A handful of nonprofit, postsecondary schools in Florida offer degree programs in the telecommunications field that range from the associate's to bachelor's and graduate levels. While some programs are geared toward the journalistic and communications aspects of this field, others focus on the technical side, including courses in computer networking and engineering. In addition to classroom instruction, some programs may offer students alternative learning opportunities, such as a multimedia project, work experiences through on-campus radio or broadcast stations, or an internship. Graduate students may choose to complete a thesis.
Find below more information about the telecommunications programs offered by Florida schools.
Florida International University
This Miami university features a 30-credit hour telecommunications and networking master's degree program. This multidisciplinary program combines computer science, engineering and business management and is the first of its kind in the state. The program offers two tracks. The systems and networks track requires applicants to have a bachelor's degree relevant to computer science, math, physics or computer engineering. Applicants to the management and policy track must have a bachelor's degree in engineering, information science or another technology- or science-related field. Students choose a thesis or non-thesis option. The College of Engineering and Computing offers eligible students fellowships, assistantships and scholarships, some of which include full tuition and a stipend.
Florida State College at Jacksonville
This Jacksonville college offers a bachelor's degree program in computer systems networking and telecommunications. Students must have earned an associate's degree or higher and taken prerequisites in computer networking before they are accepted to the program. The curriculum provides coursework in the management of computer system networks for public and private businesses. Some of the upper-level courses cover integration of information technology, network security, new technologies and information technology administration. A capstone course and an internship are required during the final two years of the program.
University of Florida
This public university in Gainesville allows students to study electronic mass media in its Department of Telecommunication. Students can enroll in the bachelor's degree program in telecommunication and choose from four concentration areas: management, media and society, news and production. All students complete core classes in telecommunications regulations, telecommunications ethics, electronic media writing and telecommunications fundamentals.
Students also have the option of enrolling in a dual degree program that leads to a telecommunication bachelor's degree and a mass communications master's degree with a telecommunication focus. A stand-alone master's degree program in this field of study is offered as well. The master's program requires students to choose a thesis or project option. Graduate-level classes cover supervising telecommunication platforms, abiding by telecommunication rules and investigating audiences. Additionally, UF has a Professional MA in Mass Communication program with a multimedia telecommunication concentration. This 2-year program has a journalistic emphasis and requires students to complete a multimedia project.
Students can obtain practical experience in any of the three commercial stations, one online radio station or three non-commercial stations on campus. The telecommunications department recommends that all telecommunications students have access to an Apple computer with specific video editing software.
University of South Florida
USF's main campus in Tampa has a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communications program with six specialization areas, two of which are related to telecommunications. Students in the telecommunications news track take courses in telecommunications fundamentals, electronic field production and broadcast journalism. The telecommunications production track covers topics in telecommunications programming, telecommunications foundations and electronic field production. Students in this program can apply for any of several scholarships awarded by the School of Mass Communications.
Orlando's Valencia College offers an associate's degree program in electronics engineering technology that covers some telecommunications concepts. Students can choose the telecommunication and wireless concentration to take classes in wireless networks, fiber optics, photonics and other areas. Core coursework for all students includes topics such as digital systems, engineering technology and microprocessors.
School Comparison: At a Glance
|School Name||School Type & Setting||Telecommunications Programs Offered||Tuition and Fees (2015-2016)|
|Florida International University||4-year, public; large suburb||Master of Science in Telecommunications and Networking||$11,097 in-state, $23,578 out-of-state*|
|Florida State College at Jacksonville||4-year, public; large city||Bachelor of Applied Science in Computer Systems Networking and Telecommunications||$2,830 in-state, $9,944 out-of-state*|
|University of Florida||4-year, public; midsize city|| Bachelor of Science in Telecommunication,
Dual bachelor's/master's degree in telecommunication,
Master of Arts degrees in Telecommunication
| $6,381 in-state undergraduate, $28,659 out-of-state undergraduate*
$12,737 in-state graduate, $29,302 out-of-state graduate*
|University of South Florida||4-year, public; large city||Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communications||$6,410 in-state, $17,324 out-of-state*|
|Valencia College||4-year, public; midsize city||Associate in Science in Electronics Engineering Technology||$2,474 in-state, $9,383 out-of-state*|
Source: *NCES College Navigator