There are more than 100 communication schools, but only a select few can be considered as one of the top schools for communication. International students can select the best schools for communication based on the student to faculty ratio, quality of programs, diversity of fields, internship opportunities and experience. Each school has specific and unique aspects that make the school rise above the rest.
With more than 100 schools for communication, it may be difficult to narrow down the schools that are best for you. The most important thing to keep in mind when looking for a school is the concentration of communications you would like to pursue. International students who choose to study in the US will most likely be required to choose a focus within communication. Usually the concentrations include print/online journalism, broadcast journalism, public relations, advertising and telecommunications. International students should choose the school that has the most specialized programs within their choice of focus. For example, print journalism students may want to look at Ohio University for its well-esteemed publications. Broadcast journalism students may want to explore Ohio and Illinois Centers for Broadcasting for its hands-on training, and public relations and advertising students may want to research Boston University for its noteworthy marketing programs.
Other factors to keep in mind are the size of the school, whether it is public or private, where it is located, what types of programs it offers and what makes it stand out when compared to the other top schools for communication.
Syracuse University: S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, NY
Syracuse University's S.I Newhouse School of Public Communications in New York has been named the number one journalism school in the United States by many academic journals. The U.S World and News Report has ranked Syracuse's communication school high, and the Princeton Review named the school as one of the top schools for communication in the Northeast.
This 4-year private university has a medium enrollment size and is located in a small city with an urban setting. International students who want to attend a large school but are afraid they will become a number should consider Syracuse, as it enrolls enough students to qualify as a larger school but is still small enough to keep a community feel. The programs at this prestigious school are diverse. Undergraduates enrolled in the college can obtain a degree in advertising, broadcasting, magazine, photography, newspaper, public relations, television, radio and film.
Northwestern University: Medill School of Journalism, Media, Integrated Marketing Communications, IL
Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism, Media, Integrated Marketing Communications is also a medium-sized 4-year private college. Instead of an urban setting, however, Northwestern is located in a small city with a suburban setting. International students who want to live in a smaller community should consider Northwestern. The school has 38 Pulitzer Prize laureates as alumni and the opportunity to work in Chicago storefront newsrooms and from Capitol Hill. Northwestern University prides itself in giving students a superb liberal arts education. Alongside communication classes, students will be required to take 75 percent of courses outside of the Medill school as a way to “deepen their interests by taking a second major or a minor in addition to journalism.”
International students who choose to study at Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism will have the opportunity to produce award-winning media as early as their freshman year. The college also has a high school program for rising high school seniors. During the program the students will live in a dorm on Northwestern University's campus and take classes in print, broadcast, digital and audio journalism from accomplished journalists.
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill: School of Journalism and Mass Communication
Offering a more specialized form of communication, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's School of Journalism and Mass Communication prepares students for the future of journalism with special programs in business journalism, medical and science journalism, sports communication, Latino journalism and health communication. The college is a large, 4-year public university located in a large town. Though the university is larger than the previous two schools, the School of Journalism and Mass Communication is able to keep a personal and direct teaching relationship with the students. Students enrolled in the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's School of Journalism and Mass Communication can become staff of The Daily Tar Heel, the student-run newspaper that has been recognized on the Princeton Review's annual list.
Unique to this school is the Visiting International Scholars Program which is designed to help academic and professional journalists and other communicators spend a semester or year in Chapel Hill to learn about their specialty within the field of mass communication and about the U.S culture. The program admits about 20 to 25 participants during an enrollment period. Scholars from all countries are welcome to participate in the program. Those involved in the program receive no credit. However, the college welcomes international students to apply to the well-esteemed communication programs eligible to receive credit.
University of Kansas: William Allen White School of Journalism and Mass Communication
Ann Brill, Dean of the University of Kansas' William Allen White School of Journalism and Mass Communications says that the graduates of the college are prepared for “the challenges of the multimedia world.” Students accepted into the program begin immediately with high-level courses, real experience and networking opportunities. The college has won second place in the Hearst Foundation “College Pulitzers” national writing contest. In the Journalism Career Center, students can find career guidance and counseling for journalism students including help with resumes, internships, interviews, networking, job security and more.
This 4-year public university is the largest of the schools mentioned and is set in a small city with an urban setting. International students who would like to attend a school with a large enrollment size should think about attending the University of Kansas.
Communication schools change every year, updating technology, professors and quality of programs to match the convergence of media. Thus, the high competition between select communication schools is constantly shifting. When narrowing down the best schools for communication, international students will find that each school has specific and unique aspects that make the school rise above the rest. What aspect of the schools work for you? Are you looking for small class sizes and individual attention? Are you looking for the latest equipment and award winning publications? Are you looking for a certain location or career opportunities? Whatever the case may be, each school will have something different to offer.