Apr 22, 2024  
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog 
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog

Education, Adult Education/Human Resource Development: M.S.Ed.

Admission Criteria

The following must be provided when submitting the online application:

  • An online application submitted at: http://www.jmu.edu/grad/prospective.
  • Official transcripts reflecting all post-secondary education, with a cumulative grade point average of 2.75 or higher. Applicants can have electronic copies of transcripts sent via eSCRIP-SAFE.
  • A two- to three-page personal statement explaining why the applicant is interested in pursuing a Master’s in AHRD.
  • Two letters of recommendation from employers or educators who can attest to the applicant’s potential for graduate-level course work.
  • A copy of the applicant’s current resume.

The Master of Science in Education (M.S.Ed.) degree in adult education/human resource development is designed for persons entering or advancing in positions associated with learning in education, business, industry, government, and other public and private sector organizations. The program is targeted to college graduates pursuing a career in the AHRD field, experienced AHRD professionals who want to expand their skills and enhance their career potential, and working managers and professionals in leadership roles where skills in developing and leading people have become critical to their organizations’ success. A major strength of the program is that it allows individuals to tailor their programs to individual career needs and objectives.

Program Mission and Outcomes

The mission of the AHRD program is to prepare professionals to lead, design, implement and evaluate learning programs within education, business, industry, government, military, health care, and other public and private sector organizations. In addition to delivering effective instruction, AHRD professionals design ways to improve human performance, facilitate change and enhance creativity.

By completing our program, graduates will be able to:

  • Understand and apply systems theory, analytic systems, principles of adult development, learning theory and leadership theory.
  • Understand business, industry, educational and other organizational settings.
  • Identify, understand and build effective organizational relationships that support teaching, learning and continuous human performance improvement appropriate to the context.
  • Organize, manage and evaluate teaching, learning and continuous human performance improvement efforts.
  • Analyze, design, develop, implement and evaluate targeted curriculum in appropriate modes (including distance, action, self-directed, transformative, informal learning, etc.) for individual, team and organizational applications with a focus on continuous human performance improvement.
  • Facilitate and lead team-based learning activities appropriate to the context.
  • Apply appropriate technologies in the creation of learning programs.
  • Recognize and respond responsibly to issues of diversity and ethics.
  • Demonstrate the ability to articulate and forecast the vision and role for teaching, learning and continuous human performance improvement appropriate to a context.
  • Interpret and conduct research.

Students in the adult education/human resource development program must follow several fundamental guidelines:

  • Consult program advisers for advice and approval regarding curricular requirements.
  • Plan to count no more than six credit hours of workshop credit in any degree program. To be accepted, workshop courses must be approved for credit in the program. The program will not accept workshop courses offered by departments outside the College of Education for elective credit.
  • Adhere to The Graduate School policy that at least half of the courses in any graduate program be at the 600 level.
  • Secure the required approval of the advisers for any course credits to be transferred into a JMU degree program.

Degree Requirements

The program consists of a minimum of 36 credit hours of course work. These credits include core program courses, electives and either a research project or a thesis. Students electing the thesis option will take one fewer elective course as thesis credits total 6 hours.

Comprehensive Examination

During the final semester in which the learner is enrolled in this program, they will participate in an oral comprehensive examination to be conducted by the learner’s advisory committee. The examination will cover key concepts, principles, theories and practices covered in the core courses. The comprehensive examination committee consists of at least two full-time AHRD faculty members and/or faculty of courses taken by the student.

Degree Requirements

  • Required Courses Credits: 27.00
  • Research Paper or Thesis Credits: 3.00 - 6.00
  • Electives Credits: ​​​​​​​3.00-6.00

Degree Requirements Total: 36 Credit Hours

Core Minimum Requirements: 27 Credit Hours

The core requirements consist of foundational courses that are the basis for the understanding of adult education/ human resource development. These core courses encourage learners to investigate adult education/human resource development and to appreciate all facets of this dynamic field.

Research Paper or Thesis: 3-6 Credit Hours

Choose one of the following options:

Research Paper Option

Research Students take AHRD 680  for three credit hours and choose six credit hours of electives.

Thesis Option

Thesis students take AHRD 700  for six credits and choose three credit hours of electives.

Elective Courses: 3-6 Credit Hours

  • Electives Credits: 3.00-6.00

Total: 36 Credit Hours