DOCTORAL

Individually Designed Concentration

Overview & Requirements
Applying
Careers & Internships

Doctoral students may have research interests that cut across our designated doctoral concentrations. In keeping with our traditions of interdisciplinary scholarship, rather than requiring you to choose a concentration that may not be the best preparation for the work you wish to do, we offer an Individually Designed Concentration option.

Students may propose an Individually Designed Concentration by preparing a formal request within one year of initial enrollment. The Individually Designed Concentration should combine work in the Center for the Study of Higher and Postsecondary Education with work in other departments and schools within the University.

Students are assigned an academic advisor from among the Center for the Study of Higher and Postsecondary Education (CSHPE) faculty members, based on shared professional interests. Students and advisors work together to develop a plan of study that is appropriate to the student’s background and career interests. As students progress, they meet annually with CSHPE faculty, who conduct an academic review of students’ progress to ensure all needs are being met. Higher education course descriptions, including syllabi, are available online. As a student's interests and ideals are honed with gained knowledge and experience, a change of advisor may be in the student's best academic interest.

Additional Certificate and Endorsement Opportunities
Learning Experience Design Certificate

Requirements

Total Credit Hours Required
60

Credit Hours

60

Students propose an Individually Designed Concentration by preparing a formal request within one year of initial enrollment.

Questions?

Questions?

Frequently Asked Questions

Prospective students

Prospective Students

CSHPE students
Discover more offerings from CSHPE

The Center for the Study of Postsecondary and Higher Education

Associated Faculty

Associate Professor

734-647-1652

Director, Center for the Study of Higher and Postsecondary Education; Professor

734-615-3349

Professor; Faculty Associate, Research Center for Group Dynamics, Institute for Social Research

734-647-8394

Marvin W. Peterson Collegiate Professor of Education; Professor of Public Policy, Gerald R Ford School of Public Policy

734-647-1984

Professor, School of Education; Professor of Public Policy, Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy; Professor, Department of Economics, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts

734-615-5113

Professor, School of Education; Professor of Integrative Systems and Design, College of Engineering

734-647-1979

Professor of Education; Professor of Economics, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts; Professor of Public Policy, Gerald R Ford School of Public Policy

734-647-8366

Assistant Professor

734-647-2130

Connect with CSHPE

Contact

Phone: (734) 764-9470
Fax: (734) 764-2510
cshpe.info@umich.edu

Location

610 E. University Avenue
Room 2117
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-1259

Office Hours

Monday–Friday
8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Application Deadline

Final
December 1
All students

Application Process

Step 1: Prepare your application materials

To submit a successful application for admission, you need to provide the following:

  • Academic Statement of Purpose

    • Part-Time Admission: Applicants seeking admission to a master’s program may attend on a part-time basis. Please indicate this in your Academic Statement of Purpose.

    • The Academic Statement of Purpose should be a concise statement about your academic and research background, your career goals, and your reasons for applying to this degree program. Please be specific in explaining how the course offerings and faculty expertise of this program fit your educational and career objectives. Please mention if you are interested in attending part-time. We are also interested in how you learned about our program. Two double-spaced pages is considered a good length. 

  • Personal Statement 

    • 500 word limit

    • How have your background and life experiences, including cultural, geographical, financial, educational or other opportunities or challenges, motivated your decision to pursue a graduate degree at the University of Michigan? For example, if you grew up in a community where educational, cultural, or other opportunities were either especially plentiful or especially lacking, you might discuss the impact this had on your development and interests. This should be a discussion of the journey that has led to your decision to seek a graduate degree. Please do not repeat your Academic Statement of Purpose. 

  • Three (3) letters of recommendation

    • We strongly encourage two of your letters come from individuals who are familiar with your academic performance. The third may be from a professional reference.

    • Register your recommenders' names and contact information on the online application so that they will be sent instructions for submitting their letters via the application system. Let your recommenders know that they need to upload a letter and that it is required by the program. 

    • As soon as you click "save" on the page of the application where your recommenders' contact information is entered, they will receive an email with instructions for completing the process. Proceed to this point in the application process as soon as possible to trigger that email.

  • Resume or CV

  • GRE Test Scores (valid 5 years from test date)

    • Provide ETS with the U-M Institutional Code of 1839 and your scores will be sent directly to the university.

    • If you are applying as a dual degree candidate to our MA/MBA program we will accept GMAT scores in place of GRE scores.

  • TOEFL, MELAB, ECPE, or IELTS scores (for non-native speakers of English only; valid 2 years from test date)

Step 2: Create an ApplyWeb account, managed by Rackham Graduate School

 

Create an account with Rackham Graduate School. 

This program, like all of the School of Education's graduate programs, is administered through the University of Michigan's Horace H. Rackham School of Graduate Studies. Rackham offers a host of resources and administrative support to help see you through from submitting your application to completion of your degree.

