Associate in Applied Science in Public Relations

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Field of Interest

Field of Interest: Business, Entrepreneurialism, and Management

The Associate in Applied Science (AAS) in Public Relations program provides students with general, practical, and marketable skills that will enable them to seek entry-level employment in public relations, such as press relations, community or consumer relations, market research, in-house publications, political campaigns, fund raising and volunteer recruitment. The program includes development of a portfolio that will exhibit students' ability to write both news and feature stories, to develop and plan events, and to produce brochures, advertisements, or small publications with desktop publishing. The curriculum combines coursework in public relations with a General Education component.


Details icon Important information you’ll need when applying to MCC:

Academic Career
Degree/Certificate Type
Career and Technical Associate Degree
Academic Plan
Public Relations (AAS)
Academic Plan Code
Total Credits Required
Catalog Year

What You’ll Learn

This pathway map will help you gain the expertise needed to:

  1. Perform microcomputer applications in word processing, spreadsheet, and database; explore basic business-personal computer concepts.
  2. Identify the fundamental characteristics and functions of modern business, including business principles, marketing, labor relations, and business risk.
  3. Read negatives and contact prints; use cropping/proportion wheel to size prints.
  4. Layout, edit and publish a small newspaper.
  5. Access news through use of the interview and other tools of journalism.
  6. Write news stories.
  7. Research and write human interest stories for a daily or weekly newspaper.
  8. Initiate and conduct public and promotional events.
  9. Initiate and conduct a public relations and advertising campaign for a public school, a political candidate, a business or an organization.
  10. Write press releases.
  11. Describe the interrelationship among the mass media: newspapers, magazines, television, motion pictures, radio, recordings, books, advertising and public relations.
  12. Describe the principles for marketing, labor relations, business risk, public relations and record keeping for a small business.
  13. Create, design, and market an advertising campaign.
  14. Write, edit, and market a variety of feature styles ranging from the "How To" to the "Feature Report.
  15. Explain the impact of racial and gender roles on the media and the impact of media roles on U.
  16. Describe roles, contributions, and challenges of the minority press in the United States.

Career Opportunities

Successful completion of this degree may lead to employment in a variety of different occupations and industries. Below are examples of related occupations with associated Maricopa County-based annual median wages* for this degree. Education requirements vary for the occupations listed below, so you may need further education or degrees in order to qualify for some of these jobs and earn the related salaries. Please visit with an academic advisor and/or program director for additional information. You can click on any occupation to view the detail regarding education level, wages, and employment information.

There are additional career opportunities associated with this degree that do not have occupational data available for Arizona at this time. These occupations are listed below, with links to salary information for the United States as a whole: * Career and wage information provided by Emsi using data, reports, and forecasts which are generated using government data sources and Emsi’s proprietary analytical processes. Emsi’s data covers multiple classes of workers including QCEW, non-QCEW, and those who are self-employed. Disclaimer

Course Sequence by Term

The following is the suggested course sequence by term. Please keep in mind:

  • Students should meet with an academic advisor to develop an individual education plan that meets their academic and career goals. Use the Pathway Planner tool in your Student Center to manage your plan.
  • The course sequence is laid out by suggested term and may be affected when students enter the program at different times of the year.
  • Initial course placement is determined by current district placement measures and/or completion of 100-200 level course and/or program requirements.
  • Degree and transfer seeking students may be required to successfully complete a MCCCD First Year Experience Course (FYE) within the first two semesters at a MCCCD College. Courses include AAA/CPD150, AAA/CPD150AC, CPD104, and AAA115/CPD115. Course offerings will vary by college. See an academic, program, or faculty advisor for details.
  • Consult with your faculty mentor or academic advisor to determine educational requirements, including possible university transfer options, for your chosen career field.

Full-time Sequence

Full-time status is 12 credits to 18 credits per semester.

Term 1

A sequence of suggested courses that should be taken during Term 1
Course Name Requisites Notes Area Credits
First Year Composition Any approved general education course from the First-Year Composition area FYC 3
CIS105 Survey of Computer Information Systems FYC 3
GBS151 or
Introduction to Business or Computer Usage and Applications RC 3
JRN125 or
Photo Editing or Introduction to Adobe Photoshop RC 3
MKT101 or
Introduction to Public Relations or Marketing and Social Networking RC 3

Term 2

A sequence of suggested courses that should be taken during Term 2
Course Name Requisites Notes Area Credits
MCO120 Media and Society RC 3
Humanities and Fine Arts Any approved general education course in the Humanities and Fine Arts area HU 3
First Year Composition Any approved general education course from the First-Year Composition area FYC 3
JRN201 News Writing RC 3
COM100 or
COM110 or
COM225 or
Introduction to Human Communication or Interpersonal Communication or Public Speaking or Small Group Communication COM 3
CRE101 College Critical Reading and Critical Thinking CR 3

Term 3

A sequence of suggested courses that should be taken during Term 3
Course Name Requisites Notes Area Credits
JRN225 Photojournalism RC 3
MCO220 Cultural Diversity and the Media RC 3
Natural Science Any approved general education course from the Natural Sciences area NS 4
MAT112 or
MAT120 or
MAT121 or
Mathematical Concepts and Applications or Intermediate Algebra or Intermediate Algebra or Intermediate Algebra OR satisfactory completion of a higher level math course. Recommended course: MAT142 MA 3–5
Social & Behavioral Sciences Any approved general education course from the Social and Behavioral Sciences area SB 3

Term 4

A sequence of suggested courses that should be taken during Term 4
Course Name Requisites Notes Area Credits
MKT263 Advertising Principles MKT271 is recommended prerequisite, but not required RC 3
JRN234 or
Feature Writing or Magazine Article Writing RC 3
JRN235 Practicum: Public Relations RC 3
JRN215 News Production RC 3
Restricted Elective RE

Program Electives

Select 3 credits from the following courses to meet the Restricted Elective requirements.

A list of program electives for this pathway map
Course Name Requisites Notes Area Credits
GBS110 Human Relations in Business and Industry RE 3
GBS233 Business Communication RE 3
JRN236 Advanced Practicum: Public Relations RE 3
MGT251 Human Relations in Business RE 3

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Course Area Key


Students must earn a grade of "C" or better for all courses required within the program.

Course Sequence total credits may differ from the program information located on the MCCCD curriculum website due to program and system design.

At Maricopa, we strive to provide you with accurate and current information about our degree and certificate offerings. Due to the dynamic nature of the curriculum process, course and program information is subject to change. As a result, the course list associated with this degree or certificate on this site does not represent a contract, nor does it guarantee course availability. If you are interested in pursuing this degree or certificate, we encourage you to meet with an advisor to discuss the requirements at your college for the appropriate catalog year.

View MCCCD’s curriculum website for the Associate in Applied Science in Public Relations (

Other Versions

The pathway map presented above is for the current catalog year and is the intended pathway map for new students. Other versions of this pathway map from different catalog years are available below:

A list of the current and previous versions of the pathway map for the Public Relations program
Catalog Year Effective Dates
2020-2021 (Current)    5/26/2020 – 5/24/2021
2019-2020 5/28/2019 – 5/25/2020
2018-2019 5/29/2018 – 5/27/2019