Online Communications Degree Programs

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What is an Online Communications Degree Program?

Are you wondering what an online communications degree program entails? Well, you have come to the right place. In this program, you can expect to cover a broad range of subjects. What do you think these subjects all have in common? Well, you will find they all emphasize the sharing of ideas. What will you learn if you pursue this path? For one, you will learn to share your ideas through writing. And you will also learn to finesse them through speaking. Plus, you could study conflict resolution.

Across all organizations, you will find it is key to communicate information. You can infer how important communications is for getting the word out. As such, you will be studying the best methods to do so. Your goal is for your business to achieve its goals. Are you wondering what industries will utilize your communications skills? Well, you will find that many do.

For example, you will see that some online communications degree programs focus on a specific industry or sector. You will often see a business focus, for example. Also, you will find, programs focus on particular work functions or fields. For example, you will find a focus on public relations. At the core, what do you think most programs have in common? Well, you will find that their aim is to help you to express concepts. And, to help you do so effectively. So, do you love using words? Do you love using visuals? Do you love finding creative ways to get your message across? Well, then this program may be for you!

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TYPES OF ONLINE COMMUNICATION DEGREES

A.A.  in Communication StudiesB.A. in Communication StudiesM.A. in Communication
In this program, you will examine the foundations of communication. You will cover topics like theory. You will also cover application. Plus, you will work on a variety of skill areas. You could work on writing. Or, you could cover public speaking. Also, you will work on interpersonal communications. And, you will learn how to apply these skills to achieve different goals. You will also learn to use your skills across different settings.This program allows you to take an in depth look at how you get your messages across. So, you could study the best practices for visual communications. Also, you could learn about the theory of persuasion. And, you will learn to communicate effectively. This is so you can speak to diverse audiences. It is also for you to apply your skills to different situations.On this path, you will cover the principles of communications. Also, you will cover the practices of communications. And, the contexts in which you would use it. Plus, you will examine philosophy. You could also study ethics. And,  you could cover the modalities of communications. You will also gain an introduction to graduate study. So, you could cover qualitative research. Or, you could get into quantitative research.
  • Professional Public Speaking
  • Photography
  • Communication Law
  • Media Writing for Communication
  • Tech & Communication
  •  Visual Journalism
  • Communication & Identity
  • Mass Media Industries
  • Digital Media Design

Online Communications Degree Programs

What do you think marketing, copy writing, and event planning all have in common? Well, as you can tell, all of these practices involve communication. Many branches of communication, you will find, fall under the same umbrella. In an online communications degree program, you could take a broad view of the field. Meaning, you would study it on a whole. Or, you could concentrate on a niche area. For example, you could focus on digital strategy. Or, you could focus on PR. Either way, you will likely do a lot of writing on this path. And, you could do a good amount of speaking, too. Also, you could find yourself doing research. Regardless, your mission will be the same. You will be charged to come up with different ways that you can reach diverse audiences.

Undergraduate Communications Programs

At the undergraduate level, you will likely cover the fundamentals of communications. So, for example, you could try your hand at journalism. You could also learn the fine details of social media marketing. And, you could study how public relations keeps the lines of communication open. You will find these channels are essential among businesses. You will also find them vital to government organizations. As you can gather, good communication is essential to consumers, too!

The courses you may take in your major will combine a variety of skill areas. You could study public speaking and research. Or, you could study writing, and critical thinking. Plus, you could learn to apply these skills in the most effective ways. You could learn about composing tweets. And, you can look at the best ways for crafting a speech.

You will find that many programs also offer concentrations. For instance, you could study New Media. This, you may be aware, includes digital media. Here, you will cover topics like online articles. Also, you will cover blogs. And of course, you will cover social media. Other concentrations you could cover may include Business Communications. Plus, you could study Journalism. You could also study Radio & Television, among other topics.

