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Masters Degrees in Higher Education, USA

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The focus of the program is on preparing graduate students to work as educators, practitioners and policy-makers in student affairs, student services and higher education. Read more
The focus of the program is on preparing graduate students to work as educators, practitioners and policy-makers in student affairs, student services and higher education. The program will help students comprehend, analyze and meet the changing needs and wants of the current college student. Students will learn how to use interpersonal skills and strategic interventions, especially as they relate to issues of equity and access, which lead to success for ALL students. Employing an Action Research Methodology, graduates of this program will be prepared to analyze current higher education practices and policies and create programs, services and interventions that generate positive impact and student success. Students will have an opportunity to complete two internships in the field.

The program is aligned with the CAS (Council on the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education) Standards and the ACPA/NASPA Professional Competencies.

Course Structure and Content

The program is a 42-credit program that can be completed in 2 years. Students have the option of earning a certificate in either Sustainability or Educational Technology as part of the HEPSA Program.

Students will have two internship classes and opportunities totaling 500 hours in the field. Internship 1 will focus on developing the interpersonal, listening and referral skills necessary for work in the field of higher education and student affairs. Internship 2 will focus on developing an understanding of strategic planning and institutional structure as well as planning for and creating policy changes.

All students in their first semester will take a course on Critical Action Research where they will have an opportunity to pose a question about student affairs/higher education that they would like to understand. Throughout their program they will answer that question through their course work. The capstone project will result in a publishable thesis answering that question. This process will help to position students as experts on their topic of interest as they move in to a professional or new role.

Modules include:

• The Sustainable Campus
• Issues of Power and Privilege in Higher Education Policy and Student Affairs
• Applications and Implications of Technology in Student Affairs
• Program Evaluation and Assessment
• Theories of College Student Identity Development
• Law, Policy and Equity in Higher Education and Student Affairs
• Resource Management in Student Affairs and Higher Education
• Transformative Leadership in Higher Education and Student Affairs

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The major in Administration and Supervision includes a specialization in higher education, which is designed for graduate students from junior or community colleges and/or four-year institutions who are interested in pursuing study in the area of higher education. Read more
The major in Administration and Supervision includes a specialization in higher education, which is designed for graduate students from junior or community colleges and/or four-year institutions who are interested in pursuing study in the area of higher education. Faculty members in the Womack Educational Leadership Department work with students who choose to specialize in higher education to assure that they complete requirements including a foundations core, a specialized core, and elective hours in order to develop a specialized professional knowledge base and skills in the student’s chosen area. Upon enrollment in the Higher Education program, students will select either the research path or practicum path.

Career

Graduates from the Administration and Supervision program with the higher education specialization may be employed in a variety of positions at universities and community colleges. Examples include, but are not limited to:

Academic advisors
Admissions office representatives
Recruiters
Scheduling center officials
Student affairs administrators

MTSU graduates are employed in universities, community colleges, and technology centers in Tennessee and other states; examples include:

Columbia State Community College
Middle Tennessee State University
Motlow State Community College
Tennessee Technology Centers
University of Memphis
University of Mississippi
University of Southern Mississippi

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The MA in Student Affairs in Higher Education program represents what a well-rounded academic program is all about—academic excellence, plus geographical, cultural, and ethnic diversity. Read more
The MA in Student Affairs in Higher Education program represents what a well-rounded academic program is all about—academic excellence, plus geographical, cultural, and ethnic diversity. Coursework and assistantships—held by about 90 percent of our students—blend academic achievement with real-world responsibilities so that you are fully prepared for entry-level and mid-management jobs, depending on your past experience.

STUDENTS FROM A VARIETY OF PROFESSIONAL AND ACADEMIC BACKGROUNDS

A typical SAHE entering class includes graduates of private and public institutions, from very small to very large, from all sections of the country. Many students are returning to graduate school after having worked for a few years.

YOUR COHORT BECOMES PART OF YOUR PROFESSIONAL NETWORK

All students join a fall cohort and either begin classes in the summer or in fall. With the cohort model you surround yourself with like-minded learners who will become members of your professional network. You progress through a prescribed sequence of courses as a group, and, together, you’ll discover the history of your profession while mastering the theories and techniques that have proven effective when working with diverse campus populations.

