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2021 Highest Paid Communication & Media Studies Graduates

55,113 Bachelor's Degrees
$31,626 Avg Salary
$24,445 Avg Student Debt

Finding the Best Communication & Media Studies School for You

Highest Paid Communication & Media Studies GraduatesCommunication & Media Studies is one of the most popular majors in the nation, ranking 6th of all the majors we analyze. In 2018-2019, 55,113 bachelor's degrees were awarded to students with this major. Since the program you select can have a significant impact on your future, we've developed a number of rankings, including this Highest Paid Communications Graduates list, to help you choose the best school for you.

For this year's Highest Paid Communication & Media Studies Graduates ranking, we looked at 537 colleges that offer a bachelor's in communications.

The numbers used in this ranking are early career salaries, which we define to be 10 years after a student started college. This is the salary typically earned 4-6 years after graduation, but may be different depending on how long a person takes to complete their degree.

Comparing Average Salaries of Communication & Media Studies Majors

The average communication and media studies major who graduates from a school in the United States earns about $31,626 per year during the early years of their career. That's not so great, since it is 21% less than the national average salary of a typical bachelor's degree holder. However, graduates from the schools in this list may make more.

Average Salary for Communications Graduates from Schools Nationwide  31,626
0K
63,200
National Average Salary for All College Grads (Regardless of Major)  39,802
0K
63,200

College Combat

In addition to College Factual's rankings, you may want to take a look at College Combat, our unique tool that lets you pit your favorite schools head-to-head and compare how they rate on factors that most interest you. When you have some time, check it out - you may want to bookmark the link so you don't forget it.

Featured Communication & Media Studies Programs

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

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2021 Highest Paid Communication & Media Studies Grads in the United States

Below you'll see a list of the colleges and universities that produce the highest paid communication and media studies majors.

Top 25 Best Schools for Highly Paid Communications Graduates

#1

University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA

University of Pennsylvania comes in at #1 in this year's ranking. Located in the city of Philadelphia, UPenn is a private not-for-profit school with a fairly large student population. Students who receive their bachelor's in communications from the school go on to jobs that make an average salary of $49,400.

On average, communications graduates from UPenn take out $18,296 in student loans while working on their bachelor's degree. The average monthly payment of a loan this size is about $202, assuming that the borrower is on a 10-year repayment plan.

Read full report on Communication & Media Studies at University of Pennsylvania

#1

Stanford University

Stanford, CA

Stanford University comes in at #1 in this year's ranking. Stanford is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in the suburb of Stanford.

Full Communication & Media Studies at Stanford University Report

#2

Cornell University

Ithaca, NY

Cornell University comes in at #2 in this year's ranking. Located in the city of Ithaca, Cornell is a private not-for-profit school with a fairly large student population. Upon graduating with a bachelor's degree, communications majors make an average salary of $47,100.

While working on their bachelor's, communications majors at Cornell accumulate an average of around $13,860 in student debt. For students who choose a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly student loan payment is $140.

Read full report on Communication & Media Studies at Cornell University

#3

Boston College

Chestnut Hill, MA

Boston College comes in at #3 in this year's ranking. Boston College is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in the small city of Chestnut Hill. Communications majors who obtain their bachelor's from the school make an average salary of $45,700.

The average amount in student loans that communications majors at Boston College take out while working on their bachelor's is $14,245. When it comes time to repay the loan, graduates who are on a 10-year repayment plan pay an average monthly payment of $161.

Read full report on Communication & Media Studies at Boston College

Northeastern University Professional Advancement Network comes in at #4 in this year's ranking. Northeastern University Professional Advancement Network is a large private not-for-profit school located in the large city of Boston. The average salary for a student who gets a bachelor's degree in communications from the school is $45,400.

The average amount in student loans that communications majors at Northeastern University Professional Advancement Network take out while working on their bachelor's is $23,106. This translates to an average monthly loan payment of $254, based on a 10-year repayment plan.

Read More…

Our rankings recognize Northeastern University as the #5 school in this year's rankings. Northeastern is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in the large city of Boston. The average salary for a student who gets a bachelor's degree in communications from the school is $45,400.

