Minors and Support Areas

Graduate students not wishing to be admitted to a specific program, but wishing to take specific courses or support/minor areas of study within the A&HE curriculum are encouraged to do so. The faculty sees this as a way to better prepare future faculty members for all disciplines/fields and to serve MSU's teaching effort through graduate assistants. Interested graduate students should seek the advice of a program faculty member and their committee chair.

Schedule of Course Offerings

The schedule of course offerings has been designed with students in mind. The majority of students in Adult and Higher Education are part-time graduate students with full-time adult responsibilities. Therefore, the schedule has several significant features:

  • Most fall and spring semester courses are offered evenings or weekends.

  • Courses are offered in a regular, predictable rotation as much as possible. Core courses defined for each focus are offered at least once each year. At a minimum, all other courses are offered every other year. During the summer, courses are offered based on student needs.

  • Students may begin classes in the fall, spring or summer as a full-time or a part-time student. Adult and Higher Education has a history of delivering courses some at a distance, and the efficient and effective expansion of the distance education strategy is an on-going topic of discussion. Many courses are offered as hybrid courses - with a combination of face-to-face and distance delivery.

  • This schedule chart depicts a working schedule of course offerings for Higher Education Administration, Higher Education Academics (Teaching), Student Affairs, and Adult Education foci.

Adult & Higher Education Two Year Course Schedule

Program Delivery

Adult and Higher Education is interested in serving students who are not able to attend on-campus courses. Therefore, numerous, creative means of course and advising delivery are being considered for development. Alternatives include the establishment of cohort groups in centers of population; particularly, those centers where several higher education institutions are within easy driving distance for students who express similar aspirations for studies in higher education. Contact us to discuss making this possibility a reality in your area of Montana or the country.

Course Descriptions


  • EDCI 500 Dissertation Design Seminar (1 credit)

    Designed for students who are in the process of planning their doctoral research.

  • EDCI 501 Educational Statistics I (3 credits)

    The application of statistical processes to the analysis of educational data. Educational problems that require hypothesis testing, test construction statistics, regression, estimation and the Tdistribution, analysis of frequencies, and ANOVA in their solution will be included.

  • EDCI 504 Assessment and Evaluation in Education (3 credits)

    Prerequisite: Graduate standing. Evaluation as an ongoing process in education. This course will engage students in a discussion regarding the construction, selection and use of criterion-referenced, norm-referenced, and alternative assessment methods. In addition, students will be involved in special projects which allow them to explore evaluation at the classroom, program, and/or institutional levels.

  • EDCI 506 Applied Educational Research (3 credits)

    Prerequisite: Nine hours competed in major field of study. Students are introduced to systematic scientific inquiry, its purpose in an educational environment, the different approaches to conducting educational research, and the major components of an educational research study. Providing a foundation for further study of research methodologies, students will identify and evaluate existing literature on a topic and conduct an educational research study.

  • EDU 602 Educational Statistics II (3 credits)

    Prerequisite: EDCI 501. The application of statistical processes to the analysis of educational data. Educational problems that apply multifactor ANOVA, multiple comparison techniques, ANCOVA, multiple regression, and factor analysis in their solution are included.

  • EDU 607 Quantitative Education Research (3 credits)

    Prerequisite: EDU 602, EDCI 506, graduate standing. Within the context of systematic scientific inquiry, the quantitative research paradigm and designs, design-related data collection and management methodologies, appropriate data analysis and writing strategies, and the role of quantitative research in decision-support will be addressed. Students will plan and complete a quantitative research project.

  • EDU 610 Qualitative Educational Research (3 credits)

    Prerequisite: Graduate standing and EDCI 506. Within the context of systematic inquiry, the qualitative research paradigm and methods and techniques from many fields of the social sciences will be addressed. Students will plan and complete a qualitative research project.


  • EDLD 501 Foundations of Adult Education (3 credits)

    Prerequisite: Graduate standing. A survey of the field and profession of adult education as part of lifelong learning. Professionalism in adult education is approached through the study of: related adult education; historical and philosophical foundations; providers and programs; and, issues and trends. EDLD 504 Teaching and Learning in Adult Education (3 credits) Prerequisite: Graduate standing. This is a study of the adult learner, adult learning theories, and teaching strategies appropriate for adult education strategies. Practice teaching will be evaluated.

  • EDLD 509 Issues and Trends in Higher Education (3 credits)

    Prerequisite: Graduate standing. This course is an indepth and contemporary exploration of critical issues, trends, and forces facing and influencing higher education. The emphasis is on current issues, but we do cover some of the historical roots. The theme throughout the course is of addressing the ways in which contemporary institutions respond to the critical issues and challenges as they are set within and often against the dynamic context of social, political, and economic forces.

  • EDLD 512 Finance and Administration in Higher Education (3 credits)

    Prerequisite: EDLD 605 or consent of instructor. The study of financial governance across higher education from macro-systems (national and state governing boards) to micro-systems (university, college, and department.) In the course, students assess the impact of various decisions and levels of funding on students and an institution's financial status.

  • EDLD 513 Resource and Program Management (3 credits)

    Prerequisite: Graduate standing. The study of program/department management in higher and adult education, for both academic and administrative/support units. Includes issues that deal with the management of faculty, support personnel, programs, facilities, and budgeting.

