The Master of Arts in Educational Leadership - Higher Education/Student Affairs (HESA) offers a practice-based experience designed to prepare the new generation of practitioners in higher education and student affairs. Our program is ideal for those seeking entry-level positions in the field, and those aspiring to become mid-level administrators. HESA offers a flexible course schedule including several delivery formats (evenings, weekend, week-long, hybrid, online, a distance learning formats). HESA prepares professionals with a passion for working directly with students, fostering student success and development. Our graduates might work in offices such as orientation, Greek life, residence life, TRIO programs, diversity offices, academic advising, student activities, alumni relations, and international affairs. Many students admitted to the HESA program secure Graduate Assistant positions (tuition remission and stipend) across the university, gaining valuable professional experience while completing their degree. The HESA program welcomes application for full-time and part-time enrollment.
Applicants must meet the following requirements:
- Applicants must meet the admission requirements of the Graduate School.
- Applicants must have earned a valid undergraduate degree from an accredited four-year institution of higher education (an undergraduate student may apply after the final semester’s registration is completed).
- International students must meet the following additional criteria: an official score report from either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), International English Language Test System (IELTS) or the Michigan English Language Assessment Battery (MELAB) must be sent by the testing service directly to the University. Student score reports, faxes or photocopies will not be considered official. Minimum scores for admission is 550 (Paper-based Test), or 79 (Internet-based Test) for the TOEFL; 77 on MELAB; or 6.5 (or higher) on the IELTS. If the TOEFL is taken, the Test of Written English (TWE) is also required. A conditional admission may be available to those students falling just below the minimum score requirements.
- Applicants seeking their first master’s degree must have an undergraduate GPA of 2.7 overall or a GPA of 3.0 in the second half of the undergraduate program. Applicants seeking a second master’s degree must have a GPA of 3.3 or better on their previous graduate degree.
- Applicants must submit recommendation forms from two professional supervisors and/or supervising professors that address the quality of the applicant’s professional work. The completed forms are due within the online Application for Graduate Admissions. By entering the recommenders email address within the online application, they will be able to upload a letter and the required recommendation form directly to your application. The recommendation form must come directly from your reference.
- Applicants must submit a résumé that details their professional and educational experiences.
- Applicants must submit the Graduate Application for Admission form.
- On the graduate application, students must complete the personal statement of accomplishments and academic goals portion describing the reasons for requesting admission. This essay must be a minimum of 250 words and will be reviewed as an indicator of writing ability.
The admission process for the master’s degree is as follows:
- Completed applications are accepted on a rolling basis. If you are seeking a Graduate Assistantship, it is recommended that you apply before February 1st.
- The Office of Admissions will receive and gather ALL required documents. Completed applications that contain the required GPAs, confidential appraisal forms and the résumé will be forwarded to the coordinator of advising for the educational leadership program.
- Completed applications will be reviewed by the faculty review committee. Those applicants who have submitted acceptable GPAs, résumé, recommendations and personal statement will be admitted, assigned an advisor and invited for an advising interview. An application may be deemed “questionable” due to a combination of low GPA, fair or poor recommendations, poor writing ability and/or statements that are inconsistent with the student’s goals as an administrator. These “questionable” applications will be reviewed by the full faculty, giving special consideration to the life experiences, verbal skills, writing skills, educational background, and GPAs.
- Those persons whose applications are accepted will be notified.
- All decisions by the faculty regarding admissions are final.
Please contact the department for advisor information.
Retention Review Requirements
A retention review will be conducted by the faculty review committee and coordinated by the EDLD coordinator of advising. Students who have not met the following criteria will be identified and asked to meet with their academic advisors. Students must have:
- A minimum GPA of at least 3.25 in required educational leadership courses;
- Acceptable progress made in developing a professional portfolio after completing 18 hours of course work; and
- An overall academic skills assessment of average or above in any educational leadership class.
The objective of this retention plan is to assure that students have an opportunity to review the appropriateness of their career choice and to receive assistance in achieving their master’s degree in educational leadership should they choose to continue in the field. The retention review will be conducted by the EDLD coordinator of advising with the faculty review committee.
- After completing 18 hours of course work, students should schedule a meeting with their advisor to discuss the review progress in developing a professional portfolio.
- Faculty may complete the Leadership Candidate Evaluation form for any student in any class if they choose to do so. These forms will be filed in the student’s folder.
- Each semester the Graduate School will review the GPA of each student completing 12 hours. The EDLD coordinator of advising will examine the files of all students who have not achieved the required GPA and recommend review by the faculty review committee.
The coordinator of advising will request each identified student to meet with his or her advisor to discuss career goals and the need for assistance. If the need for assistance is established, a plan will be developed. For example, if difficulties exist with skill or concept acquisition, the student may be required to audit a class.
Students will be guided through the portfolio assessment process by their advisor as follows:
- Following admission, students are required to schedule a meeting with their advisor to plan their program of study and to obtain information about the portfolio assessment and exit requirements
- After completing 18 hours of course work, it is recommended that students schedule a meeting with their advisor to discuss the progress of their portfolios.
- A student who believes his/her portfolio is complete should contact the advisor to schedule the oral and written presentation. This will consist of an oral presentation by the student, followed by discussion with faculty regarding the student’s learning and growth, along with perceptions of the strengths and/or weaknesses of the overall program.
- Student achievement will be documented in a cumulative portfolio that contains artifacts representative of the educational leadership knowledge base.
An assessment of the portfolio will be made using the following criteria:
Quality of content
In addition, the program component stressing effective written and oral communication skills will be assessed by examination of the quality of writing presented in the portfolio and the quality of oral communication displayed in the portfolio presentation before the faculty. All of the components of the portfolio must be rated satisfactory for completion and presented through the use of LiveText.
The portfolio will be evaluated as one of the following:
Pass without revisions
Pass with minor revisions by date indicated
Pass with major revisions by date indicated
Degree Requirements: 38 hours
Students must complete a minimum of 38 credit hours to complete the master’s degree. 27-28 hours of specific basic concentration coursework, and 10-11 hours in related course electives are required. Electives are chosen in consultation with the student’s program advisor. EDPS 687 or EDLD 638 should be taken as early as possible on a student’s program.
Required Courses: 27-28 hours
Elective Courses: 10-11 hours
Student will take 10-11 hours of elective courses selected in consultation with their graduate advisor. Students who elected EDLD 636 above, must complete 11 credit hours.
Course Substitutions/Program Changes - The advisor must approve changes in the student’s official program and substitution of courses before registration.
Courses Outside the Program - The Program faculty have prepared a suggested list of courses. Other courses may be used for electives in this area if they are approved by the student’s advisor.
Internships - Information is available from the director of the intern program or at emich.edu/coe/lc. Internship placements should be arranged at least one semester in advance and must be approved by the internship director.
For more information about the program, admissions, etc., contact the department head or visit emich.edu/coe/lc.