College Student Affairs and Development (MS)

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The Master of Science in College Student Affairs and Development (CSAD) is a 36-credit program that prepares students to work as a student affairs professional across a variety of settings and functional roles. This degree will allow for entry into a broad range of areas in a higher education setting, but it emphasizes knowledge and skills that prepare students to work directly with students in “front-line” roles. 

This program will prepare students for a career in student affairs in alignment with NASPA/ACPA competencies, with a particular focus on Social Justice and Inclusion, Student Learning and Development, and Advising and Supporting

Admission to the Program

The application process is managed by the Center for Graduate Studies.

There is no single factor or test score to determine student admission to the Master of Science in College Student Affairs and Development. However, a bachelor's degree is required, with an expected minimum GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Data used to reach an admissions decision include:

  1. An online graduate application with the student’s written objective for entering the program;
  2. All undergraduate and graduate transcripts;
  3. Contact information for three recommendations (from an employer, a professor, and a character reference); and
  4. A group interview (see below).

After reviewing these data, the Counselor Education faculty discusses all information regarding each applicant. The decision to accept or deny an applicant lies wholly within the jurisdiction of the department.


After reviewing submitted materials, selected applicants are invited to a group interview that involves Counselor Education faculty and approximately eight to 12 applicants. This interview assesses sensitivity, oral/verbal ability, communication skills (including feedback), self-awareness and interpersonal skills.

Program Requirements

Students must meet the College's standards for graduate study.


Students are encouraged to consult course descriptions for prerequisites.

Students complete the following coursework:

  • EDC 502: Self in Society College Student Affairs
  • EDC 602: Counseling Concepts
  • EDC 603: Group Counseling Concepts
  • EDC 606: Research and Program Evaluation
  • EDC 614: Contemporary Issues
  • EDC 626: Counseling in College Settings
  • EDC 627: College Student Development
  • EDC 718: Pre-Practicum
  • EDC 723: Implementation I - College Counselor

The program provides flexibility in terms of course sequence and number credits per semester, but below is an example of pathway through the program that would allow students graduate in 5 semester (including one summer):

Fall #1 (9 credits)

  • EDC 502 Self-n-Society (6 credits)
  • EDC 626 Counseling in College Settings (3 credits)

Spring #1 (9 credits)

  • EDC 602 Counseling Concepts (3 credits)
  • EDC 627 College Student Development (3 credits)
  • EDC 606 Research & Program Evaluation (3 credits)

Summer #1 (9 credits)

  • EDC 614 Contemporary Issues (3 credits)

Fall #2 (6 credits)

  • EDC 603 Group Counseling Concepts (3 credits)
  • EDC 718 Prepracticum (3 credits)

Spring #2 (6 credits)

  • EDC 723 Implementation I

Student Learning Outcomes

College Counseling and Student Affairs Emphasis Program Objectives

Students will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate self-care strategies appropriate to the student affairs professional role
  2. Describe the effects of power and privilege for student affairs professionals and students
  3. Describe how systemic and environmental factors affect human development, functioning, and behavior
  4. Identify strategies for advocating for diverse students’ educational development 
  5. Effectively use ethical and culturally relevant strategies for designing and facilitating groups
  6. Describe the importance of research in advancing the counseling profession, and can effectively critique research to inform counseling practice
  7. Demonstrate the following dispositions: self-awareness, integrity, respect for human dignity and diversity, and professional commitment