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Graduate

Gaylord Hall on the University of Oklahoma campus at night

Graduate Programs

 

 

Programs

These programs are geared to continuing and full-time students, as well as the working professionals who need to spread coursework over several years. The College regularly offers core courses and some (though not all) electives at night. A full-time student can generally complete the course work for a master's degree in four regular semesters. A part-time student can schedule classes at his or her own pace, with a five-year limit.

For more information on admissions and graduate student financial aid:

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Creative Media Production

This emphasis enables students to pursue individual interests in video production and multimedia through theoretical and practical study. Students tailor their study in these areas through their core coursework in research and theory, and other courses or independent study in video production and interactive multimedia.

Media Management

The emphasis in media management is designed to provide students interested in developing the insights and skills necessary for management positions in the industry with an opportunity to pursue courses that will provide such background. Students individually tailor their study through their core coursework in media research and theory, through JMC 5970 Fundamentals of Media Management, and other JMC coursework and independent study with faculty. Outside courses in marketing, business administration and/or human relations are chosen to complement this coursework according to students’ interests.

Journalism

This emphasis addresses the practical and theoretical problems of news and information gathering, editing and presentation. Students may take coursework relevant to digital journalism. Courses in the College are complemented by a wide range of courses outside it, shaped by the individual career interests of students.

Strategic Communication:
PR and Advertising

The field of strategic communication at the graduate level is of particular interest to persons involved in or anticipating careers in advertising, public relations, or research. Working from the foundation of the graduate curriculum's core courses, the strategic communication emphasis offers a mix of theory and practical courses. Relevant courses from other disciplines such as marketing, human relations, communication and psychology may be taken as electives in conjunction with this area of emphasis.

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Classes in the Master of Arts program are designed to provide a mix of mass communication theory, research methodologies and advanced professional skills. The courses you take will be determined by the route of completion (thesis, professional project, comprehensive exam) you choose.

All students must earn an overall 3.0 grade point average. Work must be completed within a five-year period.

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Requires 32 credit hours including a minimum of 4 thesis hours.

Core courses 13 hours:

  • Conceptual Issues in Graduate Study in JMC
  • Introduction to Research Methods in Mass Communication
  • Mass Communication Theory
  • Thesis/Project Seminar
  • Qualitative Research Methods OR Quantitative Research Methods

9 hours of graduate electives in Journalism and Mass Communication

6 credit hours of graduate work in areas other than Journalism and Mass Communication

JMC 5980 Thesis: 4 hours

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Requires 33 credit hours including a minimum of 4 project hours.

Core courses 13 hours:

  • Conceptual Issues in Graduate Study in JMC
  • Readings in Mass Communication
  • Introduction to Research Methods
  • Professional Practices (three 1-hour courses), and
  • Thesis/Project Seminar

10 hours of graduate electives in Journalism and Mass Communication

6 credit hours of graduate work in areas other than Journalism and Mass Communication

JMC 5880 Graduate Project: 4 hours

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Requires 33 credit hours.

Core courses 12 hours:

  • Conceptual Issues in Graduate Study in JMC
  • Readings in Mass Communication
  • Introduction to Research Methods in Mass Communication, and
  • Professional Practices (three 1-hour courses)

12 hours of graduate electives in Journalism and Mass Communication

9 credit hours of graduate work in areas other than Journalism and Mass Communication

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Graduate electives at Gaylord College vary from semester to semester to provide a wide opportunity for students to increase their knowledge of mass communication theory, research methodology and professional practices.

Here is a sample list of some recent electives in the program:

  • Contemporary Problems in Advertising
  • Magazine Production
  • Advanced Multimedia Journalism
  • Strategic Fashion Communication
  • Advertising Account Planning
  • Sports Public Relations
  • Producing and Directing for Multi-Camera
  • Advanced Video Production
  • Advanced Broadcast News
  • Multimedia Content Management
  • Documentary Producing and Directing
  • Broadcast Advertising Productionå
  • Race, Gender and the Media
  • Dramatic Series/Short Productions
  • Capitol Bureau Reporting
  • Principles of Media Entrepreneurship
  • Advanced Content Management
  • Women in Media Leadership
  • Digital Strategies and Tactics
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To further sharpen professional skills, Graduate Studies offers 1-hour professional practice courses to students in the professional project and comprehensive exam routes. These offerings vary from semester to semester, often changing to meet new trends and opportunities in mass communications. Classes meet a few times a semester, often off-campus at involved mass communication agencies and organizations. Here is a sample list of some recent offerings:

  • Contemporary Problems in Media Management
  • Writing the Memoir
  • Sell Your Writing
  • Advertising Agency Management
  • Advertising Project Management
  • Entrepreneurship in the Media
  • Readings in Advertising
  • Creative Surge
  • New Business Pitch for Ad and PR agencies

Please contact the graduate studies academic adviser, Leslie Cermak at lcermak@ou.edu for more information on these course offerings. 

The University of Oklahoma can help upwardly mobile professionals achieve their goal of being the strategic leaders that employers are seeking. Our online Master of Arts in Strategic Communication and Digital Strategy (MA-SC&DS) prepares graduates to create coordinated, proactive messaging campaigns for modern media channels in as few as 20 months. Students will learn to lead multi-channel communication teams, use research and data analytics to evaluate campaigns, leverage the power of social media to create communities, create content that tells impactful, memorable stories in digital market, and focus on essential professional skills as a strategic leader, including crisis communication, digital marketing, management and strategic planning.

This 33-credit program’s curriculum also includes the opportunity to earn certifications from industry leaders in digital marketing.

For more information on the admissions process and financial aid for graduate students, contact OU Online.

