How Can I Specialize a Communications Degree?

Earning a degree in communications will give you the skills that all of the leading employers are looking for today, but choosing to specialize a communications degree will make you stand out in the job market. If you have decided that a communications degree is the best choice for you to pursue a degree in virtually any industry, the next step is deciding on the appropriate specialization. Since there are different methods of communications and different public and private industries these methods are used in, specializing is a good choice to propel your career or extend your career options. Here are the steps that you must take to specialize your degree as a communications major:

Step 1: Decide on a Career Path

One of the biggest benefits of majoring in communications is the degree of flexibility that will come with your degree. Many prospective students and undeclared majors who are not sure exactly what they want to do, enjoy the idea that they can pursue a long list of different job titles after graduation. If, however, you are willing to settle on a specific occupation, a specific industry or a specific field, choosing a specialty is key. To do this, you will first need to decide on your career path so that you can take the right specialized curriculum.

Before you commit to just one industry, you should research the career options available in each field. You can pursue management positions in business, specialist roles in advertising, administrator positions in education, writing positions in broadcasting, editing positions in journalism, management roles in public relations, analyst positions in healthcare, and project management positions in politics. You should review career opportunities in communications to get a feel for the big picture.

Step 2: Choose a Specialty

Once you know what path you would like to venture down, the next step will be choosing a major. There are so many different specializations that are relevant and practical choices for communications majors, and not all schools offer all specializations. Some of the popular options include: Interpersonal Communication, Public Relations, Performance Studies, Organizational Communication, Technical Communication, Media Production, Journalism, Public Safety, Strategic Public Communication, Family Communication, Leadership in Community and Health and Wellness Communication.

Step 3: Select the Best School

Not all schools have the most reputable communications degree programs. While a majority of schools offer general undergraduate communications degrees, not all schools offer the option to specialize your degree. You will need to review the program offerings before applying to a school or enrolling in classes. It is also in your best interest to search for schools that hold a field-related accreditation like the one granted by the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications. Choosing accredited schools will make it easier to land a job and to advance your degree later on in your career.

Every type of degree holds its own value. If you want to be sure that your degree in communications has worth, you should consider a specialization. When you study the general communications curriculum, you will get the skills that are most important to employers. While this is true, studying only general coursework may not be worth it upon graduation. Instead of taking a general degree program, specialize a communications degree and gain a competitive advantage.

For more information on communications degrees, please see: What is the Difference Between an English Degree and a Communications Degree?