What should you look for? You can look for undergraduate communications programs like:

  • Associate of Arts (A.A.) in Communication Studies
  • Associate in Applied Science Degree (A.A.S.) in Marketing Communications
  • Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Communication Studies
  • Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Communications

Graduate Communications Programs

Are you wondering about communications at the graduate level? Well, at this level, you will find, you may take an even more analytical approach. You can really delve into how people exchange information. In addition, you can analyze how organizations relate information. So, you can expect to study the theories behind communications. Also, you will study the practical strategies you need to go forward.

What do you think the difference between undergraduate programs and graduate programs is? Well, you will find that  both levels of communications programs are diverse. In each, you could take courses in personal interactions. Or, you could study digital media. You could also study communications. And, you could do so across different contexts. For example, you could cover politics. Or, you could take on conflict resolution.

In many cases, you can choose a concentration. For example, you could choose Digital Strategy. On this path, you could cover how you would deploy digital media. This is so you can help companies achieve business goals. In some programs, you will focus on a particular industry. For instance, in a health and communications program, you will delve into communication strategies. But, you will focus specifically on medical and wellness organizations. On this path, you will also cover medical findings. In addition, you could cover talking more effectively with patients.

You can look for graduate communications programs like:

  • Master of Arts (M.A.) in Communication
  • M.A. in Emerging Media
  • Master of Science (M.S.) in Communication
  • Ph.D. in Communication

Online Communications Courses

Are you wondering how your courses could compare? Well, no matter what your degree level or which specialization you choose, your coursework will have a common thread. What is that, you ask? You will cover all of the different ways of sharing messages. So, you could cover everything under the journalism umbrella, for instance. This means you will delve into writing content. Or, you could study copy writing. And, of course, you will cover social media. Do you like visuals? You could even study graphic design.

Some common courses include:

 

 

Public Speaking: This course covers everything that goes into effective speaking. That includes putting together well-researched presentations, understanding your audience, and speaking in different situations. No “ums” allowed!

Mass Media and Broadcasting: Mass media include print, radio, film, television, and the internet. A course like this may cover everything from the laws governing advertising to the ethics of what gets shared. You’ll seek a clearer picture of how media impacts the economy. And, you’ll study the finer points of each medium.

Visual Communications and Design:  Not all communication is verbal. This course covers how to use visuals to express your ideas. You’ll study design principles and the technologies used to create graphics. And, you’ll learn how and when to use visuals across different channels.

How Long Does It Take You to Earn a Degree in Communications?

Are you wondering about time? Well, generally, it will take you least four years to earn a B.A. in Communications. Earning an M.A. in Communications will usually take you less time. It could take you around one to two years. Of course, you will find, it all depends on whether you study part time, or you go full time. You must also consider other factors, like fees.

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Communications Degree Program Examples

SchoolDegree Level# of Credits RequiredStart DatesMinimum Months to Complete
Colorado Christian UniversityA.A.60Multiple24
Berkeley CollegeA.A60N/A24
Syracuse UniversityM.A.33N/A15

How Much Does a Communications Degree Program Cost You?

You may also be wondering about cost. According to DataUSA you can see the median in state public tuition for a degree in communication is $6,894. The median out of state private tuition you will find, is more. This number, you will see, went up to $30,500. You can compare tuition for these schools that offer communications degree programs:

SchoolDegree Level# of Credits RequiredCost Per CreditTotal Tuition Cost
Southern New Hampshire UniversityB.A.120$320$38,400
Walden UniversityB.A.181$325$58,825
Purdue University GlobalB.A.180$371$66,780

Top Schools That Offer Communications Degree Programs

You will find many schools offering programs. According to the DataUSA, you can find 1,372 schools with Communications programs. From those schools, you can see that students were awarded 68,683 degrees in 2017 (the most recent data).

