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Advertising Certificate Programs

Advertising is an exciting and rewarding field. It entails different forms of expression and communication used to sell products or services. Advertising programs prepare students to take up positions in advertising agencies or creative departments as graphic designers, advertising artists, web designers, art directors or illustrators. A number of programs are offered in this area of study. Students can pursue degrees or certificate programs in advertising depending on their own career goals. The ones who want to enter this field can pursue a certificate in advertising.

A number of certificate programs are offered in advertising that help students learn the skills required to become illustrators, graphic designers or art directors. These programs generally take less than a year to complete and help students improve their career prospects. Professionals who are already in the field of advertising and seeking career enhancement can also enroll in a certificate in advertising and get the required knowledge and skills necessary for senior-level positions. These programs help students understand how to come up with attractive designs in an effective manner so that they can reach out to the target audience. They also study the fundamentals of advertising as well as art and design concepts.

Admission Requirements

To pursue a certificate in advertising, candidates must hold a high school diploma or GED. It is also important for them to have a creative mind and have prior knowledge of art, geometry, and computer design at high school level. Some universities also offer certificates at graduate level. These are more advanced in terms of curriculum and typically require students to hold a bachelors degree from an accredited institute. As a part of the application process, you’ll also be required to provide official transcripts, letters of recommendations, personal statement, and in some cases an application fee as well.

Program Coursework

 Students in certificate programs in advertising cover a variety of general education courses as well as specific advertising curriculum. The precise coursework depends on the type of program one enrolls in. Generally, students will get to know the basic design color theory, textual design, desktop publishing practices, computer graphics software fundamentals and related topics.

Examples of courses that you may have to study include:
  • Essentials of Advertising
  • Advertising Research & Strategy
  • Advertising Profiles & Trends
  • Internet Advertising
  • Branding Theory
  • Advertising Sales
  • Advertising Copywriting
  • Public Relations

Online Certificate in Advertising

Students who cannot find the time to take up regular programs can enroll in an online certificate in advertising. These programs offer freedom, flexibility, comfort, which may not possible in the case of regular programs offered at traditional schools. This is why enrolling in online certificate programs can be more beneficial than traditional classes. These programs can be particularly suitable for working professionals looking for advanced opportunities in advertising along with their employment. As they can manage classes remotely and study around their personal routine, they can earn a certificate and improve their skills in advertising.

Job Opportunities

A certificate in advertising can lead students to a number of job opportunities in art departments or advertising agencies. They can also work with design companies, publishers and other businesses that need design professionals. 
  • Advertising Artists
  • Public relations specialists
  • Communications managers
  • Marketing managers
  • Marketing researchers
  • Product and brand managers
  • Sales professionals
The details of some of these positions as provided by O*NET Online are as follows:

Advertising and Promotions Managers

They are responsible for planning, coordinating, and overseeing advertising policies and campaigns in order to generate or maintain consumer interest and sales in accordance with predefined goals.

Median wages (2013): $93,880 per year

Advertising Sales Agents

They interact and negotiate with third parties such as TV, media, radio, and magazine representatives and persuade them to buy advertising space, media or time. They may also bargain for outdoor advertising space and convince retailers to display relevant sales promotion material.

$45,830 annual (2013): $45,830 per year

Market Research Analysts and Marketing Specialists

These professionals identify and evaluate the needs of the target market as well as the market conditions that are likely to impact the future sales and profitability of the business. They examine the economic, social, and legal environment as well as competitor strategies.  

Median wages (2013): $60,800 per year

States with the highest employment level in this occupation:



Employment per thousand jobs

Location quotient

Hourly mean wage

Annual mean wage

California 1660 0.11 1.26 18.13 37720
Florida 1130 0.14 1.68 17.97 37370
Illinois 960 0.16 1.92 17.9 37240
Texas 760 0.07 0.78 16.62 34570
New York 650 0.07 0.85 20.12 41840


How Long Does It Take to Complete an Advertising Certificate Program?

Even though online advertising certificate courses are more common as compared to traditional diplomas, their curriculum is not so different from each other. Some institutions offer certificates in Advertising as a combination of online and on-campus seminars/lectures etc. Most of these certificates are non-degree programs that can be completed in 6 to 12 months.

What Are the Requirements to Complete an Advertising Certificate Program?

The San Diego University of Integrative Studies offers a non-degree advertising certificate program that requires students to complete 40 units of coursework. Some certificates in Advertising require students to purchase graphic design software prior to enrollment. Requirements for degree completion vary from university to university.

How Much Can I Make After Completing an Advertising Certificate Program?

After completing a certificate program in Advertising, people usually work as Advertising Sales Agents or as Marketing Managers. The U.S. Bureau of Labor & Statistics (2018), reported the annual median income of Advertising, Promotions, and Marketing Managers was $132,620 whereas, the yearly median salary of Advertising Sales Agents was $51,740.

Frequently Asked Question(s)

Q:What will I learn in Advertising Certificate Programs? Can you briefly tell me?

A:In an advertising certificate program, you will acquire in-depth knowledge of advertising and promotion. The program will cover a wide range of topics through which you will learn how to design advertisements, promotional campaigns, and more. This program is career-oriented and is offered by many accredited schools. Browse through our page for more information.

Q:How long does it take to get an associate degree in advertising?

A:It typically takes two years to get an associate degree in advertising. Throughout these two years, you will be required to cover a range of subjects and courses related to advertising, promotions and marketing. If you want to earn the degree in less than two years, you can go for an accelerated degree track.

Q:What are the admission requirements for associate degree in advertising?

A:The admission requirements for an associate degree in advertising will vary from college to college. Most schools require applicants to submit a high school diploma or GED, demonstrate satisfactory academic performance, meet a minimum CGPA requirements, and submit letters of recommendation. You can check with prospective schools to learn more about the exact admission criteria.

Q:What can you do with an advertising associate degree?

A:An associate degree in advertising can qualify you for entry-level careers in this field. Some of the job positions that fall in this category are: junior copywriter, sales assistant, assistant art director, assistant account manager, assistant media planner, etc. You will need at least a bachelor degree to apply for most managerial jobs in this field.

Q:How to get an associate degree in advertising online?

A:There are a number of accredited schools offering online associate programs in advertising. To successfully earn this degree, you must first enroll in classes and meet all the minimum requirements. Apart from that, you will also need to maintain a minimum CGPA throughout the duration of the program, cover all required courses and assignments, and pass qualifying examinations.

Q:How fast can you get your associate degree in advertising?

A:Typically it takes two years to complete an associate-level degree. However, you can earn the degree in less than two years by enrolling in an accelerated program. An accelerated associate degree can be completed in one year or less, depending on which school you enroll in. The coursework of accelerated programs is vigorous and will require you to work very hard.

Q:How many credits are required for associates degree in advertising?

A:The credit hour requirement for an associate degree in advertising will depend on which college you enroll in. Typically, the requirement ranges between 60 and 90 credit hours. You can seek information about this requirement from prospective colleges. Associate degrees in advertising are also offered online as well as at campus-based institutes.

Q:Where can you work with advertising associate degree?

A:With an associate degree in advertising you can find many entry-level career opportunities in a variety of fields. These include jobs in accounting, advertising, social media, promotions, marketing, general management, public relations, customer services etc. You could work for a huge variety of sectors including entertainment, sports, media industry, retailing and food chains.

Q:What benefits will I get with a advertising associate degree?

A:With an advertising degree at associate level, you can qualify for entry-level roles in different sectors. An associate degree can prepare you for basic job positions and also prepare you for advanced studies ahead. The main purpose of the program is to equip you with knowledge of the field as well as career-oriented skills.

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