Do you have a love for the written word? Do you thrive when talking to people out in public?
Then earning an online communications degree may be the perfect choice to take a step towards creating a long-term career out of your passion!
Now, more than ever, students come from all walks of life and are often busy with family or work obligations outside of school. If this sounds like you, then the flexibility of being able to log-in to your college courses online can be a great solution to juggle your hectic life and still earn a respected college degree!
Careers in Communication
With the continual growth of the economy and advancement of the digital age, a degree in communications can open up the door to a wide variety of career options! To give you an idea of the career paths available, we have put together a list with some of the most popular jobs in communications and their respective mid-career salaries:
|Job Title||Job Summary||Mid-Career Pay|
|Editor in Chief||Has the final say in published works and is in charge of supervising the editorial department.||$83,393|
|Account Supervisor, Advertising||Leads the accounts department within an advertising agency to ensure that clients are highly satisfied.||$77,579|
|News Anchor||Expert communicators who present local, state, and global news stories to the public.||$73,595|
|Public Relations Manager||Coordinates outreach to the public through planning events and initiatives.||$78,727|
|Freelance Writer||Commonly works remotely with a business to produce editorial and marketing pieces.||$52,291|
*Job and salary data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and Payscale.com
Whether you enjoy the financial end of business or you have a passion for production and cinema, many online communication degree programs allow you to customize your education towards a concentration that suits your interests.
As you can see, the sky is the limit when it comes to career paths in the communications field, and if you are impressed with the salaries above, you aren’t alone! These numbers show an average based upon 10 years of working in the profession, and you may make more or less depending on your experience and skill-set.
Benefits of Earning your Communications Degree Online
- Lower tuition costs
- Full scheduling flexibility
- Enhanced interaction opportunities to up your communication skills
- Wide range of concentrations, from TV Producing to Public Relations
- Career advancement
…. and so much more!
With over 6 million students taking at least one online college course, there is no better time than now to jump in and start paving the path to your future with an online Communications degree!
Types of Online Communications Degrees
While there are general timeframes for completing programs offering degrees online, such as two years for an associate’s or four years for a bachelor’s degree, these numbers aren’t set in stone. There are many ways to shave off the average time by increasing your course load, taking accelerated classes, or taking advantage of your university’s credit by examination options or life experience portfolio.
Online Associate’s Degree in Communications
If you are looking for an introduction to the communications field in order to get a jump start on your career, then an associate’s degree can be a solid option to begin your journey.
Throughout your course of study, you will cover several different aspects of communication that will prepare you for a variety of career paths. Some of the common courses you may find in your online program include:
- Writing effective press releases and other written communication
- Understanding the field of public relations
- Laws and ethics of communication
- Solving and identifying common professional problems
- Strengthening computer skills
- Developing an effective portfolio
Wherever your passions lie, working towards your goals with an associate’s degree in communications is a great stepping stone towards a productive future.
Online Bachelor’s Degree in Communications
One of the most common online communications programs offered is the bachelor’s degree program. Earning your bachelor’s degree opens up a wider range of career opportunities, and will help set you apart in this competitive field. There are several advanced communications courses that you will take throughout this study program, and typically, you will have the option to choose a concentration as well.
Online Bachelor’s in Communications:
Some of the skills you will learn through this program include:
- Understanding mass media and society
- Advanced journalism skills
- Working with new technologies of communication
- Publication design
- Focus on skills directly related to your chosen concentration
By advancing your education with a bachelor’s in communications, you will be preparing yourself for senior-level positions within a company. This increases your potential for exciting career opportunities and a higher pay rate in the long-term!
Online Master’s Degree in Communications
Online degree programs can be a great opportunity for professionals that are looking to advance their knowledge without sacrificing their current job schedule. If this sounds like you, having the ability to log-in to classes anytime and anywhere makes an online master’s degree in communications a feasible option to move up the corporate ladder!
