Sports communications careerists can find work in several fields, including broadcast media, athletic journalism, and public relations. Those interested should look into Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Communications programs concentrating on sports communications. Master’s degree programs in sports communications may lead to senior-level positions, such as team promotions manager or sports information director.
Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) Programs in Communications
Students enrolled in programs at this level generally complete studies focused on mass communications; however, concentration areas such as sports communications are often offered. Students enrolled in a program within this specialty area are taught about providing information to highly involved audiences that have a profound interest in sports.
Admission criteria typically require incoming students to hold a GED certificate or a high school diploma.
Coursework within this baccalaureate concentration covers courses focused on current issues in sports, including the evolving modes of communicating information to sports enthusiasts and the relationship of sports to society. Coursework may include topic areas such as:
•Promotion and public relations
•Sports, communication, and culture
Job and Wage Outlook
A decline of six percent in the job growth rate for broadcast news analysts, reporters, and correspondents has been predicted over the 2010 – 2020 decade (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). Applicants with work experience in the field are expected to enjoy the brightest prospects. In May 2012, reporters and correspondents earned a median annual salary of $37,090; during the same year, broadcast news analysts banked a median annual wage of $55,380 (BLS).
Master’s Degree Programs in Sports Communications
Coursework in a sports communications master’s degree program covers advanced theories about communicating sports information to diverse audiences, such as fans, the media, and investors. Examination of the impact of sports on American society will help students hone skills that will help them advocate for sports as a tool for greater economic and social good. Schools do not offer consistent titles for this program, which can take various forms, such as Master of Science (M.S.) or Master of Arts (M.A.) in Sports Reporting, Sports Administration, Sports Management, or Sports Journalism.
Admission criteria typically require incoming students to have completed a bachelor’s degree program from an accredited school. Candidates seeking admission to some schools may also be required to have prior work experience in media, journalism, or public relations. An acceptable level of fluency in basic communication skills, including public speaking and writing, may also be required to be displayed by prospective students.
Coursework covers theoretical knowledge of communications and explains how students can apply these skills. Strategies for relaying key messages on all aspects of sports, including business, athletes, and competition, are also explored. Coursework may cover topic areas such as:
•Marketing and business tactics
•Fundraising and sponsorship
•Leadership in sports communications
•Media and broadcast relations
Graduates of the bachelor’s degree program can pursue senior-level and managerial positions in the sports communications and information field. They may choose from career choices such as:
•Community outreach manager
•Sports information director
•Public relations specialist