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The professional studies program is specifically designed to enable students to create an individualized plan of graduate study tailored to their personal and professional goals. This degree offers students the opportunity to draw on more than 50 graduate programs in order to gain the advanced knowledge and skills necessary to respond successfully to new and emerging career opportunities. The professional studies degree can be completed on campus or online.

For example, students interested in integrating sustainability into their career as a facilities manager might combine courses from the sustainability and facility manangement programs. Educators may be interested in combining courses from the school psychology and secondary education of students who are deaf or hard of hearing programs to improve their knowledge of special learning populations and the social issues students face in today's educational environments. Communication professionals interested in employment in government offices might choose concentrations in communication and media technologies and public policy to enhance their knowledge of media relations, public relations, government operations, and policy formation. There are a wide range of concentrations that can be created based on each student's professional career aspirations.

The degree also includes a capstone project. This applied, hands-on project is directly related to the student’s individualized plan of study.

Concentration areas

Students create two or three concentrations with courses selected from a wide range of graduate programs at RIT. Some common concentration areas include:

Applied and Computational Mathematics
Applied Statistics/Quality
Business (Marketing, Management, etc.)
Color Science
Communication and Media Technology
Computer Engineering
Computer Science
Criminal Justice
Electrical Engineering
Environmental, Health and Safety Management
Facilities Management
Health Systems Administration
Human Resource Development
Imaging Science
Industrial and Systems Engineering Industrial Design
Information Sciences and Technologies
Microelectronics Manufacturing Engineering
Packaging Science
Product Development and Design
Project Management
Public Policy
School Psychology
Secondary Education of Students Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing
Service Management
Software Development
Software Engineering
Training, Design and Assessment
Visual Communication Design

Plan of study

The program requires the completion of 33 credit hours and can be completed through full or part-time study. Students begin their studies with Contexts and Trends (PROF-705), the program’s foundation course. Throughout this course students explore their personal career objectives and research RIT’s portfolio of graduate programs to identify courses that best match their professional and personal goals.

Students create two or three concentrations that make up their required course work for the degree program. Each concentration is a selection of courses drawn from existing RIT graduate programs and can range from 9 to 15 credit hours. Graduate credits earned in other programs may be used in completing a concentration, upon approval.

Credit hours not required to fulfill a concentration area may be used for electives. All elective and transferred graduate courses need to be integrated into the proposed plan of study. With certain concentrations, the degree may be completed entirely through online learning.

Required courses

Context and Trends (PROF-705)

This course introduces students to interdisciplinary thinking, personal self-assessment, problem solving, goal setting, and research techniques using electronic information resources. Students work toward selecting concentrations and finalizing a plan of study for their graduate program.

The Capstone Project (PROF-775)

This course is a supervised, hands-on experience in which students apply the skills and knowledge developed through their individualized plans of study, concluding with oral and written presentations. Before students can engage in theri capstoe porject, they must first complete the Capstone Proposal Seminar course (PROF-770).

International Students

International applicants whose native language is not English must submit scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language. Minimum scores of 550 (paper-based) or 79 (Internet-based) are required. Scores from the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) are accepted in place of the TOEFL exam. Minimum acceptable scores will vary; however, the absolute minimum score for an unconditional acceptance is 6.5. The TOEFL requirement is waived for native speakers of English or for those submitting educational transcripts and diplomas from American colleges and universities.

Visit the Professional Studies MS page on the Rochester Institute of Technology USA website for more details!




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