To reach a new kind of consumer in a new global marketplace, advertising needs a new brand of leaders and thinkers. Quite simply, we need a new kind of student. You might have a non-traditional background. You’re less interested in titles than results. And you want to use your career to make a difference. If you’re that kind of student, then we hope you’ll be inspired to learn more.
Applicants with an excellent undergraduate record in advertising or a related field are good candidates to apply. Previous work experience is desirable. And of course, applicants from other disciplines will be considered provided they can show a keen interest in pursuing a career in advertising.
Applicants must demonstrate an acceptable undergraduate G.P.A. (3.0 or better preferred) and satisfactory scores on the GRE or GMAT, and must complete and submit an application to the Temerlin Advertising Institute. We do not have hard minimums on scores but consider the entire application — undergraduate record, test scores, statement of purpose, letters of recommendation, creative samples if applicable and resume. To assess your performance on standardized entrance tests, refer to the many sites online that explain "acceptable GRE and GMAT scores."
In addition to the appropriate four-year undergraduate degree, all students admitted to the program must have completed the following courses or their equivalents:
- Introduction to Survey of Advertising
- Advertising Media Planning
- Advertising, Business or Consumer Research
Students who have not completed these courses, or their equivalent(s), will be required to gain the knowledge.
We welcome students from all over the world to study advertising in Dallas, then venture out into a global marketplace with the tools needed to compete and succeed. International students will be required to demonstrate English language proficiency through scores on the TOEFL or other equivalent tests.
Requirements for students needing the I-20 and F-1 visa. All international students admitted to a graduate program are required to provide:
- photocopy of passport page that shows official spelling of student's name (submitted at time of application)
- proof of financial support, usually in the form of a certified letter from a bank
Official TOEFL Score: A score of a least 100 on the TOEFL iBT (or 250 or 600 on older versions of the test) is required of all international applicants whose first language is not English. Request the TOEFL score be sent from the Educational Testing Service in Princeton, New Jersey directly to "SMU Meadows School of the Arts", School Code 7640, and the appropriate Department Code in the Social Sciences category: 83 Communications. Applicants that have graduated from a U.S. or English speaking University will be waived of this requirement.
All applicants must complete the online application. Applicants for the Creative specialization will be required to submit an additional application and creative samples. The application, letters of recommendation, resume and creative samples will be submitted during the online application process. Transcripts will be submitted - either by mail or digitally - directly to the Meadows School of the Arts (MSA) Graduate Office. Additionally, paper documents required of International Students must be submitted directly to the MSA Graduate Office.
SMU | Meadows School of the Arts
PO BOX 750356
Dallas TX 75275-0356
Click here for the online application
- Online Application
- 3 letters of recommendation
- Portfolio submission (creative only)
- TOEFL (International only)
Request in writing one official transcript from the Registrar of each college or university previously attended, including summer terms. These may be sent directly to the Meadows Graduate Office. If the transcripts are sent to you, do not open the sealed envelopes, but mail directly to the Meadows Graduate Office. A supplementary transcript covering work in progress at the time of the application must be furnished upon completion of that work. You have the option of requesting electronic transcript submission. If you do, you will be asked to provide an address to receive the electronic transcripts. Send to: Hoselton@smu.edu. The following services are "secure" and approved by SMU.
International transcripts that are not in English must be accompanied by official translations. We recommend the following services:
Along with help from TAI and other sources, there are a variety of ways students can manage the cost of a graduate degree. Many links to helpful offices are provided herein. Additionally, the MSA Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid can be helpful in answering questions: Below is an outline of options with which we are most familiar.
- Personal Savings and/or Family Funds. You and your family will know the extent to which personal financing is available. We have designed this program to be price competitive with other private graduate programs in our discipline.
- TAI Graduate Assistantships. Awarded to our very top applicants, these assistantships pay $10,000 annually. Students are assigned to work 20 hours per week during the semesters of the award. Assistantships awarded for the first year are renewable contingent on good work performance. You do not need to apply for an assistantship, as they will be offered to the top ranked candidates in each application pool. International students are considered equally for graduate assistantships. These are awarded at the time of admission into the program.
- TAI Scholarships. We have been able to help over half of our students with some level of funding. Scholarships are merit and need based and have ranged in amounts from $5,000 to $20,000 per year. To apply for TAI financial aid, check the financial aid box in the online application, AND fill out and submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form you can access through the SMU central Office of Financial Aid. We will review the FAFSA information along with your application to decide awards. Remember awards are merit and need based. We will consider both your application and your financial need as reported in the FAFSA. International students are considered equally for TAI Scholarships but will not be able to fill out a FAFSA form.
- U.S. Military or Corporate Programs. TAI participates in the most recent GI Bill initiative, The Yellow Ribbon Program. Initiated in 2008, this program allows the young men and women who have served our country to complete or extend their education at nominal or no expense. Additionally, some companies have programs that support graduate level study. We do not keep a file of those but advise potential students to check with their corporate HR departments to see if there are active educational support programs.
- Federal Student Loans. Most students in the U.S. do carry some amount of loans throughout their education. SMU's central Office of Financial Aid processes applications for federal student loans. Begin that process and/or seek additional information.
- Scholarships and/or grants from organizations/associations. Although there are literally thousands of scholarship and grant opportunities you should research on your own, we have indexed the scholarships we know about specific to advertising and related fields. Most of these are for students currently enrolled and would be helpful to you after you have enrolled in the program.
How much will your Master of Arts in Advertising cost you? Perhaps not as much as you might think. During the first two years of our program, nearly half of our students received financial aid from the Temerlin Advertising Institute that helped to cover between 20 - 80% of tuition and fees. This section outlines costs while the following section explains ways to finance your graduate education.
Tuition is charged by the credit hour and student fees are added to that. Tuition is the same for in state, out of state, and international students. For the most current information on SMU tuition and fees, or to do your own calculations, click here and then select Meadows School of the Arts.
Tuition for the TAI MA program includes:
- Global Immersion. All dormitory housing, hotels, in-country travel and most meals during the international immersion portion of the program. The international immersion takes place during approximately four weeks in the summer between your first and second year of the program. (Students pay for airfare and incidentals.)
- Executive Internship. During your final semester, you are placed in an Executive Internship of 20 hours per week with an agency, client or media company in DFW. Students may still work 20 hours a week at a part-time job or graduate assistantship during their final semester. The course load during that last semester consists of the Executive Internship and Advertising Campaigns so there is time for a 40-hour work week. Every attempt is made to provide paid assignments, but the main purpose of the Executive Internship is to put theory and skills into practice while gaining industry experience and contacts.
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