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10 Highest Paying Communications Degree Jobs

If you’re a natural communicator and want to capitalize on this talent, then the logical next step is to consider the many lucrative communications degree jobs available. Many of these professions are associated with six-figure salary potentials, and some are currently experiencing unprecedented growth. The time to pursue a career in communications is now! Start by perusing the following ten high-paying communications degree jobs.  

Public Relations and Fundraising Managers

Median Annual Wage: $114,800

Salary Potential: $208,000

When looking for communications degree jobs, be sure to consider positions that include management roles such as the position of a public relations and fundraising manager. These professionals must rely on their strong communication skills to manage PR campaigns and fundraisers on behalf of companies and organizations. This can include directing and overseeing staff members as they execute tasks.

Although some employers will prefer a master’s credential, a bachelor’s degree is usually sufficient for management roles in public relations and fundraising. This is especially true if you also have some experience in the field. Academic backgrounds in communications, English, journalism, or marketing will prepare candidates for success in the role of a public relations/fundraising manager.

Communication majors at Rutgers University have the opportunity to specialize in Strategic Public Communication and Public Relations. Offered through the university’s School of Communication and Information, this degree track includes courses such as Organizational Reputation and Representation, Crisis Communication & Public Information, and Message Design for Public Relations, for instance.

Colorado State University offers a similar option online. Its public relations specialization is comprised of classes like International Public Relations, Campaign and Event Planning, and Public Relations Techniques.

Jobs for public relations and fundraising managers are growing faster than average, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Still, competition for these well-paid positions will remain stiff.

Broadcast News Analysts

Median Annual Wage: $66,880

Salary Potential: $200,180

Broadcast news analysts report the news to the public via the radio or television. Often called news anchors, these communications professionals are responsible for telling news stories in a way that the audience understands and finds interesting.

Minimum requirements for employment as a broadcast news analyst include a bachelor’s degree in either journalism or communications as well as an internship or prior work experience. This latter component demonstrates to employers that candidates have the ability to engage with a wide audience.

Demand for broadcast news analysts is expected to remain steady over the next several years, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Competition for these jobs will remain just as strong, however. Anchors who are social media savvy may have a competitive edge over other applicants.

Students interested in pursuing a career as a broadcast news analyst should consider Lindenwood University. The school’s BA in Mass Communications includes an optional Broadcast emphasis. Topics covered through the degree plan include video production, writing for electronic media, communication law and theory, and more.

For students desiring a comparable online option, Penn State World Campus offers a Bachelor of Arts in Digital Journalism and Media. Courses required for the degree include Law of Mass Communications, Media Ethics, and Principles of Multimedia Journalism, for example.

Writers and Authors

Median Annual Wage: $62,170

Salary Potential: $121,670

Among the most well-known communications degree jobs is that of a writer or author. These communications professionals are masters of the written word and use their excellent communication skills to convey information in print. There are numerous different kinds of writers and authors, including novelists, copywriters, biographers, speechwriters, playwrights, and more.

Education requirements for writers will vary based on the terms of employment. Many writers are self-employed, so there is no formal education requirement; still, an academic background in journalism or English may prove helpful. For salaried positions, you’ll likely need a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in communications or a related field.

Though top-earning professionals in the field earned over $120,000 in 2018, the median annual wage for writers and authors was just over half this wage that same year. Discrepancies in pay may be explained by the industry in which various writers and authors work as well as their years of experience practicing their craft.

Missouri State University offers a fully online BS in Professional Writing designed for students interested in a professional writing career. Requirements for the major include classes like Writing With Technology, Technical Editing, and Writing for the Web.

A solid on-campus option for career preparation in the field is Kutztown University’s BA in Professional Writing program. Courses associated with the program include Copy Editing: Revision and Style, Introduction to Mass Communications, and Magazine Writing, for instance.

Market Research Analysts

Median Annual Wage: $63,120

Salary Potential: $121,080

When you think of communications degree jobs, the occupation of market research analysts may not be the first thing that comes to mind. Still, these positions generally require just a bachelor’s degree and carry with them the potential to earn a desirable salary.

But what is a market research analyst? These professionals study the market to determine the success of a product or service. They gather information on market conditions, use software to analyze this data, and prepare presentations for clients and company executives.

The demand for market research analysts is currently very high. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicts that jobs for these professionals will increase by 20% between 2018 and 2028. As more businesses continue to rely on market data for their business models, these jobs will continue to be in demand.