THE MA IN STUDENT AFFAIRS IN HIGHER EDUCATION

This program introduces you to the key principles and responsibilities of this area of study. Practical experiences provided by your assistantship and practicums help transition you from the classroom to your first job in the field.

A minimum of 42 credits (36 required and 6 credits of elective or thesis), a portfolio requirement, and the equivalent of two academic years of full-time study are required to earn the Master of Arts degree.

Student Affairs is an applied science field and, as such, you will:
-Understand theories of personality and human development.
-Learn elements of research.
-Acquire specific skills and techniques for helping others learn, grow, and develop.
-Comprehend organizational management theory and practice.
-Complete a variety of practice-oriented courses.

You will also demonstrate professional competence by writing either a thesis or completing six hours of approved electives along with a final semester portfolio completed during the final semester.

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The Master of Science in Student Affairs Administration (MSAA) degree program is ideally suited for those who wish to pursue careers in higher education. Read more

Program Overview

The Master of Science in Student Affairs Administration (MSAA) degree program is ideally suited for those who wish to pursue careers in higher education. Potential higher education roles include academic advising, admissions and enrollment management, career development and placement, financial aid, health services, judicial affairs, leadership development, multicultural affairs, non-traditional and commuter student services, residential life, services for students with disabilities, student activities, and student development and involvement.

Explore Student Affairs Administration: https://www.binghamton.edu/student-affairs-administration/index.html

Coupled with sufficient professional experience, the MSAA may also serve as the foundation for students wishing to become deans of students or vice presidents for student affairs.

The MSAA degree program is grounded in both student development theory and the concept of theory-to-practice-to-theory. Thus, an underlying goal of the program is to prepare professionals who have working knowledge of how student development theory is used in practice, and how practice serves to inform future theory development. A secondary goal of the proposed program is to prepare administrative leaders and personnel who are comfortable working with people of diverse backgrounds in positions that require decision-makers to respond to department/unit situations while taking into consideration how their decisions impact other systems (i.e. departments and/or divisions) within the institution.

Curriculum

The curriculum for the MSAA degree program was designed to meet the American College Personnel Association (ACPA) Professional Preparation Commission Standards.

Required Core Courses Include:
Introduction to Student Personnel Services
College Student Development: Theory, Research and Practice
Culture of the American College Student
Organization and Administration of Higher Education
Law in Higher Education

Explore the complete curriculum online: https://www.binghamton.edu/student-affairs-administration/curriculum/index.html

Admissions Materials:

- Online graduate degree application and application fee

- Transcripts from each college/university you have attended

- Two letters of recommendation, which should come from instructors or professors who can attest to the applicant's academic ability for graduate study
Applicants who have been out of college for at least three (3) years may submit current letters of reference from employment supervisors or others affiliated with their employment who can attest to their ability to perform successfully and professionally and to the likelihood of success in a graduate program

- Personal statement (2-3 pages), which should specifically address the applicant's interest in the program, career goals, and current skills and experiences relative to their current or intended career in student affairs

- Resume or Curriculum Vitae (max. 2 pages)

- Official GRE scores. GMAT scores can be submitted in lieu of GRE scores.

- A signed copy of the Student Affairs Administration Contract
* By signing the document, you agree, if admitted to the program, to abide by the professional standards of student affairs administration as set forth by the American College Personnel Association (ACPA) Statement of Ethical Principles and Standards that govern our profession.
* Review the Statement of Ethical Principles and Standards before signing the contract.

- A signed copy of the Student Affairs Administration Certification of Information

And, for international applicants:
- International Student Financial Statement form
- Official bank statement/proof of support
- Official TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE Academic scores

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The MPA + MS Student Affairs Administration Dual-Degree Program prepares students for administrative positions in college and university settings. Read more
The MPA + MS Student Affairs Administration Dual-Degree Program prepares students for administrative positions in college and university settings.

To be an effective leader in student affairs, professionals must first be knowledgeable of how students grow and develop during the college years and how institutions can be intentional in facilitating the growth process. Leaders in higher education need to employ proven managerial strategies in order to be successful and must pay careful attention to the management of human resources, finances, information technology, and physical infrastructure. In addition to this, leaders should know how to adjust their administrative style if problems are encountered and be able to ground both successes and shortcomings in administrative theory.

