Ranking at 34th on Niche.com, 24th on QS and 11th on College Factual, the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign is an exciting prospect for any young person wanting to enter media. The college offers the chance to “learn how to develop content that is informative, strategic, accurate, persuasive, entertaining, creative, targeted and shareable through any media platform” And the college has some incredible resources that lead to hands-on media experience. For example, it has Illinois Public Media, which produces TV, radio and online content with students and industry experts.

This college produces many media award nominees and winners.

16. University of California, Santa Barbara

Film & Media Studies

Website

University of California, Santa Barbara ranks at 13th on College Factual, joint 18th on QS and 27th on Niche.com. And the college is poised to rise in these rankings in future years, as it’s constantly innovating. For example, it just unveiled a new cutting-edge sound mixing program. And alumni from the University of California, Santa Barbara go on to receive top honors. For instance, alumni Lisa Bruce and Scott Frank were nominated for the 2018 Oscars. Professors at the university also gain incredible recognition for their work. This includes Professor Robin Nabi, who recently won the Mass Communication Division Award for Theory from the 2018 International Communication Association.

This college is proud of its Pulitzer Prize-winning alumni.

15. University of Wisconsin – Madison

Strategic Communication Major

Website

Coming within the top 25 of three methodology lists is University of Wisconsin Madison. It’s 24th on College Factual, fifth on QS and 15th on Niche.com. The college puts its success in media education down to, “a near equal mix of practical training and enrichment courses,” which produces, “critical thinkers, problem solvers, and innovators – the kind of graduates employers are eager to hire.” This statement is backed up with an incredible fact: no less than 12 University of Wisconsin – Madison alumni have won Pulitzer Prizes to date.  

Syracuse has forged strong relationships with a range of media companies.

14. Syracuse University

Television, Radio & Film Bachelor’s

Syracuse University is College Magazine’s number one media college. Niche.com places it at 23rd best. These two placements are significant, as both rely heavily on student-generated reviews in their rankings. QS places this college between 51st and 100th. It doesn’t make Business Insider or College Factual’s lists. It’s located in Upstate New York but has strong ties with the media hubs surrounding it. It has a range of impressive industry partnerships that benefit students, such as with the W20 Group Center for Social Commerce, The Eric Mower Advertising Forum, and PAN Communications.

Students are using cutting-edge tech at UCSD.

13. University of California, San Diego

Communication Undergraduate Program

Located just over 100 miles from Hollywood, University of California, San Diego is a strong rival to the Los Angeles based colleges. It places at 12th on College Factual, 54th on Niche.com and 18th on QS. While it doesn’t feature on Business Insider or College Magazine, the University of California, San Diego’s communication department has a range of other distinctions that make it worthy of inclusion on this list. Two current professors are recipients of the MacArthur Genius Award. Another professor just won the ICQI Qualitative Book Award. And the college is really teaching students the cutting-edge of media. For example, virtual reality and augmented reality are now being used in their classes.

Students looking for a career in film would benefit from studying at Berkeley.

12. University of California, Berkeley

Film & Media Undergraduate Program

Website

Berkeley ranks at 25th on College Factual, 30th on Niche.com, 13th on Business Insider and sixth on QS. The college’s media school is called the Film and Media Department. As the title implies, this means that the college’s media specialism is cinema. It’s been teaching film since 1976, and this specialism is really paying off for students. For instance, a recent graduate of film and media studies has been selected for CBS’s Writers Mentoring Program. Also, Its faculty members earn numerous awards, such as Professor Anne Nesbet, who won a California Book Award Gold Medal in 2017.

An impressive amount of funding has gone into University of North Carolina At Chapel Hill

11. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Media and Journalism Major

Website

Placing at seventh on College Factual, ninth on Niche.com, 30th on QS, but not featuring on College Magazine and Business Insider is the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Prominent media figures have given the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill lots of funding. For example, the entrepreneur Frank Andrews recently funded a new innovation program at the school, which will give participating students everything they need to make an impact on the media world. And because of other funding, the college has been able to award $1.99 million in scholarships in 2017-2018.

This college offers exclusive internships at leading media companies.

10. American University

Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies

Website

This college polarizes the methodology lists. Both College Factual and College Magazine place American University in the top 10, ranking it fifth and sixth respectively. It fares less well on Niche.com, coming in at 29th. QS is significantly less generous, placing it at 151st. But Business Insider’s media professional sourced list doesn’t feature it at all. This Washington DC-based college provides many incredible resources specifically for their students. For example, they provide exclusive internships at NBC, NPR, USA Today, The Washington Post and other top media outlets. These look great on a resume and lead to incredible full-time employment shortly after graduating.

Just knowing Boston College’s professors can get students into media jobs.

9. Boston College

Communication Undergraduate Program

Website

Placing at 10th on College Magazine, joint 14th on Business Insider, 22nd on Niche.com and 45th on College Factual, Boston College’s media department is only let down by QS, which places it between 151st to 200th. These results indicate that students are raving about the college! (College Magazine, Niche.com and Business Insider’s rankings all draw strongly on student and alumni opinion.) This may be because Boston College’s professors are still highly active in various media roles. For example, the Associate Professor Matt Sienkiewicz was recently nominated for an Emmy Award for producing a public service announcement.

You can expect to rise through the ranks of top media companies with a degree from the University of Michigan.

