Journalism & Mass Communications Advertising & Public Relations

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College: Journalism & Mass Communications
Degree Offered: Bachelor of Journalism
Hours Required: 120
Minimum Cumulative GPA: 2.0 for graduation
Minor Available: No
Advisor: Andrea Spader
  1. Intro

Advertising & Public Relations

COLLEGE: Journalism & Mass Communications

MAJOR: Advertising & Public Relations

DEGREE OFFERED: Bachelor of Journalism


MINIMUM CUMULATIVE GPA: 2.0 for graduation


ADVISOR: Andrea Spader


Professors: Brown, Hachtmann, Mitchell, Shipley (emeritus)

Associate Professor: Struthers

Assistant Professors: Jones, Kiambi, Wagler, Wang, Yan

Professors of Practice: Goff, James (emeritus), Larsen

Assistant Professors of Practice: Sallee, Tidball

The advertising and public relations major prepares students for careers in a wide variety of communication-related areas. Recent graduates have taken jobs in more than 20 states and several other countries in diverse careers such as retail and corporate advertising and marketing, media sales, brand management, media planning, account management, research, public relations, media relations, special event planning, mobile and digital communications, creative concepting, sports media relations, digital insights and analytics, copywriting and layout and design.

The advertising and public relations faculty believes that a successful career must be built upon a solid foundation, an education that combines theory and practice. To achieve that end, the major offers courses in copywriting, layout, media planning, graphics, campaign development, research, management, coding, and strategic communications. The curriculum is designed to emphasize strategy, planning and implementation in creative problem-solving.

Much emphasis is placed on individual relationships between faculty and students, an interaction vital to a student’s creative development. An advisor also helps each student tailor an academic plan to meet his or her interests and needs.

In advertising and public relations classes, students often work with actual clients who present real-life problems. This experience gives students a professional perspective on problem solving in many sectors including nonprofit, retail, small business and community organizations as well as large corporations. Students are encouraged to augment their academic experience with internships.

The faculty, with many professional contacts both locally and nationwide, actively help students find jobs within the state and throughout the country. Students interested in majoring in advertising and public relations should contact the college office in 147 Andersen Hall, 402-472-3041.


Specific Major Requirements

The major is 40 hours in advertising and public relations.

The courses required for a major in advertising and public relations are as follows:

ADPR 151, ADPR 221, ADPR 283, JOMC 100, JOMC 101, JOMC 130, JOMC 131, JOMC 132, JOMC 133, JOMC 134, JOMC 486, and JOMC 487.

Additionally, all ADPR majors take one of the following three capstone courses: ADPR 429, ADPR 439, or ADPR 489, as well as 12 hours from approved electives for the major.

The 12 elective hours may comprise one of five optional areas of emphasis, including account services, creative/interactive, digital communication, public relations or sports communication. Students also may select the elective courses from multiple areas of emphasis to provide a broad background. Among the 12 elective hours, students may select courses from ADPR, BRDC, JOMC or JOUR. At least 9 of the 12 elective hours must be chosen from ADPR elective options numbered 300 or higher. However, for the public relations emphasis JOUR 201, JOUR 202 and ADPR 207 can apply.

The account services emphasis includes the following: ADPR 329, ADPR 339, ADPR 360, ADPR 434, ADPR 481, and ADPR 484.

The creative/interactive emphasis includes the following: ADPR 323, ADPR 329, ADPR 333, ADPR 339, ADPR 433, ADPR 447, ADPR 458, ADPR 459, ADPR 483, and ADPR 484.

The digital communication emphasis includes the following: ADPR 329, ADPR 339, ADPR 360, ADPR 434, ADPR 458, ADPR 459, ADPR 466; JOUR 304 and JOUR 407.

The public relations emphasis includes the following: ADPR 207, ADPR 329, ADPR 339, ADPR 417, ADPR 437, ADPR 450, ADPR 451, ADPR 457, ADPR 466; JOUR 201 and JOUR 202.

The sports communication emphasis includes the following: JOMC 150 and at least 3 more hours from Section A (ADPR 464, BRDC 375, JOUR 326 or a sports internship in ADPR, BRDC or JOUR). The remaining 6 hours may be selected from either Section A or Section B (ADPR 151, ADPR 207, ADPR 283, ADPR 450, ADPR 451, JOUR 201 or JOUR 202). NOTE: The 12 hours for the emphasis may not include any course already required for the major.

