Higher Education and Student Affairs (HESA) Leadership Concentration Courses

Learn more about the courses in the higher education and student affairs leadership concentration in the educational leadership master's program in the Department of Educational Leadership, Research and Technology at Western Michigan University. Additional information available on the current students resources section of the website. Printable version.

6890 Global Perspectives with Dunn

Unless otherwise noted, all courses are three credit hours.

I.  Leadership core

Section total: Four credits

II. Specialty core in Higher education and student affairs

Section total: 21 credits

III. Field experience

Students currently working full-time in appropriate higher education/student affairs position may be eligible to waive up to 150 hours of the Field Experience required clock hours. This will be determined with the faculty advisor. Students will complete the appropriate paperwork and reflective practice assignment to receive the waiver.

Section total: Three credits

IV.  Diversity cognate

The WMU higher education and student affairs program was founded on and continues to emphasize issues of inclusion and access to higher education for historically marginalized and or under served student populations in higher education. One way this is actualized is through a required and individually designed diversity cognate, six credit hours selected by the student with help from an advisor. Courses for the diversity cognate should meet the stated goals and be approved by the faculty advisor.

  • Diversity cognate courses. A variety of courses at WMU or beyond may fit. (Courses may range from 1 to 3 credits for a total of 6 credits). Sampling of previous courses have included:Asian American students in higher education, Global perspectives in higher education, LGBT students in higher education, Students with disabilities, Social justice mission of community colleges, Hispanics and Latinos in higher education, White privilege and White identity, Women in leadership, First-generation college students.

Sample list of diversity cognate coursesStudy abraod pre departure

Section total: six credits


Free Elective - Advisor approval required Students may choose a graduate level elective that aligns with HESA program goals and personal career interests with faculty advisor approval. Courses may include hot topic mini seminars, research courses, independent study, research projects, additional field work/internships, combinations of options and others. Students should provide the course description and clearly articulate how the free elective course aligns with HESA program goals and will assist in developing themselves as a practitioner-scholar for service in entry and mid-level positions in higher education.

Section total: three credits

 VI. Capstone experience and portfolio development

  • EDLD 6792: Capstone Seminar, 100 supervised field-based hours, plus  seminar, plus portfolio
  • Participation in a shorter (100 hour) advanced practicum experience coupled with a seminar course; and, development of an electronic portfolio representing all academic work and professional experiences during the master's program.

Section total: 2 credits

Program total: 39 credits

New Multi-year plan of HESA courses (revised, Spring 2019)