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Doktor Spinn

The Perfect PR Education

Filed under: Student

I was thinking the other day about how I would put together a perfect PR education. I guess I would compile it something like this:

First Year

First Semester

Media Logic I, 10 weeks
- Bandwagon Effect, Card-Stacking, Dunbar’s Number, Spiral of Silence, Market-Driven Journalism, The Tipping Point, The Long-Tail, Shannon-Weaver Model, The Global Village, News Media Logic, Social Media Logic, etc.

Media Organizations, 5 weeks
- Media Conglomerates, The Power of Media, Ownership Structures, Global vs. Local Media, Circulation, etc.

Modern Marketing, 5 weeks
- The Media Mix, Bought/Owned/Earned Media, PR, SEO Basics, Web Strategy, Mobile Marketing, Advertising, Push & Pull, Social Objects, Media Buy Dynamics, Integrated Marketing, Branding, etc.

Second Semester

Rhethoric, 5 weeks
- Oral Presentation, Written Presentations, Pitching Basics, Classical Disposition, Presentation Software, etc.

Methodology I, 5 weeks
- Qualitative vs. Quantitative Research, Correlations, etc.

Copywriting, 10 weeks
- Headlines, Style, Clarity and Brevity, Call-To-Action, Prominence, Structure and Disposition, Proofreading, Copy Editing, Portfolio Production, etc.

Second Year

First Semester

Creativity Techniques, 5 weeks
- Brainstorming, Physical Feedback Loop, Image-Streaming, Variation Technique, Case Studies, Inspirational Seminars, etc.

Organizational Structures, 5 weeks
- Listed Companies, Small- and Medium-Sized Businesses, Marketing Structures, Value-Chain, Controlling, Laws, Ethics, etc.

Strategic Communications, 10 weeks
- Two-Way Symmetrical Model, Open/Closed Systems Models, Business Objectives, PR Value and Measurability, etc.

Second Semester

Tools of the Trade, 10 weeks
- Media Training Basics, Press Releases, Policies and Guidelines, PR Strategies, Workshop Formats, Media Relations Basics, Content Creation, Infographics, SWOT Analysis, Social Media Intelligence, etc.

Methodology II, 5 weeks
- Statistics, Science Philosophy, etc.

Diploma Thesis, 5 weeks
- Students to pick the subject.

Third Year

First Semester

Human Interaction Design, 5 weeks
- Call-To-Action, Disposition, Structure, Wireframes & Mockups, Semiotics etc.

Internship I, 5 weeks
- Students to find their own internships.

PR Summit, 10 weeks
- Arranging Seminars, Inviting Guests & Speakers, Event Marketing, PR Logistics, etc.

Second Semester

Media Logic II, 10 weeks
- Maslow’s Pyramide, Uses & Gratifications, Incentives & Motivators, Gift Status, Media Semantics, The Medium is the Message, Critical Theories, Perception and Cognition,, etc.

Methodology III, 5 weeks
- Qualitative vs. Quantitative Research, Advanced Science Philosophy, etc.

Bachelor Thesis, 10 weeks
- Students to pick the subject.

Fourth Year

First Semester

Available specializations at 1/2 speed (choose 2-4):

Public Affairs and Lobbying, 10 weeks

Corporate Communications and Issues Management, 10 weeks

Social Media PR and Community Management, 10 weeks

CSR and B2B Industry PR, 10 weeks

Internal Communications and Employer Branding, 10 weeks

FMCG Marketing PR and Branding, 10 weeks

Second Semester

Social Psychology and Persuasion, 5 weeks
- The Advisory Role, Underdog Psychology, Conflict/Diplomacy, Affirmations, Visualizations, Authority, Influencing Influencers, Wag the Dog, The Power of Suggestions, Social Proof/Testimonials, etc.

Methodology IV, 5 weeks
- Advanced Research, Advanced Science Methods, etc.

Master Thesis, 10 weeks
- Students to pick the subject.

Fifth Year

First Semester

International Studies, 10 weeks
- Student to choose the subjects and country to study in.

Internship II, 10 weeks
- Students to find their own internships.

Now I’d love to hear your feedback on this. What do you think the perfect PR education should consist of?

