Marketing & Advertising

What Are the Best Master of Science in Marketing Programs?

What Are the Best Master of Science in Marketing Programs?
Some marketers—especially aspiring CMOs—choose MBAs, but you might do better with a Master of Science in Marketing if you want to stay in marketing strategy, brand management, digital marketing, marketing communications, marketing analytics, pricing strategy, or product development. Image from Unsplash
Christa Terry profile
Christa Terry September 19, 2019

We've compiled a guide to the best Master of Science in Marketing programs in 2019. For each of the master's degree programs highlighted, you'll find the degree type, format, tuition, core courses, electives, and features.

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Marketing was once considered an art, but in the age of big data the field has become more of a science. These days, marketing is less about crafting the perfect advertisement and more about boosting sales and demonstrating ROI through analytics. While marketers may still be creatives at heart, their day-to-day work now largely involves:

  • Overseeing multiple channels
  • Segmenting audiences
  • Using analytics to track the effectiveness of campaigns
  • Optimizing campaigns for digital visibility

Everyone from the junior marketing executives right up to the CMO has to be a revenue generator.

For those capable of succeeding in this new milieu, the future looks bright. The job outlook for marketers is solid, with employment in the industry expected to grow by 8% percent between now and 2024.

Rising through the ranks in marketing requires not only creative chops, but also skills in:

  • Digital marketing
  • Market research
  • Analytics
  • Public relations

Marketers are increasingly being asked to have some knowledge of data science and information systems as well. The increasing emphasis on data analysis means that a master’s degree in marketing is practically a necessity for any marketer who wants to advance their career.

Which MS in marketing program you choose will depend on what your long-term goals look like. Some marketers—especially aspiring CMOs—choose MBAs, but you might do better with a Master of Science in Marketing if you want to stay in:

  • Marketing strategy
  • Brand management
  • Digital marketing
  • Marketing communications
  • Marketing analytics
  • Pricing strategy
  • Product development

Look for programs with concentrations and curricula that align with your interests and career goals.

Many Master of Science in Marketing programs can be completed in just one year of full-time study, but if you need flexibility, there are part-time programs that take two to three years. There are also accelerated programs—some as short as ten months—but be aware that these often have different prerequisites from traditional master’s degree programs.

The best master of science in marketing programs:

In compiling this list we consulted a number of sources, including US News and World Report, Poets and Quants, and the programs’ websites and graduate catalogs.

For each of the programs below, we’ve included information about the most relevant things to consider when choosing a master of science in marketing program. We list:

  • Degree type
  • Tuition
  • Graduation requirements
  • Core courses
  • Electives
  • Features
  • Concentrations (when available)

American University Kogod School of Business__

  • Degree: MS in Marketing
  • Format: Full- or part-time, on-campus
  • Tuition: $52,770
  • Graduation requirements: 30 credit hours (24 credit hours of core coursework and six credit hours of elective coursework) in one or two years
  • Core courses: Understanding the Marketplace and Consumer; Digital Advertising and Search Engine Marketing; Managing Digital Brand Identities; Entertainment Marketing; Data Driven Marketing and Customer Management; Overview of Integrated Marketing Communications; Brand Strategy; Research for Marketing Decisions; Applied Client Project
  • Electives: Sports Marketing Management; Marketing for Social Change; New Product Management; Data Driven Marketing and Customer Management; other non-recurring options
  • Features: Combined bachelor’s/master’s programs; real-world experience through Applied Client Project; curricular focus on social change; multiple site visits each year

Columbia University Business School__

  • Degree: Master of Science in Marketing Science
  • Format: Full-time, on-campus
  • Tuition: $64,320
  • Graduation requirements: 30 credit hours representing a minimum of 10 full graduate-level courses (five core courses, two MBA electives, and two electives chosen from courses offered by the Doctoral Program or by other schools at Columbia University)
  • Core courses: Market Intelligence: The Art and the Science; Mathematical Methods; Marketing Models; Strategic Consumer Insights; Multivariate Statistics
  • Electives: Many, including: Marketing for Organic Revenue Growth; Advanced Marketing Strategy; Pricing Strategies; Systematic Creativity in Business; Digital Marketing; Consumer Behavior I or II; MS Machine Learning; Data Mining; Multilevel Models; Sample Surveys; Time Series Analysis; Bayesian Modeling and Computation
  • Features: Students have the option to complete a master’s thesis for course credit; STEM-eligible curriculum; curriculum focuses on marketing analytics; career coaching; can be completed in two semesters

Georgia State University J. Mack Robinson College of Business__

  • Degree: Master of Science in Marketing
  • Format: One-year part-time on-campus cohort program
  • Tuition: $37,500 for residents; $43,500 for non-residents
  • Graduation requirements: 30 credit hours
  • Core courses: Marketing Management; Marketing Research; Buyer Behavior; Customer Relationship Marketing; Marketing Metrics; Digital/Social Media Marketing; Data Driven Marketing; Product Management; International Marketing; Applied Marketing Strategy
  • Electives: None
  • Features: Option to pursue a dual degree in marketing and big data analytics; all classes are held after 5:30 p.m.; new state-of-the-art Social Media Intelligence Lab; option to also earn a Graduate Certificate of Specialization in Brand & Customer Management