By carefully structuring the sequence of courses, recognizing comparable course offerings, and using courses in one program to count as electives in the other, students are often able to complete both degrees in three years of full-time study without compromising the professional standards of either program.

Successful completion of the dual-degree programs results in two degrees: a Master's in Public Administration (MPA) and a Master of Science in Student Affairs Administration.

The MPA-MSAA Dual Degree Program

The Master of Public Administration (MPA) and Master of Science in Student Affairs Administration (MSAA) programs both are housed within the College of Community and Public Affairs and are considered professional terminal degrees. By carefully structuring the sequence of courses, recognizing comparable course offerings and using courses in one program to count as electives in the other, the MPA-MSAA dual degree program allows students to complete both degrees in three years of full-time study, without compromising the professional standards of either program. The 42-credit hour MPA program and the 45-credit hour MS in Student Affairs Administration program can be completed as part of a 66-credit hour program (rather than 87 credit hours required to complete the two programs without the benefit of the dual degree structure).
The MPA-MSAA dual degree will prepare students for administrative positions in college and university settings. The MSAA program provides specialized training for students desiring to work in student affairs offices, while the MPA provides the knowledge and skills necessary for management. To be an effective leader in student affairs, professionals must first be knowledgeable of how students grow and develop during the college years and how institutions can be intentional in facilitating the growth process. This requires the study of organizational and student development theory as well as gaining hands-on experience in at least one student services office. Leaders in higher education also need to employ proven managerial strategies in order to be successful and must pay careful attention to the management of human resources, finances, information technology, and physical infrastructure. In addition to this, leaders should know how to adjust their administrative style if problems are encountered and be able to ground both successes and shortcomings in administrative theory.

All applicants must submit the following:

- Online graduate degree application and application fee
- Transcripts from each college/university you have attended
- Letters of recommendation (see details below)
- Personal statement (2-3 pages) describing your reasons for pursuing graduate study, your career aspirations, your special interests within your field, and any unusual features of your background that might need explanation or be of interest to your program's admissions committee.
- Resume or Curriculum Vitae (max. 2 pages)
- Official GRE scores. GMAT scores can be submitted in lieu of GRE scores.

And, for international applicants:
- International Student Financial Statement form
- Official bank statement/proof of support
- Official TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE Academic scores

You must also meet the following program-specific requirements:
MPA:
- Two letters of recommendation
Letters of recommendation should be from individuals who know the applicant in a professional capacity, such as professors, work supervisors, and professionals from organizations where the applicant has served as a volunteer or in another capacity. When evaluating the letters of recommendation, the admissions committee looks for evidence of academic achievement, community involvement, and personal characteristics that suggests the applicant has the capacity to foster an institutional culture that advances democratic administration and governance.

- Personal statement
The personal statement should be no more than 500 words or two (2) double-spaced, typed pages and should answer the question,"Why do I want an MPA?" You may wish to describe your reasons for pursuing graduate studies in public administration, your career aspirations, your special interests within your field, and any unusual features of your background that might need explanation or be of interest to your program's admissions committee. In the personal statement, the committee assesses the student's commitment to public and/or nonprofit administration as well as his/her ability to communicate in writing.

- Significant work experience (5 or more years in the public and/or nonprofit sectors) can earn applicants a positive adjustment to their admissions scores. However, the lack of work experience does not result in a penalty.

MS:
- Personal statements should specifically address the applicant's interest in the program, career goals, and current skills and experiences relative to their current or intended career in student affairs

- Three letters of recommendation, which should come from instructors or professors who can attest to the applicant's academic ability for graduate study
Applicants who have been out of college for at least three (3) years may submit current letters of reference from employment supervisors or others affiliated with their employment who can attest to their ability to perform successfully and professionally and to the likelihood of success in a graduate program

- A signed copy of the Student Affairs Administration Contract
*By signing the above document, you agree, if admitted to the program, to abide by the professional standards of student affairs administration as set forth by the American College Personnel Association (ACPA) Statement of Ethical Principles and Standards that govern our profession.
*Review the Statement of Ethical Principles and Standards before signing the contract.

- A signed copy of the Student Affairs Administration Certification of Information

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