If approved by the associate dean, all areas of emphasis may further include the following: ADPR X91, BRDC X91, JOUR X91, JOMC X91, ADPR 495, ADPR 496 and ADPR 499H.

Students may complete two majors in the College of Journalism and Mass Communications by completing all requirements for each major. However, the second major in the college will not take the place of a concentration or any of the 72 hours required outside the college.

Graduating seniors also must complete JOMC 98 Senior Assessment. Typically, JOMC 98 (0 credit) is taken in the last semester. However, seniors who have completed all courses for the major may take it in the term preceding graduation.


Internship Policy

Students may be able to earn credit for internships under certain circumstances. Please go to the college website and find the Internship Policy under the Student Services tab.

Credit in Special Experiences

Students may earn up to 6 credit hours toward the degree in some student experiences: Jacht, National Student Advertising Competition, photojournalism reports, depth reports and others. Students may repeat the same course again for additional credit hours, but those credits will not count toward the degree inside or outside the major. Talk with an academic advisor for further information or specific questions.


College Admission

College Admission

The entrance requirements for the College of Journalism and Mass Communications are the same as the admission requirements for the University of Nebraska–Lincoln.

These include:

  • English (4 units)
  • Mathematics (4 units)
  • Social studies (3 units)
  • Natural sciences (3 units), and
  • Foreign language (2 units)

One unit equals one year of high school credit. Students with one deficiency, two deficiencies but not in the same category, or two deficiencies in foreign language who receive a Deferred Admission or Admission by Review, may be considered for admission to the college. Students who are admitted through the Admission by Review process with core course deficiencies will have certain conditions attached to their enrollment at UNL. These conditions are explained under Admission to the University, Removal of Deficiencies. High school deficiencies must be removed during the first 30 credit hours of enrollment at UNL (60 hours for foreign language) or the first calendar year, whichever takes longer.

Admission Deficiencies/Removal of Deficiencies

You must remove entrance deficiencies in geometry and foreign language before you can graduate from the College of Journalism and Mass Communications.

Removing Foreign Language Deficiencies

A student will need to complete the second semester of the first-year language sequence to clear the deficiency and the second semester of the second-year language sequence to complete the college graduation requirement in language.

Removing Geometry Deficiency

A deficiency of one year of geometry can be removed by taking two high school geometry courses by Independent Study or by completing a geometry course from an accredited community college or a four-year institution. Neither of these options will count for college credit.

Admission GPA

Any student transferring into the college must have at least a 2.0 GPA. A student with 12 or more hours of college credit must have at least a 2.0 GPA to be admitted or readmitted to the College of Journalism and Mass Communications.


A student who left the University not in good standing (below a 2.0 grade point average) may be readmitted in the Explore Center. Such a student would be eligible to reenter the College of Journalism and Mass Communications upon attaining a 2.0 cumulative GPA. This student would follow the bulletin in effect at the time of the transfer from the Explore Center to the college.

Other Admission Requirements

Students from other Colleges

College of Journalism and Mass Communications courses will be restricted to College of Journalism and Mass Communications majors except where stipulated differently. Students from colleges and departments with a written agreement with the College of Journalism and Mass Communications will be exempt from this policy. Permission may be granted by an associate dean of the College of Journalism and Mass Communications in special circumstances following the directives provided by the faculty in these matters.

ESL Students

Applicants who speak English as a second language must present a TOEFL score of 70 or higher, which includes a subscore of at least 20 on the writing test. Additionally, broadcasting majors must present a score of at least 45 on the Test of Spoken English.

College Degree Requirements

College General Education Requirements

To graduate with a bachelor of journalism degree, students must complete requirements from the following areas:

  • the University ACE requirements
  • the requirements for a major offered by the college
  • the non-major requirements that are specific to the college

College Non-Major Requirements

The college non-major requirements (NMR) are designed to further the purposes of liberal education by encouraging study in several different areas. Courses satisfying these requirements may impart specialized knowledge or broadly connect the subject matter to other areas of knowledge.

Group 1

The college requires a second set of ACE 1-9 courses beyond the ACE courses required by UNL, which must include a lab related to an ACE 4 course. This set of courses is identified as Group 1.