8. University of Michigan-Ann Arbor

Major in Communication Studies

Website

This college has incredibly consistent rankings on four of the five methodology lists. It’s 27th on College Factual, 18th on Niche.com, 22nd on Business Insider and 18th on QS. This means that you can be sure that the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor will provide you with world-leading media education. It does this by combining coursework with internships. This results in highly successful alumni, such as Tyndie Dubose, who is vice president of New Business Partner Marketing at Nickelodeon, and Jamie Sztoser, who is vice president of fashion & media at Choice Associates.

This college has a scientific approach to media education.

7. Cornell University

Communication Undergraduate Program

Website

Coming in at eighth on College Factual, 24th on Niche.com, joint 11th on Business Insider and 23rd on QS, Cornell University is an amazing media college. It traces its communication school’s origin back to 1874 when it created the first-ever college journalism course. Cornell will appeal to a very specific kind of person looking to enter into the media. It states on the Cornell Communication school website that its degrees are more focused on the social science side of media and less on the art side. If you’re looking for a more scientific media education, then applying to Cornell will be your best opportunity!

This college has a 95% graduate employment rate within six months of graduation.

6. Boston University

BS in Advertising

Website

Boston University is the best place to study media in Boston, Massachusetts. This is no easy feat, as it has the world renowned Harvard, MIT, Boston College and others as its neighbors. Niche.com places it at 10th. Business Insider places it at 18th. College Factual places it at 19th. QS places it between 51st and 100th. And College Magazine places it at third. It’s able to get such strong rankings across the board due to its dedicated job placement ethic. In fact, within six months of graduating, 95% of undergraduates found jobs at places such as Buzzfeed, Atlantic Media, Apple, Amazon and Business Insider.

NYU is the best media college in New York City.

5. New York University

Bachelor of Science in Media, Culture, and Communication

Website

New York University’s media school is in the top 20 of every methodology list. College Factual has it at 10th, Niche.com has it at seventh, Business Insider has it at eighth, QS has it at 16th, and College Magazine has it at ninth. These strong rankings mean that NYU is the best media school in NYC by a long distance. And, unsurprisingly, staff and students are winning prizes almost every week. For example, recent wins include three Steinhardt Teaching Excellence awards for NYU media professors, a Berlin Prize for a professor and four Fulbright Grants for students.

Stanford gives students the opportunity to temporarily study in Washington DC and New York City.

4. Stanford University

Major in Communication

Website

Stanford makes the top 10 on all but one methodology list. College Factual has it at 6th place. Niche has it at 2nd. Business Insider has it at 3rd. QS has it at 4th. What makes Stanford so consistently prominent? Stanford’s communication school puts it down to the way that the school was founded and the faculty’s ties with Silicon Valley and other innovative media bases. The communication school came about in the 1950s, which expanded the college’s leading journalistic practices into other forms of media education. As for its ties, there are a range of opportunities, even outside of Silicon Valley, that will get students ahead. These include a program that takes place in Washington DC that is taught by government policymakers and a program of experiential learning in New York City.

Famous media personalities support this college.

3. Northwestern University

Major in Radio/Television/Film

Website

Niche.com considers Northwestern to be the US’s top communications college. The other lists all place it in high regard. College Factual has it at fourth. Business Insider ranks it at 19th. QS places it at 17th. College Magazine lists it at eighth. Northwestern University can boast many great names that assist students in their training. For example, Julia Louis-Dreyfus and her husband Brad Hall sponsor the school’s sitcom related education. And Stephen Colbert hosts a live event celebrating the school’s community accomplishments. The reason why both well-known celebrities support these students is simple; they’re alumni. And the college’s other alumni are no less impressive. Graduates of Northeastern have been nominated for and won Academy Awards, Emmy Awards, Tony Awards, Pulitzer Prizes, Peabody Awards and Grammy Awards.

This college gives students worldwide opportunities.

2. University of Pennsylvania

Communication Undergraduate Program

Website

This college is well regarded by every methodology source! College Factual has it at second place. Niche.com puts it at fourth. Business Insider puts it at joint 14th. QS places it at 10th. And College Magazine has it at fourth. What has the University of Pennsylvania done to deserve this universal acclaim? There are many things. When it comes to media colleges, University of Pennsylvania is one of the oldest. Its communications school opened in 1958, and it’s been constantly evolving ever since. But if you’re thinking that Philadelphia may not be the best place to study media, the University of Pennsylvania’s opportunities will make you think again. The college allows its students to take part in media-related activities across the world. One example is the Prague International Communication Association Conference, which recently saw 65 students and faculty attend and, in some cases, win awards.

USC’s 98% graduate employment rate secures its place at the top of our list.

1. University of Southern California

Undergraduate Communication BA

Website

Placing at first on two methodology lists and third on an another, University of Southern California tops our rankings. College Factual and QS are the sources naming it as the best media college. Niche.com is the source placing it at third. This shows that both external assessment and peer-led review sources agree on the merits of USC. And further investigation proves that USC deserves its place at the top! A staggering 98% of the class of 2016 is employed. And they’re working in the top media companies, such as ABC News, AccuWeather, CBS, CNN, Comcast, Entertainment Weekly, Fox Sports, Sony, Columbia Pictures, Food Network, NBC, Warner Bros and many more impressive media businesses!