School2017 Degrees awarded2019/20 Tuition (out of state unless *)
California State U Fullerton929$18,804
Florida International U799$18,963
U of North Carolina at Chapel Hill626$36,159
Full Sail U621$24,513*
Ohio State U Main Campus553$32,061
Michigan State U552$39,766
U of Southern California522$58,195*
California State U Sacramento504$19,248
U of South Florida Main Campus494$17,324
Purdue U Main Campus489$28,794

Choosing an Accredited Communications Degree Program

Are you wondering what an accredited program is? Perhaps you have heard the word. Well, you should know, it is essentially a seal of approval for your program. What does it mean for you? Well, it offers you the insurance that your program is top notch. As you may have heard, it is the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications (ACEJMC) who is responsible for accrediting communications programs. And, they only accredit programs they feel will best help you. This is to prepare you as a student, for potential career paths.

The ACEJMC, you will find, values programs that have multidisciplinary curricula. What does that mean for you? It means, your program must foster critical thinking. And it must also enable your freedom of expression. In addition, you will find, your programs must have a competent faculty. You will also find that they need to provide resources to you as a student. This is to help you pursue your goals.

In short, if you choose an accredited program, it can help you be confident. This is because you have more assurance in the quality of your education. But, it’s optional for you. You will find it may not be required for all career paths in communications.

What Can You Do with a Communications degree?

According to the most current data, you will find there are over 2 million communications graduates in the work force. The number of graduates, you will be happy to know, is growing at an annual rate of 5.17%!

Are you wondering if you fit in? Well, you will find the average degree holder in the workforce is 40.1 years old. Also, you will see that females are slightly more likely to study communications. As such, you will find they represent 65.3% of degree holders.

Media and communication occupations, you will find, are growing steadily. How much, you ask? Well, you will find at about as fast as average for all roles. So, you will see the industry is projected to add 4% more roles by 2028. You may not be surprised to know that the demand has increased. Are you professional? Can you work with information across a variety of platforms? Then, you are needed in the field. If you are good at social media, you may be a good fit for the many new jobs available for public relations specialists.

The popularity of internet streaming platforms, as you can imagine, has also led to more roles. You will also find more film and video editor roles, as a result.

Top Salaries by State for Reporters

StateEmploymentAnnual Mean Wage
District of Columbia1,610$100,550
New York4,540$81,930
California3,430$67,820
Arizona680$61,400
New Jersey590$61,180

Careers with a Degree in Communications

Public Relations Specialist

Are you wondering what Public Relations Specialists do? Well, on this path, you would develop and maintain a public image for an organization. In PR, your goal is to influence the public perception of that organization. For instance, as a specialist, you may write press releases. These releases you provide could cover a company’s recent achievements. You may also be tasked with ensuring that advertising and promotions are on the mark. Also, you may monitor a company’s public image. If you are savvy in social media, you could really make a mark here.

Median Salary: $60,000 per year

Job Growth Through 2026: 6% (As fast as avg.)

Typical Entry Level Education: B.A. degree

Technical Writer

As a Technical Writer, you would document and communicate technical information. You would write things such as instruction manuals. Or, you could write how to guides. You could also write out FAQ pages. As a writer, you may work with technology professionals. This is so you can put together materials for purposes like user support. You could also work for professional, scientific, and technical services companies.

Median Salary: $71,850 per year

Job Growth Through 2026: 8% (Faster than avg.)

Typical Entry Level Education: B.A. degree

Reporter

As a Reporter, you would inform the public about events and news. You may report at the local level. Or, you could cover national or global events. You may use various media, like television, as your medium. Or, you could work for news websites, or a radio station. As a reporter, you may research stories provided to you. But, you will also pitch your own ideas. Then, you must interpret and present your findings to your audience.

Median Salary: $43,490 per year

Job Growth Through 2026:  -10% (Decline)

Typical Entry Level Education: B.A. degree

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Sources for school statistics is the U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics.

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This is an offer for educational opportunities that may lead to employment and not an offer for nor a guarantee of employment. Students should consult with a representative from the school they select to learn more about career opportunities in that field. Program outcomes vary according to each institution’s specific program curriculum. Financial aid may be available to those who qualify. The financial aid information on this site is for informational and research purposes only and is not an assurance of financial aid.