MSc in College Student Personnel Services & Administration

University of Central Arkansas

Program Description
AACSB Accredited

MSc in College Student Personnel Services & Administration

University of Central Arkansas

The College Student Personnel Services and Administration (CSPA) program provides professional preparation for students seeking student services positions in both two-year and four-year postsecondary institutions. The program is interdisciplinary to prepare student services administrators for diverse areas of responsibility, including campus climate and diversity, finance, budgeting, grant writing, assessment, leadership, and legal/ethical issues.

Consistent with the standards and beliefs stated by ACPA: College Student Educators International, NASPA: Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education, and the Council for the Advancement of Standards (CAS), UCA’s course of study offers opportunities to experience the exciting relationship between theory and practice. Students are expected to meet the intellectual challenges of coursework, assistantships, and professional involvement while participating in learning experiences leading to an understanding of college student development, collegiate subcultures, organizational dynamics, and the nature of higher education.

The CSPA specialization provides coursework and practice leading to a Master of Science in College Student Personnel Services and Administration.

Cohort Model

The CSPA program follows a cohort model in which approximately 15-20 students are admitted to pursue courses concurrently. Students take their classes with the members of their cohort during the two-year track.

Students benefit from:

  • Mutual academic and emotional support for program success and timely completion
  • Camaraderie and collaborative learning with experienced colleagues
  • Lasting personal ties and professional networks that aid in career development and ongoing professional growth

Program Requirements

The program integrates theory with practice by combining academic preparation with field-based experiences and internships. The program also provides students access to graduate-level instruction from faculty with diverse backgrounds, including field practitioners.

The academic program requires the completion of 42 semester hours of graduate credit. Additionally, a written comprehensive examination or thesis is required for graduation competency requirements.

Degree Plan

Fall I

  • CSPA 6310 History of American Higher Education
  • LEAD 6330 Counseling Process and Skills
  • CSPA 6391 Principles and Practices
 in Student Affairs

Spring I

  • LEAD 6321 Research Methods
  • CSPA 6360 Diversity in Higher Education
  • CSPA 6365 Practicum
  • CSPA 6392 Student Development Theory

Summer I

  • CSPA 6370 Internship
  • LEAD 6390 Special Topics – Study Abroad

Fall II

  • LEAD 6320 Counseling Theories
  • CSPA 6320 Law in Higher Education
  • CSPA 6325 Assessment in Student Affairs
  • CSPA 6V95 Thesis

Spring II

  • CSPA 6311 Leadership & Supervision
  • CSPA 6318 Budgeting and Finance
  • CSPA 6335 Grant Writing
  • CSPA 6V95 Thesis

Prospective students can apply to the CSPA program at any time during the year. Applicants who qualify may enter the program on a full-time or a part-time basis.

In applying for admission, prospective students must present evidence of their ability to participate successfully in a graduate-level academic endeavor. To be considered, applicants must meet the general requirements for admission to the Graduate School and complete all necessary files.

Admission to the Graduate School is based on the following requirements:

  1. Online application
  2. Graduate School application fee
  3. Transcripts from all institutions attended
  4. Entrance exam scores (GRE or Praxis CORE)

For more information, please visit the Graduate School website.

Admission to the CSPA program is based on the following requirements:

  1. A completed application for admission
  2. Resume
  3. Three letters of recommendation from professionals who are familiar with the applicant’s professional and academic performance, and can address capabilities to be successful in graduate school and the profession
  4. A one-page single-spaced letter of intent that includes reasons for becoming a student affairs professional, reasons for applying to this program, and future goals in the profession
  5. Personal interview with CSPA faculty members

Upon receiving completed applications, program faculty will contact applicants regarding participation in the CSPA Interviewing Conference.

Cost & Fees

Tuition Rates

This school offers programs in:
  • English

Last updated October 23, 2017
Duration & Price
This course is Campus or Online
Start Date
Start date
Sept. 2018
2 years
Part time
Full time
USA - Conway, Arkansas
Start date: Sept. 2018
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info
Sept. 2018
USA - Conway, Arkansas
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info
Price see Tuition Rates table under Cost & Fees