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As a graduate of this program, students will be able to:

  • Create strategy utilizing data analytics to inform decision making.
  • Understand user behavior on a variety of digital channels and tailor campaign strategies accordingly.
  • Apply best practices in social media marketing to construct a social media marketing plan.
  • Gain a deep understanding of crisis planning, media relationships, image restoration, and ethical responses.
  • Become an expert in creating crisis mitigation.
  • Use qualitative and quantitative research methods to plan campaigns and measure the effectiveness of existing campaigns.
  • Evaluate published marketing research for insights.
  • Improve storytelling skills, especially in the digital realm, multiple audiences, platforms, and purposes.
  • Create content for a variety of digital channels that tells coherent stories about organizations, brands, and products while informing consumers.
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The Master of Arts in Strategic Communication and Digital Strategy is a fully online program conducted over five semesters (20 months).

It features:

  • Courses that range from eight to 16 weeks in length
  • A blend of asynchronous coursework and live online classes
  • Mix of strategy, social media expertise, and analytic skills development

The program includes 11 courses for a total of 33 credit hours. We designed it to accommodate full- time work schedules, so our students can stay current with their career while earning a degree.

Course topics include:

  • JMC 5093 Introduction to Research Methods  
  • JMC 5863 Marketing & Media Analytics
  • JMC 5473 Social Media Marketing
  • JMC 5883 Digital Behavior
  • JMC 5293 Professional Seminar in Strategic Communication
  • JMC 5413 Crisis Communication
  • JMC 5893 Management & Leadership
  • JMC 5823 Cross-Cultural Communication
  • JMC 5343 Digital Strategic Communication
  • JMC 5813 Ethics of Strategic Communication
  • JMC 5873 Strategic Planning & Brand Strategy
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Cohort 1 (SP21)

SemesterCourses
1st Semester
SP21
  • JMC 5093 Research
  • JMC 5863 Analytics
2nd Semester
SU21
  • JMC 5473 Social Media Marketing       
  • JMC 5883 Digital Behavior
3rd Semester
FA21
  • JMC 5293 Pro Seminar      
  • JMC 5413 Crisis Comm
  • JMC 5893 Management/Leader

4th Semester
SP22
  • JMC 5873 Strategic Planning
  • JMC 5343 Digital Strategic Comm
5th Semester
SU22
  • JMC 5813 Ethics
  • JMC 5823 Cross-Cultural Comm

Cohort 2 (SU21)

SemesterCourses
1st Semester
SU21
  • JMC 5473 Social Media Marketing       
  • JMC 5883 Digital Behavior
2nd Semester
FA21
  • JMC 5093 Research        
  • JMC 5863 Analytics
3rd Semester
SP22
  • JMC 5873 Strategic Planning
  • JMC 5343 Digital Strategic Comm
4th Semester
SU22
  • JMC 5813 Ethics
  • JMC 5823 Cross-Cultural Comm
5th Semester
FA22
  • JMC 5293 Pro Seminar      
  • JMC 5413 Crisis Comm
  • JMC 5893 Management/Leader

Cohort 3 (FA21)

SemesterCourses
1st Semester
FA21
  • JMC 5293 Pro Seminar      
  • JMC 5413 Crisis Comm
  • JMC 5893 Management/Leader
2nd Semester
SP22
  • JMC 5093 Research        
  • JMC 5863 Analytics
3rd Semester
SU22
  • JMC 5813 Ethics
  • JMC 5823 Cross-Cultural Comm
4th Semester
FA22
  • JMC 5473 Social Media Marketing       
  • JMC 5883 Digital Behavior
5th Semester
SP23
  • JMC 5873 Strategic Planning
  • JMC 5343 Digital Strategic Comm
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The online MA-SC&DS includes coursework that can lead to certifications from industry leaders in digital marketing. The online MA-SC&DS has a curriculum that provides opportunities for professional certifications, including Google, Facebook, and Hootsuite.

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Carly Carson - JMC 5473 Social Media Marketing

Gill C. Duff - JMC 5873 Strategic Planning & Digital Strategy

Kimberly Hill - JMC 5873 Strategic Planning & Digital Strategy

Michael Bagalman - JMC 5863 Marketing and Media Analytics

Katie R. Place Ph.D. - JMC 5813 Ethics of Strategic Communication

Nate Fisher Ph.D. - JMC 5343 Digital Strategic Communication

Pam Campbell - JMC 5293 Professional Seminar in Strategic Communication

Pattye Moore - JMC 5893 Management and Leadership

Robert Pritchard - JMC 5413 Crisis Communication 

Meta Carstarphen - JMC 5823 Cross-Cultural Communication 

Dallas Diggs - JMC 5293 Professional Seminar in Strategic Communication

Carla Holmes - JMC 5413 Crisis Communication

Yoon Hi Sung - JMC 5343 Digital Strategic Communication and JMC 5883 Digital Behavior

Debbie Yount - JMC 5473 Social Media Marketing and JMC 5873 Strategic Planning & Digital Strategy

Doyle Yoon - JMC 5093 Research Methods in Strategic Communication and JMC 5883 Digital Behavior 

Angela Zhang - JMC 5813 Ethics of Strategic Communication

Stephanie Wierwille - JMC 5473 Social Media Marketing

Emily K. Graham - JMC 5823 Cross-Cultural Communication 

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To learn more about the online Master of Arts in Strategic Communication and Digital Strategy program, please fill out the Contact Form and an Enrollment Counselor will be in contact with to discuss the program further or email at Gaylord_OnlineMA@ou.edu.

This unique program is designed to develop and refine commercial writing skills for students interested in producing: nonfiction books, novels and screenplays.

The Master of Professional Writing (MPW) is one of the first programs of its kind in the United States, focusing on popular fiction and nonfiction. The degree evolves from a longstanding emphasis under the M.A. in Journalism and Mass Communication. For 65 years, the University of Oklahoma's program in Professional Writing has prepared students to work as freelance fiction and nonfiction writers of books, screenplays, magazine articles and short stories. Our program faculty include commercially successful authors who bring substantial practical and creative experience to the classroom. 

Our unique Master of Professional Writing program allows students to work in close collaboration with experienced faculty who are actively writing and publishing novels, non-fiction books and screenplays, and fellow students who are doing the same. The MPW program has a long history of producing some of America’s most successful novelists, including western great Louis L’Amour, mystery favorite Tony Hillerman and urban fantasy pioneer Jim Butcher. Other distinguished writers who have come through the MPW program include Marilyn Harris, Ross Thomas, Carolyn Hart, Harold Keith, Bill Wallace, Jack Bickham and Curtiss Ann Matlock.

