Foundations of Advertising and Media Course | Comms Council & AUT

Posted 6 December 2019.

​​To register interest for 2020, please email Erin Auchterlonie:

Usually this course is held from June until September each year, however, with all that is going on in the world and in NZ we have made some changes to the Foundations Course structure and will be delivering the course digitally. More information to come soon.

​The Comms Council / AUT Foundations of Advertising and Media Programme is a comprehensive course which covers the fundamentals of the advertising and media agency world. The course is now regarded as one of the most valuable and effective courses for those with fewer than two years’ experience. The course will be underpinned academically by AUT and is supported with presentations and case studies from industry experts and leaders. Places are limited to 40 and we anticipate all places will be filled quickly.


The twelve-week course includes the following modules:

History and Context
- the organisational and industry structure + functions of creative and media agencies

Brand Stewardship - critically reviews the concept of brands, new developments in branding theory and understanding of the consumer/brand relationship

Media - the world of media and emerging trends

Creative - the creative process

Digital - the impact of digital on advertising and media

CRM - the value and significance of client relationship management

Integrated Marketing Communications - integration of marketing communications and brand stewardship along all channels

Agency Business - the importance of revenue generation and managing profitability

CEO Forum - agency leadership and challenges with ‘a view from the top.’

The course is targeted at a junior level audience e.g. agency Graduates, Media Assistants, Account Managers and Planners and marketing people with 1 - 3 years’ experience, or those interested in the advertising and media agency world as a career step.

  • Commencement date: Tuesday 9th June 2020 for all attendees with an opening function and this is followed by weekly presentations and interactive exercises from industry leaders and AUT lecturers during the course
  • As this is a university course, participants are required to attend all modules and complete all assignments. Agencies must be prepared to release their participants every Tuesday in time for a 5 pm start and to be given a reasonable time to complete the assignment processes
  • Assessment includes two assignment components which are led by AUT – full details will be given during the course
  • At the end of the course, a Comms Council/AUT Certificate of Completion, potentially with Merit or Honours, will be presented to those who have successfully completed all Comms Council/AUT requirements
  • Participants are required to attend all the modules on a weekly basis and complete the assignments. Should the participant not be able to attend a module - it is expected that an email is sent advising Comms Council of their absence. Failure to attend the modules or contribute to the assignments will exclude the participant from receiving the Comms Council/AUT qualification completion certificate
  • A closing function including participant presentation of their group assignments and completion certificates will take place on Tuesday 15th September 2020 - this is a ‘must-attend’ for agency managers! Traditionally participants have exceeded all expectations during the presentation process and this is an occasion to celebrate their work and dedication.
  • Investment – Comms Council graduates receive this course as part of the Comms Council Graduate Placement Programme. Comms Council Members, individuals/non-Comms Council graduates will be charged $2800.00 plus GST pp.

South Island, Wellington and Hamilton Comms Council Industry Members will be charged $750.00 plus GST pp. This will cover costs for remote access via Zoom/Skype and the use of the Logitech camera, microphone and AV Technician.

We strongly encourage all participants to attend the following dates:

  • Opening Function - Tuesday 9th June 2020, Longroom Ponsonby
  • CEO Forum - Tuesday 8th September 2020, Swashbucklers Restaurant Auckland
  • Final Function/Presentation Evening - Tuesday 15th September 2020, Venue TBC

Full details of the course including dates will be sent to participants and their managers.

Feedback from this year’s course is extremely positive and participants have spoken of the genuine value they gained by attending. Contact Marlen Smith -

The Commercial Communications Council gratefully acknowledges the significant contribution and support from AUT, industry leaders/contributors, agency hosts, MultiMedia and media partners.

For inquiries, email

To download the 2020 brochure, click here

See Comms Council Terms & Conditions here.