Step 3: Complete pages 1-5 of application using ApplyWeb

  • After completing page 5 of the application, you will receive an e-mail with your U-M ID. A U-M ID number will be issued to you via email within 5 business days of completing pages 1-5 and advancing to page 6 of the ApplyWeb application. Having your U-M ID number to include on all your application materials ensures accurate and timely processing, so we encourage you to complete pages 1-5 early in the process.

  • If you need to submit your application before you receive your U-M ID number, you may still complete the application. Include your date of birth and the program’s name on your application materials.

  • Current and former U-M Ann Arbor students, alumni and employees: You do not need to obtain a new U-M ID number. Use your previously obtained U-M ID number.

  • If your personal information has changed (for example, legal name, gender), make sure the personal information you submit with your application matches your previous Ann Arbor campus record. If your previous Ann Arbor campus record does not display your current personal information, contact the Registrar’s Office or the Shared Services Center to change your personal information before you apply.

Step 4: Upload academic statement of purpose, the personal statement, and a curriculum vitae (CV) or resume to the ApplyWeb application

 

Include at the top of each document:

  • The type of document (Academic Statement of Purpose, Personal Statement, or Curriculum Vitae or Resume)

  • Your name

  • The name of the graduate program

  • Your 8 digit U-M ID (if known)

Make sure margins are at least one-inch so nothing is cropped when you upload the documents to the application.

Step 5: Submit test scores

GRE Test Scores (valid 5 years from test date)

  • Provide ETS with the U-M Institutional Code of 1839 and your scores will be sent directly to the university.

  • If you are applying as a dual-degree candidate to our MA/MBA program, we will accept GMAT scores in place of GRE scores.

TOEFL, MELAB, ECPE, or IELTS scores (for non-native speakers of English only; valid 2 years from test date)

Step 6: Submit transcripts

  • Upload an electronic version of your official transcript(s) for each Bachelor’s, Master’s, Professional, or Doctoral degree earned or in progress through your ApplyWeb application account (part of the Rackham application system). Do not upload academic records printed from your school’s website or student portal.  

  • You are not required to send official transcripts at the time of application. If you are recommended for admission, the Rackham Graduate School will require official transcripts. Admitted applicants will receive an email notification when the official transcripts are required.

  • Students who have studied in a country outside of the U.S. should review the required credentials from non-U.S. institutions. For all degrees obtained at non-U.S. institutions—Request that degree-granting institutions submit official transcripts/records to the Rackham Graduate School at the time of application.

  • Information for submitting official transcripts can be found on the Rackham Graduate School website.

Step 7: Check that letters of recommendation have been submitted

  • We strongly encourage two of your letters come from individuals who are familiar with your academic performance. The third may be from a professional reference.

  • Register your recommenders' names and contact information on the online application so that they will be sent instructions for submitting their letters via the application system. Let your recommenders know that they need to upload a letter and that it is required by the program. 

  • As soon as you click "save" on the page of the application where your recommenders' contact information is entered, they will receive an email with instructions for completing the process. Proceed to this point in the application process as soon as possible to trigger that email.

Step 8: Create a U-M Friend Account

Check on your application status. If you’ve been accepted, you will receive an email with information on how to send your official transcripts.

Step 9: Respond to admission offer

  • If you have been accepted, congratulations! You may accept or decline the offer of admission in your U-M Friend Account. 

  • For international students that accept offer of admission, Rackham prepares immigration documents for visas. 

Contact us

For questions regarding the master's or doctoral program application in Higher Education:
Jessica Mason 
Admissions and Graduate Records Coordinator 
jessfred@umich.edu
734-764-8483 

For questions regarding tuition, scholarships, financial aid, & residency: 
Eileen Brussolo 
Student Affairs Program Manager 
efc@umich.edu
734-936-1829 

For general questions regarding the master’s or doctoral program in Higher Education: 
Higher Education Program Office 
cshpe.info@umich.edu
734-764-9472

U-M Office of Financial Aid

 

Quick Facts

GRE general exam required

Yes

Average GRE scores of applicants

152 quant
157 verbal
4.5 writing
Scores older than five years not accepted. Institution code: 1839

Prior master's degree required

No

Undergraduate GPA guideline (4-point scale) for last two years of coursework

3.0

Graduate GPA guideline (4-point scale)

3.3

Financial aid available

Yes

Online, evening, or weekend courses

No

Starting term

Fall term only

Connect with CSHPE

Contact

Phone: (734) 764-9470
Fax: (734) 764-2510
cshpe.info@umich.edu

Location

610 E. University Avenue
Room 2117
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-1259

Office Hours

Monday–Friday
8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Careers

100%

of graduate respondents found full-time employment in education within 8 months

100%

of graduates are highly satisfied or satisfied with their current position