Grand Canyon University offers a flexible online BA in Communications that can be applied to a wide range of industries, including sales and marketing. Core courses comprising the program’s curriculum include Communication Campaigns, Communication Research Methods, and Training and Development.

An even more targeted option for aspiring market research analysts is the University of West Alabama’s online BA/BS in Integrated Marketing Communications. A marketing internship is required for the successful completion of the program.

Editors

Median Annual Wage: $59,480

Salary Potential: $117,810

If you’re looking for high-paying communications degree jobs, you may want to consider a career as an editor. Although the median annual wage for these communications professionals was just under $60,000 in 2018, top-earning professionals in the field made well over six figures that same year.

Though correcting errors in spelling and grammar are what editors are best known for, that’s not all they do. Editors may also be responsible for rewriting text, helping writers develop their ideas, verifying details and sources, and more. There are different types of editors, too, so specific duties will vary. Some examples of these varying roles include copy editors, managing editors, and publication assistants, for example.

To become an editor, you’ll typically need a minimum of a bachelor’s degree. Employers usually prefer an academic background in communications, English, or journalism. Degrees in closely related fields may also be considered.

Arizona State University offers a convenient pathway to a career as an editor through its online Bachelor of Science program in Technical Communication. Courses required for this 120-credit hour program include Fundamentals of Writing for Digital Media, Principles of Technical Editing, and Global Issues in Technical Communication, for instance.

The University of Houston-Downtown offers a similar on-campus program through its College of Humanities and Social Sciences. The school’s BS in Technical Communication features classes such as Studies in English Grammar; Visual Rhetoric and Literacy; and Editing, Rewriting, and Copyreading.

Technical Writers

Median Annual Wage: $71,850

Salary Potential: $114,930

Among those communications degree jobs for individuals who specialize in written communication is the role of technical writer. Technical writers use their knowledge of the written word to make complex concepts and ideas easier to understand. They may write instruction manuals, brochures, articles, and other publications.

Jobs for technical writers are on the rise, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). As science and technology continues to advance, the demand for technical writers who can explain these advancements to the public will continue to grow.

In order to secure a position as a technical writer, you’ll need at least a bachelor’s degree in communications, English, or related field. Depending on the industry you wish to work in, you may also need a secondary degree or academic background in an area like engineering, medicine, or computer science, for instance.

Carnegie Mellon University offers a robust Bachelor of Science in Technical Writing and Communication for students interested in pursuing a career as a technical writer. One of the nation’s only BS programs of its kind, this offering features tracks in Technical Communication (TC) and Scientific and Medical Communication (SMC).

For online students, Indiana University-East offers a similar program. The school’s online BA in English with an emphasis in Technical and Professional Writing is comprised of courses such as Grammar and Usage, Technical Editing, and Advanced Technical Writing. This 60-credit hour offering is a degree completion program.

Advertising Sales Agents

Median Annual Wage: $51,740

Salary Potential: $114,810

Still looking for communications degree jobs? If so, you may want to consider the role of an advertising sales agent. Sometimes called advertising sales representatives, these professionals are responsible for selling advertising services on behalf of an advertising agency. Their duties may include contacting prospective customers to pitch their advertising packages, creating sales presentations, and estimating costs associated with the agency’s advertising services.

Although it’s possible to get a job as an advertising sales agent without a bachelor’s degree, it can be challenging. With a degree in communications or marketing, you’ll be more prepared for your duties, and you’ll have a competitive edge over other applicants during your job search.  According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), knowledge of digital communications and digital media will also increase your chances of employment as an advertising sales agent.

While the salary potential for advertising sales agents is enticing, it’s important to keep in mind that the average wage for most employees in this field is significantly less than that of top earners. Still, with years of experience in the field, your chances of earning a handsome paycheck are good.

For those interested in a career as an advertising sales agent, the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire offers a Bachelor’s in Integrated Strategic Communication with an emphasis in Advertising. Major requirements include course titles like Advertising in Contemporary Society, Multimedia Communication, Advertising Account Management, and Advertising Message Strategy.

Appalachian State University offers a similar program that can be completed online. The school’s BS in Communications with a specialization in Advertising is a comprehensive 120-credit hour offering intended for full-time students. Classes include Foundation of Advertising, Media Graphics, Social Media Strategies, and Copywriting for Advertising.

