Higher and Postsecondary Education MA

Master of Arts in Higher & Postsecondary Education


The Master of Arts program develops knowledgeable practitioners in three domains of higher and postsecondary education. Though graduate students will be exposed to each of the domains, they will specialize in one.

  • Academic & Developmental Analysis
    • The educational core that encompasses teaching and learning, student and professional Development
  • Organizational and Institutional Analysis
    • A framework that includes institutional planning, organizational development, policymaking, and implementation
  • Social/Cultural and Civic Analysis
    • Including civic engagement, philanthropy, benefits of higher education in diverse society

Graduates of this program work in a variety of academic and student support positions, as well as in various administrative roles.

Deciding between the M.A. and the Ed.M.?

The Master of Arts (M.A.) degree requires a minimum of 32 credits to complete the degree. The Master of Education (Ed.M) is an advanced degree for applicants who have professional experience and would like to further their learning and research into the field of higher education. The Master of Education (Ed.M.) degree requires a minimum of 60 credits to complete the degree.

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Admissions Information

Master of Arts

  • Points/Credits: 32
  • Entry Terms: Fall Only

Application Deadlines

  • Spring: N/A
  • Summer/Fall (Priority): January 15
  • Summer/Fall (Final): April 15

Supplemental Application Requirements/Comments

  • Academic Writing Sample
  • Three (3) Letters of Recommendation, one (1) of which must be academic

Statement of Purpose

  • For more information on our application process and guidelines for the statement of purpose, please visit the Admissions website.

Requirements from the TC Catalog

View Full Catalog Listing

The M.A. requires a minimum of 32 points of graduate coursework. Students pursue one of three domain sequences: (1) Academic and Developmental Analysis, (2) Organizational and Institutional Analysis, or (3) Social/Cultural and Civic Analysis.

Course requirements common to all sequences include (15 points):

  • ORL 5521 Introduction to research methods in education (3) or equivalent with advisor approval
  • ORLH 4010 Purposes and policies of higher education (3)
  • ORLH 4011 Curriculum and instruction in higher education (3)
  • ORLH 4040 The American college student (3)
  • ORLH 5525 Advanced professional seminar: College student development theories (3)

Beyond the core requirements, additional requirements for the Academic and Developmental Analysis sequence include the following coursework as well as a culminating project:

  • ORLH 4042 Student personnel administration: Programs and services (3) or other with advisor approval

Three (3) elective courses from the following (9 points):

  • ORLD 4051 How adults learn (3)
  • ORLH 4012 The community college (3)
  • ORLH 4041 Student personnel administration: Organization, functions, and issues (3) or other with advisor approval
  • ORLH 5011 College teaching and learning (3)
  • ORLH 5044 Theories of diversity in higher education (3)
  • ORLH 5522 Advanced professional seminar: Contemporary student issues and policies (3)
  • ORLH 5524 Advanced professional seminar: An analysis of student cultures (3)
  • ORLH 5527 Advanced professional seminar: The college professoriate (3)
  • ORLH 5545 Advanced professional seminar: The civic mission of higher education (3)
  • ORLH 5546 Advanced professional seminar: Philanthropy and education (3)
  • Other ORLH courses (TBA) related to Higher Education area of interest with advisor approval (3)

Other Courses:

  • M.A. students with internship must take ORLH 5241, Observation and Supervised Fieldwork in Higher and Postsecondary Education (1 point). Non-internship students elect another Teachers College course with advisor approval (1 point).
  • Minimum of two additional out-of-program Teachers College elective courses -- one 3-point course and one 1-point course -- for a total of 4 points. These courses require advisor approval (4 points).

Beyond the core requirements, additional requirements for the Organizational and Institutional Analysis sequence include the following coursework as well as a culminating project:

  • ORLH 4020 College and university organization and administration (3)
  • ORLH 4031 Financial administration of higher education institutions (3) 

Two (2) elective courses from the following (6 points):

  • ORLD 4051 How adults learn (3)
  • ORLH 4012 The community college (3)
  • ORLH 5011 College teaching and learning (3)
  • ORLH 5527 Advanced professional seminar: The college professoriate (3)
  • ORLH 5545 Advanced professional seminar: The civic mission of higher education (3)
  • ORLH 5546 Advanced professional seminar: Philanthropy and education (3)
  • ORLH 6556 Educational leadership: Research, art, and practice (3) or equivalent with advisor approval
  • Other ORLH courses (TBA) related to Higher Education area of interest with advisor approval (3)

Other Courses:

  • M.A. students with internship must take ORLH 5241, Observation and Supervised Fieldwork in Higher and Postsecondary Education (1 point). Non-internship students elect another Teachers College course with advisor approval (1 point).
  • Minimum of two additional out-of-program Teachers College elective courses -- one 3-point course and one 1-point course -- for a total of 4 points. These courses require advisor approval (4 points).

Beyond the core requirements, additional requirements for the Social/Cultural and Civic Analysis sequence include the following coursework as well as a culminating project:

  • ORLH 5044 Theories of diversity in higher education (3) 

Three (3) elective courses from the following (9 points):

  • ORLD 4051 How adults learn (3)
  • ORLH 5011 College teaching and learning (3)
  • ORLH 5522 Advanced professional seminar: Contemporary student issues and policies (3)
  • ORLH 5524 Advanced professional seminar: An analysis of student cultures (3)
  • ORLH 5527 Advanced professional seminar: The college professoriate (3)
  • ORLH 5545 Advanced professional seminar: The civic mission of higher education (3)
  • ORLH 5546 Advanced professional seminar: Philanthropy and education (3)
  • ORLH 6556 Educational leadership: Research, art and practice (3) or equivalent with advisor approval
  • Other ORLH courses (TBA) related to Higher Education area of interest with advisor approval (3)

Other Courses:

  • M.A. students with internship must take ORLH 5241, Observation and Supervised Fieldwork in Higher and Postsecondary Education (1 point). Non-internship students elect another Teachers College course with advisor approval (1 point).
  • Minimum of two additional out-of-program Teachers College elective courses -- one 3-point course and one 1-point course -- for a total of 4 points. These courses require advisor approval (4 points).

Changes or other adjustments to requirements and distributions, as shown for the M.A. in Higher and Postsecondary Education, require approval of the HPSE MA Advisor. The above plan assumes advisor approval for all courses of enrollment.

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