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Students cover novel writing, nonfiction book writing and screenwriting in the core curriculum. Additional coursework in one or more of these three areas enables them to develop their knowledge and skills in line with their interests. Students’ development is demonstrated in the final project–a book-length, professional-quality manuscript.

The central feature of the curriculum is intensive evaluation and critique of each student’s writing. This individualized focus begins in the writing courses in the core curriculum and continues in much of the additional Professional Writing coursework and the final project.  Students work with instructors who are successful, published writers themselves.

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The MPW degree requires a minimum of 32 credit hours, excluding any undergraduate deficiency coursework.

Core Courses

Requires 32 credit hours excluding any undergraduate deficiency coursework.

Core courses 15 hours:

  • JMC 5514 Writing the Novel-Graduate
  • JMC 5734 Writing the Screenplay
  • JMC 5594 Writing the Commercial Nonfiction Book

And one of the following:

  • JMC 5073 Conceptual Issues in Journalism and Mass Communication
  • JMC 5063 Readings in Mass Communication
  • JMC 5083 Mass Communication Theory
  • JMC 5093 Introduction to Research Methods

PW Electives

9-12 credit hours from the list.

Students will select appropriate coursework from the list below in consultation with their adviser. Students may focus on one of the three areas covered in the core writing courses or choose to develop their abilities across more than one of those areas. In the case of individualized courses such as JMC 5503 Tutorial in Writing and JMC 5990 Independent Study, content will be tailored to the interests and needs of the student. (JMC 5514 Writing the Novel-Graduate, JMC 5594 Writing the Commercial Nonfiction Book and JMC 5734 Writing the Screenplay are listed both here and in the core curriculum because they may be repeated once with a change of content.)

NOTE: Students who wish to include any other JMC course not on the list must petition the JMC graduate liaison and the dean of the Graduate College.

Outside Electives

With the approval of the adviser, students are to take supportive coursework offered by other departments appropriate to the student’s focus in the program.

The following courses are possibilities that may be of interest to a variety of students in the program:

  • ENGL 5223 Seminar-Film
  • ENGL 5923 Advanced Fiction Writing
  • ENGL 5943 Advanced Creative Nonfiction
  • DRAM G4773 Playwriting I
  • DRAM G4783 Playwriting II
  • DRAM 5733 Graduate Play Structure and Analysis

Other areas of study will vary depending on students’ focus but may include history, psychology, physical sciences, anthropology, women’s studies, arts, modern languages, classics, or any other disciplines that should be helpful in developing the student’s final project. For example, a student writing a historical novel for a project might benefit from history courses.

Completion Project

JMC 5880 Graduate Project (2-4 hours).

The student must write a book-length manuscript (minimum of 50,000 words -- about 200 pages) or a feature-length screenplay (90 to 120 pages, approximating a film of 90 to 120 minutes) in the appropriate professionally recognized formats. The content of the project must be substantially new material and cannot repeat that submitted in previous coursework. This work is done under JMC 5880 Graduate Project.

The student must assemble a project committee, as the College of Journalism and Mass Communication and the Graduate College require for thesis students. The student must then submit a written project proposal for approval. The proposal shall detail whether the project is to be a book or screenplay; it shall specify appropriate professional markets for future submission of the work; it shall include the major points of content; and it shall state any specific research methods necessary to support the development of the work. Upon completion of the project, the student must successfully defend the work before his or her committee and be able to provide a marketing strategy for submission to publishers or studios. (The work does not have to be accepted for publication but must be judged by the committee to be of publishable quality.)

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Graduate electives at Gaylord College vary from semester to semester to provide a wide opportunity for students to increase their knowledge of mass communication theory, research methodology and professional practices.

Here is a sample list of some recent electives in the program:

  • Contemporary Problems in Advertising
  • Magazine Production
  • Advanced Multimedia Journalism
  • Strategic Fashion Communication
  • Advertising Account Planning
  • Sports Public Relations
  • Producing and Directing for Multi-Camera
  • Advanced Video Production
  • Advanced Broadcast News
  • Multimedia Content Management
  • Documentary Producing and Directing
  • Broadcast Advertising Productionå
  • Race, Gender and the Media
  • Dramatic Series/Short Productions
  • Capitol Bureau Reporting
  • Principles of Media Entrepreneurship
  • Advanced Content Management
  • Women in Media Leadership
  • Digital Strategies and Tactics
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To further sharpen professional skills, Graduate Studies offers 1-hour professional practice courses to students in the professional project and comprehensive exam routes. These offerings vary from semester to semester, often changing to meet new trends and opportunities in mass communications. Classes meet a few times a semester, often off-campus at involved mass communication agencies and organizations. Here is a sample list of some recent offerings:

  • Contemporary Problems in Media Management
  • Writing the Memoir
  • Sell Your Writing
  • Advertising Agency Management
  • Advertising Project Management
  • Entrepreneurship in the Media
  • Readings in Advertising
  • Creative Surge
  • New Business Pitch for Ad and PR agencies

Please contact the graduate studies academic adviser, Leslie Cermak at lcermak@ou.edu for more information on these course offerings. 

Gaylord College now offers an accelerated BA/MA program that allows high achieving undergraduate students to begin graduate study during their senior year. The programs are designed for students to complete their master's degree in one year beyond the BA study. This program allows students to earn both the bachelor's and master's degrees in five years. 

Students can pursue an accelerated master's degree in creative media production, journalism, and strategic communication (with focus in public relations or advertising).

For more information on admissions and graduate student financial aid:

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Gaylord students with a 3.5 GPA (or higher) and minimum of 97 credit hours completed before beginning the program. 

Applications are available from your undergraduate adviser.

Completed applications should be submitted to Leslie Cermak, Gaylord graduate student adviser, Room 3120C Gaylord Hall. 

