A student majoring in Speech Communications learns how humans communicate in every possible setting, from small groups to large organizations, and for every possible reason, from debates to public speaking. Effective communication skills influence every aspect of life and can serve as the basis for careers in a variety of areas.

Speech Communication majors can go into public relations or other related occupations, while some go on to graduate school or law school. But many students graduate with an education degree and teach speech in Middle Schools or High Schools.

Speech Communication at BHSU offers:

  • The opportunity to join the Forensics Team and participate in debates across the state
  • Small classes with excellent individual attention
  • Highly motivated and experienced faculty
  • Opportunities to use your speech skills in other student organizations, such as the campus radio and TV stations

Develop a Highly Desirable Skill Set

As a Speech Communication Studies Major or Minor you will study people and how they interact with each other using messages. Five hundred years ago, French intellectual François de La Rochefoucauld remarked that one is better off studying people rather than books. In today’s fast-changing society where technical requirements of jobs change rapidly, the one constant you can count on is that you will need to understand people. If you want to be more clear and persuasive when you communicate, if you want to understand what other people are saying, and if you want a skill set that will be relevant no matter what the future holds, consider a Communication Studies major or minor.

  • THE OPPORTUNITY to join the Forensics Team and compete at tournaments across the country.
  • SMALL CLASSES with excellent individual attention.
  • HIGHLY MOTIVATED and experienced faculty.
  • EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION SKILLS influence every aspect of life and can serve as the basis for careers in a variety of areas.

SPEECH Communication Studies Course Requirements

*Current students, please refer to the DegreeWorks Dashboard in MyBHSU to confirm your major requirements.

Find Your Career

Employment opportunities include:
» Applied Communication
» Communication Education
» Electronic and Digital Media
» Health Communication
» International Communication
» Legal Communication
» Mediation and Dispute Resolution
» Performance Studies
» Public Address
» Public Relations
» Rhetorical Criticism

Student Experiences


“BHSU Speech Communication Studies is an excellent program not only for those students planning to enter the speech communication field, but for any student who wants to improve thinking and speaking abilities. The program, especially debate classes, prepares students to communicate clearly and succinctly in ‘real life’ scenarios. As a graduate of BHSU and a participant in the debate program, I rely daily on the thinking and speaking knowledge that I gained through the program. The Communications Studies major provides current students and graduates like me with not only the knowledge of communication theory and practice, but with the wisdom to put that knowledge into practice. I highly recommend the classes for theory, practice, and future application as a major course of study or as electives.


“As a transfer student, I am proud to report that the decision to earn my degree at BHSU rather than other institutions was the right decision. The course schedule coupled with engaging and dedicated professors make the Speech Communication Studies major an educational and worthy endeavor. My degree services my professional life as part of a management team for an affordable housing community. I use my degree every day. All human beings need to communicate. My degree helps me to understand, use and excel in it. The value is in the name: Communication.”




“Obtaining a Speech Communication Studies degree from BHSU gave me the tools I needed to follow my dreams. For me, it was more than earning a degree; it was gaining the skills I would use in my career as an Admissions Counselor and High School Soccer Coach, as well as in my everyday life.”

Contact Info

Sonya Pagel
Professor, Speech Communication
Meier Hall 308 Map
Phone: 605-642-6085

Black Hills State University
1200 University St. Unit 9003
Spearfish, SD, USA 57799-9003