Public Relations Degree Online

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BA in Communication Video
Public Relations Degree Online from SNHU

Is the Communication - Public Relations Degree Online Right for You?

If you are interested in learning how to use emerging technologies to communicate effectively, consider SNHU's online Public Relations Degree.

The BA in Communication with a Public Relations concentration emphasizes building mutually beneficial relationships between organizations and their public audiences. Earn your online Public Relations Degree at SNHU to prepare for a career in corporate, government, agency and nonprofit public relations.

The Public Relations Degree online program focuses on developing your critical skills in thinking, writing, research, strategic planning and execution. Public speaking classes leverage widely available technology to promote research and speaking skills that are essential to the communications professional.

Employers often cite good communication skills as one of the most critical qualifications in a prospective employee. Our BA Communications Online Degree with a concentration in Public Relations will help you strengthen your ability to communicate effectively with co-workers, clients and the general public.

Why Get a BA Communications-Public Relations Online Degree at SNHU?

As a private, nonprofit, accredited university, we focus on ensuring you obtain the skills you need to succeed. Whether you enroll in the BA communications online or on campus, you will benefit from all SNHU has to offer:

  • Learn public relations theory and industry-specific concepts that help build your public speaking, presentation and interviewing skills.   
  • Quality education at one of the most affordable tuition rates available.
  • Complete course work in many areas of the field, gaining experience with business communication, graphic design and public relations.  
  • High quality instruction from our English Department faculty. 
  • Professors and instructors who are actively involved in their students' success. 
  • Accredited by New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

Communication-Public Relations
Employment Opportunities

Employment of those in public relations is expected to grow 21 percent through 2020, much faster than average for most occupations, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Businesses' and governments' need for good public relations is increasing globally.

Careers for Communications graduates include:

  • Public Relations
  • Media Relations
  • Employee Relations
  • Journalism
  • Corporate communications
  • Advertising
  • Copywriting
  • Training & Development
  • Speechwriting

Visit our Career Development Center online to learn more about career opportunities in communications.

Transfer of Credit

If you’re a student who wants to transfer to SNHU or if you simply want to finish what you’ve started, we try to make transferring as easy as possible. We’ll accept up to 90 transferred academic credits and automatically complete an official credit evaluation as part of the application review process.

School of Arts and Sciences Required Courses

ENG-220: Business Communication
This course is a practical introduction to the preparation of business correspondence, employment applications and resumes and formal research reports. Written communication skills are emphasized.
ENG-121, ENG-121H or ENG-200

Select Two of the Following:

GRA-310: Digital Graphic Design for the Web
This course presents digital graphic theory and develops skills that meet the design and technical requirements of professionally created digital images for commercial applications on the World Wide Web on a variety of platforms and Internet appliances. Each student will develop a professional portfolio consisting of printed and CD-ROM material. Students also develop working Web sites to display their graphic design projects. Topics include design strategies, Web authoring environments, color calibration and aesthetics, special HTML tags, image mapping, style sheets, digital cameras and scanners, GIF animation and an introduction to Dynamic HTML.
HIS-114: United States History II: 1865-Present
The second half of the United States history survey course covers the period following the Civil War. The economic, political and ideological developments that allowed the United States to attain a position of the world leadership are closely examined. Required for majors in History and Social Studies Education with a concentration in History.
POL-210: American Politics
This course offers a broad introduction to the structure and function of the American political system at the national level, including the roles played by the president, Congress, the courts, the bureaucracy, political parties, interest groups and the mass media in the policy- making and electoral processes. This course places special emphasis on how the efforts of the framers of the Constitution to solve what they saw as the political problems of their day continue to shape American national politics in ours.
PSY-257: Social Psychology
Social psychology is an interesting, dynamic study of how people's thoughts, feelings and actions are affected by others. Issues discussed include prejudice, conformity, interpersonal attraction and violence. The scientific methods of studying such phenomena are emphasized. Offered as needed.
PSY-108 or PSY-108H
SCI-219: Environmental Issues
This course covers a variety of environmental topics in a manner specifically designed for the non-science major. It provides a fundamental understanding of the various processes necessary to support life on Earth and examines how human activities and attitudes (individual, traditional, cultural and others) generate environmental issues that threaten these processes. Topics include ecology, populations, agriculture, desertification and deforestation, water and ocean pollution, air pollution including ozone depletion and acid rain, global climate change, natural resource depletion, solid and hazardous wastes, energy including fossil fuels and nuclear power, economics and sustainability.
SOC-328: Sociology of Aging
Students in this course examine the basic social processes and problems of aging. Social and psychological issues and issues involved with death and dying are discussed. Offered every other year.