Applications received before March 1st of every year will be considered for fall semester.

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Sequential degree programs confer the BA when it is completed so students can graduate with BA with their undergraduate cohorts. 

Two options in all degree programs: choose to do a project or thesis. 

Shared credits: Select up to 9 credit hours of shared BA/MA credits (up to 6 credit hours in JMC)

Same curriculum experience (required courses, number of credit hours) as current MA project and thesis options.

Pay undergraduate tuition until completing BA. 

Graduate assistantships available on competitive basis in the fifth year.

The Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication invites applicants for our Ph.D. program. We seek junior colleagues who wish to explore deeply the practices and values of journalism, mass communication and the media professions. Successful applicants will be admitted for the fall semester, with an application deadline of February 1. The program is highly competitive, admitting and funding up to five students per year. We welcome applicants from across Oklahoma, the United States and the world – particularly those with three or more years of professional experience in journalism and mass communication disciplines.

Doctoral candidates will find a faculty with a wide range of interests encompassing a variety of approaches and perspectives related to the program’s three concentrations:  News and Information, Strategic Communication and Media Arts.  The program builds on a record of excellence in preparing master’s students for doctoral study, as evidenced by top-paper awards and paper presentations at national and international academic conferences in recent years.

The program is housed in Gaylord Hall, a state-of-the-art building with a 44,000-square-foot wing with space devoted to graduate research and teaching support. Graduates will be prepared to become both accomplished researchers and outstanding teachers in colleges and universities around the world.

For more information on admissions and financial aid:
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  • Strong grounding in a range of research methods.
    Students must complete three research methods courses, including both advanced quantitative and qualitative courses offered in the Gaylord College and a third research methodology course (or graduate-level statistics course) from elsewhere on the OU campus. (These three are in addition to a requirement of basic graduate-level research methods proficiency.)
  • An emphasis on regular interaction between students and faculty about research.
    Students must take a weekly, one-credit Ph.D. Seminar course to feature discussions and presentations of research by faculty, students, and guests. This course will underline the faculty’s expectation of research productivity and quality among our doctoral students.
  • An expectation of student excellence in teaching.
    The program will require a course exploring pedagogical theory and practice. The course will be aimed at helping our doctoral students to become excellent teachers in addition to excellent researchers.  Most students will also have the opportunity to gain teaching experience as part of their work as graduate assistants.
  • Opportunity for flexible, interdisciplinary study in an outside area of concentration.
    The requirement of a concentration outside the college reflects the program’s commitment to drawing on the broad strengths of the university in social sciences and humanities.
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News and Information

Emphasizes performance, critical analysis, effects, representations and the community-building potential of news and information media.

Faculty expertise: organizational management, media ethics and normative theory, media law, race and gender, media credibility, and international/intercultural/ethnic media.

Strategic Communication

Emphasizes a broad spectrum of theoretical and practice-oriented research topics and problems in public relations and advertising.

Faculty expertise: digital advertising, public relations, media psychology, race and gender, health communication, data analytics, public diplomacy, crisis communication, and message strategy and tactics.

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Total 90 hours, with varying amounts of M.A. and Ph.D. transfer credit to be determined by the Gaylord College Graduate Committee, Graduate Director and Graduate College.

Core Classes:
37 minimum hours

  • 3 hours – Research methods proficiency (basic graduate-level proficiency demonstrated through completion of JMC 5093 Introduction to Research Methods, a graduate-level methods course elsewhere in the university or a methods course transferred in)
  • 3 hours – JMC 5073 Conceptual Issues in Graduate Study in Journalism and Mass Communication or 3 hours of graduate electives (if course was taken at M.A. level)
  • 3 hours – JMC 6133 Advanced Quantitative Research Methods or 3 hours of 6000-level electives as approved by the student’s advisory committee (if JMC 5133 Quantitative Research Methods was taken at the M.A. level)
  • 3 hours – JMC 6113 Advanced Qualitative Research Methods or 3 hours of 6000-level electives as approved by the student’s advisory committee (if JMC 5113 Qualitative Research Methods was taken at the M.A. level)
  • 3 hours – JMC 6083 Advanced Mass Communication Theory or3 hours of 6000-level electives as approved by the student’s advisory committee (if JMC 5083 Mass Communication Theory was taken at the M.A. level)
  • 3 hours – JMC 6183 Approaches to Teaching
  • 4 hours – JMC 6091 Ph.D. Seminar (1 credit per semester, minimum 4 hours)
  • 3 hours – Additional research methods course and/or graduate-level statistics (to be taken at 5000 or 6000 level in an OU department outside of JMC -- for example, Anthropology, Psychology,Sociology, History)
  • 12 hours minimum – JMC 6980 Dissertation

Concentration and Emphasis:
24 minimum hours

  • 9 hours minimum – Courses in concentration

Students will choose one of the following areas and take Advanced Topics in that area at least three times for a total of 9 hours. With approval of their advisory committees, students may divide the 9 hours among more than one of the Advanced Topics areas:

  • JMC 6153 Advanced Topics in Media Arts*
  • JMC 6163 Advanced Topics in News and Information*
  • JMC 6173 Advanced Topics in Strategic Communication*
  • 15 hours minimum – Secondary area of emphasis outside JMC

Other Requirements

The student’s emphasis will be defined in the plan of study and will likely include courses from two or more departments.

Numerous possibilities for interdisciplinary study exist in the university. Given the breadth of intellectual grounding in mass communication study, possible departments are many, including Anthropology, Communication, History, Political Science, Philosophy, Sociology, Human Relations, Marketing, and Management. The secondary-emphasis requirement will enable students to take maximum advantage of these opportunities.

Total from above requirements:
61 hours (minimum)

Remaining hours to bring degree total to 90 will come from a combination of additional electives taken during the student’s doctoral study at OU, transfer credit, or both.

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Applicants must complete the appropriate general OU Graduate Application using the links below.

