Feb 21, 2024  
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog 
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog

Higher Education, M.Ed.

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The M.Ed. in Higher Education prepares students for leadership positions in colleges and universities by providing the foundation and resources necessary to understand and analyze how universities and colleges work. Graduates of the program are prepared to take on roles in a wide range of higher education settings and assume key roles in activities such as admissions, advising, student activities, administration, and policy analysis.

The higher education program utilizes a cohort model that offers full-time and part-time options. The full-time track is ideal for students who hold graduate assistantships on SMU’s campus, while the part-time track is designed for working professionals and must be completed in no more than five years.

Program Structure. This 36-hour degree program is designed to be completed in 2 years on a full-time schedule or 3-5 years on a part-time schedule. All courses are delivered in 3-credit semester-long courses. Candidates must complete the required 6000-level courses that have not already been used to fulfill an undergraduate requirement.

Students are required to select and complete one field studies experience under the supervision of a faculty member of record and a supervisor. The course prepares graduate students for professional practice in various higher education settings through supervised experiences in a setting appropriate to the student’s projected career aspirations and areas of specialization. 

Students are also required to complete one of two culminating experiences: EPL 6347 Capstone Project  (which may be substituted for one of the elective/special topics courses) or EPL 6001 Comprehensive Program Exam  and a second elective/special topics course.

While applicants may request consideration for transfer of up to six hours of relevant graduate credit, be advised that applicants should not expect to receive more than six hours of transfer credit from other institutions. Requests for transfer credit are evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Students need to submit a transfer request as soon as they are accepted into the program in order to be considered. Only courses with a grade of B or above can be transferred. Generally, no credit will be allowed toward the Master’s degree for courses taken more than six years before acceptance into the program. Any exceptions to the requirements and policies stated above must have the approval of the academic adviser and department chair.


Admission Requirements

Any exceptions to the following requirements must have the approval of the academic adviser and department chair.

1. A completed online application: https://gradadmission.smu.edu/apply/
2. A baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution.
3. Official copies of all graduate and undergraduate transcripts where a degree has been conferred or you have received 9 or more credit hours.

  • Electronic transcripts should be sent directly by the institution to: gradappmaterials@smu.edu
  • Paper transcripts should be sent directly by the institution to:

Graduate Application Processing
PO Box 518
Dallas, TX 75275-0518

4. A minimum undergraduate grade point average of 3.000 (on a 4.000 scale).
5. Essay Writing Sample. Submit an academic paper from prior coursework that demonstrates your analytic and written communication abilities. In lieu of a prior paper, you may submit a 3-5 page paper that addresses specific issues facing higher education today.
6. Personal Statement. Applicants should prepare a statement of purpose, which should be between 750-1,000 words. This statement should address the factors that encouraged you to seek a degree with the SMU Higher Education Program. You may wish to address your background, personal and professional experiences that prepared you for the study of higher education, what strengths you bring to the program, and your professional goals after the completion of the M.Ed. Your responses should be saved and uploaded as the following:

  • 12-point Times New Roman font 
  • Single-spaced 
  • One-inch margins

7. Applicants with a degree from countries where the predominant language is not English are required to supply scores on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) administered by the Educational Testing Service. The minimum scores for admission speaking 24, listening/reading 22, and writing 21.
8. Three letters of recommendation from academic and/or professional references.
9. The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is not required for your admissions packet. Applicants who have taken the GRE general test or another standardized test (i.e. GMAT, LSAT) are welcome to submit scores. To ensure that we receive your GRE scores, please use the institution code 6660.

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