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Master of Science in Higher Education

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The Master of Science in Higher Education program stresses the practical knowledge, critical thinking, research, and writing skills relevant to leaders in today’s colleges and universities. Whether your interests are in administration, teaching, student development, or other areas within higher education, you will have the opportunity to work closely with your instructors and other students who share your interests. Enjoy the convenience and flexibility of online learning while you study to maximize your career choices and strengthen your knowledge and skills as a practitioner of higher education.

Master of Science in Higher Education Program Highlights

Courses feature learning activities led by distinguished faculty members who are dedicated to helping you pursue your educational goals. In the interactive online courses, you will:

  • Focus on multicultural and diversity issues affecting 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 in the United States and the organizational principles that guide them

Master of Science in Higher Education Concentrations

Choose from three concentrations designed to help you develop valuable expertise in specific areas of higher education administration, teaching, or student affairs.

College Administration and Leadership: Study to gain expertise in the principles of effective leadership as they relate to the management of academic programs and departments in a variety of postsecondary settings. Explore the roles of institutional research and strategic planning in institutions of higher education. Develop skills in assessing and evaluating academic programs, including accreditation standards and processes in both on-ground and online institutions. Prepare to enter the field of higher education administration, or to advance your career and take on new leadership roles.

College Teaching: Explore foundations of adult learning and the use of technology in higher education settings. Focus on developing expertise in curriculum design and implementation and in the methods and models used to assess learning outcomes. Analyze strategies for quality online education as you explore the theory and processes of designing, delivering, and assessing online learning. 

Note: most institutions require individuals teaching at the collegiate level to have the minimum of either a master’s degree in their teaching field or a master’s degree in higher education and 18 semester hours (27 quarter credit hours) of graduate coursework in their teaching field.

Student Affairs: Focus on developing expertise in the administration of a comprehensive student services program for both on-ground and online institutions. Gain hands-on experience through an internship at a real-world educational institution, and explore how to incorporate current management and legal issues into student affairs. This concentration addresses specific standards of the Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education (CAS) for graduate programs in student affairs and the standards of the Professional Preparation Commission of the American College Personnel Association (ACPA).

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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 graduates and current students can choose to enroll in Promise Opens Doors’ Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) Core Certificate Program (TCCP), a 4- to 6-month program that includes an online practicum with a real-time classroom in Asia. The certificate is recognized in certain states as fulfilling part of the certification requirements to teach English as a Foreign Language to students in the U.S. Note: this program is not included in the cost of Purdue Global tuition.

In addition, our alliance provides Promise Opens Doors students, alumni, and employees and their immediate family members with a tuition reduction on School of Education programs. Speak to an advisor to learn more.

Tuition reduction may not be combined with Purdue Global scholarships, grants, military tuition reductions, tuition vouchers, or other discounts or Tuition Cap or ExcelTrackTM pricing. Eligible family members include spouses, domestic partners, parents, siblings, and children.

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Higher Education at the Highest Standards

Purdue University Global is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission (HLC) and committed to the highest standards. Our specific programs hold additional industry-relevant approvals and accreditations.

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What are the Career Opportunities?

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. Your master's degree may help you qualify for positions such as the following:

  • Department or division chair
  • Positions in institutional research, assessment, or staff development
  • Supervisory roles such as director of admissions, advising, student life, or student services

Upon successful completion of the program, you may choose to further your knowledge by pursuing doctoral-level studies.

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How Do I Get Started?

Purdue Global offers multiple start dates, giving you greater flexibility with your education, life, and work schedules.


Start Date

October 17, 2018

Start Date

December 05, 2018

Start Date

January 23, 2019

Start Date

March 13, 2019

Start Date

April 24, 2019

Start Date

June 12, 2019

Start Date

July 24, 2019

Start Date

September 11, 2019

Start Date

October 23, 2019

Start Date

December 11, 2019

What Courses WIll I Take?

The Master of Science in Higher Education program focuses on the practical knowledge, critical thinking, and research skills related to today's colleges and universities. Courses include:

  • Foundations of Higher Education
  • Higher Education Laws and Regulations
  • Multiculturalism and Diversity in Higher Education
  • Higher Education Finance
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Program Requirements
  • Core Credits30
  • Concentration Credits20
  • Total Credits50

Can I Afford This?

Here are some of the ways we can help lower the cost of your tuition and help you graduate sooner.

Tuition and Fees

Tuition Rates

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Desired Track Only one track is available for this program.
Enrollment Location:
Tuition Discount Options:

Online, Rockville, Indiana, Missouri, Wisconsin

$420.00 cost per credit
number of credits

Tuition does not include University fees and associated program fees. View tuition and fee information or contact an Admissions Advisor for more information.

Indiana resident military veterans: tuition for online undergraduate degree and certificate programs is $220.00 per quarter credit hour.

Gainful Employment Disclosures

Access gainful employment information, including program length, tuition costs, financing options, and success rates.§

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Helpful Information

Whether you are on your way up the corporate ladder or just getting started, our degree programs and certificates could help you prepare to take your career to a higher level.

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*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.

Purdue Global cannot guarantee employment or career advancement.

The University cannot guarantee that students will be granted admission to any future programs.

§Purdue University acquired Kaplan University in March 2018 and created Purdue University Global, which is following the same curriculum format and instructional delivery methods as developed and used by Kaplan University. These disclosures are based on Kaplan University data reported prior to the acquisition.