Communication Studies Salary and Career Facts

Communication studies can prepare students for a variety of roles, such as teaching, writing for the media, marketing products, or promoting people and events. Find out what kinds of jobs are available and how much money you can make with a degree in communication studies. Get info about professional organizations in the communication field. Schools offering Applied Communications degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Are Career Options Available for Communication Studies Graduates?

Communication studies is a broad field related to researching the different forms of communication people use in their lives. There are several jobs this major can prepare you for, a few being: A public relations specialist; a writer; an advertising, promotions, or marketing manager; or a communications professor. PR specialists work with companies to develop marketable and appealing self-images to present to the public. Writers create text for a variety of purposes, with many of those in communications going into journalism. Advertising, promotions, and marketing manages attempt to create interest in a product or company through means such as advertisements, purchasing and promotion incentives, and detailed marketing strategies, respectively. Professors teach their students about the principles of communication in an easily understandable format and assess their learning through exams. You can learn some additional details about these careers below:

Public Relations SpecialistsAdvertising and Promotions ManagersMarketing ManagersWriters and AuthorsPostsecondary Communication Teachers
Degree Required Bachelor'sBachelor'sBachelor'sBachelor'sDoctoral
Key Responsibilities Managing an organization's public imageDesign programs and campaigns to create interest in products and servicesManage marketing staff, develop strategies to maximize profitsWrite books, articles, and blogsInstruct college level students in the field of communication
Job Growth (2014-2024)*6%5%9%2%10%
Mean Salary (2015)* $65,830 $113,610$140,660$69,130$70,290

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Communication Studies Programs Are Available To Me?

You can choose from communication studies programs offered at the bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degree levels. A doctorate is typically required if you want to teach at colleges and universities.

Communication studies programs are interdisciplinary and may be comprised of coursework from various academic departments, including English, business, political science, and journalism. Writing skills are a main a focus of communication studies programs. You could take courses in composition, news writing, and journalism. Some schools give you the option to choose a concentration, such as public relations, film studies, or organizational communication.

What Jobs Can I Get?

A communication studies degree can prepare you for a wide range of careers. Many graduates go on to become journalists, public relations specialists, human resource managers, writers, and teachers. You could work at an advertising or marketing firm, publishing house, social media company, or television studio.

Can I Join a Professional Organization?

You might consider becoming a member of the National Communication Association (NCA) if you're involved in researching or teaching communications (www.natcom.org). NCA's conferences and journals can help inform you of the latest developments and innovations in the field. As a student, NCA might provide you with opportunities to network with professionals.

Alternatively, you may choose to obtain certification from the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) if you're a public relations specialist (www.iabc.com). The IABC requires you to have a bachelor's degree, a portfolio of projects and years of professional experience before you're eligible to sit for an exam on communications management.

How Much Can I Earn?

In a report released in May 2015, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) concluded that public relations specialists earned an average annual salary of $65,830 (www.bls.gov). BLS reports from the same year determined that writers and authors earned a mean wage of $69,130, advertising and promotions managers made $113,610, marketing managers were paid $140,660 and postsecondary communications teachers received $70,290.

What Are Some Related Alternative Careers?

Market research analysts study trends related to the economy, hoping to find opportunities for new products or services in demand that their company could fulfill. Editors preview what writers and authors have sent them, suggesting edits and proofreading for grammar, spelling, syntax, and general coherence. Technical writers create manuals, guides, and articles with the intent of conveying highly specialized and complex information, gathering and presenting information through communication channels within the organization they work for. All of these careers require a bachelor's education.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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