The Department of Communication is a national leader in the study of communication as a social science, ranked among the top five by the National Research Council.

Our faculty and students are dedicated to understanding the role and enhancing the effectiveness of communication processes, systems and infrastructure in society. We explore communication in its many forms and contexts as a fundamentally social phenomenon. Our faculty members are recognized for developing and applying novel theoretical perspectives to the most pressing social and policy issues of the day.  

Our Programs & Research

Undergraduate

Our carefully constructed curriculum provides a core of contemporary communication knowledge, theory and practice: Students learn how communication influences attitudes, opinions and behaviors; how communication systems work in society; and how to apply this understanding of communication to solve problems, sustain the environment, reach the public with new knowledge, and manage the intricate networks of technologies.

Graduate

Our faculty and associated Graduate Field of Communication ensure that students are familiar with a wide range of tools, theories and methods, and can use these skills in original empirical research that asks and answers theoretically driven, socially relevant questions. Drawing from Cornell’s outstanding scholars and resources in the social sciences, natural sciences and humanities, our students find new ways to investigate how communication shapes society.

Research & outreach

We engage in a rich variety of research at the cutting edge of the field of communication and related disciplines, conducting research in many different areas. We encourage undergraduate and graduate students to explore faculty research areas and contact individual faculty members if interested in getting involved with research. Students must have a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA to do research.

Communication in the News

An abstract image of weather.

News

The 2030 Project to marshal faculty to solve climate crisis
Declaring this the “decisive decade” for climate action, Cornell launched The 2030 Project: A Climate Initiative, which will mobilize world-class faculty to develop and accelerate tangible solutions to the climate challenge.
  • Cornell AgriTech
  • Cornell Atkinson
  • Cornell Cooperative Extension
On the left, a woman wearing a green dress. On the right, the same woman wearing a green dress but with a darker skin tone.

News

A Cornell study found that still images of models in online retail ads had statistically lighter skin tones than those in videos of the same product and model. They also found evidence of “tokenism” – one model who was considerably darker-skinned than the others.
  • Department of Communication
  • Behavior
  • Communication
COVID-19 vaccines

News

Misperceptions of marginalized and disadvantaged communities’ level of concern regarding COVID-19 and other issues could undermine cooperation and trust needed to address collective problems, according to new Cornell-led research.
  • Department of Communication
  • Communication
  • Health + Nutrition
An aerial view of a neighborhood

News

A new database allows users to search any U.S. ZIP code address to learn about extreme weather concerns like hurricane or wildfire exposure, and to find nearby problematic environmental sites.
  • Department of Communication
  • Communication
  • Environment
A stethoscope

News

A Cornell collaboration crossing medicine, law, technology and communication is aiming to encourage the use of health care benefits by refugees in the U.S. – who often suffer poor health but are using these entitlements less than they have in the past.
  • Department of Communication
  • Communication
  • Health + Nutrition

Contact Us

450 Mann Library Building
phone: (607) 255-2601
email: communication [at] cornell.edu
We are located on the 4th floor of Mann Library, accessible only by the stairs/elevators within the library, which are just past the circulation desk.

Department Hours:
Monday - Thursday, 8am to 4:30pm
Friday, 8am to 3:30pm