An online digital communications degree is ideal for individuals who have already started working in an entry-level position. Online courses give students the freedom to live life outside of the classroom. They are able to work and study when it is easiest for them. Maintaining a full-time job is not an option for some, but a necessity. Without a job, they cannot care for their family and fulfill other financial obligations. Attending class online allows them the privilege of being able to do both and still continue to strive to meet their career goals.
An online digital communications degree gives you the skills you need to start working in a digital environment. Where you go from there is up to you. Because digital communications is constantly changing, you are able to continue your education online and remain as up-to-date as possible on all of the latest technological advancements. This allows you to take advantage of new opportunities and continue to pursue your career goals at a pace you are comfortable with. Learning online makes it possible for you to build a career you can be proud of.
Methodology: Ranking the Best Online Digital Communications Degree Programs
Bachelor’s Degree Center editors feature only accredited, legitimate colleges and universities in our ranking of the best online digital communications degrees. Programs are ranked by cost, graduate salary, and student reviews, using data from IPEDS and Niche.
1. Purdue University Global
Purdue University Global offers a BS in Communication that is recognized among the most innovative online digital communications degree available in the marketplace. Purdue Global’s BS in Communication requires students to complete a minimum of 180 quarter credits across ten-week terms. Degree candidates interested in Purdue Global’s baccalaureate degree in communication offers students an accelerated option in which they can earn both a baccalaureate and master’s degree simultaneously, in less time, and at a reduced cost.
Purdue University Global was established in 2018 as an online school designed to serve the learning needs of working adults. Purdue University Global is the distance learning division of the Purdue University, with a student enrollment of approximately 28,750 students.
What We Like: Purdue Global was created after the university acquired the existing adult education company known as Kaplan University.
Degree: BS Communication
2. Northeastern University
The Professional Studies College at Northeastern University offers a BS in Digital Communication and Media that is among Boston’s most innovative online digital communications degree programs. There are no F1 Visa requirements for Northeastern University’s baccalaureate degree in communications. NEU offers three entry points each year for its online digital communications degree. Degree candidates enrolled in NEU’s program are required to complete at least 120 semester units to meet NEU’s program requirements. Classes for this degree include foundations in visual communications and human and computer interaction, to name a few.
Northeastern University is a private school that was established in the late-1890s. The school operates multiple campuses throughout the United States, from coast to coast.
What We Like: NEU is primarily a residential university, with most underclassmen living on campus and juniors/seniors given the option to live off-campus.
Degree: Bachelor of Science in Digital Communication and Media
3. Bellevue University
Bellevue University offers a BA in Communication Studies that can be completed 100% online or on-campus. Bellevue University’s online digital communications degree program allows degree candidates to build a marketable portfolio for their career. This communications degree from BU requires students to finish 127 credits, with 67 credits required for those who hold an associate’s degree. Classes for Bellevue’s communication baccalaureate degree include communication in the digital age, communication and popular culture, business communication, and critical thinking and communication, plus a capstone project.
Established in the mid-1960s as a private school, Bellevue University was founded to meet the needs of adult learners in the Bellevue area. The university’s suburban campus in Bellevue is home to approximately 10,150 students.
What We Like: Bellevue University operates a technology and professional center in nearby Omaha.
Degree: Online BA Communications
4. Texas Tech University
Texas Tech University’s College of Media and Communication offers a Bachelor of Arts degree program (BA) in Digital Media and Professional Communication that is available entirely online or on the school’s Waco campus. Students enrolled in Texas Tech University’s online digital communications degree program must complete 120 semester units to graduate. Classes for this degree in digital communications include media literacy, visual storytelling, communicating in a global society, and writing for media & communication, to name a few. Texas Tech University is ranked as the best online college in Texas by a few ranking companies.
Founded in the 1920s as a technical research institution, Texas Tech University is one of the largest schools in terms of student enrollment in Texas, with more than 40,150 students attending classes. TTU is organized into thirteen colleges/schools and is home to more than five dozen research institutes and centers.
What We Like: Texas Tech University’s campus was recognized among the most notable by novelist James Michener.
Degree: BA in Digital Media and Professional Communication
5. Penn State World Campus
Penn State World Campus offers a BA in Digital Journalism and Media that offers several start dates each year. PS World’s nationally ranked online digital communications degree program requires degree candidates to complete 120 semester credits to meet the baccalaureate program’s requirements. Students graduating from Penn State World Campus’s online digital communications degree program enter the workforce as writers or producers of digital content or other journalistic organizations.
Established and launched in the late-1990s, Penn State World Campus now serves 14,550 undergraduate or graduate students. Penn State World Campus was developed to meet the needs of working adults who cannot attend one of the many Penn State campuses throughout the state.
What We Like: Distance education offered by PSU dates back to the 1890s.
