2019 Best Online Master's in Communication Programs

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The best online master's degrees in communication are offered by the schools on this list. Johns Hopkins University comes in first with an affordable annual tuition of $20,435 for an MA in Communication. Graduates earn a median salary of $98,900. The most affordable school on the list is second-ranked Webster University. Webster University's MA in Communication Arts costs $13,260 per year. Southern New Hampshire University Online offers an MA in Communication with specialization options in New Media and Marketing and in Public Relations.

Alumni salaries were provided by PayScale. View our methodology for more details or learn more about SR Education Group.

Find an Online Degree:
Rank School Annual Tuition Median Salary
#1 #1 Johns Hopkins University $20,435 $98,900
#2 #2 Webster University $13,260 $84,300
#3 #3 West Virginia University $14,960 $84,500
#4 #4 Franklin University $13,400 $78,700
#5 #5 Southern New Hampshire University Online $13,794 $66,400
Salary data provided by Payscale Logo. Updated 2018.
  • Annual Tuition: $20,435
  • Median Salary: $98,900
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Accreditation: MSCHE
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The prestigious John Hopkins University offers a master’s in communication that is available entirely online. If students live in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area, it is possible to complete the program by taking classes partially online and partially in person. To be admitted, students must have obtained a bachelor’s degree with a minimum 3.0 GPA and have a history of relevant coursework. This online M.A. program consists of 10 courses, and online coursework is available via Blackboard 24 hours a day and seven days a week.

 

  • Annual Tuition: $13,260
  • Median Salary: $84,300
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Accreditation: HLC
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Webster University offers several online master’s in communications programs. These include a Master of Arts in advertising and marketing communications, Master of Arts in communications management, Master of Arts in media communications, and Master of Arts in public relations. Each program can be completed fully online or onsite at the primary campus in St. Louis, Missouri. To be admitted, students must have obtained a bachelor’s degree with a minimum 2.5 GPA and have a history of relevant coursework. The M.A. in communications programs typically require 24 credit hours of required courses and 12 credit hours of elective courses.

  • Annual Tuition: $14,960
  • Median Salary: $84,500
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Accreditation: HLC
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West Virginia University offers a robust master’s in communication studies through the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences. This online program focuses primarily on helping working professionals advance their communication skills and careers. To be admitted, students must have obtained a bachelor’s degree with a minimum 2.75 GPA and have a history of relevant coursework. This M.A. program requires the completion of 36 credit hours that are typically spread across six semesters, making it easier to balance work and school.

  • Annual Tuition: $13,400
  • Median Salary: $78,700
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Accreditation: HLC
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Franklin University offers an online Master of Science in marketing and communication. It focuses on creating future workplace leaders who understand concepts ranging from company messaging to market share and ROI. To be admitted, students must have obtained a bachelor’s degree with a minimum 2.75 GPA and have a history of relevant coursework. If the GPA is below that number, a candidate may still be admitted following the successful completion of a graduate entrance exam. This M.A. program requires the completion of 40 credit hours of graduate education.

  • Annual Tuition: $13,794
  • Median Salary: $66,400
  • School Type: Non-Profit
  • Accreditation: NECHE
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Southern New Hampshire University offers an online Master of Arts degree in communication with a concentration in new media and marketing as well as an option for public relations. The programs use more of a practical application method rather than strictly theory-based teaching. They are best suited to those who are pursuing communications-related careers. To be admitted, students must have obtained a bachelor’s degree with a minimum 2.75 GPA and have a history of relevant coursework. Students with a lower GPA may possibly obtain provisional acceptance and be asked to complete an Introduction to Graduate Studies class. This M.A. program requires the completion of 36 credit hours.

Online Master's in Communications Overview

Program Requirements

While most communications master's programs accept applicants from a variety of undergraduate backgrounds, strong writing skills are required. Programs may also require a high undergraduate GPA and standardized test scores. The majority of master’s programs in communications are two-year degrees, though they range in length from one to three years.

Curriculum

The curriculum in a communications master's program requires study in a variety of communications and leadership strategies. Students learn about various methods of written and oral communication, such as public relations, mass communications, and digital communication. Many programs require foundational coursework in quantitative and qualitative research methods for social science. These courses teach students how to develop a sound research project, which is key for thesis-based degrees. The thesis requires students to draft a lengthy paper around a particular question or problem in communications.

Certain communications master's programs offer concentrations in communications management or professional communications. These degrees require more business-oriented coursework, such as classes in organizational behavior, team management, and international business.

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