Communications majors at Northeastern take out an average of $23,106 in student loans while working on their bachelor's degree. This translates to an average monthly loan payment of $254, based on a 10-year repayment plan.

Read full report on Communication & Media Studies at Northeastern University

George Washington University earned the #5 spot in our 2021 rankings. GWU is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in the city of Washington.

On average, communications graduates from GWU take out $20,820 in student loans while working on their bachelor's degree. The average monthly payment of a loan this size is about $214, assuming that the borrower is on a 10-year repayment plan.

Read More…

#6

Brown University

Providence, RI

Our rankings recognize Brown University as the #6 school in this year's rankings. Brown is a large private not-for-profit school located in the city of Providence.

On average, communications graduates from Brown take out $14,007 in student loans while working on their bachelor's degree.

Read full report on Communication & Media Studies at Brown University

Metropolitan State University earned the #6 spot in our 2021 rankings. Located in the large city of Saint Paul, Metro State is a public school with a moderately-sized student population. The average salary for a student who gets a bachelor's degree in communications from the school is $44,000.

Communications majors at Metro State take out an average of $17,746 in student loans while working on their bachelor's degree. This translates to an average monthly loan payment of $172, based on a 10-year repayment plan.

Full Communication & Media Studies at Metropolitan State University Report

The #7 spot in this year's ranking belongs to University of California - Berkeley. Located in the midsize city of Berkeley, UC Berkeley is a public college with a fairly large student population. The average salary for a student who gets a bachelor's degree in communications from the school is $43,800.

While working on their bachelor's, communications majors at UC Berkeley accumulate an average of around $15,484 in student debt. This translates to an average monthly loan payment of $156, based on a 10-year repayment plan.

Read More…

Our rankings recognize Colorado State University - Global Campus as the #8 school in this year's rankings. Located in the large city of Greenwood Village, Colorado State University - Global Campus is a public school with a fairly large student population. The average salary for a student who gets a bachelor's degree in communications from the school is $43,600.

On average, communications graduates from Colorado State University - Global Campus take out $26,373 in student loans while working on their bachelor's degree. This translates to an average monthly loan payment of $262, based on a 10-year repayment plan.

Full Communication & Media Studies at Colorado State University - Global Campus Report

University of Maryland - College Park landed the #9 spot in our 2021 rankings for highest paid communication and media studies school. UMCP is a very large public school located in the suburb of College Park. The average salary for a student who gets a bachelor's degree in communications from the school is $43,300.

On average, communications graduates from UMCP take out $18,317 in student loans while working on their bachelor's degree. For students who choose a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly student loan payment is $197.

Read full report on Communication & Media Studies at University of Maryland - College Park

#9

Seton Hall University

South Orange, NJ

Seton Hall University comes in at #9 in this year's ranking. Seton Hall is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in the suburb of South Orange.

While working on their bachelor's, communications majors at Seton Hall accumulate an average of around $23,782 in student debt. The average monthly payment of a loan this size is about $257, assuming that the borrower is on a 10-year repayment plan.

Read full report on Communication & Media Studies at Seton Hall University

University of Maryland Global Campus comes in at #10 in this year's ranking. UMGC is a fairly large public school located in the large suburb of Adelphi. Students who receive their bachelor's in communications from the school go on to jobs that make an average salary of $43,000.

While working on their bachelor's, communications majors at UMGC accumulate an average of around $25,233 in student debt. For students who choose a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly student loan payment is $224.

Read More…

#10

The College of Wooster

Wooster, OH

The #10 spot in this year's ranking belongs to The College of Wooster. Located in the town of Wooster, Wooster College is a private not-for-profit college with a small student population.

The average amount in student loans that communications majors at Wooster College take out while working on their bachelor's is $22,636.

Read full report on Communication & Media Studies at The College of Wooster

#11

Santa Clara University

Santa Clara, CA

The #11 spot in this year's ranking belongs to Santa Clara University. SCU is a medium-sized private not-for-profit school located in the medium-sized city of Santa Clara. Students who receive their bachelor's in communications from the school go on to jobs that make an average salary of $43,000.

