Academic Programs Catalog

College of Communication Arts and Sciences

Graduate Study

The Department of Advertising and Public Relations offers professional graduate programs leading to the Master of Arts degrees in both Advertising and Public Relations, and participates in the doctoral program in Information and Media.

Academic standards for admission and retention; degree requirements; and residence, transfer credit, and time limit requirements are in accordance with the regulations of the university and the college.


Advertising - Master of Arts

The department offers two programs leading to the Master of Arts degree: one in advertising and one in public relations. Both programs provide an intensive professional preparation for careers in these fields. Course work focuses on the general principles and practices underlying all advertising and public relations activities, as well as specialized areas of social media, management, media planning, consumer behavior, social marketing, or research.

Both master's degree programs are available under either Plan A (with thesis) or Plan B (without thesis).  Early in their studies, students need to work with their advisors to decide which plan best fits their personal and professional goals.

Requirements for the degree include course work in other academic units within the university. Concepts and analytical techniques derived primarily from the behavioral sciences and business administration are especially important.  The student's master's degree program must be approved by the student's academic advisor.

In addition to meeting the requirements of the university and of the College of Communication Arts and Sciences, students must meet the requirements specified below.

Admission

Admission to departmental programs is determined by an evaluation of information regarding the applicant's academic record, goals and motivation, experience, personal references, and other items submitted as indicators of intellectual, creative, and administrative capabilities. The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test is also required. The Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) is not required, but scores on this test may be submitted.

To be admitted to either the Master of Arts degree in Advertising or the Master of Arts degree in Public Relations, the applicant must submit:

  1. a Graduate School application.
  2. an official copy of all transcripts.
  3. three letters of recommendation.
  4. a statement of purpose outlining academic and professional goals.
  5. a personal background statement.
  6. Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores.
  7. Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) scores, if applicable.
  8. a resume. 

Although evidence other than grades influences the admission decision, the Department uses the following guidelines: students whose grade–point averages for the third and fourth years of undergraduate study are 3.25 or better may be admitted to regular status; students whose grade–point averages are 3.00 to 3.24 may be admitted to provisional status; and students whose grade--point averages are below 3.00 are rarely admitted.

A background in advertising and/or public relations, either from experience or from undergraduate study, is necessary before students can begin graduate study. Students without adequate background will be required to remedy significant deficiencies through collateral course work or individual study.

Requirements for the Master of Arts Degree in  Advertising

At least 30 credits are required for the degree under either Plan A or Plan B.

                     
Requirements for Both Plan A and Plan B (15 credits):  
1. All of the following courses:  
  ADV 823 Consumer Behavior Theories 3
  ADV 826 Advertising and Promotion Management 3
  ADV 865 Advertising and Society 3
  COM 803 Introduction to Quantitative Research Methods 3
  MKT 805 Marketing Management 3
Additional Requirements for Plan A (15 credits):  
1. The following course (4 to 8 credits):  
  ADV 899 Master's Thesis Research 4 to 8
2. Additional credits from the courses listed below, or in other courses, as approved by the student's academic advisor (7 to 11 credits):  
  ADV 830 Seminar in Social Marketing 3
  ADV 836 Media Innovations 3
  ADV 843 Strategic Brand Communication 3
  ADV 846 Media Strategy 3
  ADV 870 International Advertising 3
  ADV 890 Independent Study 1 to 6
  ADV 892 Special Topics 3 to 9
  ADV 893 Internship 1 to 3
  Not more than 6 credits in ADV 890 and ADV 893 combined may be counted toward the requirements for the Master of Arts degree in Advertising.  
Additional Requirements for Plan B (15 credits):  
1. Fifteen additional credits from the courses listed below, or in other courses, as approved by the student's academic advisor:  
  ADV 830 Seminar in Social Marketing 3
  ADV 836 Media Innovations 3
  ADV 843 Strategic Brand Communication 3
  ADV 846 Media Strategy 3
  ADV 870 International Advertising 3
  ADV 890 Independent Study 1 to 6
  ADV 892 Special Topics 3 to 9
  ADV 893 Internship 1 to 3
  Not more than 6 credits in ADV 890 and ADV 893 combined may be counted toward the requirements for the Master of Arts degree in Advertising.  
  The final certifying experience is a poster presentation during the semester of graduation.
 



Public Relations - Master of Arts

Requirements for the Master of Arts Degree in Public Relations

At least 30 credits are required for the master's degree in public relations under either Plan A or Plan B.

                     
Requirements for Both Plan A and Plan B (15 credits):  
1. All of the following courses:  
  ADV 850 Public Relations Management 3
  ADV 855 Public Relations Theories 3
  ADV 860 Media Relations 3
  COM 803 Introduction to Quantitative Research Methods 3
  MKT 805 Marketing Management 3
Additional Requirements for Plan A (15 credits):  
1. The following course (4 to 6):  
  ADV 899 Master's Thesis Research 4 to 8
2.

Additional credits from the courses listed below, or in other courses, as approved by the student's academic advisor
(7 to 11 credits):

 
  ADV 823 Consumer Behavior Theories 3
  ADV 830 Seminar in Social Marketing 3
  ADV 836 Media Innovations 3
  ADV 843 Strategic Brand Communication 3
  ADV 846 Media Strategy 3
  ADV 865 Advertising and Society 3
  ADV 890 Independent Study 1 to 6
  ADV 892 Special Topics 3 to 9
  ADV 893 Internship 1 to 3
 

Not more than 6 credits in ADV 890 and ADV 893 combined may be counted toward the requirements for the Master of Arts degree in Public Relations.

 
Additional Requirements for Plan B (15 credits):  
1.

Fifteen additional credits, from the courses listed below, or other courses, as approved by the student’s academic advisor.

 
  ADV 823 Consumer Behavior Theories 3
  ADV 830 Seminar in Social Marketing 3
  ADV 836 Media Innovations 3
  ADV 843 Strategic Brand Communication 3
  ADV 846 Media Strategy 3
  ADV 865 Advertising and Society 3
  ADV 890 Independent Study 1 to 6
  ADV 892 Special Topics 3 to 9
  ADV 893 Internship 1 to 3
 

Not more than 6 credits in ADV 890 and ADV 893 combined may be counted toward the requirements for the Master of Arts degree in Public Relations.

 
     
The final certifying experience is a poster presentation during the semester of graduation.