Flexibility for your degree

Whether you're interested in public diplomacy at the international or local level, strategic communications for a multi-national corporation, or study abroad advising at a university, IC offers students the flexibility to design a degree that matches their unique career goals. The program encompasses multiple concentrations, a dual degree with AU's business school, and hands-on experiential learning, all of which allow students to customize their academic experiences.

IC students select one of four concentrations within the master’s degree that aligns with their career interests or design their own concentration in consultation with their academic advisor. Students can also build on their curriculum with intensive Skills Institutes and a career-oriented Practicum.

Degree Options

In addition to the standard master's degree, you can earn a dual degree through our partnership at AU.

The Intercultural and International Communication degree is a unique opportunity to study the intersection of culture and communication within the context of international affairs. We prepare graduates to be successful and culturally-aware communicators in a wide variety of public and private professional settings. You will graduate with an understanding of the complex role communication policies play in international politics and business. You will learn how to speak with foreign publics, how to navigate the cultural factors present in international and local conflicts, and how to achieve educational transformation.

The School of International Service (SIS) offers a dual master's degree program with Kogod School of Business, giving students the opportunity to acquire expertise in both international communication and business. This combination of skills is particularly valuable to international organizations trying to increase productivity through better business practices and to businesses adjusting to the global market. Graduates will receive an MA through SIS and an MBA through Kogod.

Generally, dual degree students will spend their first year taking core curriculum courses at Kogod, then spend their second and third years taking courses at both SIS and Kogod. Students must complete 31 credit hours at Kogod and 39 credit hours at SIS, with the option to count up to 9 credit hours from Kogod degree requirements towards SIS degree requirements.

Prospective MA/MBA students must separately apply to and be accepted by each school. The admissions committees from each school do not collaborate on the decision-making process.

View Kogod School of Business dual degree admissions requirements and MBA coursework.


Students can choose from the four options below for their concentration. Additionally, students have the option to complete a self-designed concentration after discussion with their academic advisor.

Below are samples of the courses you can take by concentration area.

Understand the transmission of ideas, perceptions, and feelings between and within cultures. Students will examine the drivers and expressions of cross-cultural conflict and the process of cultural adaptation to better understand and overcome barriers to effective cross-cultural communication at the individual, organizational, and international levels.

  • SIS 628 Intercultural Leadership
  • SIS 628 Postcolonialism, Race and International Relations
  • SIS 611 International Negotiation
  • SIS 730 Designing Intercultural Training Programs

Students in this concentration develop deep understanding about local and global identity dynamics and concrete strategies for developing culturally-responsive approaches in their intercultural and international work. These competencies are increasingly in demand as governmental, non-governmental, and private organizations seek to ensure that their work values diversity, fosters inclusivity, and builds equity and justice. 

  • SIS 628 Global Health, Culture and Communication
  • SIS 628 Intercultural Leadership
  • SIS 628 Global Migration
  • SIS 711 Global Perspectives on Public Diplomacy
  • SIS 711 Transnational Education
  • SIS 724 Big Data Analytics and Text Mining

Students will learn about a diverse range of policy tools, such as cultural diplomacy, international broadcasting, information operations, nation-branding, cultural management, and international education exchange programs.

  • SIS 653 Public Diplomacy
  • SIS 711 Global Perspectives on Public Diplomacy
  • SIS 653 Diplomatic Practice
  • SIS 653 The Media and Foreign Policy
  • SIS 619 Negotiation Analysis and Skills
  • SIS 628 Strategic Communication

Understand how education shapes and is shaped by international relations. Students will explore how globalization and migration influence educational policy and practice, as well as the emergence and impact of nontraditional actors in schooling around the world.

  • SIS 711 Transnational Education
  • SIS 619 Peace Education
  • EDU 611 International Education Exchange: Policies and Practices
  • EDU 614 Social Theory and Educational Practice
  • SIS 730 Developing Budget Models: International Programs
  • SIS 730 International Education Program Evaluation

Experiential Learning

Students are encouraged to take Skills Institutes and can participate in the Graduate Practicum Program, both of which provide extensive, practical real world skills.

Below are sample Skills Institutes and Practica that align with the IC curriculum.

The Practicum is a one-semester, pre-professional experience, which serves as a capstone for the MA program. Student teams complete projects for external client organizations, producing deliverables that address challenges identified by clients in a statement of work. Students work under a site supervisor and a faculty advisor. Each practicum offers real-world experience with project management, client relations, oral presentations, and writing skills. Practicum options change every year, and students can apply to one that best suits their academic and career interests. Some practica have international immersion components.

  • Affecting Institutional Culture Change for Intercultural Competence
  • Assessing Community Impact and Evaluation Training in Indonesia and Thailand
  • Cultural Diplomacy and International Exchange
  • Education Diplomacy: Building US-Cuban Educational Partnerships
  • Program Design and Assessment in International Education in Kenta
  • Putting Social Media to Work: Aligning Practice to Strategic Objectives
  • Social Diplomacy
  • Strategic Communication

Skills Institutes are intensive workshops designed to introduce students to professional skills relevant to careers in international affairs. They are a distinctive feature of the IC degree and are taught by experienced practitioners. These rigorous and experiential workshops allow students to translate theory into practice and gain the competencies sought by today's employers. Over the 2-3 full days, students will have the opportunity to focus on tangible skills that are applicable to the communication field.

  • Contemporary Public Diplomacy
  • Creative Arts and Intercultural Conflict Resolution
  • Crisis Public Diplomacy
  • Culturally-Responsive Program Analysis
  • Designing Intercultural Training Programs
  • Developing Budget Models for International Programs
  • International Education Program Evaluation
  • Smartphone Media Production

Application At a Glance

View a detailed admission and degree requirements listing for your degree of interest.

Entrance Semester
Fall and Spring
Application Deadline
January 15 for the fall semester
October 1 for the spring semester 
Additional Requirements
Undergraduate degree
Two letters of recommendation
Statement of Purpose
TOEFL/IELTS score if international applicant
Completion of online application