Our MA program is designed for students seeking to enter or advance in a range of professional careers in higher education and student affairs. Students gain the academic preparation necessary for entry-level leadership positions. They work closely with faculty and a network of professionals in the field to understand the challenges and skills inherent to a career in higher education. Coursework emphasizes student development, student affairs, organizational behavior, multiculturalism, and research methods. The MA curriculum prepares students to work as professionals in a complex and ever-changing environment. Our graduates are equipped to translate academic knowledge and research into effective practice, and communicate with multiple audiences.

Program Coordinator:  Dr. Frankie Santos Laanan

Admission Requirements

Prospective students should apply to both the UA Graduate School as well as the department. For information about applying to the Graduate School and to submit your Graduate School Admissions Application online, visit the Graduate School Online Application Center. When applying to the Graduate School, select the desired degree program as well as the campus location/mode of delivery.

The following materials need to be sent to the Graduate School.

  • Graduate School Application (can be submitted online or printed from the Graduate School Online Application Center)
  • Standardized test scores. You should demonstrate satisfactory performance on an up to date (within the last five years) standardized test. The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is the preferred test, but Miller’s Analogies Test (MAT) scores will also be considered for MA and EdD applicants only. To be considered for regular admission, you should have an acceptable entrance score, no lower than 300 NEW (1000 OLD) on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or 50th percentile on the Miller Analogies Test (MAT).
  • Transcripts. You should submit all transcripts from postsecondary institutions attended. Prospective students should have maintained an undergraduate grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale, or a 3.0 average for the last 60 semester hours in a degree program.

Apply to the Department

The following departmental requirements should be submitted to Graduate School’s Managing Supporting Documents portal.

  • HEA Application
  • 3 letters of recommendation
  • A one-page statement of purpose for pursing the degree (you can use the same for the graduate school application)
  • Vita or resume
  • Writing Sample:  A five-page writing sample describing a problem that faces higher education today (nationally), analyzing salient points of the issue, and evaluating potential solutions. The sample should demonstrate formal writing and should include appropriate citations.  Applicants may submit an academic paper in lieu of the five-page essay, preferably on a recent topic related to higher education.

Questions concerning the application process should be directed to Donna Smith (205.348.6871).

Admission Deadline

  •  January 15

Qualified students interested in graduate assistantships should have all application materials by the application deadline.

Program Requirements

One plan is offered for the master’s degree.  Candidates for the master’s degree must earn a minimum of 36 semester hours of credit.  The Capstone Seminar in Higher Education (AHE 593) is the required culminating experience for the program, and is detailed in the Higher Education Administration Program Handbook.  The 36-hour degree program and is designed for students seeking to enter a range of professional careers in postsecondary education. The program includes courses in foundational studies, professional studies, supervised practice, and research methods. As a rule, all master’s students are required  to complete an internship and a capstone  seminar.

Unless substitutions are approved by the student’s Faculty Advisor, all of the following courses are required for the award of the M.A. in Higher Education Administration.

  • AHE 500 Perspectives on Higher Education
  • AHE 521 Student Affairs
  • BCE 514 Counseling Skills
  • AHE 680 Reading Research in Higher Education
  • AHE 507 Student Development Theory I
  • BER 540 Statistical Methods in Education
  • AHE 591 Seminar in Higher Education: Higher Education & Student Affairs Assessment
  • AHE 592 Internship in Higher Education
  • AHE 591 Seminar in Higher Education: Multicultural & Diversity Issues in Higher Education
  • AHE 540 Organization and Administration of Higher Education
  • AHE 520 The Student in Higher Education
  • AHE 593 Capstone Seminar in Higher Education