Academic Programs Catalog

College of Communication Arts and Sciences

Undergraduate Program

While all those in the advertising field share a common orientation and a core knowledge base, within the industry there are a wide number of roles requiring specialized knowledge. These specialties can roughly be divided into the artistic functions known within the field as advertising creative and the strategic/managerial functions. The department offers the Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations and two advertising degrees, a Bachelor of Arts in Advertising Creative and a Bachelor of Science in Advertising Management. The advertising degrees share a similar core, but allow students to choose the degree that best fits their own professional aspirations. In addition, a Minor in Advertising Analytics and a Minor in Public Relations are available.


Advertising Creative

The undergraduate advertising creative program prepares students to work in advertising and related industries, as art directors, designers and/or copywriters.  Promotional communication businesses, like advertising, demand a variety of skilled employees, including those who develop the messaging strategy, those who study the intended audience for the message, those who decide the best channel of communication to reach that audience, and those who actually compose the look, the wording and, if appropriate, the sounds of the message.  The advertising creative program is focused on those who actually create the advertisement.

Students receive a broad liberal arts background, as well as a strong overview of the advertising process that provides them with an understanding of the strategy, research, and other functions necessary to effective advertising.  However, greater depth of training is dedicated to helping students develop advertising art direction, design and copywriting skills.  Over the course of the program, students develop a portfolio of their work, to help them in seeking employment upon graduation.  These skills enable students to find work not only in advertising, but also in the fields of direct marketing, sales promotion, public relations, app and web design, electronic commerce, and more.

Internships and other cooperative educational opportunities are encouraged in the program.  Co-curricular activities include multiple student clubs, as well as national student competitions. Study abroad programs provide ways for students to gain experience that enhance and reach outside of the classroom, further advancing their employment opportunities.

Admission

Enrollment in the advertising creative program is limited. In addition to the university and college requirements, students must complete Advertising 205, and Psychology 101 with a combined minimum grade–point average of 2.00.

Admission to a Second Bachelor's Degree Program  or an Additional Major

The ability of the advertising creative program to accommodate students seeking admission to a second bachelor's degree program or an additional major is limited. At a minimum, these students must meet the same requirements as for admission to the advertising creative major.

Requirements for the Bachelor of Arts  Degree in Advertising Creative

  1. The University requirements for bachelor's degrees as described in the Undergraduate Education section of the catalog; 120 credits, including general elective credits, are required for the Bachelor of Arts degree in Advertising.

    The University's Tier II writing requirement for the Advertising major is met by completing Advertising 486.  That course is referenced in item 3. a. below.
  2. The requirements of the College of Communication Arts and Sciences for the Bachelor of Arts degree.
  3. The following requirements for the major:
    a. All of the following core courses (20 credits):
    ADV 205 Principles of Advertising 3
    ADV 210 Concept Development 1
    ADV 245 Multimedia Commercial Production 3
    ADV 330 Advertising Management 3
    ADV 342 Account Planning and Research 3
    ADV 450 Portfolio Presentation 1
    ADV 475 Advertising and Society 3
    ADV 486 Integrated Campaigns (W) 3
    The completion of Advertising 486 satisfies the capstone/synthesis requirement for the advertising creative major.
    b. Both of the following courses (6 credits):
    CAS 110 Creative Thinking 3
    CAS 112 Story, Sound and Motion 3
    c. Two of the following courses (2 credits):
    CAS 203 Design in Media Settings 1
    CAS 204 Web Design in Media Settings 1
    CAS 205 Photography in Media Settings 1
    CAS 206 Graphics and Illustration in Media Settings 1
    d. One of the following concentrations (15 or 16 credits):
    Art Direction (15 credits)
    ADV 222 Introduction to Copywriting 3
    or
    ADV 225 Writing for Public Relations 3
    ADV 224 Introduction to Creative Media 3
    ADV 326 Advanced Creative: Media I 3
    ADV 354 Interactive Advertising Design 3
    ADV 428 Advanced Creative: Media II 3
    Copywriting (15 to 16 credits)
    ADV 222 Introduction to Copywriting 3
    ADV 225 Writing for Public Relations 3
    ADV 322 360-degree Copywriting 3
    ADV 422 Advanced Copywriting: Creating Experiences 3
    Additional writing class from a list of approved courses as approved by the advisor 3 or 4
    e. Both of the following courses (7 credits):
    MKT 327 Introduction to Marketing 3
    PSY 101 Introductory Psychology 4


