Texas Tech University

Online Programs at TTU

M.Ed. in Higher Ed Degree Provides New Online Option

by Kelly Podzemny

A new online degree offered by the Texas Tech University College of Education is creating opportunities for higher education administrators. The Master of Education in Higher Education (M.Ed. in Higher Ed) is designed for entry-level and mid-management professionals working in higher education.

Many people in administrative positions at universities and community colleges may have their bachelor's degree, but often can't continue on to graduate school because of work schedules or personal commitments. The M.Ed. in Higher Ed allows them to continue their education while working in an environment that places a premium on advanced degrees.

"The master's online program will offer opportunities for so many people that are working in higher ed," Assistant Professor of Practice David Jones said. "They need an opportunity to advance in their career through an advanced degree and credential, but cannot do it because they cannot leave their full-time job. So the online environment really creates an opportunity for them to seek out that advancement."

TTU College of Education
Texas Tech University College of Education

The inaugural cohort of the non-thesis program begins in the upcoming spring semester and $1,000 scholarships are available to students who are accepted and enrolled in the Spring 2016 cohort. Subsequent cohorts with as many as 20 students each will begin every fall semester after.

The M.Ed. in Higher Ed is a 36 credit hour program. Students are expected to enroll in two classes per semester (Fall, Summer, and Spring) for two years to complete the program. The first phase of courses taken imparts knowledge on students to aid them in advancing through the remainder of the program. Phase two begins applying that knowledge to hypothetical situations, and includes an internship. The final phase includes a capstone course that requires students to apply what they've learned to a real-world situation on their campus.

Employment of higher education administrators is projected to grow faster than for other university-related occupations through 2017 and retirements will also provide opportunities for those who have the required qualifications.

"Retirements for the population that currently works in higher ed are occurring at high rates and will continue to do so in the foreseeable future," Jones said. "So there's going to be a need for qualified and credentialed individuals to fill those positions."

The M.Ed. in Higher Ed will be unique among similar programs offered in Texas. Only two other public universities and one private school in the state offer it fully online. Most others are traditional face-to-face programs that require on-site attendance.