Master of Science in Higher Education

Prepare to move your education career forward.

Position yourself to be an education leader with an online master's degree in Higher Education that's designed around recognized professional standards. You'll focus your studies on building skills that align with your career goals. Graduates of this program will be prepared to take on a variety of faculty or administrative roles within Higher Education institutions, continuing education programs, nonprofits, or research and policy organizations.

Outcome goals and graduates’ proficiency levels

These results show recent Capella graduates' proficiency levels in the expected learning outcomes for each of the Master of Science in Higher Education specializations. Faculty make this assessment in the capstone course—the final course in which Capella students demonstrate what they've learned.

Master of Science (MS) in Higher Education specializations

Adult Education Specialization

The master's Adult Education specialization is designed to enhance learners' qualifications in adult education and college teaching. The curriculum emphasizes reflective practice within adult education settings and integration of current theory with best practices in adult learning and teaching. Learners focus on the learning styles of individuals from various backgrounds, collaborative learning, and program development for the adult learner. Learners who successfully complete this specialization are prepared to pursue careers as educators in community college, distance education, college, university, corporate, or other adult education settings.

2014 - 2015 Demonstration of Program Outcomes MS in Higher Ed Adult Education

  • Non-Performance
  • Basic
  • Proficient
  • Distinguished

  • 0%
  • 20%
  • 40%
  • 60%
  • 80%
  • 100%

Adapt strategies and methods to address the characteristics of adult learners.
Advance the practice of learning and teaching within the field of adult education.
Apply adult education principles and theories to instruction, program development, and enhancement of learning.
Apply reflective strategies that lead to improved personal and professional practice.
Evaluate how globalization and diversity influence educational outcomes.
Influence the vision and direction of adult education.
Integrate effective communication and ethical practices that support professional adult learning principles and expectations.


Outcome Demonstrations
Source: Aggregated outcome assessment results from Q22014 – Q12015 capstone courses



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Higher Education Leadership and Administration Specialization

The master's Higher Education Leadership and Administration specialization integrates current, recognized theory and best practices with practical application. Learners may choose from two emphases: Higher Education Program Administration or Community College Leadership. Learners engage in a curriculum that emphasizes history, politics and public policy, law and governance, finance and development, and program administration. Successful graduates of this specialization are prepared to pursue leadership positions at community colleges; universities; or other public, private, or for-profit postsecondary educational institutions.

2014 - 2015 Demonstration of Program Outcomes MS in Higher Education Leadership and Administration

  • Non-Performance
  • Basic
  • Proficient
  • Distinguished

  • 0%
  • 20%
  • 40%
  • 60%
  • 80%
  • 100%

Apply professional practices that support diversity, equity and ethical decision making for academic excellence.
Apply relevant higher education theory and research to personal leadership skills and practice.
Apply technology to implement data driven decisions.
Communicate and collaborate effectively as a leader in higher education.
Manage change in higher education organizations.
Manage resources of higher education organizations.


Outcome Demonstrations
Source: Aggregated outcome assessment results from Q22014 – Q12015 capstone courses



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Integrative Studies Specialization

The master's Integrative Studies specialization is designed for mid-career professionals and leaders within a variety of settings including adult and higher education, alternative educational programs, allied health care, military, and for-profit and non-profit organizations. This program does not lead to licensure but is intended for those who desire to customize a program of study that fits the unique needs of a diverse group of professionals in changing educational environments. Learners will demonstrate an understanding of the competencies of this specialization through a portfolio-creation process.

2014 - 2015 Demonstration of Program Outcomes MS in Higher Ed Integrative Studies

  • Non-Performance
  • Basic
  • Proficient
  • Distinguished

  • 0%
  • 20%
  • 40%
  • 60%
  • 80%
  • 100%

Apply concepts of diversity, ethics, and critical thinking to solve problems.
Apply leadership best practices based on research driven strategies that support change in educational environments.
Employ effective communication skills and technology tools to improve learning, productivity, and professional practice.
Engage in ongoing professional development.
Integrate effective teaching and learning knowledge and strategies in diverse professional settings and disciplines.


Outcome Demonstrations
Source: Aggregated outcome assessment results from Q22014 – Q12015 capstone courses



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Quality and Professional Relevance

  • The National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) has accredited Capella's Professional Education Unit, which is made up of 14 advanced academic offerings that prepare individuals to serve in a variety of roles within the P–12 education environment. NCATE-accredited programs are recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation for the preparation of P-12 teachers and other professional school personnel. Graduates of these programs are highly regarded by many school districts, licensing authorities, and teaching professionals.

1This specialization is not intended to lead to teacher certification. Teachers are advised to contact their individual school districts as to whether this program may qualify for salary advancement.

Master's Education Program Graduates

Data from graduates across all Education Master's programs have been combined for these Career Outcomes results.

The graphs below show some key findings from Capella's Alumni Outcomes Survey. We use this information to help improve our courses, programs and services and to give you an idea of how alumni are using their degrees.

Satisfaction with Capella Eduation Master's 

Graduates

Percentage of respondents who answered "strongly agree" or "agree."
Source: Responses to the Alumni Outcomes Survey one year after graduation. The data were collected during Q2 2014 – Q1 2015.

Improvement in Skills & Abilities Education Master's Graduates

Percentage of respondents who indicated they had accomplished each item.
Source: Responses to the Alumni Outcomes Survey one year after graduation. The data were collected during Q2 2014 – Q1 2015.

Master's Education Program Graduates

Data from graduates across all Education Master's programs have been combined for these Student Experience results.

The graphs below show some key findings from Capella's Alumni Outcomes Survey. We use this information to help improve our courses, programs and services and to give you an idea of how alumni feel about Capella and what general skills and abilities they gained.

Satisfaction with Capella Eduation Master's Graduates

Percentage of respondents who answered affirmatively.
Source: Responses to the Alumni Outcomes Survey one year after graduation. The data were collected during Q2 2014 – Q1 2015.

Improvement in Skills & Abilities Education Master's Graduates

Percentage of respondents who rated themselves as "proficient" or "exceptional" on ability to demonstrate the skill or ability on the job.
Source: Responses to the Alumni Outcomes Survey one year after graduation. The data were collected during Q2 2014 – Q1 2015.

Expense, completion, & career information (Gainful Employment)

Capella believes in being clear about the real cost, time, and value of a Capella degree The Gainful Employment disclosures, required by the US Department of Education (ED) (under 34 CFR 688.6 ), provide some information about completion, expenses and occupations based on learners who graduated between July 2013 and June 2014. Most of our students are part-time so they might not take a full course load or attend all 4 quarters each year. We took that into account in calculating these data. For example, we define program length for certificates and master's and doctoral degrees as the number of calendar quarters it takes a typical student to complete a program. The ED has defined time to complete for a Bachelor's degree as 4 years. Program cost is based on the specific pricing structure for each program which is either a cost per credit or a cost per active quarter.

Other related information may be found on the Learning Outcomes, Career Outcomes, and Student Experience tabs on this page.

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Learn more about these values and how they are calculated»

See Gainful Employment data for this program's specializations

Earn Your Master's Degree

Four graduate schools. More than 40 specializations. Enroll in an online master’s degree program at Capella.


Alumni Success Story Quote

Photo of Talonda Thomas, MS Talonda Thomas, MS

"When I started my master's program, all of a sudden everything was completely tailored to what I needed in my classroom and what I should be doing with my students."

Watch Talonda's story »