Johns Hopkins University Carey Business School__

  • Degree: MS in Marketing
  • Format: Full-time (one year on the Baltimore campus) or part-time (two years with courses at the Baltimore campus and online)
  • Tuition: $71,600 (full-time) or $1,410 per credit (part-time)
  • Graduation requirements: 36 credit hours
  • Core courses: Consumer Behavior; Marketing Research; Marketing Strategy; Business Communication; Business Leadership and Human Values; Marketing Management; Statistical Analysis; Business Analytics; Customer Analytics; Pricing Analysis; Social Media Analytics; Strategic Market Intelligence; Data Analytics
  • Electives: 10 credits: Accounting and Financial Reporting; Advanced Behavioral Marketing; Business Law; Branding and Marketing Communications; Business-to-Business Marketing and Channel Strategy; Customer Relationship Management; Designing Experiments; Integrated Digital Marketing; New Product Development; Retail Analytics; Sales Force Management
  • Features: High post-graduate employment rates; online master’s options for students who require flexibility; STEM-designated curriculum

Temple University Fox School of Business__

  • Degree: MS in Marketing
  • Format: On-campus, full-time (three semesters) or part-time (2.5 years); most classes are offered in-person at Temple University Center City
  • Tuition: $33,420
  • Graduation requirements: 30 credit hours completed in three semesters for full-time students or part time in two and a half years
  • Core courses: Advertising Research and Strategy; Consumer and Buyer Behavior; Marketing Management and Strategy; Marketing Research: Techniques and Application; Marketing Strategy
  • Electives: Product Management; Mobile Marketing and Communications; International Marketing; Customer Data Analytics; Quantitative Methods for Business; Media Planning and Analysis; Visual Communication and Branding; User Experience Design and Strategy; Visualization: The Art of Numbers and the Psychology of Persuasion; Data and Financial Driven Marketing
  • Features: Two concentrations— Enterprise Marketing Management and Marketing Research and Insights; students collaborate on real-world business challenges through a capstone project; research or teaching assistantships are available; 21 research centers and institutes at Fox, including centers focused on big data, consumer sensory innovation, statistical analysis, and the sports industry.

Texas A & M University – College Station Mays Business School__

  • Degree: Master of Science in Marketing
  • Format: Full-time
  • Tuition: Full program cost: $30,000 in state; $35,000 out-of-state
  • Graduation requirements: 48 credit hours (or 36 credit hours for students who have completed the core business courses in an undergraduate program) plus an internship over a period of 16 months
  • Core courses: Data-driven marketing management; Research for marketing decisions; Marketing metrics; Marketing analytics; Consumer insights and analysis; Marketing consulting project; Applied marketing projects to advance the community; Data management and visualization; Marketing strategy consulting project
  • Concentration courses: General degree: Innovation, product development and design thinking; Delivering service excellence; Branding. Healthcare specialization: The business of healthcare; Improving service quality in healthcare; Healthcare tech.
  • Features: A corporate mentorship program; hands-on, real-world learning; opportunities to network with executives and entrepreneurs; career advisement

University of Houston Bauer College of Business__

  • Degree: Master of Science in Marketing
  • Format: On-campus, full-time (12 months) or part-time (24 months)
  • Tuition and fees: $34,000 for residents; $53,000 for non-residents; $59,000 for international students
  • Graduation requirements: 36 credit hours completed in one or two years
  • Core courses: Financial Accounting; Quantitative Analysis for Business Decisions; Marketing Administration; Marketing Professional Project/Practical Marketing Analysis
  • Electives: Search Engine Marketing; Customer Relationship Management & Database Marketing; Management of Marketing Information; Pricing Strategy; Business to Business Marketing; New Product Development; Brand Management; Technology Entrepreneurship; Brainstorming to Bankrolling; and more depending on a student’s concentration
  • Features: Elective courses are offered in the evening to accommodate working professionals; lots of opportunities to customize curriculum; hands-on learning; prize-winning programs; electives offered in Consulting, Digital Marketing, Entrepreneurship & Technology, Marketing Analytics, Product Management, and Selling & Sales Management

University of Maryland – College Park Robert H. Smith School of Business__

  • Degree: MS in Marketing Analytics
  • Format: Full-time, on-campus
  • Tuition: $46,980 in-state; $59,850 out-of-state
  • Graduation requirements: 31+ credit hours (8 required courses, 3 elective application courses, and an Action Learning Project) completed in 10 or 16 months
  • Core courses: Market-Based Management; Customer Analysis; Statistical Programming; Advanced Marketing Analysis; Marketing Research and Analysis; Data Science; Business Policies & Ethics; Business Communications; Action Learning Project
  • Electives: CRM Analytics; Web Analytics; Pricing Analytics; Market Forecasting
  • Features: Experiential learning opportunities with for corporate, government or non-profit organizations; number four Master of Finance program according to the Financial Times; number one business faculty according to The Economist (2016); worldwide alumni network of over 62,000.