Group 2

Candidates for the bachelor of journalism degree must abide by the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communication accrediting guidelines, which require 72 semester hours be completed outside the college in subjects approved by UNL as liberal education/liberal arts courses and traditional liberal arts and sciences courses. All ACE courses from outside the College of Journalism and Mass Communications, and all traditional liberal arts courses (departments identified in the degree audit) will apply to Group 2, along with non-vocational ALEC courses, College of Business Administration courses and College of Fine and Performing Arts courses and any from NUTR, HRTM, and TMFD, unless specifically excluded. These 72 hours of liberal education/liberal arts courses are identified as Group 2.

Students graduating with 120 hours can take a maximum of 48 hours in the College of Journalism and Mass Communications. Students may take additional hours in the college, but those hours will be in addition to the 120 hours required to graduate.

Group 3—Specializations: 36 hours

CoJMC majors must complete the 36-hour requirement for specializations (areas of focus) outside the College of Journalism and Mass Communications. This requirement can be accomplished by completing a series of concentrations (12-hour minimum) and/or minors specified by a department or an inter-disciplinary program (Plan A or Plan B). For any outside concentration, at least half of the hours in the concentration must be at the 200-level or above. For example, students could declare:

  • Three concentrations or minors of 12 hours each from different subject areas outside the college
  • Two concentrations or minors of 18 hours each from different subject areas outside the college
  • Two concentrations or minors of 24 hours and 12 hours each from different subject areas outside the college
  • One concentration of 36 hours from one subject area outside the college

If students take an 18-hour minor and a 15-hour minor, they may complete one more 3-hour course in either area to satisfy the 36-hour requirement.

Courses may count simultaneously toward two minors or concentrations only after 36 hours have been completed.

In no case will CoJMC courses count toward a concentration or a minor. Only grades of C or better will count toward concentrations, minors or second majors.

Students who complete an inter-college major in the College of Arts & Sciences of 24-35 hours will complete the specializations requirement by taking the balance of the 36 hours from the major department or by taking a separate 12-hour concentration. Students completing an arts and sciences major will additionally need to complete the arts and sciences distribution requirements.

Students who complete a dual matriculation are exempt from the specialization requirement.

Group 4—Languages—Classical and Modern: 0-6 or 10 hours

A student who has completed the fourth-year level of one foreign language in high school is exempt from the languages requirement. All foreign language courses as well as American Sign Language courses will count also in Group 2. Language courses at the 100 level or those numbered 201, 202 or 210 do not apply to Group 3 concentrations. Language course numbered 203, 204, or 300 and higher will apply to Group 3 concentrations.

Options for completion of language requirement:

1. Regular four-semester sequence: 101, 102, 201, and 202 (5, 5, 3, 3 hours for a total of 16)

2. Three-semester sequence: 101, 102, and 210 (5, 5, 6 hours for a total of 16)

3. Students who have completed at least two years of one foreign language in high school may satisfy the college’s foreign language requirement by completing 101 and 102 in a different foreign language.

4. Students who have not taken four years of the same foreign language in high school but who complete the Modern Language Placement Exam and are placed into 203 (or higher) of that language, are exempt from the foreign language requirement without credit toward the degree.

Students who have taken three years or fewer of a foreign language in high school should contact the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures for recommended placement.

A student who achieves a specified scaled score in the College Level Examination Program (CLEP) subject exam in French, German and Spanish, Levels 1 and 2, may be exempted from the language requirement and may also receive credit for the fourth semester course in the language. Students who want to exercise this option must receive permission from an associate dean of the College of Journalism and Mass Communications.

A student who has demonstrated acceptable proficiency in a language other than English is exempt from the foreign language requirement without credit toward the degree (for example, international students who completed high school outside the United States). The student's academic advisor will determine whether a placement exam administered by the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures is necessary.

Group 5

At least 30 of the 120 semester hours of credit must be in courses numbered above 299.

Minimum Hours Required for Graduation

A minimum of 120 semester hours of credit is required for graduation from the College of Journalism and Mass Communications.

Grade Rules

C- and D Grades

The college will accept no more than 15 semester hours of grades less than a C from any program outside the University of Nebraska system. No grades less than a C will count toward a major, a minor, or concentration.

