Counseling (MA), Student AffairsCounseling in Higher Ed Concentration at Montclair State University

Counseling, Student Affairs/Counseling in Higher Ed Concentration (MA)

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Counseling, Student Affairs/Counseling in Higher Ed Concentration (MA)

College and university campuses rely on master’s level professionals in several capacities. The Student Affairs/Higher Education concentration prepares professionals to work on college campuses in several student services capacities. Career services, student affairs, academic advising, student activities, international programs and other student-focused offices employ our graduates. The program has a strong emphasis on a counseling foundation to prepare professionals who maintain a developmental approach to their work with students.

Hear from current students and alumni on their experiences in the Counseling (MA) programs at Montclair State:

Along with the Master’s degree in Student Affairs/counseling in Higher Education, the following degrees are also offered: Master’s degree in Educational Leadership – Higher EducationMaster’s degree in Addiction CounselingMaster’s degree in Clinical Mental Health CounselingMaster’s degree in School CounselingPhD in Counseling, and a certification program leading to Director of School Counseling.

Please refer to our programs of study page for a comprehensive list of all of the graduate programs offered within the university.

Admission Requirements

The Graduate School requires the equivalent of a U.S. bachelor’s degree in order to be eligible to apply for a graduate program. Applicants with non-U.S. degrees, please visit the International Applicants page to review the U.S. degree equivalency information.

Application Checklist

In order to make applying for graduate school as seamless as possible for you, we have
created an application checklist. This checklist can be a reference point for you during the
application process to ensure that you have a comprehensive understanding of the steps
needed to apply, as well as all of corresponding supplemental materials for your specific
program of interest.

  • Application Deadline: All required materials must be received by these deadlines
    • Applying for G.A. Positions: Can apply at any time but priority will be given to completed applications received by March 1st for Fall and October 25th for Spring
    • Final Date to Complete Applications for Fall is April 1st (with a priority deadline of March 1st)*
    • Final Date to Complete Applications for Spring is November 1st (with a priority deadline of September 15th)*

    *Any applications received after final deadlines or with missing information will be considered for the next semester.

  • Submit Online Application: Please create your online account and submit your application by following the general application instructions and pay (or waive) the non-refundable $60 application fee. Once this step has been completed, the online portal will allow you to upload your supplemental materials.

The following is a list of the supplemental materials that will accompany your application for the Counseling, Student Affairs/Counseling in Higher Ed Concentration (MA) program:

  • Transcript: 1 (one) from each college attended.
  • Write an essay of no more than three double spaced pages in response to the prompt below. Your essay should reflect your developing knowledge of and interest in the counseling profession and your potential place within it.  Address each of the areas identified below:
    1. What draws you to counseling and the particular concentration you have chosen within that profession;
    2. Discuss any personal and professional experiences that have helped prepare you to begin graduate studies in the counseling profession;
    3. Share your perspective regarding the role of multiculturalism and social justice in counseling.
  • Letters of Recommendation: Two (If graduated from any academic program in the past three years, one letter must be from a professor).
  • Resume: Required.
  • Students holding degrees from non-US institutions must request a course-by-course transcript evaluation from a member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services or by Educated Choices. TOEFL or IELTS is required for applicants to any program who earned their degree in a country where English is not the official language. Please check our International Applicants page for more information and for our current TOEFL/IELTS Waiver Policy.

Coursework in the Student Affairs/Higher Education program includes core courses in counseling as well as electives specific to the work of student affairs professionals. The program consists of 36 credit hours, including three semesters of fieldwork. Full-time and part-time study are available for students, with most courses offered in the evenings and other arrangements to accommodate work schedules. Please note that students must have flexibility to complete the fieldwork experiences at an approved site during the latter portion of their time in the program. Full-time students can generally complete the 36 credit hour program in one and a half to three calendar years. Many core courses are offered in the summer session to facilitate timely completion of the degree. For more information, please visit the Counseling, Student Affairs/Counseling in Higher Ed Concentration (MA) program listing in the University Catalog.


If you have any general questions regarding the application process and requirements, please email or call us:
The Graduate School
Telephone: 973-655-5147
Fax: 973-655-7869

If you have specific inquiries regarding your program of interest, please contact the Counseling, Student Affairs/Counseling in Higher Ed Concentration (MA) Program Coordinator:

*During the summer months, there will be a rotating department chair available to answer your inquiry. Find the updated summer chair for this program.*

Program Coordinator: Dr. Muninder Ahluwalia
University Hall 2178
Telephone: 973-655-7622