"A university should be concerned with training future leaders."
- Charles H. Sandage, department founder


in the classroom

The undergraduate curriculum at the Charles H. Sandage Department of Advertising is designed to graduate students with both a broad understanding of advertising in all its forms and a specialization in a self-selected area of interest. 

year one
exposure to the structure, language, opportunities and challenges of the advertising industry

year two
learning the tools of the industry

year three
applying the tools of the industry to solve real world advertising problems

year four
identifying and deeply exploring an area of specialization

The graduate curriculum in the department produces leaders in both industry and academia. The MS program provides students with a solid foundation in brand strategy and research. Doctoral students earn their Ph.D. in the affiliated Institute of Communications Research.

Faculty backgrounds:
Our students draw knowledge and inspiration from a faculty with extensive, diverse academic and industry experience. Therefore, students can explore many aspects of advertising and public relations, including, but in no way limited to, digital and social media, computational advertising, advertising creativity, and brand strategy.

Dedication to teaching:
The department’s commitment to teaching is widely recognized across campus and the country. In 2014, nine different faculty members and instructors for the department were included on the University of Illinois List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent. In 2015, Steven Hall was awarded the American Advertising Federation (AAF) Distinguished Teaching Award. In 2014, Peter S. Sheldon was awarded the Distinguished Teaching Award by the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication’s (AEJMC) advertising division. Shachar Meron is the current winner of the Faculty Excellence in Teaching Award in the Charles H. Sandage Department of Advertising. 

Leaders in the academic world:
Many professors in the Charles H. Sandage Department of Advertising hold top leadership positions in field. They include:

  • Michelle Nelson, President Elect of the American Academy of Advertising (AAA)
  • Kevin Wise, Chair of the Information Systems Division, International Communication Association (ICA)
  • Sela Sar, incoming head of the Advertising Division of the Association of Educators in Journalism and Mass Communication, (AEJMC)
  • John Wirtz, Executive Committee member, Advertising Division of AEJMC

In addition, members of the faculty serve on editorial boards and act as associate editors for such top publications as The Journal of Advertising and The International Journal of Advertising. They routinely win top paper awards in leading journals and at major conferences.

Learn about admissions statistics for this major.