Pass/No Pass Limits

The college will accept up to 24 hours of Pass/No Pass courses toward a bachelor of journalism degree, subject to the following limits:

All courses in the College of Journalism and Mass Communications must be taken for grade only, unless otherwise specified. This applies to both majors and non-majors.

The Pass/No Pass (P/N) option is designed to be used by students seeking to expand their intellectual horizons by taking courses in areas where they may have minimum preparation without adversely affecting a student’s grade point average.

1. Neither a P (pass) nor an N (no pass) contributes to a student’s GPA.

2. P (pass) is interpreted to mean a grade of C or better. A student who earns a C- or lower will receive a grade of N.

3. P/N is not available to students on academic probation unless the course is offered only that way.

4. The 24-hour college limit does not include courses offered on a Pass/No Pass only basis or AP credit. This limit does apply to transfer courses from UNO, UNK, UNMC, and other institutions.

5. P/N hours can count toward fulfillment of group requirements, including concentrations, up to the 24-credit hour maximum.

6. Students may change from graded to P/N only until half way through the course. Additionally, after the half-way date, a student registered for P/N cannot change to graded unless the P/N registration is in conflict with a professor, department, college, or university policy governing P/N. Changing from graded to P/N or from P/N to graded can be completed on MyRED or by filing a drop/add form with the Office of the University Registrar, 107 Canfield Administration Building, and needs no instructor’s approval.


Students must complete at least 30 of the 120 total hours for their degree at UNL. Students must complete at least half of their major course work including 6 hours above 299 in their major, and 15 of the 30 hours required above 299 in residence. Students transferring hours into the advertising and public relations, broadcasting, or journalism majors must meet additional requirements, which are described under Transfer Credit Rules. To encourage participation in international study, the college accepts all prior-approved education abroad credits as hours in residence.

Transfer Credit Rules

The goal of the following policy is to ensure that students from other campuses meet the same standards required of students who take all their courses at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln’s College of Journalism and Mass Communications.

The college will accept up to 6 hours in journalism and mass communications courses taken at institutions that do not have an accredited journalism and mass communications program. Students must take the remainder of the required hours in their ADPR, BRDC, JOMC or JOUR courses on campus at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln. In advertising and public relations, these courses must include one 300- or 400-level ADPR course and ADPR 429, ADPR 439 or ADPR 489; and in broadcasting, BRDC 370 and BRDC 472 or BRDC 360 and BRDC 462. In journalism, the courses must include JOUR 302 and either JOUR 450, JOUR 446 or JOUR 497. Students from ACEJMC-accredited programs may request equivalency reviews of the required courses at those schools. Degree candidates must accumulate 72 credit hours of non-journalism and mass communications classes. These are to be selected from ACE courses outside of journalism and mass communications courses or courses in disciplines listed as Liberal Education/Liberal Arts, which includes non-vocational ALEC courses, College of Business Administration courses and College of Fine and Performing Arts courses.

Credit for courses taken at foreign universities and colleges will be transferred only after evaluation by the appropriate associate dean. This evaluation may include examination of the student over subject matter studied at the foreign institution.

ACE Requirements

All students must fulfill the Achievement-Centered Education (ACE) requirements. Information about the ACE program may be viewed at

Bulletin Rule

Students who left the university in good standing may be readmitted to the College of Journalism and Mass Communications and they may choose the bulletin under which they wish to graduate according to the following guidelines:

1. Students must fulfill the requirements stated in the Undergraduate Bulletin for the year they enter the College of Journalism and Mass Communications or in any subsequent bulletin published while they are enrolled in the college.

2. A student must meet the requirements from one bulletin only rather than choosing a portion from one bulletin and the remainder from another.

3. No returning student may use a bulletin that is 10 years old or older. In addition, any student seeking graduation credit for a College of Journalism and Mass Communications course taken more than 10 years prior to graduation must demonstrate mastery of the material currently included in that course at the proficiency level satisfactory to the relevant associate dean and one or more faculty members qualified to teach the course in question. Students unable to demonstrate satisfactory mastery of the course material will be required to repeat the original course or a corresponding contemporary course designated by the college’s advisory committee, if the original course is no longer offered.


This is the site for old bulletin data. Please head to UNL's Course Catalog for updated course and program information.