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Advertising Major

Public Relations

The advertising major prepares you to craft and deliver persuasive messages through paid media. Coursework explores theories, practices, and ethics of advertising. You learn about consumer behavior, advertising account planning, media buying, brand storytelling, copy design and production, and campaign evaluation.

ADVERTISING JOBS IN THE U.S. (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)

 $141,490 per year



Total Credit Hours: 120

Advertising Major Requirements
(55 hours)

General Education (45 hours)

Minor and Elective Hours (20 hours)

What You'll Study

  • 120 credit hours for a Bachelor of Arts in Communication, including Virginia Tech's Pathways 
  • 55 credits of advertising courses, including:
    • Advertising Copywriting and Brand Storytelling
    • Account Planning and Media Buying
    • Ethics and Social Responsibility in Advertising
    • Public Relations Campaigns
    • Marketing Communications
  • Our program gives you the opportunity to build knowledge in another area of focus by pursuing a minor, double major, or cognate. 

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What is a Major in Advertising?

Our advertising major prepares students for work promoting products, services, and ideas; shaping brand perceptions; and telling corporate stories. You will develop skills in messaging through multiple channels: newspapers, magazines, radio and television stations, websites, email, social networks, billboards, and direct mail. You will learn how to research consumer interests to design commercial messages that will gain attention and drive economic activity in a global economy. 

Why Study Advertising Here?

Virginia Tech’s advertising program prepares students to promote products, services, ideas and personalities through paid media. The major combines coursework from communication, business, and visual design. You’ll have class projects that design advertising strategies and materials for real clients, find internships that put skills learned in the classroom into practice, and interact with advertising-industry practitioners.

Beyond the Classroom

Get Experience

By working in the field, you'll earn job experience and learn more about communication in the workplace. You will have the opportunity to explore potential career paths and network with communication professionals.  



Our faculty has a mix of industry professionals and teaching and research scholars. Whether your interests are in a career as an advertiser or going on to get a Ph.D., we have a mentor for you. Our list includes anchors and news directors, a producer for HGTV, niche specialties like sports broadcasting, and experts on rhetorical theory, political communication, and the psychological effects of video games. 


Come with us

Every year, the School of Communication sponsors a faculty-led study abroad experience at Virginia Tech's Center for International Scholarship in Riva San Vitale, Switzerland. The program includes a one-credit course in Blacksburg during the spring semester and two weeks of study in Switzerland, with online course components during the first summer session after you return from the trip.


What Our Students Are Saying

Careers and Further Study

What do I do with an advertising major?

Some of the jobs our graduates earn include:

  • Advertising account executive
  • Creative director
  • Media buyer
  • Outdoor advertising designer
  • Copywriter
  • Digital advertising planner