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Accredited in PR. Study Guide

Accredited in PR. Study Guide

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APR STUDY GUIDE
© 2010 UNIVERSAL ACCREDITATION BOARD
PAGE 1
Study Guide
for the Examination for Accreditation in Public Relations
 A Preparation Tool for Candidates
© 2010 Universal Accreditation BoardFunctioning as part of the Public Relations Society of Americawww.praccreditation.org
Second Edition
 
APR STUDY GUIDE
© 2010 UNIVERSAL ACCREDITATION BOARD
PAGE 2
Benefits of Accreditation
“Accreditation assures that a certain standard of quality is met. In a profession wherelicensure is not required and many people practice public relations without knowing key competencies and appropriate ethical guidelines for decision-making, earning the APR credential communicates that you have the requisite knowledge for principled publicrelations expertise and proficiency. This mark of excellence demonstrates to employers that
 you truly know what it means to be a high-performing, effective and ethical publicrelations professional.”
 
 —Holly Byars, APR 
 • • • • •“On average, experienced accredited independent professionals made
$80,215.63
more in a year than unaccredited practitioners.“When years of experience as an independent professional were controlled,the income difference per year attributed to accreditation increased to
$94,449.39.
 
“The second finding demonstrates that
study and learning associated with professional development programs such as accreditation provide a real financial benefit
and is different from mere experience.”“Practice and Personal Characteristics Related to Billings Incomeamong Independent Practitioners: Moving Toward Theory,”presented at the Institute for Public Relations InternationalConference, Coral Gables, FL, March 2007. Vincent Hazleton, APR, Ph.D., Fellow PRSA, Radford University  Jay Rayburn, APR, CPRC, Ph.D. Fellow PRSA, Florida StateUniversity 
 Note: 
This study is in its third replication and covers the past six years. Our sample included 224 individuals who are independent public relations professionals. They had an average of 19 years in total experience andaveraged six years as independent professionals.
 
 
APR STUDY GUIDE
© 2010 UNIVERSAL ACCREDITATION BOARD
PAGE 3
Contents
Benefits of Accreditation...................................................................................................................................................2
 
Contents...............................................................................................................................................................................3
 
Introduction.........................................................................................................................................................................5
 
 Acknowledgments...............................................................................................................................................................6
 
Information and Resources...............................................................................................................................................7
 
Links You Can Use........................................................................................................................................................7
 
Readings...........................................................................................................................................................................8
 
 Tips and What to Expect.................................................................................................................................................10
 
 Tips for Preparation.....................................................................................................................................................10
 
 Tips for the Readiness Review...................................................................................................................................11
 
Be Prepared for Questions Panelists May Ask........................................................................................................12
 
 What to Expect at the Prometric Testing Center...................................................................................................13
 
 Tips for Taking a Computer-Based Examination...................................................................................................15
 
Public Relations: A Management Function..................................................................................................................16
 
 What is Public Relations..............................................................................................................................................16
 
Definitions.....................................................................................................................................................................17
 
Ethics and Law..................................................................................................................................................................20
 
Ethics..............................................................................................................................................................................20
 
Laws for Public Relations Professionals...................................................................................................................24
 
Communication Models and Theories..........................................................................................................................26
 
 Agenda-Setting Theory................................................................................................................................................26
 
Diffusion Theory..........................................................................................................................................................28
 
Communication Models..............................................................................................................................................30
 
Publics and Public Opinion........................................................................................................................................34
 
Research, Planning, Implementation and Evaluation.................................................................................................37
 
 The Four-Step Process................................................................................................................................................38
 
 Writing a Public Relations Plan..................................................................................................................................43
 
Plan Formats and Styles..............................................................................................................................................49
 
Methodologies..............................................................................................................................................................51
 
Content Analysis...........................................................................................................................................................56
 
Survey Research............................................................................................................................................................58
 
Sample Size....................................................................................................................................................................62
 
Survey Research Tips for Do-It-Yourselfers...........................................................................................................64
 

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