Online Master’s Degree in Higher Education

Ready to learn more about the
Ready to Take the Next Step?
Connect with an Advisor to explore program requirements, curriculum, transfer credits process, and financial aid options.
Total Courses
Cost per Credit
1.5 years
Average Completion*
15 Hours/Week
Course Effort

Master’s in Higher Education Overview

Earn your master’s degree and move your higher education career forward. Prepare for leadership opportunities in administration, teaching, student services, and other rewarding areas of postsecondary education.

  • Develop the practical knowledge, critical thinking, research, and writing skills that leaders at colleges and universities need.
  • Learn from instructors who are professionals in the higher education field and bring real-world knowledge to the classroom.
  • Focus on multicultural and diversity issues that impact student development in higher education.
  • Examine how technology, public policy, and financing issues affect a student’s ability to attend college.
  • Explore the historical development of colleges and universities and the organizational principles that guide them.


  • College administration and leadership: Become an effective leader who can manage academic programs and departments in a variety of postsecondary settings.
  • College teaching: Explore adult learning and how to use technology in higher education. Develop expertise in curriculum design and implementation, as well as learning assessment methods.
  • Student affairs: Learn to administer comprehensive student services for both on-ground and online institutions. Complete a 120-hour internship experience to gain valuable real-world experience and expand your network.
View Program Detail Plan and Policies

Kentucky students please be advised that this program is not accredited in Kentucky by the Education Professional Standards Board and is not recognized for initial, additional, or renewal of certification or salary enhancement (rank change) for P–12 educators in Kentucky. For more information, please visit the Education Professional Standards Board’s website at:

See Notes and Conditions below for important information.

Academic Alliances to Expand Your Teaching Opportunities

The College of Social and Behavioral Sciences is pleased to announce a partnership with Promise Opens Doors, an organization that offers an online certificate program for educators interested in working abroad and helping others learn English.

Purdue Global Is Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission

The HLC ( is an institutional accreditation agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

Professional Development and Networking

When you join Purdue Global, you join a community of support. Take advantage of the Graduate Resource Center, which offers information on professional memberships and clubs, career services, social networking, and more.

Admissions Requirements

A bachelor’s degree is required to enroll in a graduate program. You will need to provide an official transcript that shows completion of your bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution, though an unofficial copy may be provided during the application process. Refer to the University Catalog or speak to an Advisor to learn more.

What Courses Will I Take?

This online master’s in higher education degree program focuses on the practical knowledge, critical thinking, and research skills related to today's colleges and universities.


Choose one of three concentrations within the master’s in higher education degree to align the curriculum with your career goals.

  • College administration and leadership
  • College teaching
  • Student affairs

Sample Courses

  • Foundations of Higher Education
  • Higher Education Laws and Regulations
  • Multiculturalism and Diversity in Higher Education
  • Higher Education Finance
See All Higher Education Courses

Program Requirements

Core Credits
Elective Credits
Total Credits

Upcoming Start Dates

We offer multiple start dates to give you flexibility in your education, life, and work schedules.

Ways to Save on Time and Tuition

Purdue Global works with students to find ways to reduce costs and make education more accessible. Contact us to learn about opportunities to save on your educational costs.

Transfer Credits

Earn credit for prior coursework completed at eligible institutions.

Financial Aid

Learn about federal financial aid programs available for many of our degree programs.

Corporate Partner Benefits

Employees of Purdue Global partner organizations may be eligible for special tuition reductions.

Military Tuition Reduction

Graduate tuition savings for military include a 17–30% reduction per credit for current servicemembers and 14% per credit for veterans for graduate programs.

International Tuition Reduction

International students living outside of the United States are eligible for a 25% international student tuition reduction.

View the total cost of attendance for your program.

Calculate Your Time and Cost

Estimate how much your prior learning credits can reduce your tuition and time to graduation.

Get Started

Career Opportunities

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, demand for postsecondary teachers is expected to grow faster than the average for all occupations between 2022 and 2032. Opportunities for administrators and student services personnel are also expected to increase during the same period. The Master of Science in Higher Education is designed to prepare you to pursue leadership positions in colleges, community colleges, universities, and technical and vocational centers.

Average Salary


General labor market and salary data are provided by Lightcast and may not represent the outcomes experienced by Purdue Global graduates in these programs. Purdue Global graduates in these programs may earn salaries substantially different or less than the amounts listed above. Salary and employment outcomes vary by geographic area, previous work experience, education, and opportunities for employment that are outside of Purdue Global's control.

Lightcast average salary ranges can be explored further using Lightcast’s SkillsMatch tool. Purdue Global does not guarantee employment placement, salary level, or career advancement.

See Notes and Conditions below for important information.

Take a Career Assessment

Discover your work interests, and use them to chart your ideal career path.

Download the Program Brochure

Download our brochure to learn more about the Online Master of Science in Higher Education and the benefits of earning your degree at Purdue Global.

Get to Know Our Faculty

Purdue Global faculty members are real-world practitioners who bring knowledge gained through the powerful combination of higher learning and industry experience.


Faculty members who have advanced degrees


Faculty members who hold a doctorate


Faculty publications in 2021–2022

More Than 38,000

Professional development hours logged by faculty in 2021–2022

Statistics include all Purdue Global faculty members and are not school- or program-specific calculations. Source: Purdue Global Office of Reporting and Analysis, July 2022. 2021–2022 academic year.

Your Path to Success Begins Here

Connect with an Advisor to explore program requirements, curriculum, credit for prior learning process, and financial aid options.


*Estimated Graduation Date and Average Completion: Estimated graduation date is based on the assumption that you will enroll in time to begin classes on the next upcoming start date, will remain enrolled for each consecutive term, and will maintain satisfactory academic standing in each term to progress toward completion of your program. Completion time is based on a full-time schedule. Programs will take longer for part-time students to complete.

Employment and Career Advancement: Purdue Global cannot guarantee employment or career advancement. College teaching requirements vary by institution and program. This program was not designed to meet any specific state’s requirements for licensure or certification, and Purdue Global makes no representations or warranties as to whether the degree or any individual courses meet such requirements. Refer to the University Catalog for additional information.

Internship: The student is responsible for identifying and obtaining approval for an appropriate internship in his or her location.

Job Growth—Teachers, Postsecondary and PS Education Admins: Source: U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Postsecondary Teachers, and Postsecondary Education Administrators, National long-term projections may not reflect local and/or short-term economic or job conditions, and do not guarantee actual job growth.