Three programs in the Boston, Massachusetts, area allow students to obtain a master's degree in public relations. Boston University, Emerson College, and Suffolk University all have graduate programs in public relations, two of which offer Master of Arts and one, Boston University, offers a Master of Science.
Universities Offering Master's in Public Relations in Boston, MA
Boston University offers a Master of Science (MS) in Public Relations. The program is 48 credit hours total, or 12 courses. The required core courses focus on strategic PR management, public relations in the modern environment, a media writing, professional writing course, communication research, and media relations; there is also a required public relations lab or internship. Students must then select 20 credit hours of elective from courses such as public relations in the corporate sphere or global marketing communications. In lieu of a thesis, students must pass an online final presentation in a formal faculty review.
The Master of Arts in Public Relations program at Emerson College requires a thesis or capstone project at the culmination of the program. It has a minimum of 36 credit hours. Core courses cover new technologies in communications, public opinion, and public affairs as well as a thesis or capstone project research. Students at Emerson have the unique option of specializing in one of three different tracks: strategic public relations, sports communication, or political communications. These tracks are each two courses long. For example, the political communications track consists of diplomacy and communications classes. The sports communication track consists of sports management and communication classes. Students may also choose from a number of electives including those focused on speech writing, campaign management, and crisis communication. Some of these courses are available online.
Suffolk University Boston
Students can enroll in an MA in Communication with a concentration in Public Relations program at Suffolk University. It is a 36 credit-hour, 12 course requirement program. Students choose a research course in either applied or marketing communications as their core requirement. Then they must complete seven courses in the following subjects to achieve the public relations concentration: internet design, social media studies, public affairs, a seminar in marketing and advertising, crisis environment communications, an introduction to communications studies, and a content management course. Students must also choose four courses as electives in advertising, social media, or public relations.
Program Admittance Requirements for Master's Programs in Public Relations in Boston
The admissions process for a master's degree program in public relations is competitive. Documents applicants should expect to produce for the applications include undergraduate transcripts, professional resumes, letters of recommendation, and personal essays. Some schools require GRE scores, and some do not. For example, Boston University waives the GRE score requirement for public relations graduate school admission if the student's undergraduate GPA is a 3.0 or above. Each program requires an essay, of which applicants are usually given two prompts from which to choose. Applicants may be called in after determining suitability of their applications for interviews with faculty members and potential advisors.
There are three different universities in the Boston area that offer master's degrees in public relations--one offers an MS and two offer an MA. Boston University, Emerson College, and Suffolk University all have programs with unique course offerings and some offer opportunities to expand into specialized tracks.