  • A minimum of three years of professional experience in a mass communication field is preferred.
  • Excellent candidates who do not meet all of the requirements will be given careful consideration.
  • Retention and graduation standards will be in accordance with OU Graduate College policies.
DeadlineDescription
Dec. 15
This is the preferred application deadline for all doctoral students wishing to be considered for Gaylord College assistantships and scholarships for the fall semester.
Feb. 1Final deadline for all doctoral students for admission for the fall semester.
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  • A 3.5 GPA (4.0 scale) in all previous graduate work
  • Strong GRE scores
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • A one to two-page resume
  • A written essay of 1,000 words minimum detailing the student’s reasonsfor pursuing the degree and the intended future application of thedegree
  • International students are required by the university to take the TOEFL and IELTS exams, with a minimum score of 79 on TOEFL and a 6.5 minimum on the IELTS exam.

Practice materials for the TOEFL can be found at www.examfocus.com.

     

     

 

 

Gaylord College Graduate Certificate Programs

Students can now receive graduate certificates in
strategic planning or media management

In Fall 2016, the Gaylord College introduced two new graduate certificates: a Graduate Certificate in Media Management and a Graduate Certificate in Strategic Planning. Any current OU student, or any non-student who has completed a bachelor’s degree, can apply to be admitted to complete either one or both of the certificates. 

Graduate certificates are not degree programs; rather, they are separate graduate education credentials. Certificates are the sets of courses that provide specific knowledge in the particular area. You do not have to commit to the 2-year Master’s program of study: with the graduate certificate, you simply apply to get accepted to the certificate program, complete a certain number of courses (on your time schedule, no time limit exists), and receive the certificate upon completion.

It is possible to apply the certificate coursework to the MA degree within the Gaylord College if later you decide to pursue a Master’s degree.

The Media Management Graduate Certificate (pdf) requires a total of 13 credit hours:  9 credit hours of Journalism and Mass Communication courses (in the Gaylord College) and 4 credit hours of courses in the Price College of Business.

The Strategic Planning Graduate Certificate (pdf) requires 12 hours: 9 credit hours in JMC (and includes courses such as strategic planning and strategic communication cases) and 3 credit hours in Anthropology (to master qualitative ethnographic marketing research techniques).

More information about the application process is below, or contact graduate student adviser Leslie Cermak lcermak@ou.edu.

     

     

 

 

Apply

Gaylord College graduate programs are ideally designed for a fall start, but students may be admitted throughout the year. 

December 15 is the preferred application deadline for all prospective doctoral students wishing to be considered for Gaylord College assistantships and scholarships for the fall semester.

February 1 is the deadline for all prospective graduate students wishing to be considered for Gaylord College assistantships and scholarships for the fall semester. 

DeadlineDescription
Feb. 1


Deadline for all prospective graduate students wishing to be considered for assistantships and scholarships for the fall semester.

Deadline for international students to apply for admission for a summer start.

March 1Deadline for International students to apply for admission for a fall start.
April 1Deadline for U.S. students to apply for admission for a summer start.
May 1Deadline for U.S. students to apply for admission for a fall start.
Sept. 1Deadline for International students to apply for admission for a spring start.
Nov. 1Deadline for U.S. students to apply for admission for a spring start.
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  • A minimum of three years of professional experience in a mass communication field is preferred.
  • Excellent candidates who do not meet all of the requirements will be given careful consideration.
  • Retention and graduation standards will be in accordance with OU Graduate College policies.

Applicants must complete the appropriate general OU Graduate Application using the links below:

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Visiting the program is not a requirement for application, but is encouraged. Students may arrange for a visit by contacting:

Leslie Cermak, Graduate Adviser
405-325-2722
lcermak@ou.edu

Visits are conducted throughout the year, however some faculty may not be available during semester breaks and/or the summer semester.

Take the GRE

The Gaylord College graduate program requires the following scores on the GRE for admission:

  • 150 Quantitative
  • 150 Verbal
  • 4.5 Essay

The Graduate Record Examination is available throughout the year at testing locations. To find one near you, please visit www.gre.org. Please use the following codes to ensure your test results are submitted to Gaylord:

  • OU School Code: 6879
  • Department Code: 4503

Take the TOEFL

International students are required to take the TOEFL examination. Find out more about locations and testing at www.ets.org/toefl.

Complete the appropriate General OU Graduate Application

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The applicant (a new OU graduate student OR current OU graduate student) should:

  1. Create an account and complete the application for admission at the Graduate College Office of Admissions: ou.edu/gradcollege
  2. Application deadline: rolling
  3. Applicants do not have to take Graduate Record Examination (GRE). International students must take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or satisfy the English proficiency requirement by another method approved by the Graduate College Office of Admissions. The English proficiency requirement is a State Regents requirement for all international students and cannot be waived.
  4. Other application materials to be submitted to the Graduate College Office of Admissions are official transcript (to confirm an undergraduate degree), applicant’s resume and personal statement. One letter of recommendation is optional.

     

     

 

 

Financial Aid

The Gaylord College currently offers several graduate assistantships and many scholarships each academic year.

To apply for graduate assistantships and scholarships, you must complete Form A and 3 copies of Form B by the February 1 deadline, as well as have a completed application on file.

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For more information about Gaylord College programs, contact:

Phone: (405) 325-2722
Email: lcermak@ou.edu

Information about other sources of financial aid may also be found on the OU Student Financial Center website.

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Assistantship work may include tasks such as assisting a faculty member with research, working with students in a lab section of a course, helping with grading or class preparation, or assisting in the journalism library. A full assistantship involves 20 hours of work per week during the regular academic year. It carries a waiver of nine hours per semester of the nonresident portion of tuition and seven hours of the resident portion. A stipend is provided for 20 hours of work per week. Student health insurance is also included.