University of South Florida MUMA College of Business__

  • Degree: Master of Science in Marketing
  • Format: Full-time, on-campus
  • Tuition: $380.56 per credit hour for residents; $805.08 per credit hour for non-residents
  • Graduation requirements: 30 to 34 credit hours
  • Foundation courses: (for those with non-business undergraduate degrees) Marketing Management, Managerial Decision Analysis
  • Core courses: (15 credit hours) Creativity in Marketing; Marketing Analytics; Consumer Behavior Insights, Digital Marketing; Marketing Strategy
  • Area of emphasis courses: (9 credit hours) Digital Media and E-Commerce; Brand Management; Promotion Management; New Product Development; Innovations in Marketing; Research for Managers; Data Visualization; Logistical System Analytics; Database Management; Project Management; Sports Analytics; Logistics & Physical Distribution Management; Supply Chain Management; Logistical Systems & Analytics; Database Management; Engineering The Supply Chain; Enterprise Resource Planning & Business Process
  • Electives: (6 credit hours) Lean Six Sigma; Enterprise Resource Planning and Business Process Management; Negotiating Agreements and Resolving Conflicts; Improvisation in Business Organizations; plus selected topics in marketing
  • Features: Interdisciplinary, research-oriented curriculum; students can choose a general track and take elective courses from all concentrations; concentration offered in Marketing Analytics, Digital Marketing & Brand Management, or Supply Chain Management; students can take courses in information systems, statistics, psychology, anthropology, and communication

University of Southern California Marshall School of Business__

  • Degree: Master of Science in Marketing
  • Format: Full-time or part-time
  • Tuition: $1,980 per credit ($59,400 for the program)
  • Graduation requirements: 30 credit hours
  • Core courses: Marketing Management; Business Analytics; Consumer Insights and Analysis; Data-Driven Decision Making; Marketing Analytics; Internet Marketing; Marketing Strategy; Communication for Management
  • Electives: Advertising and Promotions; Fashion, Luxury and Lifestyle Marketing; Branding Strategy; New Product Development; Data Warehousing; Business Intelligence and Data Mining; Statistical Computing and Data Visualization; Technology Commercialization; Business Models for Digital Platforms; Marketing Channels; Data Analytics Driven Dynamic Strategy and Execution; plus many other track-specific electives
  • Features: Personalized curriculum options based on student career goals; opportunities to take MBA courses; Analytics and Consumer Behavior concentrations; industry-specific elective coursework; case studies with a global focus; option to earn a Graduate Certificate in the Business of Entertainment

__ The University of Texas at Dallas Naveen Jindal School of Management__

  • Degree: Master of Science in Marketing
  • Format: Full-time or part-time, on-campus, online, or a combination of both
  • Tuition: Full-time: app. $15,000 for Texas residents, $29,700 for non-residents; part-time (6 credits per semester): app: $9,000 per year for Texas residents, $15,600 for non-residents.
  • Graduation requirements: 36 credit hours completed in 12 to 24 months (students can earn a double MS and MBA degree by taking a total of 63 semester credit hours)
  • Core courses: Marketing Management; Marketing Data Analysis and Research; Consumer Behavior; Capstone Marketing Decision Making; Competitive Marketing Strategy; Statistics and Data Analysis
  • Electives: Interactive and Digital Marketing; Brand Management; Marketing Customer Insights Development; Marketing Automation and Campaign Management; Digital Sales Strategy; Enterprise Systems and CRM; Negotiation and Dispute Resolution; Advertising and Promotional Strategy; Competitive Marketing Strategy; Database Foundations for Business Analytics; Spreadsheet Modeling and Analytics; Data Visualization; Brand Management; Agile Project Management; Market Entry Strategies; Pricing Analytics; many others.
  • Features: Concentrations available in Advertising and Brand Management, Business Development and Professional Sales, Digital Advertising and Marketing, Marketing Analytics and Customer Insights, Marketing Management; and Product Management; unusually broad array of elective choices.

Vanderbilt University Owen Graduate School of Management__

  • Degree: Master of Marketing
  • Format: Full-time
  • Tuition: $58,400
  • Graduation requirements: 31 credit hours, completed in four seven-week modules over a period of 10 months
  • Core courses: On Ethical Marketing; How to BE at Work; Business Fundamentals for Marketers; Marketing Fundamentals; Marketing Masters Statistics; Marketing Communications: Advertising and Social Media; New Product Development; Consumer Insights for Marketing Decision Making; Pricing Strategies; Internet Marketing Strategy and Analytics; Consumer Analysis; Quantitative Analysis for Marketing Decision Making; Selling Strategy: Promotions, Persuasion and Public Relations; Developing the Marketing Plan; Marketing Strategy (Capstone); Marketing Analytics; Brand Management
  • Electives: None
  • Features: STEM eligible; independent study opportunities with deep dive immersions; marketing-related events and activities for students; one-on-one career coaching and job search support

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About the Editor

Tom Meltzer spent over 20 years writing and teaching for The Princeton Review, where he was lead author of the company's popular guide to colleges, before joining Noodle.

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