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Advertising

Concentrations: Art Direction, Copywriting, Account Planning

The School of Advertising is one of the most successful advertising degree programs in the nation. Our curriculum reflects the professional aspects of the industry by integrating technology with visual communication. Our students work both collaboratively and individually, and develop their work into a competitive portfolio that demonstrates a mastery of advertising principles.

Along the way, our students learn from the best in the industry. We draw our instructors, guest lecturers, and advisory board members from award-winning ad agencies. Our courses are designed by industry professionals so that students learn the skills that are in demand. Recent Academy of Art University Advertising students have won more awards than those at any other school.

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)

The MFA in Advertising provides the graduate student with expertise in directing a full advertising campaign from concept to finished project, including market research, strategy, copywriting, art direction, and presentation. Students focus on establishing themselves as creative communicators, capable of formulating carefully planned strategies and expression, both in traditional media and on the leading edge of interactive advertising.

The curriculum reflects the professional aspects of the industry by integrating technology with visual communication. The importance of collaboration is also emphasized. Consequently, the curriculum encourages individual focus culminating in the graduate student's Final Project -- a competitive portfolio that demonstrates a mastery of advertising principles.

Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA)

Our Bachelor of Fine Arts program in Advertising utilizes an integrated approach that provides students with expertise in directing a full advertising campaign from concept to finish, including market research, strategy, copywriting, art direction, and presentation. Upon graduation, our students will be focused and creative communicators capable of expressing themselves in traditional media and in the emerging sphere of interactive advertising.

The BFA in Advertising requires completion of 132 semester units. Students who already have a bachelor's degree can enroll in our streamlined Second Degree program, which requires completion of 66 units without requiring any Liberal Arts classes or art electives. Students may focus on the following areas in pursuing this degree: Art Direction, Copywriting, or Account Planning.

Associate of Arts (AA)

Our Associate of Arts degree in Advertising is designed for students interested in acquiring a basis of knowledge and skills necessary for the advertising profession. This degree requires students in finding an entry-level job in the advertising industry. The Associate of Arts requires completion of 66 semester units.

Online Awards of Completion (OAC)

The Online Awards of Completion in Advertising are  personal enrichment programs designed for students interested in acquiring a basis of knowledge and skills necessary for the advertising profession. An Online Award of Completion is offered for each of the three paths within the School of Advertising. Award of Completion and personal enrichment students may have these courses credited toward a degree at the Academy of Art University, pending portfolio review and approval by the department director. Degree-seeking students must satisfy existing degree requirements.

Online Awards of Completion are offered in the following subjects: Copywriting, Account Planning, Art Direction

Review all of the School of Advertising Online Awards of Completion: 
ADV Online Awards of Completion

Career Opportunities


  • Art Director for print, television, and websites
  • Copywriter for television, print, and radio
  • Creative Director
  • ... and more!

Firms Hiring Our Grads


Butler, Shine, Stern & Partners, Carol H. Williams, AKQA, Crispin Porter + Bogusky, Cutwater, DAE Advertising, Engine Company 1, Draftfcb, Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, Heat, Hill Holliday, McCann-Erickson, Mortar, OgilvyWest, Organic, Pereira & O'Dell, Publicis & Hal Riney, Razorfish, Saatchi & Saatchi, TBWA\Chiat\Day, TBWA\Hakuhodo, Venables Bell & Partners, Young & Rubicam

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