Scholarships range from $500 to about $2,500. Both academic ability and financial need are considered. The following scholarships are offered:

  • Chester H. Westfall Scholarship (outstanding student in journalism)
  • Peggy Marchant Rutland (awarded to a female, Oklahoma resident)
  • Gaylord Family
  • O.H. Lachenmeyer Memorial- a publisher of the Cushing Daily Citizen
  • Gaylord College Memorial- in memory of:
    • Dr. Fayette Copeland, director of the OU School of Journalism from 1947-1961
    • Mrs. Walter Ferguson
    • Laura H. Billingsley, a 1923 graduate of the OU School of Journalism
    • Paul Dannelly, OU Professor of Public Relations
    • John Scott, author of "Course of Oil," a month analysis of the oil and gas market

Gaylord College and OU Graduate College fellowships are available on a competitive basis. Top Ph.D. applicants will be automatically considered for these fellowships.

Graduate students may also hold leadership positions and receive pay for working with student media outlets and co-curricular activities including:

  • OU Nightly newscast
  • The Oklahoma Daily
  • The Wire student radio
  • Sooner Sports Pad
  • Routes multimedia journalism project
  • Lindsey+Asp advertising and public relations agency
  • Oklahoma Watch
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The Gaylord College offers special funding to five outstanding students per year. The following two packages are highly competitive with other programs around the country.

  • $23,000 stipend per year for four years. Doctoral graduate assistants work with faculty on research and/or as teaching assistants for 20 hours per week during each academic year.
  • Full waiver of tuition. Fees are the responsibility of the student. Currently, course fees are about $4,500 annually. The university has approved a plan to eliminate these fees over the next 6-8 years.
  • Doctoral students receive a $1,000 annual conference travel stipend to present research. Additional travel and research support is available through the Graduate College and Graduate Student Senate.
  • Student health insurance (“Plan II”) with the option of buying additional insurance for the fellow or dependents.
  • Each year, a special graduate committee will select outstanding applicants to receive our highest level of support.
  • $18,500-24,000 stipend per year for three years. Fellows will teach and do research for 20 hours per week during each academic year.
  • Full waiver of tuition and partial or full waiver of course fees.
  • $1,000 per year for three years for travel to present research papers at conferences, given that travel grant applications will be completed and separate presentations will also be made to the Gaylord College faculty and students.
  • Student health insurance (“Plan II”) with the option of buying additional insurance for the fellow or dependents.

Other funding opportunities may also be available. Students may seek assistance through the University Office of Financial Aid Services for federal loans and grants. Student Financial Center.

For more information about Gaylord College programs, contact:

Phone: (405) 325-2722
Email: lcermak@ou.edu

     

     

 

 

Graduate Opportunities

The majority of opportunities that are available for undergraduate students like clubs, guest speakers, internships and travel/study opportunities are also open to graduate students. Below are some activities that may interest graduate students and provide opportunities to collaborate with fellow scholars and faculty.

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The OU campus offers students and faculty a broad array of opportunities to conduct research across departmental boundaries. Common areas of collaboration for journalism researchers include political communication, crisis communication, public affairs, political science, international studies and computer science.

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Several opportunities to affect change on the OU campus and within the Gaylord College are available to graduate students. Gaylord College graduate students nominate two students each year to represent them in the Graduate Student Senate. Along with other representatives from the other colleges on campus, these students meet with the Graduate College and work together to create policies to guide research and other activities on campus.

Two graduate students also serve as official representatives in the Gaylord College Ambassadors. These students along with approximately two dozen undergrad students, represent the college at special events, conduct tours and escort special guests on campus.

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This is a series of brown bag lunch speakers that are arranged by graduate students for graduate students. The inaugural series was coordinated by Ph.D. student Nur Uysal and focused on the Media and War.

     

     

 

 

Featured Alumni

Joel Gavin

Q: What is your current position?

A: I am the Director of Marketing and Communications at the Oklahoma Arts Council, which is a state agency created by the state Legislature in 1965 to lead in developing a thriving arts industry in our state. I am celebrating 10 years with the agency this month (April 2019). My responsibilities vary quite a bit. They include developing and executing an overall agency marketing strategy; creating communications policies; planning events; branding and messaging; editing; managing three social media accounts; writing talking points and scripts; media relations; producing a monthly newsletter; and, more. We are a small government agency with relatively few people on staff, which means we all wear several hats. For me, this has meant that in addition to my responsibilities in marketing and communications, I review grant applications monthly, as we provide grant funding to hundreds of nonprofits, schools, and local governments statewide. These varying responsibilities help keep my job interesting.

Q: What is the year of your graduation and area of graduate study? 

A: I graduated in May 2009. Public relations and advertising were my areas of focus and interest. I wrote my thesis on media dependency and the use of the internet in religion. I’m sure a lot has changed in this area in ten years.

Q: How did the Gaylord graduate program prepare you for your current position?

A: It was an interesting contrast and a perfect complement to my undergraduate program, in which I earned a degree in business from another school. I recall early in my experience at Gaylord how several professors would use the phrase “connect the dots.” It was abstract to me at the time, but the metaphor has since crystallized. It helped me learn how to connect the theoretical to the concrete, which has been beneficial in my thought process. It taught the importance of knowing how to defend a position and build a sound rationale. One of the most valuable parts of my experience was the collaborative nature of working with my thesis chair, Dr. Gade, as my research project evolved. I knew he would challenge me and push me to do my best, and he didn’t disappoint. The rigor required through the program and the process strengthened my work ethic and set me up for success.

Q: What professional/research projects are you involved in?

A: Currently, I am organizing the annual Governor’s Arts Awards, which takes place April 16 at the state Capitol. It’s a sizable event that requires a fair amount of work, especially as it involves a lot of moving pieces. It is a rewarding event in that we get to honor people who are doing great work in communities and schools across Oklahoma.

Q: What professional achievements would you like to share?

A: I am probably most satisfied with my growth as a professional and the level of confidence and comfort I now have in my career. This isn’t a typical response to this type of question, but, as it is something that is subtle, in my opinion it is more gratifying than perhaps listing recognitions. In my current job, and in my previous job working for Governor Brad Henry, I’ve had occasion to work with people that are fairly well known. I could never have planned out a career like this. It has been an interesting ride. While this may not generally be classifiable under achievements, per se, it does help me reflect on the path of which I have traveled.

Q: How do you spend your free time?

