Best Advertising Master's Degree Programs

Many prospective graduate degree candidates are already practitioners in the highly competitive industry of advertising. Keep reading to learn more about schools that offer master's degrees in advertising. Get an overview of three good schools in particular, and see why they're special. Read more about department awards and program facilities, too. Schools offering Advertising degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Should I Look For in a Top Master's Program in Advertising?

You might consider a school's commitment to advertising as a separate discipline, ratings by employers, peer ratings by faculty and rankings by publications in the field. Look for internship opportunities that will help you increase skills, add to your professional portfolio and make contacts. Consider whether a school balances state-of-the art digital and new media training with a thorough grounding in traditional advertising media.

What are Three of the Best Master's Programs in Advertising?

Michigan State University (MSU) in East Lansing, MI

MSU's department of advertising, public relations and retailing is under the umbrella of the College of Communication Arts and Sciences.

With access to over 30 faculty members, candidates for master's degrees in advertising have abundant learning opportunities. The program has defined three areas of strategic focus: communication technology, health communication and international communication. Faculty have been awarded a National Science Foundation grant to study policy and business decision-making related to information and communication technology infrastructure. Advertising students may study abroad through established programs in France, Italy, China, Japan or Australia.

MSU's laboratory facilities include a communication's technology lab, a digital media arts and technology (DMAT) lab for multimedia production, an online interaction lab and a media, interface and network design lab for research in human-computer interaction.

Eight master's programs are offered by the College of Communication Arts and Sciences, including:

  • Master of Arts (M.A.) in Advertising

Northwestern University in Evanston, IL

Northwestern University offers an Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC) program through its Medill School of Journalism. The IMC has 14 full-time faculty members and almost 30 adjunct lecturers. It publishes the Journal of Integrated Marketing Communications, an annual publication edited by students.

The IMC goal is competency in both traditional and new media. The program emphasizes practical experience alongside academic curricula. For example, full-time students participate in team projects that work with globally-recognized brands, like Best Buy and SC Johnson, to address marketing and and advertising challenges.

According to one alumni whose salary doubled after she completed the program, IMC combines creativity and analytics, small classes and a sense of community. Additional video testimonials of former and current students are posted on the IMC website. Students may enroll in the program on a part- or full-time basis. Northwestern offers:

  • Master of Science (M.S.) in Integrated Marketing Communications

University of Texas at Austin

The first course in advertising at the public University of Texas at Austin (UTA) was offered in 1914. The Department of Advertising was established in 1974. Today, the Department of Advertising and Public Relations is housed within UTA's College of Communications. UTA is one of few schools to offer a doctoral degree (Ph.D.) specifically in advertising. Its Center for Brand Research is unique in the nation. Several master's degrees are available through the Department of Advertising and Public Relations, including:

  • Master of Arts (M.A.) in Advertising without Thesis
  • M.A. in Advertising with Thesis

Other Schools with Masters' Programs in Advertising

College/UniversityInstitution TypeLocation
Boston University4-year, PrivateBoston, MA
Savannah College of Art and Design4-year, PrivateSavannah, GA
Southern Methodist University4-year, PrivateDallas, TX
Syracuse University4-year, PrivateSyracuse, NY
The University of Alabama4-year, PublicTuscaloosa, AL
Universidad del Sagrado Corazon4-year, PrivateSanturce, PR
University of Denver4-year, PrivateDenver, CO
University of Florida4-year, PublicGainesville, FL
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign4-year, PublicChampaign, IL
Webster University4-year, PrivateSt. Louis, MO

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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