2023 Best Master’s Degree Programs in Human Resources

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Deciding which college to attend can be a daunting task. For many, it will be the most important decision that they make in their lives. To make an informed decision, you have to consider a lot of variables, such as cost of attendance, financial aid, student-teacher ratio, academics, student life, and more. These factors will either positively or negatively impact the quality of education that you receive.

Do you want to acquire a master’s degree in human resources but don’t know what institution you should attend? Well, if you are as ambitious as I was in my late teens, then you want to attend a top school, instead of an average or mediocre one. Fortunately, we have already done the legwork for you. To help you find the right school for your interests and goals, we’ve compiled a list of 2022’s best master’s in human resources programs.

What institution did we omit from this list? Leave your suggestions in the comment section below.

  1. University of Illinois Urbana Champaign, Champaign, IL

The master’s in human resources and industrial relation consists of 12 classes and requires at least 48 credit hours of coursework. Full-time learners, who take four classes at a time, can finish the MHRIR degree program in three semesters. Admitted MHRIR learners may select between a thesis and non-thesis choice. For the thesis choice, learners replace eight elective credits with a research paper and oral exam. To qualify for the MHRIR degree program, learners do not need prior work experience.

  1. Texas A&M University, College Station, TX

This 37-credit non-thesis MS in human resource management focuses on four core skill areas: conceptual, technical, interindividual, and communication. Learners who attend full-time can finish all requirements in 18 months. The curriculum is broad-based, with classes covering such concepts as HR analytics, talent management, and behavior in organizations. As a prerequisite, candidates should possess a general background in business. To apply, prospective learners must hold a bachelor’s degree from an institution recognized as being in good standing.

  1. University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI

The UW’s MBA in strategic HR management has a core curriculum in accounting and strategy. Learners get the skills to apply HR essentials within a business model, learning how to handle situations involving compensation, staffing, negotiations, and management.

The core curriculum of this MBA couples coursework with applied HR learning experiences. An integral part of the UW MBA degree program is affording learners the chance to utilize the skills they learn through real-world experiences.

  1. Villanova University, Villanova, PA

The MS in human resource management prepares learners to compete immediately in an ever-changing field. Students learn not only how to navigate employment law and regulations, but how to negotiate, mediate, resolve, and retain, depending on the situation. Villanova’s HRD master’s degree program uses an eight-week format that enables learners to concentrate on one content area at a time. Founded in 1980, the HRD graduate degree program keeps pace with the times and sector changes in finance, technology, public administration, retail, and education. Villanova accepts new learners on a rolling basis for admission in the fall, spring, or summer.

  1. The University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, TX

The MS in human resource management is a complementary degree program that couples general business knowledge with a concentration in HR management. In the 30- to 36-credit degree program, learners study theory, research methods, and practical applications as they pertain to HR. Learners may select either a thesis (30 credits) and a non-thesis plan of study (36 credits). Full-time learners can graduate in two years.

  1. Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN

This 48-credit hour MS in human resource management (MSHRM) couples coursework in HR, management, and organizational behavior studies with experiential learning. Twelve of the degree program’s credits cover business core concepts, and 16 credits are devoted to the MSHRM emphasis. Topics include industrial relations, staffing tools, and HR systems; the experiential learning project accounts for 16 credits. Over 16 weeks, learners work in teams of five or six to solve a problem concerning human capital.

  1. Cornell University, Ithaca, NY

The master’s in human resource studies (MILR) at Cornell University requires 48 credit hours, the equivalent of 16 classes. The classes break down to six classes in the core curriculum, six in the concentration, and four in electives. In the human resources and organization concentration, learners study content areas focused on organizational success and employee well-being. Classes zero in on leadership, conflict resolution, and the decision-making process.

Cornell encourages prospective learners to visit the campus before applying to form an accurate idea of what awaits them in Ithaca, New York. During the visit, learners can also interact with current learners, faculty, and staff as well as audit a class.

  1. Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH

The MS in organization development and change aims to strike a curriculum balance that addresses both relational and human factors involved in alter. Case Western spaces these experiences 10 to 12 weeks apart to accommodate the schedules of adult learners. The MPOD degree program emphasizes technology and ways to apply it when it comes to expansion and growth, accelerated alter, social entrepreneurship, and organization on an international scale.

  1. Baruch College, New York, NY

The 20-month MS in human resource management has a modern curriculum adaptable enough to accommodate executive schedules. The degree program requires candidates to bring at least five years of work experience. The mean learner MS in HRM possesses ten years of experience. Core classes cover such concepts as managing people and organizations, managerial statistics, and labor relations. Students learn as part of a cohort and can finish all 30 credits in five trimesters, through evening classes on Monday and Wednesday.

  1. Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI

The MS in human resources welcomes entry-level and seasoned professionals who want to hone their skills in HR, leveraging human talent, and cultivating success. The core curriculum centers on organizational strategy, with each learner allowed to select a concentration that matches their career goals. In strategic HR leadership concentration, learners ready for roles of advanced leadership, which require a distinct level of decision-making, initiative, and partnership. The 30-credit degree program splits into nine core credits, 12 in the chosen concentration, and nine electives. For the strategic HR leadership concentration, learners take classes in alter leadership, coaching, and development, and managing innovation within an organization.

  1. Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN

Vanderbilt’s MBA in human and organizational performance requires 62 semester hours. Through a modular system, learners may tailor their curriculum to meet both their time commitment and career goals. With a modular system, learners take seven-week classes followed by an exam week. Two “mods” equal one semester. Learners begin by studying business fundamentals, including strategy, economics, finance, and marketing. Note that the concentration requires 12 credits, but for a deeper dive, learners may take up to 20 credits.

  1. University of Rhode Island, Kingston, RI

The MS in labor relations and human resources requires 12 classes for a total of 36 credits. Five classes comprise the degree program’s core multidisciplinary curriculum, leaving seven for the learner to further investigate a concentration like labor relations. In the degree program’s final semester of enrollment, all learners take a capstone seminar that pulls together all skills. URI’s degree program aligns with the curriculum standards established by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).

  1. Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI

Through the 36-credit master of human resources and labor relations program, learners take 12 classes that investigate seven core knowledge areas in HR. For example, in talent acquisition/deployment, learners investigate what staffing involves, from recruitment to hiring decisions. As future HR professionals, learners must decide what complies and/or violates a regulation. The majority of MHRLR learners finish their degree in two years, but learners who take four classes each semester for three consecutive semesters can graduate in a little over a year.

  1. University of Louisville, Louisville, KY

Louisville’s MS in human resources and organizational development helps learners master such skills as invention, lead alter, and outcome evaluation. Through core and elective classes, students learn how to lead at the local, national, and international levels and foster workplace learning. In total, the degree program requires learners to earn 33 credit hours for the thesis choice and 36 for the non-thesis. Once admitted, learners may submit up to six transfer credits for consideration by the School of Interdisciplinary and Graduate Studies. Electives allow learners to tailor their MSHROD degrees to best match their career ambitions. Classes cover such concepts as international HR development, performance metrics, and diversity and inclusion.

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