A: I have two daughters. One is four and the other almost six. My free time is often spent playing with them or working with them on their reading or other learning. They are getting to ages where travel and longer vacations are possible, so that may be in our near future. We took a short trip to Kansas City last summer, which was a terrific place to take a family. Also, I am the cook in my family, which I do in part because I enjoy it. So, I spend plenty of time in the kitchen. My wife and I have parents in Oklahoma City, so we are blessed to be able to have consistent date nights.

Q: What advice would you give graduate students that can help them in school and their careers?

A: As far as advice on school, I say make the program work for you. If you are going to invest your time and resources on getting the degree, don’t shy away from maximizing the experience. For me, I did this by making sure I had a thesis chair whom I knew would challenge me and have high expectations. As far as advice in a career, every person is different, so assess what is most important to you. I am drawn to public service and, specifically, my work at the Oklahoma Arts Council, because it is a chance for me to do something to build our state and make it a better place. It also provides life balance, which I value as much as anything. I like to work, but I also love spending time with my family.

Christal Johnson

Q: What is your current position? 

A:  I am an assistant teaching professor (public relations department) in Newhouse School of Communications at Syracuse University. I’ve worked in this position for four years.  My responsibilities include teaching both undergraduate and graduate courses, advising students, and serving on various committees. Not sure if there’s an “average” day, but on any given day, I may be teaching classes, holding office hours, advising graduate students on their theses, meeting with my Newhouse advisees about course schedules, attending committee meetings, grading papers, and preparing lesson plans for the remaining week.

Q: What is the year of your graduation and area of graduate study? 

A: I graduated in 2013 with a Ph.D. in Mass Communication (public relations). My dissertation focused on cultural relevance and the meaning-making process of health messages for Black Women.

Q: How did the Gaylord graduate program prepare you for your current position?

A: It’s a challenge to give a succinct answer to this question, as Gaylord College prepared me in several ways, but I’ll try.

The depth and breadth of research and application of assignments that I completed in my classes prepared me tremendously for my profession. Additionally, the personal and professional advice and mentorship that my professors and dissertation committee members gave me has helped me succeed as a professor and a colleague.  I find myself implementing much of the knowledge that I learned in Gaylord in my own classes. For example, I tell my graduate students that the question determines the method (that’s a Gadeism); there’s a difference between a literature review and a review of literature (that’s a Beardism); and one should analyze the various layers of meaning in qualitative data to develop the best results (that’s a Carstarphenism), just to name a few! Every last one of my Gaylord professors contributed to my life in meaningful ways.

Q: What professional/research projects are you involved in?

A: I am developing curriculum and helping to shape the landscape of new course offerings in Newhouse School, such as Advanced Social Media Analytics, Thesis Seminar, and Hip-Hop and Media.

Although I’m in the PR Department, I am blessed to help develop and teach a wide spectrum of classes. I attribute my ability to teach an eclectic mix of courses to my training and tutelage from Gaylord College.

Q: What professional achievements would you like to share?

A: I’ve had the honor of teaching at two prestigious universities (Howard University and Syracuse University). As I mentioned earlier, I’m developing curriculum for new courses at Syracuse University.

In addition to working in academia, I am a licensed financial consultant where I get the opportunity to educate and empower others about financial literacy and help them develop a plan for financial freedom.

Q: How do you spend your free time?

A: What is free time (smile)? I learn that I have to make time for myself, and when I do, I like to travel, spend time with my family, and watch Judge Judy!

Q: What would you like to share about yourself with Gaylord faculty, alumni, and graduate students?

A: Gaylord College has one of the top-notch communications programs and roster of faculty and staff, hands down. From the course offerings, to the research, knowledge & experience of faculty, to the supportive staff members, Gaylord College has an unparalleled program that will successfully prepare any student for both academia and the industry. I am truly blessed and honored to be a Gaylord alum.

Q: What advice would you give graduate students that can help them in school and their careers?

A: Giving up is not an option. Push a little more, pray a little more, write a little more, talk to your faculty advisors or supervisor a little more, do a little more until it’s done. Whatever “it” is, get it done, make it happen, and know that bigger, better and greater are waiting for you on the other side of your situation.

Tara Mortensen

Q: What is your current position? 

A: Associate Professor at the University of South Carolina’s School of Journalism and Mass Communication and Chair of the Visual Communications Sequence. I have been at UofSC since 2012. An average workday involves teaching courses in visual communications, research, and mentoring students. I have taught a number of classes, including Principles of Visual Communication, Graphics for Visual Communications, Informational Graphics, Design of Online Content, and the Portfolio Design Capstone course.

Q: What is the year of your graduation and area of graduate study? (e.g. advertising, creative media production, journalism, public relations)

A: I graduated in 2013 with a PhD in Journalism.

Q: How did the Gaylord graduate program prepare you for your current position?

A: The Gaylord graduate program prepared well for my current position by encouraging my research and professional interests in visual communications and mentoring me in these areas. The graduate faculty worked with me closely to develop my research focus, and my dissertation provided me with a springboard for quickly launching my program of research.

Q: What professional/research projects are you involved in?

A: I’m always working on several research projects at a time, but right now I’m working to learn biometrics measures for visual communications research (including things like heartrate, brain wave activity, and eyetracking). I’m also currently the vice-head of the visual communications division of AEJMC, and that is keeping me busy.

Q: What professional achievements would you like to share?

A: I was very happy to have been given the Excellence in Visual Communications Education award from AEJMC this year.

Q: How do you spend your free time?

A: Entertaining a very busy 5-year old! I also spend time with gardening, interior design, and tending to my backyard koi pond.

Q: What advice would you give graduate students that can help them in school and their careers?

A: A few things that helped me: 1) Study hard, but not at the expense of your physical and mental health; take one full day per week off to give your mind a rest and you will be more able to concentrate the remainder of the week. 2) Structure your time into large unstructured blocks so that you never have to question whether you’re doing what is most important.  3) Work at coffee shops or restaurants. Being in the presence of others makes the research journey seem less lonely, and the coffee helps, too. 4) Work closely with your professors and mentors and ask questions. 5) Make friends with your fellow classmates. They will be lifelong friends.

