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NLU Why Get an Applied Communications Degree

Why Get an Applied Communications Degree?

National Louis University's Bachelor of Arts in Applied Communications is a foundational program designed for students who are passionate about speaking and writing. Unlike other discipline-specific professional communications programs, NLU's B.A. in Applied Communications program prepares graduates to pursue communications jobs.

Examples of Applied Communicatoins jobs include:Advertising

  • Communications
  • Journalism
  • Marketing
  • Media
  • Public Relations
  • Writing

NLU's B.A. in Applied Communications Degree Program

NLU's applied communications program is taught online, with four in-person workshops offered over the course of the program that allow for interactive peer-to-peer work. The project-based nature of the program gives students real-world experience in completing projects like writing magazine articles, launching social media campaigns and creating corporate presentations—all while developing critical skills such as negotiation, persuasion, critical thinking and decision-making. The program also includes a course designed to help students develop their speaking and presentation skills by presenting live to each other using video conferencing tools like Zoom and other modern synchronous communication methods.

The applied communications program at NLU was designed with input and expertise from professionals working in the field of communications, including those in industries such as public relations, journalism, politics, business, human resources, advertising, marketing, social sciences and government. Courses are designed and taught by practicing professionals—legal classes are taught by lawyers; the generational workplace course was designed by a professional from McDonald's corporate; writing courses are taught by published writers; PR courses include an advisory board of professionals from Apple, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Ogilvy and Mather, and the American Association of Advertising Agencies. These relevant learning experiences help position graduates globally, culturally and strategically in the job market.

A unique built-in mentorship program also helps applied communications graduates build their professional network and connect with established industry professionals. Each applied communications student is paired with a practicing industry professional to gain first-hand experience in leveraging his or her communication skills for success in the job market.

Career Outlook: Professional Communications Jobs

A Bachelor of Arts in Applied Communications is a versatile degree that prepares graduates for a communications career in nearly any field. NLU's applied communications graduates go on to pursue careers in industries such as advertising, journalism, public relations, media and more. Some examples of professional communications careers for graduates with a B.A. in Applied Communications include:

  • Account Coordinator
  • Brand Assistant
  • Broadcast Correspondent
  • Communications Coordinator
  • Marketing Coordinator
  • Media Associate
  • Producer
  • Production Assistant
  • Public Relations Manager
  • Social Media Manager
  • Technical Writer
  • Writer or Author

Job Salary Expectations for Communications Majors

Communications graduates possess skills that are appealing to employers, such as the ability to construct a persuasive argument, speak publicly and communicate clearly. To emphasize the value businesses place on skills like these, PayScale compiled a list of the best jobs for communications majors by salary potential. Some of these include:1

  1. Executive Producer — Mid-Career Pay: $107,000
  2. Social Media Director — Mid-Career Pay: $104,000
  3. Director of Public Relations — Mid-Career Pay: $99,900
  4. Marketing Communications Director — Mid-Career Pay: $94,400
  5. Director of Communications — Mid-Career Pay: $92,200
  6. Content Marketing Manager — Mid-Career Pay: $83,400
  7. Advertising Broadcast Producer — Mid-Career Pay: $83,300
  8. Senior Copywriter — Mid-Career Pay: $79,500

A B.A. in Applied Communications from National Louis University helps students develop the negotiation, persuasion, critical thinking and decision-making skills today's employers are looking for. Whatever your career goals, a degree in professional communications can help you get where you want to go.


    NLU’s Chicago campus on South Michigan Avenue occupies five floors of the historic Peoples Gas Building. This landmark building, across the street from the Art Institute of Chicago and Grant Park, is easily accessible by train, bus and car and is surrounded by restaurants, parking lots/garages and shops.

    122 S. Michigan Avenue
    Chicago, IL 60603
    (888) 658.8632
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    Conveniently located in a fast-growing business district off I-90 and Route 31, NLU Elgin features 10 classrooms with high-tech media equipment; a computer lab with high-speed Internet access; two conference rooms; and comfortable student lounges. Parking is free at this recently remodeled and upgraded teaching site, which now includes wireless Internet access.

    620 Tollgate Road
    Elgin, IL 60123
    (888) 658.8632
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    Opened in the summer of 2006, NLU North Shore at Skokie is a state-of-the-art modern campus located just off the Edens Expressway near the Old Orchard Shopping Center. The campus includes 44 wireless classrooms equipped with high-tech media equipment; four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, including a walk-in lab in the library; six conference rooms; a public café for beverages and snacks; a student welcome center; a library for research and study; and multiple, comfortable student lounge areas.

    5202 Old Orchard Road
    Skokie, IL 60077
    (888) 658.8632
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    Located just minutes from the East-West Tollway (I-88), NLU Lisle features 42 wireless classrooms equipped with high-tech media equipment; four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, including a separate walk-in lab in the library; a café for beverages and snacks; a student welcome center; a library for research and study; conference rooms; and six comfortable student lounge areas with wireless access.

    850 Warrenville Road
    Lisle, IL 60532
    (888) 658.8632
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    Located in one of Chicago's major northwest suburbs, the newly renovated NLU Wheeling includes 20 classrooms with high-tech media equipment, four conference rooms, four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, large student lounge areas with wireless capabilities and interactive video capabilities, and an extensive research library. The site also houses the university library research collection.

    1000 Capitol Drive
    Wheeling, IL 60090
    (888) 658.8632
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    Established in 1988 and located in one of Tampa's major business districts, NLU's Florida Regional Center serves students in 13 counties in central Florida. In addition to its classrooms, the National Louis University Tampa Regional Center features a computer lab, student lounges, and conference room.

    5110 Sunforest Drive, Suite 102
    Tampa, FL 33634
    (800) 366.6581
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