What Jobs Can I Get With a Communications Associate's Degree?

If you've ever dreamed about working behind the scenes of a radio or television program, offering your advice on a piece of literature or helping to spread the word about an exciting product, you might want to consider a career in communications. Many entry-level jobs in broadcasting, publishing and public relations can be obtained with an associate's degree in communications. Schools offering Applied Communications degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Can I Do With an Associate's Degree in Communications?

Graduates can acquire a variety of jobs with an associate's degree in communications, particularly those requiring strong writing and speaking skills, computer literacy and technical knowledge. Students in these programs should gain a general understanding of both the creative and technical sides of various communications industries.

Many 2-year communications degree programs can prepare graduates to transfer to 4-year programs so that they might earn higher-level positions in a communications field. However, graduates of an associate's degree in communications studies might also seek to join the workforce immediately and earn an entry-level position in broadcasting, telecommunications or journalism.

With an associate's degree in communications, salary rates will differ greatly depending on the career you choose to pursue. Below are a few common jobs in the profession and what to expect.

Overview of Jobs With an AA in Communications

Broadcast Technicians Proofreaders PR Assistants
Median Salary $40,080 (2018)* $39,140 (2018)* $38,354 (2019)**
Work Environment Full-time, usually under a deadline, and sometimes during evenings, weekends and holidays Commonly working for a client in office or remotely Full-time during regular business hours, often hitting overtime
Professional Certification Offered by the Society of Broadcast Engineers and InfoComm International Braille proofreading certifications are available N/A
Similar Occupations Computer Support Specialist, Film/Video Editor, Camera Operator Copy Editor, Web Content Editor, Medical Copy Editor Market Research Analyst, Advertising/Sales Agent

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, **PayScale.com

Broadcast Technician

A broadcast technician is one of the behind-the-scenes experts of a radio or television broadcast. Operating electronic equipment and monitoring a broadcast for clarity and quality are key responsibilities for the job. To be successful in an entry-level role, a broadcast technician must have:

  • Knowledge of telecommunications systems
  • Expertise in various methods of media production
  • Abilities to operate circuit boards, electronic equipment and computer hardware and software
  • Strong verbal communication skills

Employment Information

The employment outlook for broadcast technicians isn't particularly strong. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, broadcast technician jobs are expected to decline 3% from 2016-2026.


A proofreader's keen eye for detail ensures that a written work is at its absolute best. It is the proofreader's job to correct misspellings, grammatical errors and factual inaccuracies. Employers look for entry-level proofreaders with these skills:

  • Solid understanding of grammar and spelling
  • Strong reading comprehension
  • The self discipline necessary to successfully complete projects on time

Employment Information

Entry-level proofreaders need not limit their job search to publishing companies; proofreading jobs can also be found in law firms, hospitals, nonprofit organizations and advertising agencies. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, career opportunities in the print editing field are expected to grow only 2% between 2016 and 2026.

Public Relations Assistant

The goal of a public relations (PR) professional is to generate favorable publicity for a product, service or organization. Most public relations professionals need at least a bachelor's degree in the field. However, a public relations firm might hire a PR assistant with an associate's degree in a field such as communications. A PR assistant supports the efforts of a public relations team. At the entry-level, the duties of a public relations assistant may include:

  • Researching potential sources of media coverage for a client
  • Speaking with members of the media about publicity opportunities
  • Writing press releases
  • Coordinating special events and press conferences

Employment Information

Employment prospects may be good for graduates with an associate's degree in communications who hope to enter the public relations industry. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, job opportunities for PR specialists are expected to grow by about 9% from 2016 to 2026, which may translate to decent job growth for PR assistants as well.

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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