Advertising Management

The Bachelor of Science degree in Advertising Management provides the educational background necessary for students aspiring to become account managers, account planners, media planners, media researchers or a variety of other more managerial-oriented positions. The program focuses on developing students' strategic thinking, creative problem solving, along with more research-oriented and analytical skills. Internships and other cooperative educational opportunities are encouraged to broaden learning and practical experience in the major. Students may also choose to pursue departmental minors in Advertising Analytics or Public Relations and a number of other minors including: Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Sales Leadership, or Sports Business Management, which are particularly relevant for Advertising Management majors.

Co-curricular activities include multiple student advertising and public relations clubs, as well as national student competitions. Study abroad programs provide ways for students to gain experience that enhance and reach outside of the classroom, further advancing their employment opportunities upon graduation.

Admission

Enrollment in the Advertising Management program is limited.  In addition to the university and college requirements, students must complete Advertising 205 and Psychology 101 with a combined minimum grade–point average of 2.00.

Admission to a Second Bachelor's Degree Program or an Additional Major

The ability of the Advertising Management program to accommodate students seeking admission to a second bachelor's degree program or an additional major is limited. At a minimum, these students must meet the same requirements for admission to the Advertising Management major.

Requirements for the Bachelor of Science Degree in Advertising Management

  1. The University requirements for bachelor’s degrees as described in the Undergraduate Education section of the catalog; 120 credits, including general elective credits, are required for the Bachelor of Science degree in Advertising Management.  The University’s Tier II writing requirement for the Advertising Management major is met by completing Advertising 486. That course is referenced in item 3. a. below.
  2. The requirements of the College of Communication Arts and Sciences for the Bachelor of Science degree.
  3. The following requirements for the major:
    a. All of the following core courses (31 credits):
    ADV 205 Principles of Advertising 3
    ADV 225 Writing for Public Relations 3
    ADV 330 Advertising Management Strategy 3
    ADV 342 Account Planning and Research 3
    ADV 350 Advertising Media Planning and Strategy 3
    ADV 375 Consumer Behavior 3
    ADV 413 Issues in Contemporary Advertising 1
    ADV 442 Digital Analytics 3
    ADV 475 Advertising and Society 3
    ADV 486 Integrated Campaigns (W) 3
    CAS 110 Creative Thinking 3
    The completion of Advertising 486 satisfies the  capstone/synthesis requirement for the Advertising Management major.
    b. Complete 6 credits from the following courses in consultation with an advisor. Students are encouraged to choose a minor that adds depth to their major while selecting courses that will count towards the minor.
    ADV 334 International Advertising 3
    ADV 352 Media Sales 3
    ADV 360 Advanced Sales Communication 3
    ADV 386 Campaign Competition 3
    ADV 402 Public Relations Topics in Advertising 1 to 3
    ADV 420 New Media Driver's License 3
    ADV 430 Social Marketing: Strategy and Practice 3
    ADV 431 Monitoring and Measuring Social Media of Brands 3
    ADV 432 Digital Media Planning and Buying 3
    ADV 433 Internet Video Promotion Strategy 3
    ADV 436 Promotions and Sponsorships 3
    ADV 445 Programmatic Media and Buying 3
    ADV 456 Interactive Advertising Management Strategy 3
    ADV 481 Retail Strategy Analysis 3
    ADV 492 Special Topics in Advertising 1 to 3
    ADV 490 Independent Study 1 to 3
    or
    ADV 493 Advertising and Public Relations Internship 1 to 3
    or
    ADV 494 Practicum in Research/Creative Works and Instruction 1 to 3
    CAS 114 Creativity and Innovation Entrepreneurship 3
    COM 402 Public Relations Topics in Communication 1 to 3
    ESHP 190 The Art of Starting 3
    JRN 402 Public Relations Topics in Journalism 1 to 3
    MGT 325 Management Skills and Processes 3
    PR 260 Principles of Public Relations 3
    PR 325 Intermediate Social Media and Public Relations Techniques 3
    PR 425 Public Relations Strategy and Ethics in a Digital World 3
    A maximum of 3 credits in ADV 490 or 493 or 494 may be used to fulfill this requirement.
    c. All of the following courses (10 credits):      
    ACC 201 Principles of Financial Accounting 3
    or
    ACC 230 Survey of Accounting Concepts 3
    MKT 327 Introduction to Marketing 3
    PSY 101 Introductory Psychology 4