  • EDLD 529 Post Secondary Distance Delivered Education (3 credits)

    Prerequisite: Graduate standing. Higher, continuing, and adult education professionals will study the literature, strategies, and practices involved in delivering post secondary education at a distance.

  • EDLD 531 Student Development Theory (3 credits)

    Prerequisite: Graduate Standing. This course will introduce the theories which have been advanced regarding college students and the professional practice of student affairs. The course will examine the similarities and differences among college students and the impact which different environments and policies may have on student psycho-social development, learning attitudes, values, behaviors, and satisfaction with college.

  • EDLD 533 Law and Policy in Higher Education (3 credits)

    Prerequisite: Graduate standing. Analysis and interpretation of landmark legislation affecting American higher education since 1960 and the resulting policies that govern the management of universities and colleges. Topics include separation of church and state, access, collective bargaining, intercollegiate athletics, affirmative action, and relations with state and federal governments.

  • EDLD 535 Student Services (3 credits)

    Prerequisite: EDLD 616. Students will examine philosophical, organizational and programmatic aspects of postsecondary student services and the ethical and legal dimensions of student affairs professional practice.

  • EDLD 538 College Curriculum (3 credits)

    Prerequisite: Graduate standing. This course considers the definition, philosophical and historical roots, disciplinary organization, current issues, designs, administration, and evaluation of the college curriculum.

  • EDLD 605 Higher Education History and Philosophy (3 credits)

    Prerequisite: Graduate standing. This course is an indepth past-to-present tour of the historical and philosophical development of American higher education set agains the dynamic backgrounds of political, social, economic, cultural, and intellectual landscapes.

  • EDLD 616 Organization and Administration of Higher Education (3 credits)

    In this course students will examine the different organizational structures that characterize and govern American higher education. In this introduction to the field of higher education governance, organizational structures will be examined in relation to the role of the "educational" unit and organization theory.

  • EDLD 628 College Students (3 credits)

    Prerequisite: Graduate standing. This foundations course reviews theory and research on undergraduate college students' learning, development, culture, demographics, and sub-populations which inform current educational practice.

  • EDLD 635 College Teaching (3 credits)

    Prerequisite: Graduate standing. This course is designed to explore the learningteacher nexus with special attention to effective teaching practices and models, learning and assessment theories and perspectives, and effective course design. We will approach all of these topics in the spirit of the scholarship of teaching and learning and with attention to tradition and diverse learners.

  • EDU 614 Program Evaluation (3 credits)

    Prerequisite: EDLD 506 and graduate standing. This course exposes students to the necessary and accepted literature, models, standards, strategies, and skills to plan and implement an assessment or program evaluation of educational programs, services, and administration. These assessments are aimed at various internal and external clients including accrediting agencies, national funding organizations, and other governing bodies in higher education. To this end, students are introduced to systematic assessment methodologies appropriate for a variety of academic programs, the different approaches to conducting assessment research, and the major components of an assessment plan. Students identify and evaluate existing literature on a topic and then conduct an original assessment project to deepen their understanding of the assessment process.

  • EDU 637 Institutional Research and Assessment (3 credits)

    Prerequisite: EDLD 616. Students will explore the roles of institutional research and assessment in higher education identifying appropriate measures for academic and administrative assessment, internal and external data sources, analytic techniques, and the communication of information to academic and administrative decision makers.

  • NASX 523 American Indians and Minorities in Higher Education (3 credits)

    Prerequisite: NAS 100 or NAS 242. The course will develop and build the student's understanding of the historical and current situation of American Indians and other minorities in U.S. higher education. It will also focus on the unique place of tribal colleges in U.S. higher education.


  • EDU 600 Doctoral Seminar (3 Credits) Prerequisite: Doctoral standing and instructor approval. This course introduces and orients new students to the expectations and culture of doctoral study.
  • EDU 650 Dissertation Seminar (3 Credits) Prerequisite: Doctoral standing and instructor approval. This course is designed to help students prepare their dissertation proposal.

  • EDU 690 Doctoral Thesis (1-12 Credits) Prerequisite: Doctoral standing. Restricted Entry: Requires contract with major advisor. Course will address responsible conduct of research.


Beyond required courses, a student's program of study may (with approval of the chair, committee, and faculty member) complete other courses as well as those included in the following list.

  • EDCI 500 Seminar (1 credit, 4 max.)
  • EDLD 570 Individual Problems (1-3 credits, 6 max.)
  • EDLD 575 Research or Professional Paper/Project (1-4 credits, 6 max.)
  • EDLD 576 Internship (2-12 credits, 12 max.)
  • EDLD 580 Special Topics (1-4 credits)

NOTE: EDCI 500, 570, and 576 credits may only total a maximum of one third of the total credits in the student's program of study. These courses are particularly useful when:

  • supplemental, specialized knowledge is required by the student's committee or desired by the student.
  • a student has available elective credit space because they selected to complete the Support Area (9 credits) rather than a minor.
  • there are special circumstances that the student's committee believes would justify substituting a required course with a more appropriate one from this list or other courses.