School of Professional Development
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Master of Arts in Higher Education Administration

Application Information

The Master of Arts in Higher Education Administration application process requires applicants to submit items both online and by mail. Everything listed below is required; incomplete applications will not be reviewed. Applicants will be notified by mail and email of their admissions status. (Please note that International students have additional application requirements to those that are listed below.)

Online Component — The following seven items are submitted online.


Online Orientation. Review the program requirements and SPD policy and procedures on the SPD Master's Degree Orientation Website. Then, submit the online Orientation Checklist (located under SIGN OUT).


Online Application. Go to the Apply Yourself website and click on the "Create Account" button. You may log in and out as many times as needed to complete your application.


Personal Statement. Please attach a personal statement of 750-1000 words that is your own original work and addresses the following:  

  • What is your purpose in pursuing a Master of Arts or Advanced Graduate Certificate in Higher Education Administration (HEA)?
  • Why do you wish to be a part of the HEA program at Stony Brook University?
  • How have you prepared yourself for a career in higher education? (Include any relevant undergraduate, graduate, or professional experience.)
  • Specifically, how will the HEA degree/certificate assist you in advancing both your professional and personal goals?
  • Describe your research and study interests and any other aspects of your background, skills, or qualifications that would aid the Admissions Committee in evaluating your motivation for graduate study.
  • If you have earned less than the 3.0 minimum GPA and are seeking conditional admission, please address your prior academic performance.


Essay. Please attach an essay of 750-1000 words that is your own original work and addresses the following question:  What are three critical issues facing colleges and universities today?

Your essay should reflect high quality writing skills and demonstrate your ability to pursue graduate-level work.  The Admissions Committee will review your essay on the basis of content, sentence structure, organization, critical thinking, and analysis.  You may consult and include outside resources in your essay, but if you do, you must include citations in the text in APA format as well as a reference page with the author's name, year of publication, and title of publication.  


Resume.  Attach a resume that includes degree(s) awarded, employment history, and past/current leadership, volunteer, or other relevant involvement and experience.


Two (2) Letters of Recommendation. Recommendation letters should be written by individuals who can speak about your academic ability, commitment to the higher education field, and attributes and experiences that will make you a successful student in this program.  Recommendations from current or former employers and/or faculty members are strongly encouraged. All recommenders must submit letters of recommendation via Apply Yourself -- a customized link will be emailed directly to each recommender individual.


Application Fee. Submit the nonrefundable $100 application fee via credit card. (Instructions are on the Apply Yourself website.)

Mail — The two items below are submitted by mail.


Transcript. Arrange to have an official, sealed copy of your transcript sent to SPD. The transcript must show that you have earned a bachelor's degree with a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0.

Transcripts should be sent to:

HEA Admissions
School of Professional Development
N-201 Social and Behavioral Sciences
Stony Brook University
Stony Brook, NY 11794-4310 (must use full zip code)


Immunization Form. Print, fill out, and return the Immunization Form (PDF) demonstrating proof of immunity to measles, mumps and rubella in compliance with New York State Public Health Law 2165. The form contains instructions for completion and the mailing address for Student Health Services. Do not send this information to the School of Professional Development.

Conditional Admission

Under certain circumstances, promising candidates who lack the academic or professional preparation may be considered for conditional admission. Contact Dr. Richard Gatteau for more information.

Application Deadlines

  • For Summer/Fall admission, the application deadline is March 1.
  • For Spring admission, the application deadline is October 1.

International applicants have different deadlines and may apply for Fall and Spring admission only. Before applying, review details at

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Last modified on 9/25/15.