Most Affordable Online Communications Degrees 2022

Earning a communications degree can lead to many career opportunities. Here, we list the most affordable online programs.

Updated September 12, 2022

Most Affordable Online Communications Degrees 2022

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Online Communications Degree

Communications as an academic and professional discipline emphasizes the strategies and methods used to convey information, including spoken, written, and visual media. Communications encompasses fields as diverse as public relations, journalism, advertising, and business. In general, communications specialists analyze communication practices and devise new ways to reach audiences effectively.

An affordable online communications degree prepares graduates for a variety of media and communications careers, many of which offer strong salaries and growth potential. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) public relations specialists earned an annual median salary of $61,150 in 2019. The BLS projects 7% job growth for the career through 2029, faster than the national average.

This guide to online communications degrees includes typical admission requirements, overall program goals, and common coursework. The guide also includes information on professional organizations and scholarships for communications majors.

What Are the Goals of a Communications Degree?

Communications explores the various methods of human communication, including the use of written, spoken, and visual media to transmit information. An online communications program examines strategies for analyzing, interpreting, and improving communication among individuals, groups, communities, and societies.

Communications commonly figures into fields that actively seek to communicate information to audiences, such as journalism, public relations, marketing, and advertising. An online communications program covers topics as diverse as public speaking, telecommunications, social media management, and consumer analytics.

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FAQs About Communications Degrees

How many years is a communications degree?

Exact completion time varies among online communications programs, but most bachelor's degree programs take about four years to complete, and most master's degree programs take 1-3 years.

What kind of job can you get with a communications degree?

Communications majors pursue a wide variety of careers in fields such as publishing, public relations, and marketing.

What's the difference between communications and marketing?

Communications focuses broadly on communication practices in various professional fields, while marketing focuses on the application of these principles to businesses and other professional organizations.

How do I start a career in communications?

Most communications careers begin with a bachelor's degree. More advanced career paths often require a master's degree in communications.

Why Get a Communications Degree?

Many students pursue an online communications degree for professional and/or academic reasons, with several of the most common benefits highlighted below.

A communications program builds specialized skills in areas such as writing, public speaking, and public relations — giving students a strong understanding of communications practices.

A high level of specialization translates to increased career opportunities, and communications majors pursue a variety of positions in the public and private sector.

Along with increased career options, degree-holders typically command higher salary levels than candidates without degrees. Degree-holders often advance to higher positions more quickly.

An online communications program surrounds students with peers, professors, and other professionals in the communications field, presenting many opportunities to make valuable connections.

Many online communications degrees include experiential learning components such as internships or capstones, enabling students to learn from experienced professionals in a communications setting.

What Are the Requirements for a Communications Degree?

Admission requirements vary among programs, but all online communications degrees require applicants to hold at least a high school diploma. At the bachelor's level, programs often call for high school transcripts along with standardized test scores, such as the SAT or ACT. Many schools waive the test requirement for students who graduated high school more than five years before the time of application.

At the master's level, all programs require applicants to hold a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college or university. Some programs require applicants to hold an undergraduate background in communications, while others admit students of all majors.

Most Affordable Online Communications Degrees

#1 Most Affordable Online Communications Degrees 2022

Florida International University

  • Miami, FL
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

The flexibility of Florida International University's bachelor of arts in communication arts makes it a great choice for individuals looking for a remote education that fits their schedule. With 36 industry-relevant online bachelor's programs, the public institution educates 39,863 virtual degree-seekers. A supportive virtual community and other institutional resources benefit distance learners at the Miami-based college.

Enrollees gain industry-relevant knowledge from immersive classes. General education and advanced classes make up the curriculum for the communications degree, which also includes opportunities for selecting electives and individualizing classes. Hands-on learning opportunities let students supplement their academic experience. Degree-seekers who complete internships, externships, or research projects get first-hand experience of what it's like to work in the communications field.

The admissions office can tell applicants more about enrollment requirements. Students should check with the financial aid office to see if they qualify for any funding opportunities, since 90% of all enrollees receive some type of financial aid. Learners meeting the proper criteria can use scholarships, fellowships, and other types of aid to reduce the price of their degree.

Average Tuition
In-state
$4,721
Out-of-state
$16,529
Retention Rate
89%
Admission Rate
58%
Students Enrolled
58,711
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
68% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#2 Most Affordable Online Communications Degrees 2022

Eastern Washington University

  • Cheney, WA
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

A Cheney-based public institution, Eastern Washington University provides flexible learning opportunities to degree-seekers from all walks of life. Remote learners from around the United States pick from 33 virtual bachelor's programs at the school. Degree-seekers interested in a communications-related career find that the highly rated bachelor of arts in communication studies meets their needs.