 

Public Relations

The Bachelor of Arts degree in Public Relations provides the educational and experiential background necessary for students aspiring to become public relations specialists, public relations account managers, media relations specialists, social media managers, content managers, event coordinators and more. The program focuses on developing strategic planning skills, applied skills in writing and content creation, and critical thinking, along with research-oriented and analytical skills.

Internships and other cooperative educational opportunities are required in the program. Students may also choose to pursue related minors in Advertising Analytics, Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Sales Leadership, or Sports Business Management.

Co-curricular activities include public relations and advertising associations and clubs, national student competitions, and experiential learning. Study abroad programs provide ways for students to gain experience that enhance and reach outside of the classroom. Participation in these opportunities further advance student employment opportunities upon graduation.

The major is designed to provide an understanding of the role of public relations in contemporary society, along with knowledge and experience in developing public relations materials for use in corporate, governmental, and nonprofit organizational settings. Program curriculum focuses on public relations research methods; writing for traditional and social media; public relations techniques; public relations strategies; portfolio development; public relations campaign planning; diversity, equity and inclusion in public relations; and public relations ethics.

Admission

Enrollment in the Bachelor of Arts degree in Public Relations is limited and competitive.

To be considered for admission to the major, a student must:

  1. Have completed 28 credits.
  2. Have earned a combined minimum grade-point average of at least 3.0 in Mathematics 101 or 102 or Statistics 200; Public Relations 260; and Public Relations 225.
  3. Have a cumulative grade-point average of 3.0.
Students wishing to major in public relations must make a request to the Public Relations Program Director or delegate when they are eligible and ready to be considered. Incoming students who declare the major in public relations are automatically reviewed at the end of every semester and are either admitted or informed of their progress. Students who are not admitted will be eligible to reapply after correcting whatever deficiency is noted in their first application. Students may only reapply once. If the second application is deficient, no further applications will be considered.

Requirements for the Bachelor of Arts Degree in Public Relations
  1. The University requirements for bachelor's degrees as described in the Undergraduate Education section of the catalog; 120 credits, including general elective credits, are required for the Bachelor of Arts degree in Public Relations.

    The University's Tier II writing requirement for the Public Relations major is met by completing Public Relations 485.  That course is referenced in item 3. below.
  2. The requirements of the College of Communication Arts and Sciences for the Bachelor of Arts degree.
  3. The following requirements for the major:
    a. One of the following courses (3 credits):
    MTH 101 Quantitative Literacy I 3
    MTH 102 Quantitative Literacy II 3
    STT 200 Statistical Methods 3
    b. Both of the following courses (6 credits):
    PR 225 Writing for Public Relations 3
    PR 260 Principles of Public Relations 3
    c. All of the following courses (24 credits):
    PR 300 Public Relations Theory and Ethics 3
    PR 305 Methods of Public Relations Inquiry 3
    PR 310 Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Public Relations and Advertising 3
    PR 320 Public Relations Storytelling for Digital, Video and Print 3
    PR 325 Intermediate Social Media and Public Relations Techniques 3
    PR 335 Advanced Social Media and Public Relations Techniques 3
    PR 425 Public Relations Strategy and Ethics In a Digital World 3
    PR 485 Integrated Public Relations Campaigns (W) 3
    d. Cognate (15 credits):
    The cognate consists of a set of courses that can be selected from one of the following thematic areas: business, fine arts, physical and biological sciences, social sciences, or an approved university minor administered outside of Public Relations. At least 6 credits must be at the 300-400 level. A list of departments or courses that count in each of the thematic areas is available in the CCAS Academic and Student Affairs Office.
    e. Public Relations Field Experience
    Each student must complete 250 hours of professional public relations internship or research experience under faculty supervision. Hours may be accumulated through public relations internships, public relations research or a combination. Experiences must have the prior approval of the Public Relations Internship Coordinator and require a concluding report from the employer and the student, and may be taken as an elective class. Internships taken for credit cannot be counted toward the Cognate described in 2.d.

