Online Master’s in Social Media Marketing & Management Programs in 2023
Do you have a passion for social media, digital marketing, or developing online communities? A master's degree in social media may be the next step for you in pursuing an exciting career in social media and digital marketing. Unless you are hiding under a rock, you’ll know the majority of culture and the population lives and breathes social media. Master's in social media programs, which also may be found as an emphasis within a broader master's in strategic communication or master's in business administration program, teach students the development and management of social media platforms, digital media marketing techniques, apps, and web development and management of online communities. Coursework will include social media and multimedia storytelling techniques, marketing and branding strategies using social and digital media, social media metrics, and evaluation and research methods in digital communication.
A master's degree in social media can lead to careers such as:
- Social Media Manager
- Brand Advocate or Manager
- Digital Marketing Manager
- Public Relations Executive
- Online Communication Manager
- Website / Online Content Creator
- App Developer
For many aspiring social media experts, working in the communications industry while studying for your master's degree is critical for gaining hands-on experience and landing the best job after graduation. For busy professionals, an online master's in social media program may be the best way to earn your degree while continuing to work and/or fulfill family obligations.
Once you've decided to pursue an online master's in social media, the next step is researching and selecting the right program. But how to know which school is right for you? Keep these key factors in mind when deciding between master's programs.
A master's degree is a significant investment in your career, so make sure the program you select will provide you with a high-quality education. One way to ensure a program's quality is by checking its program accreditation. Legitimate program accreditation signifies that the program has been evaluated by a third-party accrediting organization according to rigorous academic standards and has met or exceeded these standards. Examples of accrediting organizations for master's in social media programs include the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs and the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications, as well as regional accrediting bodies such as the Western Association of Schools and Colleges and the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.
The cost for a master's in social media program can vary based on a number of factors, including the size and type of school, geographic location, a student's residency status, and the program length. When considering the total cost of a program, it's important to include mandatory school fees, books, and other program materials in addition to the tuition price.
In many cases, online programs are more affordable than their traditional on-campus counterparts, but this is not always the case. As an example, USC Annenberg's 32-unit Master of Science in Digital Social Media runs roughly $1,995 per unit in addition to mandatory fees. Meanwhile, Liberty University's online, 33-credit-hour Master's in Social Media Management degree program costs approximately $565 per credit for full-time students, in addition to online program fees.
Most master's in social media programs are designed to be completed in 1-2 years of full-time study. Factors that may impact a program's length include whether students enroll on a full- or part-time basis and if any on-campus classroom time is required and when. Oftentimes with online programs students are accepted on a rolling basis, enabling them to begin studying in the fall, spring, or even summer semesters.
In order to gain admission to a master's in social media program, students should keep in mind the following admissions requirements:
- Completion of a bachelor's degree, ideally in communication, web design, marketing, or a related field
- GPA of 3.0 or above in their undergraduate coursework
- Transcripts from all undergraduate colleges attended
- Letters of recommendation
- Personal statement or essay
- Scores from applicable graduate school tests, such as the Graduate Record Examination (GRE)
- Resume detailing relevant work experience if applicable
Classes and Courses
A master's in social media program often includes courses similar to the following, which are part of University of Florida's online Master's in Social Media program:
- Introduction to Social Media
- Introduction to Multimedia (Video Storytelling)
- Branding Using Social and Mobile Media
- Advertising and Social Media
- Mass Communication Theory
- Research Methods in Digital Communication
- Social Media Metrics and Evaluation
- Personal Branding and Professional Development
- Social Media and Emerging Technology
In addition to digital and social media courses such as the ones listed below, programs may also include foundational communication, web development, and/or business courses. Many programs also finish with a capstone project or internship component, which encourages students to put everything they've learned into practice.
For busy professionals or those with family commitments, an online master's in social media program is a convenient and potentially cost-effective way to earn an advanced degree. Online coursework allows students to complete assignments and attend lectures from home and on their own schedules, which is particularly important for students gaining professional experience simultaneously. Often with a lower tuition cost than traditional on-campus programs, online programs also allow students in rural areas to choose from a larger number of schools without a lengthy commute. These factors and more make it easier than ever to pursue a master's degree in social media.
Select Your State:
University of Florida
1885 Stadium Road
Gainseville, FL 32611
(135) 227-3341 x2
Southern New Hampshire University
2500 N River Rd.
Manchester, NH 03106
1971 University Blvd
Lynchburg, VA 24515