  • Omer Rosenbaum

    5 years? Don’t wanna underestimate the profession but 5 years it too much. Think how long does it take to be an architect or M.D.
    I would suggest 2 years of full-time studies (real full time, not the Swedish full-time) and 1 year internship.

    • http://www.doktorspinn.com/ Doktor Spinn

      We’re doing interviews with NYC interns and no-one comes with less than four years training, applying for internships on top of that. I think two different educations combined is really good for PR, but the idea for this is to suggest a PR education that could stand for itself. But I think two years is too little if you want to hit that strategic level.

    • http://www.doktorspinn.com/ Doktor Spinn

      We’re doing interviews with NYC interns and no-one comes with less than four years training, applying for internships on top of that. I think two different educations combined is really good for PR, but the idea for this is to suggest a PR education that could stand for itself. But I think two years is too little if you want to hit that strategic level.

  • Thomas W

    Master thesis is, in sweden, scheduled for 20 weeks, not 10 weeks. And it is placed as the very last thing in the education (fifth year, last semester). What was your reason to put it in the fourth year?

    • http://www.doktorspinn.com/ Doktor Spinn

      I think if the longer internship is put before the master thesis, chances are many will not complete their education if they are offered jobs. And the idea is that the methodology class should be the starting point, so it’s rather 15 weeks than 10. But maybe it’s some regulation who states that it must be 20 weeks in total? In that case we need to integrate the persuasion class somewhere else.

  • Thomas W

    Master thesis is, in sweden, scheduled for 20 weeks, not 10 weeks. And it is placed as the very last thing in the education (fifth year, last semester). What was your reason to put it in the fourth year?

  • http://www.svenw.se/ Sven Wennerström

    I think a lot of it is just a waste of time – things that bright young PR professionals will pick up in just a few weeks working at an agency, given a solid academic foundation.

    Such a foundation should include media studies, economy (micro, macro, business), marketing and (possibly optional) political science. And math and statistics, of course. You should never hire, nor trust, a PR professional who isn’t math savvy.

  • http://www.doktorspinn.com/ Doktor Spinn

    The consistent feedback I get here and elsewhere is that 4,5 years is too long. But I’m happy with that feedback, I really want to emphasize that PR very well could be studied in-depth. Communication is a highly complex subject matter!

  • http://www.doktorspinn.com/ Doktor Spinn

    The consistent feedback I get here and elsewhere is that 4,5 years is too long. But I’m happy with that feedback, I really want to emphasize that PR very well could be studied in-depth. Communication is a highly complex subject matter!

  • http://www.publicrelationsprincess.com/ Claire Celsi

    Jerry, I agree with your proposed curriculum. I would add a few mandatory business classes such as intellectual property, finance and budget and investor relations. I would also move the research classes more toward the first year. For me, it took a while for the beauty and utility of research’s role in PR to sink in. Having that knowledge ingrained within the first year of study would greatly improve understanding of that segment of PR. Thanks for posting this! Claire

    • http://www.doktorspinn.com/ Doktor Spinn

      Agreed, it’s too little business in this right now! Thanks for commenting!

  • http://www.publicrelationsprincess.com/ Claire Celsi

    Jerry, I agree with your proposed curriculum. I would add a few mandatory business classes such as intellectual property, finance and budget and investor relations. I would also move the research classes more toward the first year. For me, it took a while for the beauty and utility of research’s role in PR to sink in. Having that knowledge ingrained within the first year of study would greatly improve understanding of that segment of PR. Thanks for posting this! Claire

    • http://www.doktorspinn.com/ Doktor Spinn

      Agreed, it’s too little business in this right now! Thanks for commenting!

  • http://collentine.com/ @collentine

    looks like a great education that I would have loved to have. Two main areas I’m missing is ‘organizational learning’ and ‘intercultural communication’ which I see as major in our globalized world

    • http://www.doktorspinn.com/ Doktor Spinn

      Agreed, great input. Think I’ll have to rewrite this post in a few months, I have a few ideas on tweaks myself.

  • http://collentine.com/ @collentine

    looks like a great education that I would have loved to have. Two main areas I’m missing is ‘organizational learning’ and ‘intercultural communication’ which I see as major in our globalized world

    • http://www.doktorspinn.com/ Doktor Spinn

      Agreed, great input. Think I’ll have to rewrite this post in a few months, I have a few ideas on tweaks myself.