Degree: BA Digital Journalism and Media
6. Oregon State University Ecampus
Oregon State University Ecampus offers two of the state’s best online digital communications degree programs with its Bachelor of Science degree program (BS) or its Bachelor of Arts degree (BA) program in Digital Communication Arts. Degree candidates enrolled in OSU’s online digital communications degree will be required to finish 180 quarter credits to graduate. Degree candidates can opt for one of four start dates with classes that include social media strategy, viral content, new media and culture, and applied media aesthetics, plus media entrepreneurship, to name a few. It is noted that OSU is a military-friendly school but requires that 45 of the last 75 semester units be completed at OSU.
Founded as a research school under the Morrill Land Grant Act, Oregon State University (OSU Ecampus) is also one of only several schools that are also a sea-grant, space-grant, and sun-grant school with a student enrollment that exceeds 31,250 students.
What We Like: Nearly ¼ of a million students have graduated from OSU.
Degree: Digital Communication Arts, B.A. or B.S.
7. University of North Dakota
The University of North Dakota offers a BA in Communication that is available in Grand Forks or completely online through UND’s distance learning platform. Students enrolled in the University of North Dakota’s online digital communications degree program typically complete the 120 semester credits in four years. Additionally, students have the option to customize the communication degree in areas that include advertising, public relations, digital journalism, strategic communication, or digital analytics.
Established as a research institution in 1883 – several years before North Dakota became a state, the University of North Dakota now serves approximately 13,450 students. The school’s campus began with a few acres but now includes over 200 buildings and more than 500 acres.
What We Like: UND is home to the state’s only schools for medicine and law.
Degree: Communication, B.A
8. Grand Canyon University
Grand Canyon University offers a BA in Communications that can be finished 100% online through the school’s distance learning platform. Coursework for Grand Canyon University’s online digital communications degree program includes conflict & negotiation, principles of public relations, argumentation and advocacy, and communication research methods, to name a few. Graduates find rewarding careers as account specialists, social media managers, or copywriters, to name a few.
Grand Canyon University was founded in the late-1940s and operates as a Christian, for-profit school with a student enrollment that exceeds 100,000. GCU has grown substantially through its distance learning options with more than 89,000 students.
What We Like: GCU is organized into nine schools/colleges in the areas of education, business, nursing, fine arts, science, theology, humanities, technology, and engineering, among others.
Degree: BA in Communications Degree
9. Simmons University
Simmons University offers one of Boston’s best online digital communications degree programs with its Bachelor of Arts degree program (BA) in Communications. Applicants interested in Simmons University’s digital communication baccalaureate degree program must complete 128 semester units to graduate; however, the school permits up to 96 credits to be transferred, if eligible. Students enrolled in Simmons University’s baccalaureate degree in communications must complete coursework in visual communication, content creation, strategic advertising & branding, and media, messages, and society, to name a few.
Established as a women-focused undergraduate college, Simmons University now also operates a coeducational graduate school. More than 4,650 students undergraduate and graduate students attend classes online and on the school’s bean-town campus.
What We Like: Simmons University was one of the first to establish a policy of tolerance for transgender students as the school has always sought to empower women.
Degree: BA Communication
10. Arkansas State University
Arkansas State University offers a BS in Digital Innovation – Strategic Communications that is available entirely online. This online digital communications degree program requires degree candidates to complete 120 semester units to graduate. Arkansas State University’s baccalaureate degree in communication is designed to offer flexibility for working learners. Classes for this degree include social media measurement, computer-mediated communications, integrated marketing communications, communication in law/ethics, and social media in strategic communications, to name a few.
Arkansas State University (A-State) was established in the early 1900s and is the flagship campus of the state’s university system. As the 2nd largest institution of higher learning in Arkansas, A-State is home to approximately 13,750 students.
What We Like: A-State’s campus sits atop a hill on more than 1,200 acres overlooking Crowley’s Ridge.
Degree: BS in Digital Innovation – Strategic Communications
11. Oral Roberts University
Oral Roberts University offers a BS in Digital Communication that is available entirely through the school’s distance learning division. Oral Roberts University’s online digital communications degree program prepares professionals for the creative digital professional world and society. Graduates find rewarding work as digital marketing managers, web platform developers, media campaign planners, or social media specialists, to name a few. Classes for Oral Roberts University’s baccalaureate communication degree include storytelling, digital composition, digital news writing, and integrated marketing communications, among others. Full-time students typically finish this degree (without transfer credits) in less than four years.
Founded in the mid-1960s, Oral Roberts University is an evangelical university located in Tulsa that serves approximately 3,950 undergraduate and graduate degree students.
What We Like: The school’s suburban campus covers more than 300 acres.
Degree: BS in Digital Communication
12. Regent University
Regent University offers a BA in Communication Studies that is available on the school’s Virginia Beach campus or entirely online. Regent University’s online digital communications degree program offers degree candidates a variety of concentrations – theatre, advertising, strategic communications, journalism, social media, rhetoric and public culture, organizational communications, and professional/technical writing, to name a few. Regent University’s communication bachelor’s degree is taught from a Christian perspective. Students may also attend the program as an undeclared, generalist major.
