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Student Affairs in Higher Education

Master of Education

If you’re ready to make a positive impact in college students’ lives, a master’s degree in Student Affairs in Higher Education is the perfect way to gain the advanced skills needed to work in administrative positions on college and university campuses.

Through a blend of academic and practical learning, our students gain deep knowledge and understanding of higher education, and can become change agents at their institutions. Higher education frequently changes, and the M.Ed. in Student Affairs in Higher Education is designed to equip graduates with the tools they need to ensure the next generation of learners have a safe, equitable, and accessible campus.

This 42-credit program can be completed full-time in two years or completed part-time at the pace of the student.

What Makes KU’s Program Unique?

  • Higher Education Focus – Our program was built from the ground up to focus on student affairs in higher education, not primary or secondary education. Students in the program will eventually seek employment at a community college, four-year college or university, or other higher education institution, and our instruction and coursework support these goals.
  • Graduate Assistantships – Over ninety percent of Student Affairs students receive a graduate assistantship in a Kutztown University office. Not only does this GA opportunity provide tuition reimbursement and a stipend, but it also serves as real-world experience in an administrative role.
  • Internships - Two internship opportunities are built into the curriculum of this program. Each allows students to explore the various aspects of how campuses operate and help them to discover where their passions and skillsets lie. The internships are separate from Graduate Assistant positions.
  • Networking Opportunities – Our Student Affairs program is over 30 years, with an ever-expanding network of successful alumni. Along with the connections you will gain in your internship experiences, you’ll grow relationships with other students and professionals in the field of higher education.

What Can I do with This Degree?

Upon completion of this program, students will be prepared for administrative positions in:

  • Admissions
  • Athletics
  • Career Services
  • Financial Aid
  • First-year and Transfer Student Services
  • Housing and Residence Life
  • International Student Services
  • Registrar
  • Student Services
Quotation Mark

Without either Dr. Elliott or Dr. Hyatt I wouldn’t have such an understanding of student affairs. I’m grateful that they can offer so much advice as to what this career has to offer. How they work together promotes the cohesiveness of the program.

Dustin Miller M'21

Student Learning Outcomes

  • Student Affairs in Higher Education Graduate Program Learning Outcomes
    1. Personal and Ethical Foundations: Students will demonstrate, consistent with ACPA, NASPA, and CAS objectives, awareness and understanding of one's values and beliefs as related to professional codes of ethics and principles of personal wellness.
    2. Values, Philosophy, and History: Students will demonstrate, consistent with ACPA, NASPA, and CAS objectives, a basic understanding of the values, philosophy and history of the student affairs profession as relevant to professional practice in the field.
    3. Assessment, Evaluation, and Research: Students will demonstrate, consistent with ACPA, NASPA, and CAS objectives, an understanding and ability to design, conduct, critique, and utilize various AER methodologies and the results from them to inform professional practice.
    4. Law, Policy, and Governance: Students will demonstrate, consistent with ACPA, NASPA, and CAS objectives, an understanding of policy development processes used in various contexts; the application of legal constructs, compliance/policy issues; and governance structures and their impact upon professional practice.
    5. Organizational and Human Resources: Students will demonstrate, consistent with ACPA, NASPA, and CAS objectives, an understanding of the scale, scope, and interactivity of the human and organizational resources involved in the professional practice of student affairs within the context of higher education.
    6. Leadership: Students will demonstrate, consistent with ACPA, NASPA, and CAS objectives, a basic understanding of concepts, principles, and dynamics of leadership, leadership processes, and leadership development, both generally and in the context of higher education. This includes understanding processes of student leadership and development.
    7. Social Justice and Inclusion: Students will demonstrate, consistent with ACPA, NASPA, and CAS objectives, awareness, and understanding of issues of oppression, privilege, and power and their manifestations, along with the impact they have upon our personal and professional interactions with those with whom we work, especially college students. Additional focus is placed upon understanding social justice and advocacy-oriented practices and skills.
    8. Student Learning and Development: Students will demonstrate, consistent with ACPA, NASPA, and CAS objectives, a critical understanding of learning and development theories and their use in constructing learning outcomes. This includes the ability to apply theory to improve and inform student affairs and teaching practice.
    9. Technology: Students will demonstrate, consistent with ASPA, NASPA, and CAS objectives, understanding of the use of digital tools, resources, and technologies for the advancement of student learning, development, and success as well as digital literacy necessary for improved professional practice.
    10. Advising and Supporting: Students will demonstrate, consistent with ACPA, NASPA, and CAS objectives, development of capacities for individual interventions that entail listening, direction, feedback, critique, referral, and guidance; understanding of group dynamics; management of conflict and crisis situations; and collaboration with others on and off-campus.

    Note: The American College Personnel Association (ASPA), the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA), and the Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education (CAS) have endorsed the above ten areas as competencies and learning outcomes for graduate preparation programs in student affairs in higher education. Each area has a list of foundational level knowledge, dispositions, and skills that should be addressed in graduate training programs and that students should be prepared to meet by graduation. The curriculum for the Kutztown University Student Affairs in Higher Education Graduate Program includes a course(s) that addresses each competency area.

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