 

Minor in Advertising Analytics

The Minor in Advertising Analytics, which is administered by the Department of Advertising and Public Relations, is designed to enable students who are true problem-solvers to exercise their intellectual curiosity to find insights and answers in databases and real-time streaming data. In today’s industry, those who not only understand, but also can strategically activate data will have opportunities to advance more quickly as an advertising account executive, media planner, media sales representative, public relations specialist and more, moving into specialized roles as programmatic advertising specialists or digital advertising analysts.

The minor is available to students who are enrolled in the Advertising Management major at Michigan State University. Limited enrollment may be made available to other majors upon request. With the approval of the department and college that administer the student’s degree program, the courses that are used to satisfy the minor may also be used to satisfy the requirements for the bachelor’s degree.

To be considered for admission, a student must have been formally admitted to the Advertising Management major. Admission to the minor is competitive. Students must be enrolled in or have completed Advertising 350 (Advertising Media Planning and Strategy) and have demonstrated mastery of course content by providing their midterm or final grade in the course. Other admission criteria include overall grade-point average, work experience, and a statement of interest. Each student’s application package will be rank ordered. Students may be admitted provisionally contingent on their performance in Advertising 350.

Students who plan to apply to the program should complete an application after the midterm in Advertising 350 and submit it to the Director of the Advertising Analytics Minor in the Department of Advertising and Public Relations.

Requirements for the Minor in Advertising Analytics

Complete 18 credits from the following:

1. All of the following courses (12 credits):
ADV 442 Digital Analytics 3
ADV 445 Programmatic Media and Buying 3
ADV 456 Interactive Advertising Management Strategy 3
MI 250 Introduction to Applied Programming 3
2. Complete 6 credits from the following courses:
ADV 420 New Media Driver’s License 3
ADV 431 Monitoring and Measuring Social Media of Brands 3
ADV 432 Digital Media Planning and Buying 3
ADV 433 Internet Video Promotion Strategy 3
MI 220 Methods for Understanding Users 3
MI 320 Reasoning with Data 3


 

Minor in Public Relations

The Minor in Public Relations is available to students majoring in Advertising, Communication, Environmental Studies and Sustainability, Journalism, James Madison, Business and Professional Writing. Limited enrollment may be made available to other majors.  With the approval of the department that administers the student’s degree program, courses that are used to satisfy the requirements for the minor may also be used to satisfy the requirements for the bachelor’s degree.

The minor is designed to provide an understanding of the role of public relations in contemporary society, along with knowledge and experience in developing public relations materials for use in corporate, governmental, and nonprofit organizational settings. Areas of focus include public relations and society, writing for traditional media and social media, public relations techniques, research methods, public relations campaigns and cases, public relations strategies, portfolio development, and public relations ethics.

Students are eligible to apply for the minor if they: 

  1. are of sophomore standing or higher;
  2.  have an overall grade-point average of 3.0; 
  3.  have successfully completed Public Relations 260;
  4.  have successfully completed Public Relations 225 or Journalism 200.

To apply, students must submit an application stating their interest in the minor. Applications are due by the tenth week of the semester. If the number of applicants meeting the basic qualifications exceeds the number of spaces available, selection will include evaluation of an interest statement and academic performance in prerequisite classes. Students will be notified of the decision after the completion of the semester.

Requirements for the Minor in Public Relations

The students must complete the following (14 to 20 credits):
1. All of the following courses (9 or 10 credits):
COM 300 Methods of Communication Inquiry 4
PR 325 Intermediate Social Media and Public Relations Techniques 3
PR 425 Public Relations Strategy in a Digital World 3
Students majoring in Journalism should take Statistics and Probability 200 (3 credits) in place of Communication 300.
2. One of the following courses (3 or 4 credits):
ADV 486 Integrated Campaigns (W) 3
COM 475 Communication Campaign Design and Analysis (W) 4
3. Complete 2 to 6 credits from the following:
ADV 402 Public Relations Topics in Advertising 1
COM 402 Public Relations Topics in Communication 1
JRN 402 Public Relations Topics in Journalism 1