Online Master’s in Communications:
Some courses of study you may see throughout your master’s degree journey include:
- Skill development in technical communications
- In-depth look at the power of public relations
- Customized career-oriented courses
- Event planning
- Development of a professional exit portfolio
If you have been on the fence about advancing your communications education, online degree programs have made it easier than ever!
Online Doctorate Degree in Communications
After working your way up the corporate ladder, are you ready to see a Ph.D. after your name? Earning a doctorate degree is the crowning achievement of an educational journey, and there are several credible universities offering online doctorate communication degrees from the comfort of your own home.
During this course of study, you can expect to delve deep into the academia and theory surrounding the art of communication. Some of the courses you may encounter through this program include:
- Communication in a global media environment
- History of communication
- Philosophy and theology of communication
- In-depth research techniques
- Academic writing and publication
Once you have reached the point of seeking out a doctorate program in communications, you are no novice to the field – and the advanced coursework involved in earning a Ph.D. is a testament to that! Online doctorate programs allow you the flexibility to work around your professional life while still accomplishing your dreams of reaching the pinnacle of your educational career.
Communications Career Outlook and Salary Information
When considering any career, especially one in the ever fluctuating business world, it is essential to have an understanding of its future. Many careers are being replaced with the advancement of technology, but the communications field is a notable exception.
Every business needs effective written and public communication to develop their brand messaging, and this skill can’t be replaced by a computer!
In fact, the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that media and communication occupations will grow 4% between 2019 and 2029. This marked growth will create the potential for over 26,200 new jobs within the field of communication. With the increased demand for companies to adapt in a growing business world, the market is primed for educated communicators to take the lead in advancing their careers.
Comparing Top Communications Degree Programs
Now that you have a better understanding of what careers are available after earning a degree in communications, how do you know which university is the right choice for you?
There are several factors that go into choosing an online degree program that is a good fit for your lifestyle and future goals. Below we will discuss some of the key areas to consider when making this important life decision.
If you have begun the research into online universities, chances are that you have heard the term “accreditation” thrown around quite a bit – and for good reason! Accreditation is the voluntary process that secondary educational facilities undergo for a formal review of their academic quality and financial resources.
There are a handful of regional accreditation agencies endorsed by the U.S. Department of Education. However, a school that offers online degree programs may have additional accreditations to their name, including verification by the Distance Education and Training Council (DETC).
So, what does this mean for you?
If you are earning a degree through a college that is accredited, you can avoid the trap of falling into one of the “degree mill” type programs that are out there. When you are spending the money and effort on earning a degree in communications, you deserve to know that you will be rewarded with an education that will stand up to the requirements of your chosen field.
Student to Faculty Ratio
The student to faculty ratio may not seem like a huge issue when looking at online degree programs, but it is just as important online as it is in the classroom!
Throughout your studies, you will be working directly with your classmates and instructors through a virtual setting. This may include collaborative group projects, research papers, online discussion boards, or even live virtual class sessions. Due to this, it is imperative that your online university has a strong student to faculty ratio to ensure you will be able to receive individualized instruction and support throughout the course.
On the subject of faculty, it is always a good idea to take a look at the credentials and history of the professors from your chosen university. Most schools have a section of their website dedicated to their teaching faculty where you can look up their educational background and professional accomplishments.
Academic Advising and Student Services
College is more than just having your nose stuck in a textbook – even if you are doing classes online! The student services and academic advising support of your online university can still be an important factor in your long-term educational success.
Some key areas that set prestigious online communication universities apart include:
- Online library and academic research access
- Career counseling
- Online writing labs to develop your skills
- Communication internships and career mentoring
- Academic advising team
- Online tutoring options
When it comes to an online communications degree program, there are a wealth of options open to you. Whether you are a student fresh out of high school or a seasoned professional looking to advance an already stellar career, online degree programs offer a high-level of customization and flexibility to assist you in your long-term goals.
By closely examining the credentials of your online college choice and dedicating yourself to the commitment involved, an online degree in communications may be your ticket to a versatile career that lets you live out your passion!