Public Relations Specialists

Median Annual Wage: $60,000

Salary Potential: $112,310

Communications degree jobs can also be found in the field of public relations. As a public relations specialist, you’ll rely on your excellent communication skills to represent a brand or business in the best possible light. This may mean writing press releases or managing social media campaigns. Other duties of public relations specialists may include evaluating advertisements and promotions, prepping clients for interviews, and responding to media requests.

Though your exact salary as a public relations specialist will vary depending on your terms of employment, top-earners in the field earned well over $100,000 in 2018. Competition for jobs is expected to be strong, even though employment of PR specialists is growing steadily.

Minimum requirements for employment as a public relations specialist include a bachelor’s degree in public relations or communications or a related field like journalism, English, or even business.

Students interested in a career in public relations may want to consider Maryville University’s convenient online BA in Communication. This versatile program features tracks in Strategic Communication and Emerging Media Strategy & Social Media. Students enrolled in the program will take core courses such as Professional and Organizational Communication, Introduction to New and Social Media, and Communication Research Methods.

Similarly, Angelo State University offers an on-campus Bachelor’s in Communication with a specialization in Advertising and Public Relations. Offered through the school’s Department of Communication and Mass Media, the program features classes like Public Relations Principles, Crisis Communication, and Advertising/Public Relations Campaigns and Cases.

Reporters and Correspondents

Median Annual Wage: $41,260

Salary Potential: $100,930

Reporters and correspondents are practically poster children for communications degree jobs. These professionals, sometimes collectively referred to as journalists, are responsible for writing compelling articles and stories on various topics of interest for newspapers, magazines, and online media outlets. To accomplish this, reporters and correspondents must conduct research, hold interviews, and follow leads. They need excellent written communication skills in order to develop ideas and create intriguing stories.

To become a reporter or correspondent, you’ll need a bachelor’s degree in communications or a related field such as journalism or English. Because modern audiences are now consuming their news primarily online, courses in multimedia topics such as programming and design may also be helpful.

Competition for positions in journalism is currently very strong. The more experience you have in the field, the better your chances of securing a job.

For students interested in pursuing a career as a reporter or correspondent, the University of St. Thomas offers a Bachelor of Arts in Communication and Journalism. This dynamic program features five different professional tracks, including one specifically designed for aspiring reporters.

A comparable online option is the BS in Journalism offered through Southern Illinois University- Carbondale’s College of Mass Communication and Media Arts. Students enrolled in the program will take classes such as Mass Communication in Society, Writing Across Platforms, and Journalism Law, for instance.  

Fundraiser

Median Annual Wage: 56,950

Salary Potential: $97,380

The job title of “fundraiser” may be the last thing that comes to mind when you think of communications degree jobs. Still, these professionals must have strong verbal and written communication skills in order to convince people to donate their hard-earned money. Organizations hire professional fundraisers in order to help them raise money for a certain cause.

The employment of fundraisers is currently growing faster than average, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). This trend is expected to continue so long as non-profit agencies require donations to fund their activities. Although job prospects for fundraisers are good, you may still face competition during the application and hiring process. Candidates with real-world experience in the field and those who are proficient with social media will fare the best.

Communication majors and graduates can pursue an online undergraduate certificate in fundraising and advancement through Penn State University’s World Campus. Classes offered include Principles of Strategic Communications, Grant Writing, and Fundraising Leadership: Building a Strong Base.

Indiana University- Purdue University- Indianapolis offers a similar certificate program in fundraising that can be completed online or on campus. Courses required for the certificate include Developing Annual Sustainability, Principles and Techniques of Fundraising, and Managing the Capital Campaign, for example.

Frequently-Asked Questions About Communications Degree Jobs

Q: What type of credential do I need to secure a position in communications?

A: In most cases, a bachelor’s degree is sufficient for entry-level communications degree jobs. However, a master’s degree may make your job search easier and qualify you for more advanced roles in the field.

Q: Are communications degree jobs in demand?

A:Yes. Many of the jobs we’ve discussed in this very article are currently experiencing faster-than-average growth.

Q: What can I expect to earn with a communications degree?

A: It varies. Your salary after graduation will depend on a number of different factors, including your employer, your exact degree type, and your prior work experience.

Q: Can I earn my communications degree online?

A: Yes. A number of schools currently offer bachelor of communications degree programs that can be completed entirely online.

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