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Administrative Leadership Concentration

“Bay Pay’s MHE program is preparing me for success by exposing me to educational theories, engaging me in discussions with incredible peers and professors who give supportive yet constructive feedback.” - Aliza R. Micelotta, G'19


The Administrative Leadership Concentration in the MS in Higher Education Administration is a 12 course (36 credit) program. The concentration in Administration Leadership is designed for students seeking a broad exposure to issues in higher education management, governance and leadership. Graduates may pursue careers in various functional areas within colleges and universities, as well as in educational associations, government agencies and other nonprofit and for-profit organizations serving the higher education sector.


Core Courses (6 courses): MHE 500, MHE 505, MHE 630, MHE 640, MHE 650, MHE 670

Electives (choose 6 courses): Students can select from a wide number of approved graduate electives, and can check with their advisor for help selecting electives from the Higher Education Administration, Nonprofit Management & Philanthropy, Communications & Information Management, or MBA programs that interest them.

Curriculum & Schedules

Code Course Name Credit Hours
MHE500 Foundations of Higher Education Administration 3

This course provides a basic foundation in administration of colleges and universities in
modern-day America, including an exploration of the role and purpose of various functions,
departments, and major organizational constituent groups (e.g., faculty, students,
administration/staff, board) as well as the different types of institutions and their
organizational models. Current and emerging issues affecting college and university
operation are reviewed and the impact of state and federal policy on institutions is explored.
In this course students will write a life purpose paper marking their program entry, learn or
hone their APA writing skills, examine critical issues from the perspectives of key
stakeholders, apply organizational models to analyze institutions, and interview campus
staff to develop a unique case study paper.

MHE505 Organization and Decision-Making in Higher Education 3

This course explores the organizational design, characteristics, and processes of colleges
and universities with an emphasis on governance structures and decision-making.
Governance is always more difficult within an organization with multiple, often competing,
goals. Faculty, alumni, administrators, coaches, students, and government officials all have
different perspectives. The multi-frame theoretical lens explored in this course assists
stakeholders in understanding organizations and lends a basis for informed decision
making by participants. Students in this course examine the sources of power and influence
typically found in academic organizations, and through a series of case studies they apply
their knowledge of multi-frame theories to higher education organizations.

MHE610 Curriculum Design 3

This course explores curriculum, including key elements and practices in curriculum
planning, design, and implementation. Students consider the goals of liberal arts versus
vocational curriculum, undergraduate versus graduate curriculum, theoretical perspectives
on curriculum and its design, and emerging trends in curricular design at colleges and
universities. The goals, practices, and impacts of curricular assessment, program
assessment, and institutional accreditation are also emphasized. Students analyze
curricular practices, and try their hand at curricular projects of their own design.

MHE620 Supporting Success of Diverse Students 3

The college campus has undergone vast changes in the last century. While access to
higher education has been broadened significantly, the challenges that result from the
diverse students and student groups have impacted college services and the educational
process. At the same time, a diverse student body creates many benefits for a campus
community. In this course students develop an understanding of the characteristics,
experiences, and outcomes of increasingly diverse students (including traditional and non-
traditional students) in higher education today. They examine varied higher education campus environments and their impact on student learning, the impact of technology on course delivery models, and various cultural contexts which shape and influence student
life. Specific attention is given to administrative practices within colleges and universities,
including student affairs, enrollment management, academic affairs, and marketing.
Students apply their knowledge to several projects, including conducting a student
interview to analyze and apply concepts related to students’ diverse experiences in higher
education today.

MHE630 Legal Issues and Ethics in Higher Education 3

This course is designed to assist students in becoming knowledgeable about the
fundamentals of American law that directly and indirectly impinge on the teaching, learning,
and administrative environments of higher education institutions in both the public and
private sectors. There are diverse sources of law that impact American higher education in
numerous ways and this course is designed to enhance student understanding and
appreciation for this complexity as well as for the ethical issues which surround the
application of law in the college or university or setting. Students will identity resources to
use when facing legal and ethical issues on their campus, become an active consumer of
legal advice, build competence engaging in informed dialog with legal counsel, deepen
their understanding of social justice issues and ethics on college campuses, and engage in
self-reflection regarding the role that bias can play in decision-making.

MHE640 History and Economics of Higher Education 3

In this course students develop a conceptual overview of the history of higher education
and the forces which shaped it, and an understanding of how this history directly impacts
our institutions of today. Specific attention is given to the broader political, social, cultural,
and economic context within which higher education was established and continues to
develop today. In this course students also examine financial, economic, and budgetary
issues, resource allocation and control, and learn how higher education leaders make fiscal
decisions. Students apply their knowledge to several projects including a budget committee
member simulation in which they allocate institutional resources in alignment with campus
needs and values.

MHE650 Capstone Seminar I: Design of an Applied Research Project 3

This course is designed to give students the opportunity to facilitate meaningful change in
higher education through the creation of an original applied research project. During the
course, each student will design a significant project (applied independent research)
pertaining to a specific higher education management issue or problem of their choosing.
They will write a purpose statement and research question, write an introduction to the problem, research and write a review of literature, develop a framework, and outline a methodology for the proposed study which they will carry out in the subsequent MHE 670
course.  MHE 650 and MHE 670 are complimentary "sister" courses to be taken as a
sequence. Prerequisites: ten concentration track courses are required before the 650
and 670 courses can be taken.

MHE670 Capstone Seminar II: Conducting Applied Research in the Field 3

In this final course, students conduct an applied research project of their choosing which
they designed in the preceding 650 course. Building on their drafted plans, students
develop a survey or interview protocol, apply for review by the university’s IRB, collect
original data in the field, analyze and interpret their data, and draft original
recommendations for practitioners in the field. This research project provides students the
opportunity to demonstrate their ability to apply content, investigative methods, data-driven
problem-solving, and original critical thinking to a specific management-related issue,
problem, or challenge. Each student will complete and publicly present the results of their
applied research project, and will also complete a program learning outcomes ePortfolio.
Prerequisite: MHE 650