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Mass communications is a broad major — it includes journalism, public relations, and advertising, to name a few. It’s the study of any communication that goes to a large audience. Mass communications studies are available at the baccalaureate, master, and doctoral levels.
At the bachelor’s level, the curriculum will examine the ways that that information is created and distributed, whether that be through a newspaper, television commercial, or billboards. This area of study can often be earned as either of a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Mass Communication or a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Mass Communication. The BA will include more humanities classes, while a BS will include more science and math classes.
Career paths for graduates with a Bachelor’s in Mass Communication include: News Reporter, Statician, Journalist, Mass Communications Law, International Communication, Public Communications.
A Master’s in Mass Communication will lend itself more to analyzation of mass communications, including crisis communication, criticism, and ethics. Advanced examination of survey methods, content analysis, and ethnography will likely be covered. While graduate degrees aren’t typically required for most professions in mass communication, it can open up opportunities for higher level positions. Programs take between one to two years to complete and may require a thesis to qualify for graduation.
If academia is the end goal, then a PhD in Mass Communications is a requirement. As the terminal degree in this field, a PhD qualifies graduates to become professors. The curriculum will largely consist of a thesis, containing new and insightful research in to a mass communications’ subject. Common areas include: communication law and regulation, advertising, political communication, and health communication.