Chad Nye

Q: What is your current position?

A: I am an associate professor of journalism and the department chair of the Journalism, Multimedia, Public Relations department at Keene State College in Keene, New Hampshire. My daily work includes teaching two courses and supervising KSC-TV News, our JMPR news broadcast program, and Inside Owl Athletics, a sports broadcast program produced by our athletics department in conjunction with JMPR.

Q: What is the year of your graduation and area of graduate study?

A: I graduated in 2011 with a Ph.D. in Mass Communication. I was a member of the first Gaylord Ph.D. program, and I was one of the first to graduate from the program.

Q: How did the Gaylord graduate program prepare you for your current position?

A: The reading, the research, the deeper understanding of how scholars approach issues of journalism and mass communication were the obvious academic benefits of being a Gaylord Ph.D. student. Beyond that, some of the best preparation I received was the mentorship of my professors. Learning from them how one navigates the multiple responsibilities of teaching, scholarship, service, and student media has proven to be one of the most valuable aspects of my Gaylord experience.

Q: What professional/research projects are you involved in?

A: My research is currently focused on faculty-led journalism projects that allow me to mentor student journalists while also providing community service and outreach for the college. The best example of this work is our sports program Inside Owl Athletics. My next project will focus on the 2020 New Hampshire primary. I am planning a civic journalism project that will cover the candidates and the issues of the campaign through the primary and the general election.

Q: What professional achievements would you like to share?

A: Just a year after graduating from the Gaylord College, I was asked by an academic publisher to write a book based on my dissertation research. The book, Journalism and Justice in the Oklahoma City Bombing Trials, explores the multiple fair trial/free press issues that were present in these truly unique cases.

Q: How do you spend your free time?

A: I am blessed to live in a place as beautiful and bountiful for outdoor activity as New Hampshire. Hiking here in the fall is amazing. Snowshoeing in the winter is exhilarating. Kayaking and fishing in the spring and summer is outstanding. I train year-round for sprint triathlons, but it is a pretty short season up here. Of course, I also watch Sooner football in the fall!

Q: What would you like to share about yourself with Gaylord faculty, alumni, and graduate students?

A: My years as a Gaylord Ph.D. student were some of the most formative of my life. I have never been pushed harder intellectually, and that’s the way it should be. What I truly appreciated was the faculty support. Our professors pushed us like tough coaches, but they were also our biggest fans. I will always be grateful for my dissertation adviser, Dr. Fred Beard, and all of my dissertation committee members.

Q: What advice would you give graduate students that can help them in school and their careers?

A: When a problem/issue/challenge arises, go to your faculty adviser. They are there to help you, and they will. Do not suffer in silence. When you don’t know what to write … write something! Editing a paper that went off in the wrong direction is much easier than writing from scratch on a tight deadline. You have about 10 minutes each day that you are not reading or writing something. Use that time to take care of yourself. Pray … read or watch something that makes you laugh … go for a walk … find something that gives your mind and body a break, and commit to give yourself that little luxury each day.

Dr. Khalaf Tahat

Q: What is your current position? 

A:  I’m the Dean of Mass Communication College at Yarmouk University in Jordan, I were appointed at this position since August 20th 2019. Before that I had been the vice dean of mass communication college at YU for four years (Seb. 2015 – Aug. 2019). Usually my responsibilities in the adminstration are to liaise with international organizations (e.g., IREX, InterNews, UNESCO, EU, etc) and attract funding for the projects of the college to develop its infrastructure and modernization of its equipments.  Also my task is to improve the study plan of both B. A. and M.A .

Actually working at a public university is a tedious and laborious process, especially in light of the lack of finance resources, but it is very nice to feel that this pressure at work turns into real opportunities for the future of my students.

Q: What is the year of your graduation and area of graduate study? 

A: May 2015 was the year of my graduation, and journalism is my area of study (Ph.D).

Q: How did the Gaylord graduate program prepare you for your current position?

A: Gaylord has the finest academic researchers from different research schools and their research interests cover all current and future paths in the media. I am lucky that I have been a student at the hands of those scientists who have not hesitated to offer their latest knowledge and sincere guidance. I’m so thankful for Gaylord family for their generous financial support, this support enabling me to be in an educational environment that encourages research, excellence and perseverance. So I'm not surprised that the sincerity at work and the experience of my professors at Gaylord enabled me to get my PhD in three years. These circumstances enabled me to return quickly to my country Jordan in the Middle East to serve Jordan and academic programs that study journalism and media from my research and administrative position. This is why I have been also selected last week by the government to be a member of National Team to develop media education, the project aimed to teach media course in elementary schools by developing curriculum for this purpose.

Q: What professional/research projects are you involved in?

A: Besides my current position as the dean of mass communication college, I have been chosen from Jordanian Press Association board to be the head of their branch in North of Jordan. This branch has about 80 journalists belong to four governorates in north of Jordan (Irbid, Jarash, Ajloun, and Mafraq).

Q: What professional achievements would you like to share?

A: Interestingly, my efforts have resulted in getting the support of UNESCO and the European Union worth $ 350 thousand to develop the infrastructure of the college, updating new study plan for journalism, and RTV departments, building the capacity of Yarmouk FM, and establishing the largest multimedia laboratories in Jordan (about 120 computer stations).

Q: How do you spend your free time?

A: Friday is the only day I can stay with my family and kids. Usually we spend it in visiting our families in the village. We also visit some natural sites such as forests in Ajloun and Jerash and do barbecue.

Q: What would you like to share about yourself with Gaylord faculty, alumni, and graduate students?

A: OU always in my mind and also feel proud that I was one of its alumni. My little son his name Naser was also born at Norman. So I believe something close to me live with me remind me about Norman and Oklahoma.  

Q: What advice would you give graduate students that can help them in school and their careers?

A: In short and based on my experience, I can say that the best investment you can get is to be in Gaylord.