As an integrative public relations major, you’ll gain insights and experience in journalism, broadcast and cinematic arts, and communication. This variety allows you to create a program that fits your career goals and prepares you for an entry-level public relations position. A required internship will give you hands-on experience before graduation, and there are plenty of opportunities to get involved, including through CMU’s student-run public relations agency.
Put Your Degree to Work
You’ll have exciting opportunities in corporate relations, nonprofit organizations, health care, government, lobbying, fundraising, community relations, sports, special events planning and more. Potential positions include:
- Public relations manager
- Community relations manager
- Event manager
- Brand manager
- Marketing manager
- Advertising manager
- Sales manager
- Promotions manager
- Media relations manager
- Social media specialist
- Development director
U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics sample data
|Job||Median Pay||Job Growth through 2022|
|Public relations/fundraising manager||$95,450 per year||13% (8,000 more jobs)|
|Meeting and event planner||$45,810 per year||33% (31,300 more jobs)|
|Advertising and promotions manager||$115,750 per year||12% (25,400 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.)
Integrative Public Relations Major
Integrative Public Relations is an interdisciplinary major grounded in the disciplines concerned with the practice of public relations. Students are strongly encouraged to work closely with their academic advisor throughout their academic careers .
Total: 61 semester hours
For additional information, see the list of advisors in the Class Schedule Booklet.
Required Courses I
Electronic Media Copywriting
Practice in the pervasive short forms of audio and video writing: commercials, continuity, public service announcements, and campaign evolution. Writing Intensive. Prerequisite: BCA 211 with a grade of C or better; or signed Integrative Public Relations major with a grade of B or better in ENG 101, ENG 103/193, ELI 198 or ENG 201.
Electronic Media Promotion
Tools and techniques of promotion for electronic media. Emphasis on media needs, community relations and problems unique to the electronic media promoter. Prerequisite: BCA 211 with a C or better or signed Integrative Public Relations major; Pre/Co-requisite BCA 311; limited to juniors or above; or graduate standing.
Current communication theories and practices in organizational crisis management and external crisis communication. Emphasis on public relations and communication. This course may be offered in an online format. Prerequisites: COM 251, 301, with a grade of C (2.0) or better and completion of 56 credit hours; or JRN 350, 369 with a grade of C (2.0) or better and completion of 56 hours; or graduate standing.
Foundations of Integrative Public Relations
Introduction to the concepts, activities, responsibilities and career directions of public relations from an interdisciplinary perspective.
Public Relations Internship
Directed full-time work experience in a professional public relations environment. Prerequisites: IPR 101; BCA 210, BCA 311; COM 264, COM 357; JRN 202, JRN 302, JRN 350, JRN 450; completion of 56 credit hours; prior written approval of the designated internship director; open only to signed Integrative Public Relations majors.
Writing for the Mass Media
Gathering, processing and writing information and opinion on current matters using professional standards and formats in news, public relations and advertising. Writing Intensive. Prerequisites: ENG 101 (C or better) or ENG 103/109 (C or better) or ELI 198 (C or better) or ENG 201 (C or better).
Introduction to Graphics and Visual Communication
Principles and techniques of publication/advertising graphics and visual communication, including typography and the printing process.
Public Relations Principles and Practices
Concepts and principles of public relations practiced by corporations, agencies, non-profits and other organizations. Role of the practitioner stressed. This course may be taken in an online or hybrid format.
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.
Public Relations Writing
Creating and editing written materials for a variety of public relations purposes and a variety of media. Writing Intensive. Prerequisites: JRN 202; JRN 350 or 353.
Case Studies in Public Relations
Examination of historic and contemporary public relations problems and programs with emphasis on research, planning and problem solving skills in public relations practices. Writing Intensive. Prerequisites: JRN 350 or 353; JRN 450.
Public Relations Seminar
Practical applications of public relations principles in a diverse society. Prerequisites: JRN 350 or 353; 450.
Required Courses II
Select from the following:
Current communication theories and practices in the modern formal organization. Especially recommended for students on preprofessional curricula.
Persuasion and Social Influence
Application of theories and principles underlying attitude change. This course is approved for offering in a distance learning format.
Select hours from Communication:
Note: COM 357 fulfills the oral competency requirement.
Content focuses on how values, attitudes and beliefs influence communication among people from different cultural backgrounds. This course may be offered in an online or hybrid format.
Communication and Social Influence
This course explores how language and public speeches shape decisions, create political support, define presidential leadership, repair public images, and celebrate community values.
Small Group Communication
Theories and application of the methods surrounding small-group interaction processes.
Theories and techniques for creating public speeches. Designed for students who seek to improve public-speaking skills.
Principles and Types of Interviewing
Study of establishing and achieving communication goals in a variety of formalized interviewing contexts. Emphasis given to question development and interviewing skills.
Communication and Social/Organizational Change
Research and methods of communicating changes into existing social systems. This course may be offered in an online or hybrid format. Prerequisite: COM 251, 301, with grades of C or better; or IPR major with junior standing; or graduate standing.
Communication in Conflict Management
Theory, research, and practical application of managing conflicts through communication. Focuses on conflict between people in the contexts of family, group, and organizations. Prerequisite: COM 251, 301 with grades of C or better; or IPR major with junior standing; or graduate standing.