Established by Pat Robertson in the late 1970s in Chesapeake, VA, Regent University is a private evangelical, interdenominational school affiliated with the Christian Church. The university’s suburban campus in Virginia Beach is home to approximately 8,450 students.
What We Like: Regent University offers more than 65 study paths from its eight academic schools/colleges/divisions.
Degree: B.A. in Communication Studies
13. Wilmington University
Wilmington University offers a BS in Communications with an academic track in Digital Journalism that prepares students for rewarding careers in broadcast, print, or digital media. Wilmington University’s online digital communications degree program with the digital journalism concentration also embeds an undergraduate certificate for Technical Communication (CPTC). Degree graduates find work in the areas of digital publishing, journalism, corporate communication, or technical communication, to name a few. Classes for this baccalaureate degree include visual communication, story design methods, and streaming media, among others.
Founded in the late 1960s, Wilmington University is a private higher learning institution with more than a dozen campuses in New Jersey, Delaware, and Maryland. The school’s multiple campuses serve approximately 11,850 students.
What We Like: The school offers more than 100 programs through its seven colleges/schools/divisions.
Degree: Bachelors in Communications w/ a Digital Journalism degree concentration
14. Franklin University
Franklin University offers a BS in Communication that requires students to finish 124 semester units to graduate. The core coursework for Franklin University’s online digital communications degree program includes an introduction to mass media, digital design, video production, the principles of management, and digital photography, to name a few. Franklin University offers a generous transfer credit policy that allows for up to 96 credits to be transferred, if eligible. Communication classes will include marketing research, theories of communication, and communication ethics, plus a capstone project, among others.
Established in 1902 as a private school to serve the needs of adult learners in the Columbus area, Franklin University now operates a variety of educational centers and campuses (more than two dozen), including international partnerships.
What We Like: Most students enrolled at Franklin University attend classes and programs offered online.
Degree: BS Communication
15. Southern New Hampshire University
Southern New Hampshire University offers a BA in Communication that offers working learners the flexibility needed to complete the baccalaureate degree while working. Southern NH’s online digital communications degree program requires degree candidates to complete a minimum of 120 semester credits. Students enrolled in SNHU’s undergraduate degree in communication may opt for one of four concentrations – new media, public relations, business communication, or professional writing. Some of these classes may be eligible to be applied towards a master’s degree offered by Southern New Hampshire University.
Southern New Hampshire University (Southern NH) is a private school that was established as a secretarial/accounting school in the early 1930s. The school has had recent explosive growth due to its popular online degree programs.
What We Like: The school operates dual campuses in the Granite State.
Degree: BA in Communications
Why Should I Get My Digital Communications Degree Online?
In today’s technologically advanced world, earning an online digital communications degree is one of the best career moves you can make. Not only will you have skills that you can use in both your personal, as well as your professional life, you will be able to work in almost any industry that uses digital means to communicate with employees, other businesses, and potential customers. Communication in any form is valuable, but digital communication allows you to reach the masses within seconds.
Online degree programs are also the best option for students who need to study with fewer distractions. Many students avoid returning to school because they do not want to be confined to a classroom. It may be hard for them to study while they are around a large group of people. For others, it may just be the noise or environment. Studying remotely allows the student to choose the environment they find most comfortable. The ability to study in a comfortable environment ensures they will get the most out of their lessons and be able to retain it for longer periods of time.
What Can I Do with a Degree in Digital Communications?
With a degree in digital communications, your career options are almost unlimited. Whether you work with graphic art, written content, or video, you can find employment in almost any industry you choose. Social media and video communications are two of the most common forms of digital communication. Texts and emails are also at the top of the list and are common ways for businesses to communicate with one another, as well as with their clients. Exploring your options will give you insight into what types of careers are out there that will allow you to work in an ever-growing and expanding field.
Individuals who earn an online digital communications degree are sought after in both the media and marketing industries. With more and more companies using digital forms of communication, the ability to find work in the field is easier than ever before. Earning a digital communications degree online makes it even easier, especially since you can go to school while you continue to work. The more you learn, the more you can apply your new skills to your current position making you a potential candidate for advancement.
How Much Can I Make with a Degree in Digital Communications?
On average, a person who has earned an online digital marketing degree can make as much as $120,000 per year at the highest end of the pay scale. Depending on where you start out, you may earn as little as $50,000 if you have no actual work experience. As a recent graduate with no real work experience, an entry-level job will allow you to learn your trade from the ground up. This will give you additional skills you will not receive in a traditional classroom.
With digital communications, technology is always moving forward. There is always something new for you to learn. Even after you have earned your online degree and found the job of your dreams, returning to school to stay on top of the latest trends is a great way to increase your earning potential. Advanced degrees and certifications are excellent ways to show your employer that you are ready to move up the ladder.
Your ability to earn is only limited by your own ambition and dedication. With an online digital communications degree, you can take advantage of any opportunity you choose. You can move as slowly or as quickly as you like, taking control of your career and choosing the direction you want to take. Whether you are starting from scratch or returning to school after years in the workforce, your future is yours to decide.