MS in Advertising

The Master of Science in Advertising at Boston University is a three-semester, 52-credit program designed to prepare students to work in advertising in agencies, media companies, and other marketing communications organizations. Some will be prepared for doctoral-level studies. All students must take courses that provide a broad understanding of the advertising industry and of the role of communication in contemporary society. Additionally, they will focus on developing advertising campaigns and research skills. Students may pursue a thesis track that will prepare them for careers in marketing research or education.

MS in Advertising students will complete a total of 13 courses (52 credits). These are distributed as follows:

  • 5 required courses
  • 1 foundation course
  • 4 concentration courses
  • 3 electives at the 500 level or higher

The required, foundation, and concentration courses differ based on whether students choose a Professional or Thesis track.

Professional Track

Five Required Courses

  • COM CM 707 Writing for Media Professionals or CM 705 Writing for International Students
  • COM CM 708 Principles and Practices of Advertising (Fall only)
  • COM CM 722 Communication Research
  • COM CM 732 Advertising Campaigns (AdLab, taken twice, 2nd and 3rd semesters, for 2 credits per semester)
  • Choose one from: COM CM 710 Communication Theory, COM CM 704 Contemporary Mass Communication or COM CM 702 Advertising & Society (you may use electives to take more than one of these)

One Required Foundation Course

Choose one from the following. You may take the other one as one of the concentration courses or as an elective. Prerequisites are noted in parentheses.

  • COM CM 721 Ad Management (COM CM 708)
  • COM CM 717 Fundamentals of Creative Development

Four Concentration Courses

Choose four from the following:

  • COM CM 712 Consumer Insight and Account Planning (COM CM 708)
  • COM CM 519 Interactive Marketing Communication (COM CM 708)
  • COM CM 527 Strategic Creative Development (COM CM 708, 717)
  • COM CM 716 New & Traditional Media Strategies (COM CM 708)
  • COM CM 518 Creating Video Campaigns (COM CM 708, 717)
  • COM CM 726 Strategic Brand Solutions (COM CM 708)
  • COM CM 751 Advanced Art Direction (COM CM 708, 717)
  • COM CM 752 Advanced Copywriting (COM CM 708, 717)
  • COM CM 753 Portfolio Development (COM CM 708, 717)
  • COM CM 754 Portfolio Development II (COM CM 708, 717, 753)
  • COM CM 738 Global Marketing Communication (London program)

Three Elective Courses at the 500 Level or Higher

Thesis Track

Four Required Core Courses

  • COM CM 702 Advertising Society
  • COM CM 707 Writing for Media Professionals or
    COM CM 705 Writing for International Students
  • COM CM 708 Principles and Practices of Advertising
  • COM CM 732 Advertising Campaigns (AdLab, taken twice, 2nd and 3rd semesters, for 2 credits per semester)

Six Required Thesis Track Concentration Courses

  • COM CM 704 Contemporary Mass Communication
  • COM CM 710 Communication Theory
  • COM CM 721 Advertising Management (COM CM 708)
  • COM CM 722 Communication Research
  • COM CM 723 Advanced Communication Research for Thesis (COM CM 722)
  • COM CM 909 Thesis Research

Three Elective Courses at the 500 Level or Higher

Graduate Internships

Advertising students must complete two semesters in Advertising Campaigns, which involves working in AdLab, a student-run advertising agency at the College of Communication. Through AdLab, students work in groups to complete ad campaigns for clients outside the University. In addition, taking a graduate internship in any of the major areas of concentration is recommended as it provides valuable experience and networking opportunities. Registering for COM CM 809 Graduate Internship may allow you to receive course credit for an internship you secure.