Select hours from Broadcast & Cinematic Arts:
Introduction to Writing for Electronic Media
Introduction to creating written content for various forms of electronic media. Writing Intensive. Prerequisites: ENG 101 with a minimum grade of B or ENG 103/193 with a minimum grade of B or ELI 198 with a minimum grade of B or ENG 201 with a minimum grade of B.
Introductory course in video studio systems. Emphasis on structuring and integrating the various production elements that comprise video presentations. Prerequisites: BCA 210 with a C or better; or a signed minor in Multimedia Design.
Understanding Media Measurement
Quantitative reasoning skills in electronic media management and media audience measurement. Quantitative Reasoning. (University Program Group III-B: Studies in Social Structures)
Electronic Media Newswriting
Techniques and principles of writing and producing news copy for electronic media. Writing Intensive. Prerequisite: BCA 211 with C or better; or signed Integrative Public Relations major with a grade of B or better in ENG 101, ENG 103/193, ELI 198, or ENG 201.
Online Electronic Media
Examination of online communication technologies, including social media, virtual spaces, and content-management systems, and their effects on the electronic media and society. Prerequisites: BCA 210 with a grade of C or better; or IPR 101 with a grade of C or better.
Electronic Media Sales
Organizational systems and processes of sales in electronic media. Emphasis on techniques found most reliable in modern sales practices in radio, television, internet and cable. Prerequisites: BCA 265; limited to junior standing or above or graduate standing.
Select hours from Business and Management:
Global Business Communication
A focus on business communication skills necessary for success in the global business environment. This course may be offered in an online or hybrid format. Writing Intensive. Prerequisite: BUS 100 or BIS 100.
Legal Environment of Business
Introduction to the concept and use of law as a social institution. Open to both nonbusiness and business students. BLR 202 may not be applied toward the University Program requirements if a student is earning the Bachelor of Science in Business Administration degree. This course may be offered in an online or hybrid format. May be offered as Writing Intensive. (University Program Group III-B: Studies in Social Global Cultures)
Accounting Information for Entrepreneurial Decision Making
Introduction to principles of financial and managerial accounting, design of accounting systems, techniques of analysis and cost control. Interpretation of accounting information for decision making. Does not count for the School of Accounting major or minor. ENT 210 may not be used as a substitute for ACC 201 or ACC 250. This course may be offered in an online format.
Economics for Entrepreneurs
Introduction to the economic way of thinking and its applications to decision making in the business world. Emphasis on understanding and applying economic concepts. Does not count as credit for the Economics major or minor.
MGT 210/HSA 210
Effective Supervision: Principles and Practices
Prepares students to be effective first-line supervisors in a variety of organizational settings by using sound principles and practices applied to basic managerial processes. Identical to HSA 210. Credit may not be earned in more than one of these courses.
Small Business Management
The course covers concepts, processes, and techniques for starting and managing a small business. It focuses on management processes that are unique to small businesses. Prerequisites: 56 semester hours completed.
Select hours from Integrated Marketing:
Marketing Strategies for Entrepreneurs
General marketing principles applied to the entrepreneurial venture including daily activities, long-term branding/position strategy, inexpensive ways to conduct research, and utilizing networks to identify/reach customers. This course may be offered in an online or hybrid format. Recommended: ENT 101, ENT 201.
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.
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.
Analysis of the field of personal selling as a vital element of the promotional efforts of the firm. Prerequisites: MKT 300 or 304; 56 semester hours completed; admission to Professional Business Studies or listed on a signed major or minor; or with approval from the Office of Undergraduate Business Studies. For students with a signed minor in Electronic Media Sales, BCA 265QR and 56 semester hours completed.
Lobbying and Interest Group Behavior
The reasons for, and the methods of, lobbying government officials in the United States, with an emphasis on implications for democracy. Recommended: PSC 105.
Psychology of Advertising
Psychological principles and concepts applied to advertising and selling, promotion, buyer attitudes, consumer behavior, psychological measurement, and prediction in advertising. Prerequisite: PSY 100.
Select hours from Social Media and Multi-Media:
Introduction to elements and principles of design, creative problem solving and visual literacy as it applies to digital media.
Introduction to Graphic Design
An introduction to the theory and practice of communication design. An emphasis is placed on technical and aesthetic fundamentals.
Visual Business Communication and Digital Media
Evaluating and designing visuals and digital media in a business setting. Work of students contributes to a professional portfolio. This course may be offered in an online or hybrid format. Recommended: BIS 104 or CPS 100 or BIS 221 or BIS 255.
Web Site Development
Development of Internet and intranet web sites to support business functions including doing business on the Internet with emphasis on issues involved in designing and deploying this information technology by organizations. Prerequisite: 56 semester hours completed or listed on a signed major or minor.
Introduction to Multimedia Design
Introduction to multimedia concepts. Survey of multimedia applications in fields such as education, business and entertainment. Introduction to multimedia authoring tools. Hands-on projects.
The use and management of information systems (IS) by entrepreneurs around the world, creating value from information systems and exploring digital entrepreneurship. Prerequisite: 56 semester hours completed.
Social Media: Reputation, Image and Interaction
Advanced skills in using social media to engage audiences, establish professional brands, drive traffic and evaluate results. Prerequisite: JRN 202.
Introduction to Digital Journalism
Survey of current theories, issues and trends of the digital journalism environment, and introduction of digital journalism production using current media tools and software. Prerequisites: JRN 202 with a C or better or JRN 361 with a C or better.