May 19, 2024  
2021-2022 Graduate Catalog 
2021-2022 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Professional Studies, M.P.S.

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Program Information

Julie Fox-Horton, Ph.D., Graduate Coordinator
316 Nell Dossett Hall
Box 70659
(423) 439-4223


The Professional Studies, M.P.S. is a 30-33 credit online, interdisciplinary graduate degree designed for working professionals and aspiring professionals seeking graduate education combining two or more disciplines with profession-specific requirements or skills. Professional Studies, M.P.S. students complete a common core, and then design the remainder of their program of study from approved graduate elective courses from Social Science or STEAM fields. Students choose either a thesis or a culminating project to complete their programs of study.

Admissions Policy

Requirements for unconditional admission:

  1. A baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution.
  2. An undergraduate cumulative grade point average of at least 2.75 on a 4.0 scale. International students are required to have a GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.
  3. Two letters of recommendation.
  4. An up-to-date resume.
  5. A 500- to 600-word essay detailing the applicant’s reasons for applying to the M.P.S., Professional Studies program and discussing how the program will help the applicant achieve personal and professional goals.

Requirements for unconditional admission with provision(s):

Applicants who do not meet the requirements for unconditional admission might be admitted with provisions if their overall academic and professional records indicate potential for success in the program. Provision(s) may include, but are not limited to, taking prerequisite undergraduate courses, enrolling in specified graduate-level courses, and achieving a specified grade point average.


Professional Studies, M.P.S. Degree Requirements: 30-33 credits

Core Requirements 9 credits 
Advisor Approved Electives 18-21 credits
Culminating Project or Thesis 3-6 credits
TOTAL 30-33 credits

* Project Option: 3 credits (33 credits total) students in the project option will take one additional course from the elective list.
Thesis Option: 3-6 credits (30-33 credits total)

Professional Studies Core Requirements: 9 credits

Advisor Approved Electives: 18-21 credits

Students will select courses from an approved list of electives maintained by the graduate coordinator.

* Students in the project option will take one additional course from the elective list.

Culminating Project/Thesis: 3-6 credits

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