New Study Ranks UT First in Interactive Advertising
The Interactive Advertising Bureau recently ranking The University of Texas at Austin the top institution to offer degrees in digital advertising. The study compared undergraduate programs worldwide, focusing on those that already incorporate the Internet or social media based classes and cover material on advertising, marketing and digital media design.
The TexasMedia program was recognized for integrating advertising management and creativity in a digital media environment. Texas’ creative and media programs, in addition to easily accessible business classes in the McCombs School of Business, made the university’s advertising department superior to others.
This is the second time that TexasMedia has been recognized. TexasMedia students received the first annual Google Global Social Media Award. Lisa Dobias, director of TexasMedia noted, “We teach media from a fully integrated perspective where students are hybridized to think and develop media solutions that are truly cross-platform. We already knew that we have a truly unique program that has had great reception from industry and academia alike, plus our students have had extraordinary success in both landing first jobs and in making a great name for themselves out there, but this recognition from IAB is such a great validation. ”
The TexasMedia Program offers students a well-rounded learning experience that includes both classroom and hands-on opportunities. More specifically, Texas Advertising was recognized for its exceptional courses in Digital Media, Integrated Brand Communication and Advertising Creativity. The Interactive Advertising Bureau report concluded, “With the strength of the Advertising program and the ability to incorporate business and digital media courses, UT-Austin is in the best situation to develop an interactive advertising program.”
The department first offered an Interactive Advertising course in the Fall of 1995 and developed a sequence shortly thereafter. Through the years these classes have simulated real-life work environments and required students to produce in-depth media plans, multi-platform campaigns and branding strategies. Gene Kincaid, Senior Lecturer in the TexasMedia program commented, “Our department’s interactive focus is 20 years old! We have built a strong alumni network and they continue to support and become involved in our efforts.”
TexasMedia focuses on the insights, investments and interactive aspects of media content. Upon completion of the sequence, media students are proficient in digital metrics, analytics and digital media sales.
A social media class led by Professor Gary Wilcox manages the Texas AdGrad network on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. In cooperation with Spredfast, an Austin-based social media software company, the class currently provides undergraduate and graduate students the opportunity to manage the TexasAd Grad brand in a social media environment.
Professor Isabella Cunningham, department chair noted, “We have led in advertising education because we have always been concerned about preparing our students for tomorrow’s professional challenges. The recognition by IAB is more evidence that we have been doing the right thing.”
With the support of alumni, professors and faculty of the advertising and public relations department continuously strive to improve the program each year. It is this motivation that has propelled the Texas Advertising program to the top since its beginnings in 1974, and hopefully for many years to come.