The average amount in student loans that communications majors at SCU take out while working on their bachelor's is $17,110. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $195.

Full Communication & Media Studies at Santa Clara University Report

#12

DePauw University

Greencastle, IN

DePauw University landed the #12 spot in our 2021 rankings for highest paid communication and media studies school. Located in the distant town of Greencastle, DePauw is a private not-for-profit college with a small student population. Students who receive their bachelor's in communications from the school go on to jobs that make an average salary of $43,000.

Communications majors at DePauw take out an average of $23,315 in student loans while working on their bachelor's degree. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $270.

Read More…

#13

Boston University

Boston, MA

The #13 spot in this year's ranking belongs to Boston University. Located in the large city of Boston, Boston U is a private not-for-profit college with a fairly large student population. Upon graduating with a bachelor's degree, communications majors make an average salary of $42,900.

While working on their bachelor's, communications majors at Boston U accumulate an average of around $21,574 in student debt. This translates to an average monthly loan payment of $254, based on a 10-year repayment plan.

Read full report on Communication & Media Studies at Boston University

#14

Northwestern University

Evanston, IL

Our rankings recognize Northwestern University as the #14 school in this year's rankings. Located in the city of Evanston, Northwestern is a private not-for-profit college with a very large student population. Upon graduating with a bachelor's degree, communications majors make an average salary of $42,600.

Communications majors at Northwestern take out an average of $16,860 in student loans while working on their bachelor's degree. When it comes time to repay the loan, graduates who are on a 10-year repayment plan pay an average monthly payment of $161.

Full Communication & Media Studies at Northwestern University Report

Pepperdine University earned the #14 spot in our 2021 rankings. Located in the large suburb of Malibu, Pepperdine is a private not-for-profit school with a medium-sized student population.

The average amount in student loans that communications majors at Pepperdine take out while working on their bachelor's is $18,012.

Read More…

The #15 spot in this year's ranking belongs to Massachusetts Institute of Technology. MIT is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in the medium-sized city of Cambridge.

Read More…

Our rankings recognize Roger Williams University as the #15 school in this year's rankings. Located in the suburb of Bristol, RWU is a private not-for-profit college with a small student population. The average salary for a student who gets a bachelor's degree in communications from the school is $42,300.

While working on their bachelor's, communications majors at RWU accumulate an average of around $23,921 in student debt. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $280.

Read full report on Communication & Media Studies at Roger Williams University

#16

Bryant University

Smithfield, RI

Our rankings recognize Bryant University as the #16 school in this year's rankings. Bryant is a small private not-for-profit school located in the large suburb of Smithfield. The average salary for a student who gets a bachelor's degree in communications from the school is $42,300.

On average, communications graduates from Bryant take out $22,875 in student loans while working on their bachelor's degree. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $280.

Read full report on Communication & Media Studies at Bryant University

#17

Fairfield University

Fairfield, CT

Fairfield University comes in at #17 in this year's ranking. Located in the large suburb of Fairfield, Fairfield U is a private not-for-profit school with a moderately-sized student population. The average salary for a student who gets a bachelor's degree in communications from the school is $42,300.

The average amount in student loans that communications majors at Fairfield U take out while working on their bachelor's is $22,581. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $280.

Full Communication & Media Studies at Fairfield University Report

#18

Villanova University

Villanova, PA

Our rankings recognize Villanova University as the #18 school in this year's rankings. Located in the large suburb of Villanova, Villanova is a private not-for-profit school with a large student population. Communications majors who obtain their bachelor's from the school make an average salary of $42,200.

On average, communications graduates from Villanova take out $22,999 in student loans while working on their bachelor's degree. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $279.

Full Communication & Media Studies at Villanova University Report

Rest of the Top 50 Schools for Highest Paid Communication & Media Studies Graduates

#29

Marymount University

Arlington, VA
#30

Texas Christian University

Fort Worth, TX
#32

University of Kansas

Lawrence, KS

#33

Lake Forest College

Lake Forest, IL

#35

Edgewood College

Madison, WI
#36

University of Dayton

Dayton, OH
#39

University of Utah

Salt Lake City, UT
#40

San Francisco State University

San Francisco, CA

#47

Virginia Tech

Blacksburg, VA

Remaining Award Winners

This list shows the rest of the colleges awarded a Highest Paid Communication & Media Studies Graduates badge. Showing in this list means the college was ranked in the top 15% of the 537 different United States communication and media studies schools we analyzed.

