Central’s four-year advertising major lets you unleash your imagination. You’ll combine advertising, marketing and theory classes with hands-on experiences. Our student-centered faculty members are excited to share their professional and rich research experience with you, while they individually mentor you through the program. You can gain professional development during the annual National Student Advertising Competition and in paid positions at CM Life, the CMU student newspaper’s “best-in-the-nation” advertising/business department.
Points of Pride
Students working in CM Life’s advertising department brought home 17 awards, including College Newspaper of the Year, from the 42nd annual College Newspaper Business and Advertising Managers Conference in Austin, Texas. Categories included black and white display ad, the classified page, training programs and mobile application sales increase.
Put Your Degree to Work
CMU’s advertising major helps students develop strategic creative and analytical skills and learn to approach and solve problems for companies and brands with an effective, unconventional mindset. Graduates of this advertising degree program put their skills to work and become leaders in a wide array of creative communication fields. Job opportunities for advertising majors include:
- Ad copywriter
- Graphic designer
- Media buyer
- Media planner
- Account manager
- Ad traffic manager
- Market researcher
- Audience/consumer analyst
- Art director
- Creative director
U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics sample data
Below is a list of potential careers, median salary over the course of the career and projected job growth.
|Job||Median Pay||Job Growth through 2026|
|Advertising/marketing manager||$129,380 per year||10% (23,800 more jobs)|
|Art director||$92,500 per year||5% (4,900 more jobs)|
|Market research analyst||$63,230 per year||23% (138,300 more jobs)|
The course listings below are a representation of what this academic program requires. For a full review of this program in detail please see our official online academic bulletin AND consult with an academic advisor. This listing does not include the General Education courses required for all majors and may not include some program specific information, such as admissions, retention, and termination standards.
(Click on the course name or number for a complete course description.)
An Advertising Major requires 39 hours of journalism and marketing coursework.
The Journalism Department requires that ALL graduating seniors take an exit exam prior to graduation as part of the department’s assessment efforts.
Total: 39 semester hours
Required Courses II
Select one of the following:
The Asian Media and Cross-cultural Mass Communication
Analysis of Asian media systems and historical, economic, political and cultural factors shaping those systems. May be offered as Writing Intensive. (University Program Group IV-B: Studies in Cultures Outside of the Anglo-American Tradition)
Racial and Cultural Diversity: Mass Media's Role
Critical, historical and contemporary examination of African, Hispanic, Asian, Native American, and gender stereotypes in mass media. Self- portrayals by these groups using mass media. May be offered as Writing Intensive. (University Program Group IV-C: Studies in Racism and Cultural Diversity in the United States)
Required Courses III
Introduction to Graphics and Visual Communication
Principles and techniques of publication/advertising graphics and visual communication, including typography and the printing process.
Foundations of Strategic Public Relations
Overview of strategic campaign process and application public relations theory to real-world projects including formative research, strategic and tactical planning, and plan evaluation phases.
Organization of today's advertising industry; role of advertising in promotion; examination of types of advertising and media vehicles. This course is approved for offering in an online or hybrid format.
Writing for Advertising
An introduction to the principles and techniques used in writing for print, broadcast, internet, mobile, direct mail, and point-of-sale advertising. Prerequisites: JRN 360.
Evaluation of media in relationship to marketing objectives. Selection of media space/time and decision-making in development of media schedules. Prerequisite: JRN 360.
Advertising and Public Relations Research
Reviews and applies secondary, social scientific, professional, and interpretative research methods in persuasive mass communication contexts. Prerequisite: JRN 350 or 353 or 360.
Law of Mass Communication
Principles and case studies. Prerequisites: JRN 101 or 102; junior standing.
Development of advertising plans. Choice of appeals, approaches, media, and creative strategies. Preparation, production and presentation of campaigns. Budget allocation, marketing research, assessment and evaluation. Prerequisites: JRN 361; JRN 365 or MKT 315.
Experience in advertising under professional and faculty supervision. May be applied toward journalism major or minor only with permission of faculty advisor. Prerequisites: junior standing and permission of instructor.
Introduction to Marketing
A basic introduction to the marketing environment, the marketing mix, marketing management and the place of marketing in world society. Credit may not be earned in both MKT 304 and MKT 300; cannot be counted on any BSBA major including Marketing, Logistics Management, or Hospitality Services Administration. This course may be offered online. May be offered as Writing Intensive. Prerequisite: 56 semester hours completed.
Required Courses I
Select one of the following:
Media and Society
Understanding the influence of media and society. (University Program Group III-B: Studies in Social Structures)
Introduction to Journalism
An introduction to journalism as a social, cultural, political, technological, and economic force; a professional field; an academic discipline, unit and program.
Required Courses IV
Select one of the following:
Advertising Account Management
An exploration of the history, functions, and skills of advertising account management. Prerequisite: JRN 360.
Advertising Copy and Design
Techniques used to interpret advertising strategies and create advertising concepts, copy, layout, and presentations in print, broadcast and digital media. Prerequisites: JRN 302, 360, 361.
Advertising Account Planning
This course will explain, explore, demonstrate, and examine the research techniques and interpretive skills used in the field of marketing- communications. Prerequisite: JRN 360.