Enrollees connect with distinguished faculty members and a supportive student body. Furthering personal and professional goals is made easier for degree-seekers with the remote classroom environment's career-relevant coursework and projects. Many learners get involved with faculty-driven research projects, internships, or externships. Learners can work with their faculty advisor to customize their coursework, select electives, and fit their program to their interests.

Degree candidates can make their education more affordable by exploring a variety of internal and external opportunities for financial assistance. Different kinds of financial aid, such as scholarships and fellowships benefit eligible students. Educational expenses decrease for the 96% of the college's enrollees who get some kind of financial assistance.

Average Tuition
In-state
$6,543
Out-of-state
$24,074
Retention Rate
70%
Admission Rate
96%
Students Enrolled
12,410
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
31% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities

#3 Most Affordable Online Communications Degrees 2022

University of Central Florida

  • Orlando, FL
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Orlando-based University of Central Florida provides premier online degrees for students seeking competitive study. As many as 19 remote bachelor's programs are available to the 41,097 distance learners at the public institution. The bachelor of arts in communication and conflict offers degree-seekers interested in communications a rigorous education with industry relevance.

Degree candidates benefit from a supportive learning community, connecting with classmates and faculty through a virtual classroom environment. Classes covering foundational and advanced topics in communications provide enrollees with relevant knowledge for their future careers in the field. The hands-on practice that learners get and the experiential learning opportunities like internships and research projects help them advance their competency for a future communications job. Academic advising and career counseling are just some of the resources focused on student success that the institution offers to degree-seekers during the program.

Learners can explore ways to lower degree costs by working with a financial aid officer. Funding opportunities at the college include many different fellowships, scholarships, and federal financial aid opportunities. The institution provides some type of financial assistance to 92% of its enrollees.

Average Tuition
In-state
$4,478
Out-of-state
$19,810
Retention Rate
91%
Admission Rate
44%
Students Enrolled
69,402
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
59% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#4 Most Affordable Online Communications Degrees 2022

University of Louisville

  • Louisville, KY
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

The flexibility of University of Louisville's learning opportunities suits many different types of degree-seekers interested in the public institution. From its main campus in Louisville, the Kentucky school supports 2,624 remote learners nationwide, offering nine bachelor's programs virtually. Students planning for a career in communications or a related field find the top-ranking bachelor of communication program a great choice.

Connecting with premier faculty members and a supportive learning community benefits communications students. Advancing personal and professional goals is made easier for degree-seekers with career-ready classwork and projects that they complete in an online learning space. Faculty-driven research, internships, and externships are some of the opportunities learners can explore. Enrollees can work with their faculty advisor to customize their coursework, select electives, and fit their program to their interests.

An education at the college is made less expensive through the many different internal and external funding opportunities available. Scholarships, fellowships, and other kinds of financial assistance are available to students who qualify by meeting eligibility criteria. Educational expenses decrease for the 98% of the college's enrollees who get some kind of financial assistance.

Average Tuition
In-state
$11,732
Out-of-state
$27,758
Retention Rate
80%
Admission Rate
69%
Students Enrolled
21,670
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
12% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#5 Most Affordable Online Communications Degrees 2022

University of Minnesota-Crookston

  • Crookston, MN
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

The University of Minnesota-Crookston offers premier online degrees for students looking for a competitive program. With 15 bachelor's programs available online, the public institution supports 1,266 virtual learners. The bachelor of science in communication provides a rigorous education relevant to the communications industry.

The program's remote classroom environment lets participants connect with the supportive virtual learning community, including classmates and faculty. Enrollees complete coursework covering foundational and advanced topics to gain knowledge relevant to the communications field. Internships, research projects, and other experiential learning opportunities help learners practice hands-on skills to build their competency for a communications job. Institutional resources focused on student success, like career and academic advising, are available to degree-seekers throughout the program.

Financial aid officers can alert learners to funding opportunities that may help defray the costs of a communications degree. Students can explore scholarships, fellowships, and federal financial aid opportunities. Of all enrollees, 93% get some form of financial assistance.

Average Tuition
In-state
$10,438
Out-of-state
$10,438
Retention Rate
72%
Admission Rate
68%
Students Enrolled
2,768
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
46% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

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