Graduate Program Directory

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University of Arkansas

University of Arkansas
MED:  (HIED EdD also offered)
What college at the institution does this program reside in?
College of Education and Health Professions
What department within the college does this program reside in?
Rehabilitation, Human Resources, and Communication Disorders
Program Director contact for this program:

Leslie Jo Shelton
Assistant Professor of HIED
University of Arkansas
Fayetteville, AR 72701
How is the program offered?
  • Courses taken on a campus (residency)
What is the program's primary area of focus?
  • Student Learning and Development
What is the mission and/or objectives of the program?
To graduate doctoral and master's degree students who come from diverse backgrounds and who are characterized by their competence and confidence to be effective leaders in the higher education workplace.

We are a practitioner-oriented program with a primary focus on the preparation of academic and administrative professionals who are characterized by their competence and confidence to be effective leaders in the higher education workplace.

What is the pedagogical philosophy of the program?

To model those teaching practices we wish our students to exhibit. To incorporate a variety of active learning approaches into our classes so that students have an opportunity to learn by doing as well as by listening and reading. To offer classes at times which will ensure that full- and part-time students have a minimum of course conflicts and that makes it possible for students to progress through their program of study without needless delay. To schedule (and publicize) classes at least eighteen months in advance. To maintain (within the limits of funding) up-to-date library holdings (books and periodicals) of sufficient depth and breadth to support course and dissertation requirements.


To provide sufficient variety of regularly scheduled classes, topical seminars, practicums, internships, and independent studies to facilitate tailoring a program of study to meet the needs of each student. To offer courses oriented to the practitioner that are up-to-date with current and projected demands/needs of the field. To offer rigorous programs of study (masters, educational specialist, doctoral) that will prepare motivated students to succeed in a challenging higher education environment. To ensure there is minimal unintended overlap in the content of different courses.


To attract and retain faculty with practical experience in higher education settings who are excellent instructors and who:

Are motivated to keep up-to-date in the practice of administration and/or teaching. Are able to remain current in the literature. Can establish and maintain appropriate personal and professional relationships with students while they are enrolled and after they graduate. Can develop mentoring relationship with students that promote collaboration in teaching, scholarship, and service. Can provide personalized academic advising and assist with career planning and placement for both currently-enrolled students and alumni. Take care to ensure that graduates are distinguished by their ability to facilitate constructive change in the work setting, solve problems, and communicate orally and in writing. Will respect the individuality of students and treat each student with dignity and respect. Are active in professional organizations related to Higher Education Other

To conduct periodic reviews of current students and graduates to ensure that the program is continuing to meet the needs of the students.

What are the learning outcomes of the program?
To produce graduates who are characterized as:

Familiar with the general literature of higher education and possessed of an in-depth knowledge in their area(s) of special interest.

Distinguished by their ability to facilitate constructive change in the work setting and to solve problems of the type encountered by persons in their intended career area, regardless of whether these are administrative or instructional in nature.

Extremely competent in oral and written communication skills.

Able to read, interpret and analyze research findings and, in the case of doctoral level students, who are able to conduct valid research projects.

The Master of Education (M.Ed.) degree in Higher Education provides professional preparation for students in both two-year and four-year post-secondary institutions, including community colleges and technical colleges, liberal arts colleges, and four-year colleges and universities. Students enroll on both a full-time and part-time basis, with many working full-time on a college campus while pursuing their degree. Most students either have a graduate assistantship in an office on campus or work full-time or part-time.

Depending upon prior experience, program graduates typically seek careers at the director or assistant director level in a variety of specialty areas, including advising, admissions, international program work, academic services, and student affairs (Greek life, residence life, activities and programs, judicial services, etc.).

The doctoral program in Higher Education focuses on administration. Within this program, there is sufficient flexibility to fashion a program of study tailored to each student's specific career goals. Students may focus on two- or four-year colleges or some other aspect of post-secondary education.

According to the CAS Standards and Guidelines a "program should recognize the important educational opportunities that diversity among its students and faculty brings to student affairs preparation. Therefore, programs should encourage the recognition of and adherence to the spirit of multiculturalism by all who are allied with the program's educational enterprise." How does this program do that?
Our program is committed to the spirit of multiculturalism in many ways. Our program values and seeks to incorporate the diverse lived experiences of our students and faculty inside and out of the classroom. CAS Standards and Guidelines as well as the ACPA/NASPA Professional Competencies shape our curriculum, with the opportunity for a special emphasis on issues of social justice and inclusion. To facilitate this focus and prepare graduates to be multiculturally competent professionals, our program recently added a Diversity in HIED course, and a HIED in International Contexts course that are open to all HIED students in the program.

What is the cost of tuition?
Please contact the University of Arkansas Graduate School for updated information. (Cost of Attendance:
Which of the following are available to help defray the cost of tuition, fees and other related education costs (from the program and/or institution)?
  • Assistantships
  • Financial Aid
  • Travel Funding
On average, how many years does it take to complete the program?
Two years (Summer courses optional)

What is the employment rate of graduates from this program?
Our program has a history of successful placement for graduates. Our recent alumni have secured professional positions in a variety of areas in higher education, including academic advising, admissions, athletics, civic engagement, fraternity/sorority life, international studies, residence life, student activities, and student conduct. Since 2012, MEd graduates have accepted jobs at institutions in Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Missouri, New York, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, South Carolina, and Washington.