Communication (BA) Online Major Courses

COM-126: Introduction to Mass Communication
This communications survey course covers mass media, culture, and society. The course focuses on how and why the US media operate as they do, as well as on how media performance might be improved.
COM-212: Public Speaking
This course is designed to help students develop abilities, including organization and delivery skills, for all speaking situations. The evaluation and improvement of voice, diction, articulation and posture also are studied. May not be used as literature elective.
COM-227: Public Relations
This course introduces students to the theory and practice of public relations in the United States. Students study the major figures in this field as well as organizations, their behavior, and the relationships between organizations and their publics.
ENG-11, ENG-121, ENG-121H or ENG-200
COM-230: Graphics and Layout in Print Media
This course is an introduction to the principles and practices of graphic design. Students are introduced through lecture, demonstration and hands-on computer work to the basic elements of graphic visual communication. Adobe Illustrator is used as a primary tool in exploring visual perception through a variety of creative exercises that familiarize the student with basic visual principles such as figure/ground manipulation, shape grouping, letterform shape creation, and grid and system creation. Formal elements of graphic design such as line, shape, color, texture, pattern, balance, symmetry, rhythm, space and unity are thoroughly explored by example and hands-on computer exercises; special topics included are: designing with type, layout strategies, logo design, symbol and pictogram development and stationery systems.
COM-232: Desktop Publishing
This course is an introduction to the software application Adobe InDesign designed for the novice user. The Macintosh platform is used in the classroom studio lab, and the student is introduced to the creative and practical aspects of the desktop publishing program that is considered indispensable in the contemporary communications and design industries. This course is based on a series of introductory exercises and a regimen of hands-on practice that teaches software and design skills; students learn how to combine the use of InDesign with other professional graphics and work-processing software such as Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop and Microsoft Word.
COM-235: Introduction to Journalism
This writing practicum introduces students to writing for print and electronic media under deadline. Gathering information by using records, documents, observation, interviewing, and the Internet. Emphasis on library resources, electronic databases, and current events. Basic style and editing based on AP Stylebook and Libel Manual and AP Broadcast News Handbook.
ENG-121, ENG-121H or ENG-200
COM-310: Social Media
Twitter, Facebook, blogs, podcasts - the possibilities of social media today are countless and ever-changing. This course is a broad approach to the history, theory, technology, impact and strategic uses of social media. These tools are relatively inexpensive and accessible technologies that enable anyone to create, publish, edit and access messages intended for the smallest to the largest of audiences. Students will examine the strategic uses of social media for community building, civic and political participation, advertising, marketing, public relations, and journalism. This course provides hands-on experience with the most current technology.
ENG-121 or ENG-200
COM-320: Exploring World Cultures/Mass Media
This course seeks to expand global cultural understanding and communication by examining pop culture and media systems in various countries. Students will have the opportunity to expand their cultural perspective by exploring music, film, television, radio, print media, technology, and urban and youth culture. Topics will include media imports and exports, media audiences, media financing and regulation, media research and reporting, media effects, media ethics, meaning and communication through media, and intercultural communication. In lieu of a text students will use extensive Internet research, personal interviews, podcasts, discussion boards, various supplemental material, and independent cultural exploration. Classes will consist of brief lectures, discussion, viewing of media, and in-class research and projects. Global marker.
COM-126 or COM-128 and ENG-121 or ENG-200
COM-322: Advanced Public Speaking
This course provides students with the skills to produce effective oral presentations in professional contexts. The course includes formal individual speeches as well as interactive and group presentations. It is run as a seminar to provide students with experience as moderators.
COM-212 or ENG-200
COM-430: Organizational Communications
This course gives students the opportunity to develop skills, knowledge, and philosophies in organizational communication through lectures, research, readings, discussions, application, and written assignments. Emphasis is placed on verbal and nonverbal communication, cultural communication, interpersonal relationships within organizations, and dealing with the future and change.
COM-476: Corporate Communications Seminar
This course will explore the growing field of corporate communication with special emphasis on, industry analysis, media relations, message strategies and crisis communication planning. Upon completion of the course, students will understand the theory, practice and functions of corporate communicators. This course will serve as a capstone experience for all communication majors.

Public Relations Concentration Courses

Select four of the following:

COM-336: Electronic Public Relations
This course provides a focused overview of electronic public relations applications and presents guidelines for using electronic technologies for public relations purposes. Students will learn to reach various publics through public service announcements, video news releases and satellite media tours. Students will also learn how to reach media, government, consumers, employees and management effectively by applying electronic media technologies. Offered as needed.
COM-340: Writing for Public Relations
Survey course requiring copywriting in public communication formats, including news releases, features, editorials, brochures, executive summaries, company profiles, newsletters and annual report copy.
ENG-121, ENG-121H or ENG-200
COM-448: Media Ethics and Law
This course provides students with the skills and knowledge they need to work in the communications profession. They also will develop a clear understanding of the statutory and constitutional guidelines governing the profession. Students learn the theoretical underpinnings of the First Amendment, followed by its application in cases involving libel, privacy, intellectual property, corporate speech, advertising, obscenity, access to information, protection of news sources, broadcasting policy and electronic media regulations.
COM-452: Public Relations Campaign Planning Seminar
This capstone course offers practice in managing communication campaigns from the public relations perspective and emphasizes the production and presentation of campaign plans. Students will develop and pitch a campaign for a real client.

Free Elective Credits: 33

Total Credits: 120

SNHU's online degree programs meet the needs of today's students while ensuring educational quality and real-world applicability. Contact us to learn more about the SNHU difference.

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Phone: 888.327.SNHU