Rank College Location
51 Ohio State University - Main Campus Columbus, OH
52 Elon University Elon, NC
53 Arizona State University - Tempe Tempe, AZ
54 Arizona State University - Downtown Phoenix Phoenix, AZ
55 Arizona State University - Polytechnic Mesa, AZ
56 Arizona State University - Skysong Scottsdale, AZ
57 Arizona State University - West Glendale, AZ
58 University of Iowa Iowa City, IA
59 Wake Forest University Winston-Salem, NC
60 University of Phoenix - Arizona Tempe, AZ
61 Texas Tech University Lubbock, TX
62 University of Phoenix - California Costa Mesa, CA
63 University of Washington - Bothell Campus Bothell, WA
64 University of Washington - Tacoma Campus Tacoma, WA
65 University of Washington - Seattle Campus Seattle, WA
66 Furman University Greenville, SC
67 Manhattan College Riverdale, NY
68 McDaniel College Westminster, MD
69 Augustana College Rock Island, IL
70 Towson University Towson, MD
71 University of Nebraska at Omaha Omaha, NE
72 St. Thomas Aquinas College Sparkill, NY
73 Central Michigan University Mount Pleasant, MI
74 Denison University Granville, OH
75 James Madison University Harrisonburg, VA
76 Rutgers University - New Brunswick New Brunswick, NJ
77 The Graduate Center, CUNY New York, NY
78 Seattle Pacific University Seattle, WA
79 Loyola Marymount University Los Angeles, CA
80 Suffolk University Boston, MA

Additional Noteworthy Schools

These are some additional schools worth mentioning that are also great but just didn't quite make the cut to earn our top Highest Paid Communication & Media Studies Graduates award.

Rank College Location
81 Gustavus Adolphus College Saint Peter, MN
82 Marist College Poughkeepsie, NY
83 Stonehill College Easton, MA
84 Mount St Mary’s University Emmitsburg, MD
85 Regis University Denver, CO
86 University of California - Santa Barbara Santa Barbara, CA
87 Dallas Baptist University Dallas, TX
88 Saint Mary’s College Notre Dame, IN
89 Michigan State University East Lansing, MI
90 Iowa State University Ames, IA
91 Tulane University of Louisiana New Orleans, LA
92 Minnesota State University - Mankato Mankato, MN
93 Purdue University - Main Campus West Lafayette, IN
94 Wheaton College Illinois Wheaton, IL
95 Walden University Minneapolis, MN
96 Western Connecticut State University Danbury, CT
97 Saint Mary’s College of California Moraga, CA
98 The City College of New York New York, NY
99 University of Colorado Boulder Boulder, CO
100 Lasell College Newton, MA
101 University of Colorado Denver/Anschutz Medical Campus Denver, CO
102 Emmanuel College Massachusetts Boston, MA
103 University of Denver Denver, CO
104 The University of Tampa Tampa, FL
105 Utah Valley University Orem, UT
106 University of Houston - Clear Lake Houston, TX
107 University of North Dakota Grand Forks, ND

Communication & Media Studies by Region

View the Highest Paid Communication & Media Studies Graduates for a specific region near you.

Region
Southeast
New England
Rocky Mountains
Plains States
Middle Atlantic
Far Western US
Southwest
Great Lakes

Communication & Media Studies is one of 5 different types of Communication & Journalism programs to choose from.

Related Major Annual Graduates
Public Relations & Advertising 16,785
Journalism 12,988
Radio, Television & Digital Communication 10,624
Communication & Journalism (Other) 1,002
Publishing 37

View All Communications Related Majors >

Notes and References

  • The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), a branch of the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) serves as the core of the rest of our data about colleges.
  • Some other college data, including much of the graduate earnings data, comes from the U.S. Department of Education’s (College Scorecard).
  • Credit for the banner image above goes to UNU-WIDER from Helsinki, Finland.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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