DePaul University College of Communication > Academics > Graduate Programs > Public Relations and Advertising (MA) > Degree Requirements

Degree Requirements

Course Requirements

The Master of Arts in Public Relations and Advertising (PRAD) requires 12 courses (48-credit hours)— four core courses, six PRAD elective courses and two graduate electives inside or outside of the program.

Core Courses

Students are required to take all of the following:

Elective Courses

Choose eight courses from the following*:

* With approval of the graduate program director, students can take up to two ​​relevant elective courses from other College of Communication graduate programs or relevant elective courses from other graduate departments/programs outside of the College of Communication.​


Students in the Master of Arts in Public Relations and Advertising program complete their degree requirements by submitting a comprehensive ePortfolio. Students present their ePortfolios and network with industry professionals at the annual ePortfolio Showcase.

Master's Thesis 

Students who attain a 3.7 GPA or higher and obtain prior approval from the graduate program director have the option to complete a thesis instead of the ePortfolio. Approved students completing a thesis need to start the process at least 9-12 months prior to graduation and will enroll in PRAD 599 as their 12th and final course in the quarter they defend their thesis.​

Grade Requirements

Students must maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.000 in their graduate courses to remain in good academic standing. Students who do not meet this minimum cumulative requirement will be placed on academic probation and will be expected to attain the minimum cumulative requirement within two quarters. Failure to do so may result in dismissal from the program.

PRAD 510


The course will allow students to gain experience writing and delivering speeches and making professional presentations. An emphasis will be placed on the role of speeches and speechwriters and the responsibilities associated with those involved in such an integral part of a democratic society. The multiple uses and value of speeches and presentations as public relations tools will also be addressed.

PRAD 560


Political Public Relations focuses on the development and delivery of strategic messages by political parties, candidates and officeholders in American politics. Students will be responsible for researching, discussing, and evaluating the effectiveness of these messages. Special emphasis will be placed on the role of the spokesperson in a political campaign and/or serving as a spokesperson for an elected official.
Status as a Graduate Public Relations and Advertising student is a prerequisite for this class.

A&S 491


This course concerns theoretical concepts and empirical research relating to administrative behavior in organizations with special reference to educational organizations. Concepts are examined within the typical decisional framework of supervisors, chief school business officers, principles, and superintendents, and similar positions in the helping professions. Assignments are individualized.
Status as an Advanced Masters Education student is a prerequisite for this class.

PRAD 597


This course brings students together with professionals in public relations and advertising to illustrate the diverse nature of work in these fields. Speakers from both corporate and non-profit organizations will be invited to share their professional experiences and to discuss the knowledge competencies and skills required to succeed in these fields.

Content displayed from Degree Requirements on DePaul University Catalog

For high-performing College of Communication undergraduates, the combined BA/MA in Public Relations & Advertising (PRAD) program may be an option.​​