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Chicago Advertising Universities and Schools with Degree Overviews

There are at least four schools near Chicago that have advertising degree programs. Read an overview of the programs, requirements and admission info for three that are within 15 miles of downtown, and find out which school is the right one for you.

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Advertising Degree Programs in the Chicago Area

Students in the Chicago area have a variety of advertising bachelor's programs from which to choose. This article looks at three schools, all within 25 minutes of downtown, and the programs they offer. There's also a table of useful information, such as school type, tuition and graduation rates. At the end of the article are some facts about one more Chicago-area school with an advertising degree program.

  • At DePaul University, students can pursue a Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations and Advertising or follow a combined bachelor's and master's track. This school is in the heart of downtown Chicago. The College of Communication is among the fastest growing colleges at DePaul and is home to state-of-the-art facilities.
  • Students at Loyola University can pursue a bachelor's degree program in advertising and public relations. Courses are held on the Water Tower Campus, which is centrally located in Chicago's communication and advertising community, 11 miles from the city center.
  • North Park University, about nine miles from downtown Chicago, provides students the opportunity to study advertising at a small school. Advertising majors can choose to follow a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science track at the School of Business and Nonprofit Management.

Comparison of Schools

With the information in the following table, prospective students can see how these schools compare in important areas and use this knowledge to make an informed choice regarding their education.

DePaul University Loyola University North Park University
School Type 4-year university; private not-for-profit 4-year university; private not-for-profit 4-year university; private not-for-profit
Total Enrollment (2017) 22,769* 16,673* 2,937*
Campus Setting Large city Large city Large city
Tuition and Fees (2017-2018) $39,010* $43,078* $28,620*
% of First-Year Students Receiving Some Form of Financial Aid (2016-2017) 96%* 98%* 99%*
Acceptance Rate (2017) 72%* 71%* 54%*
Retention Rate (2016-2017) 84% for full-time students; 33% for part-time students* 83% for full-time students; 100% for part-time students* 71% for full-time students*
Graduation Rate 71% (students who began Fall 2011)* 77% (students who began Fall 2011)* 59% (students who began Fall 2011)*

Source: *NCES College Navigator

DePaul University

Programs at the College of Communication at DePaul University teach students to use a variety of mediums to convey messages. Among the majors offered are public relations and advertising, communication and media, journalism, organizational communication and relational communication.

Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations and Advertising

DePaul University's Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations and Advertising program allows students to take classes in one or both disciplines, depending on their interests. Public relations courses cover image management, while advertising courses teach students how to persuade consumers and sell goods and services. Students are required to take 64 credit hours of public relations, advertising and communications courses, including advertising principles or public relations fundamentals, writing for the major, research methods, ethics and related elective courses. A capstone course completes the major requirements. Students also can earn credit for an internship.

Combined Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts

DePaul University's College of Communication offers a combined program that awards a Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations and Advertising and a Master of Arts in Media and Cinema Studies, Organizational and Multicultural Communication, Health Communication, Journalism or Relational Communication. Students earn 12 credits that count toward both the undergraduate and graduate degrees, allowing them to complete the program in five years. To be admitted to the program, students must earn junior status in the BA program and have a cumulative GPA of 3.0. Admission requirements also include a 3.25 GPA in communication courses for journalism majors or a 3.5 GPA in communication courses for the remaining four majors.

Loyola University

The School of Communication at Loyola University combines an ethical foundation with industry technology to provide students with relevant coursework. Bachelor's degree programs in advertising and public relations, film and digital media studies, communication studies and journalism are offered, as is a Master of Communication in Digital Storytelling.

Bachelor of Arts in Advertising and Public Relations

The Bachelor of Arts in Advertising and Public Relations program at Loyola University requires 46 credits of major coursework. Students can integrate both advertising and public relations courses or focus on one area. The program includes a core of ten communication credits, three credits of research methods and nine credits of major foundation courses covering public relations, advertising principles and marketing fundamentals. Students also take nine credits within their individual or integrated specialization, three electives and a capstone course. An internship is required for graduation.

North Park University

The School of Business and Nonprofit Management at North Park University offers both a Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science in Advertising. A business and economics major is also available with a variety of specializations.

Bachelor of Arts in Advertising

North Park University's Bachelor of Arts in Advertising program combines coursework from the business, communication arts and art departments. The BA program is intended to provide a breadth of advertising and communication knowledge. Students can take creative design, audio and video production, account management, marketing research or consumer behavior courses to further their knowledge of these subjects. Students are required to complete 38 semester hours of major coursework. Classes include business and professional ethics, public speaking, design, economics, consumer behavior and marketing. Students also have the option of pursuing an internship.

Bachelor of Science in Advertising

The Bachelor of Science in Advertising program at North Park University is designed for students wishing to work in a creative advertising career. It requires 58 hours of major coursework. In addition to the courses required for the Bachelor of Arts, the BS program requires digital imaging and illustration and media and society courses in addition to a selection of 12 fine arts or communication credits. Students can choose from 3-dimensional design, painting, drawing, art history, audio or video production or photography. An internship is required for graduation.

Other School Options

Students can earn a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Advertising Art Direction at Columbia College - Chicago, located in downtown Chicago.

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