What are the professional contributions to the field made by graduates from this program?
Graduates of our program work in a variety of functional areas and institutional settings, and share many professional contributions to the field including demonstrating multicultural competence, awareness of internationalization of HIED, applying scholarship and student development theory to practice, and a commitment to upholding the values and ethical foundations of the field as lifelong learners focused on facilitating student learning and development. Graduates of our program also contribute to the field by serving as collaborative change-agents in various leadership roles on their campuses and in professional associations, while also remaining active as practitioner-scholars, including attending and presenting at regional and national conferences.

If this is a master's degree program, what percentage of students go on to earn doctoral degrees?
Graduates of the HIED MEd program have returned to earn doctoral degrees via several avenues, including entering a doctoral program as a full time student or by enrolling as a part time student while working full time in a student affairs position. Graduates of the MEd program have pursued doctoral study in HIED at various institutions, including returning to the University of Arkansas to pursue our HIED EdD.

Please describe the program's curriculum:
The M.Ed. curriculum consists of 33-semester credit hours and a written comprehensive examination. Typically, students complete the program in two years, and there is optional summer enrollment. Required courses include the following: Management Concepts, Legal Aspects, Student Development in Higher Education, History and Philosophy, and Research Methods. The curriculum also allows for students to complete elective coursework, and students are required to complete a reflective practice internship.

How many credits are required to graduate?
Which of the following are required for graduation?
  • Comprehensive Exams
  • Internship
How many of the program's faculty are full-time?
How many faculty are adjunct/part-time?
What is the faculty to student ratio?
Who are the current teaching faculty and what are their backgrounds and research interests?
Our faculty come from a wide variety of backgrounds and research interests, ranging from legal aspects of higher education to history, management, student development, and diversity. They are leaders in their respective areas and share their passion and dedication with our students.

Our current faculty members are Kate Mamiseishvili (Ph.D.; University of Missouri), Michael Miller (Ed.D.; University of Nebraska), Michel Hevel (Ph.D.; University of Iowa), Leslie Jo Shelton (Ph.D.; Michigan State University), Elsa Camargo (Ph.D.; Virginia Tech University) John Murry (Ed.D.; University of Arkansas), and Suzanne McCray (Ph.D.; University of Tennessee).

What is the average size of the program's cohorts?
What percentage of students are full-time?
What percentage of students are part-time?
Please describe the diversity of the program's students:
Students in our scholarly community bring a diversity of social identities as well as a variety of personal and professional backgrounds and interests.

When is the deadline to apply?
Accepted on Rolling Basis
Application URL:
Financial Aid URL:
Who is encouraged to apply?
The University of Arkansas welcomes applicants that are interested in attaining a greater understanding of the field of student affairs and how to better work with college students. Our M.Ed. in Higher Education program offers a dynamic, collegial campus and program environment that aids in fostering relationships with future colleagues, current faculty, and staff. If you are seeking a program that will allow you to demonstrate your passion for working with and advocating for college students, we encourage you to apply.

What are the requirements and criteria used for admission?
The student’s transcript with a cumulative grade point average, three letters of reference, a writing sample, and a statement of interest.

Is the GRE required?
On average how many applications are received each year?
On average how many students are accepted each year?
What makes this program unique from others?
Our M.Ed. in Higher Education program offers a wide variety of professional development and involvement opportunities for our full-time and part-time students. Chi Sigma Alpha is a national honor society for students in higher education programs that continue to exceed expectations in our program. The Higher Education Organization (THEO) allows our students to not only hold leadership roles, but encourages involvement on campus and provides networking and professional development opportunities regularly. We have a team of faculty members that are leaders in the field of higher education in teaching, research, and service. Each of our faculty members have diverse backgrounds and interests which adds to the success of our program. The former Chancellor of the University of Arkansas, Dr. David Gearhart, is one of our esteemed faculty members, as well as full-time faculty members and current senior level administrators at the U of A. The University of Arkansas is also extremely active on a national level in the higher education arena. At the annual NASPA conference, students, faculty, and alumni come together during a razorback reception. Many of our students also hold leadership positions in national organizations such as NASPA, TPE, and ACPA. Another unique aspect of our program is the competitive graduate assistantship options we offer. Many of our graduate assistants not only have tuition coverage and health care, but also earn a monthly stipend to cover cost of living all while gaining practical experience within one of the many offices on campus. In addition, several positions offer professional development funds that offset the cost of regional and national conferences that our students attend.

Student References
  1. Shani Sullivan
    Higher Education Program Graduate Assistant
    University of Arkansas
    117 Graduate Education Building
    Fayetteville, AR 72701
Graduate References
  1. Charles Tompson
    Doctoral Candidate and Graduate Assistant
    University of Arkansas
    117 Graduate Education Building
    Fayetteville, AR 72701

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