Director of the Center for the Study of Higher Education: Dr. Gary Rhoades.
Established in 1977, the Center for the Study of Higher Education offers flexible, interdisciplinary, and individualized master of arts and doctor of philosophy degree programs with concentrations in comparative higher education, organization and administration, college access, and student affairs.
These distinctive characteristics go beyond individual faculty; they reflect a collective synergy and orientation of our faculty to scholarship and practice.
Each year we admit around ten (10) Ph.D. students and twenty (20) M.A. students. The life experience and perspectives of the 90-100 students enrolled here flavor our program. A high proportion of our students are accomplished professionals and we value the practical experience and organizational skills they bring.
Ours is a diverse, supportive, challenging intellectual community. Over half of our students are women, over 20 percent are students of color, and over 10 percent are international students. Many are first generation students. This diversity enriches our community and work.
In recognition for its commitment to diversity and inclusiveness, the Center for the Study of Higher Ed has been honored with the Peter W. Likins Inclusive Excellence Award in 2010.
We are supportive of each others' work and that of our students. Most of our students work, yet are fully engaged intellectually in a program that emphasizes a culture of research and reflective practice. Our aim is to bring theories and findings from the academic literature to bear on professional practice in ways that enhance students' abilities to understand, analyze, and act within postsecondary organizations and systems. We seek students who are deeply committed to the advancement and improvement of higher education as students, practitioners, scholars, and activists.
Most of our students advance into positions in various support professions and administration, but some also pursue faculty positions. Although most obtain positions on college and university campuses, we have also placed students in systemwide administration, policy agencies such as WICHE, and in private enterprise.
An important contributor to our intellectual community is the Higher Education Student Organization (HESO). It sponsors formal and informal annual functions and activities that are academic, professional, and social in nature and that address student needs as well as bring students and faculty together for supportive exchange.
The Department of Educational Policy Studies and Practice (EPSP) includes Educational Leadership and the Center for the Study of Higher Education. The EPSP department combines the K-12 focus with postsecondary education to create a P-20 perspective that taps into the dominant discourse of education and policymakers today.
The 30-unit Master of Arts in Educational Policy, offered by the Education Policy Studies and Practice Department in the College of Education, will provide students with an understanding of education policymaking history and process, and develop their skills to analyze data and inform policies. The program will provide anyone interested in education policy with the necessary background to engage in the policymaking process: classroom teachers, school leaders, university personnel, community members, and those interested in continuing their studies in a doctoral program. The program will offer courses flexibly (e.g., evenings, online, hybrid) that will include research methods, critical topics in education policy, as well as the opportunity to take various elective courses that might include a focus on language policy, privatization and education reform, law, and/or public policy, among other focus areas.
Both the Center for the Study of Higher Education (HED) and Educational Leadership (EDL) maintain their core functions and curriculum, consistent with professional career paths and state standards for certification leading to licensure. However, the combined unit more broadly facilitates and encourages research, instructional, and service and outreach initiatives consistent with a policy development and analysis focus.
A key departmental strength concentrates on how organizations, institutions (both formal and informal), official practices, and educational professions affect outcomes across local, national, and international contexts and how these entities are themselves affected by societal, economic, and political pressures.
EPSP prepares graduate students at the doctorate and master's levels. Graduate programs in HED include Ph.D. and M.A. degrees. Graduate programs in EDL include an Ed.D., Ph.D., Ed.S., M.A. and M.Ed. The M.A. degree has a focus on policy. The M.Ed. degree is a standards-driven curriculum leading to both a degree and state certification for the principalship.
GRE Subject tests: (GRE)
The Graduate Record Exam is part of the holisitic application review and therefore there is no minimum score.
For International Students ONLY:
Minimum TOEFL: 79
Minimum IELTS: 7
Minors may be declared in Higher Education, or outside of the program with approval from your advisor.
Students must complete the minor department requirements as stated by the minor advisor.