Make the College Experience Your Career

Whether you’re looking to start your career or are already working in student affairs, develop the skills and experience needed for a career in today's diverse higher ed environments with a graduate degree from Nova Southeastern University.

Receive a hands-on, professional experience through practicum courses and working in the Office of Student Affairs. Get the full on-campus experience with free housing as you discover what makes a great college experience and how to provide that to others. 

Being a career adviser in CAPS (NSU's Center for Academic and Professional Success) has allowed me to meet with students one on one and apply what I learned in the classroom to my job. This practice gives me insight on how to best work with students and to find my own advising methods to help guide them into finding their next destination.

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Why Earn Your Master’s Degree at NSU?

Quick Facts


Visit the Tuition and Fees page for more information.

Credits & Requirements

The M.S. program requires completion of 36 total credits (includes coursework, capstone, and practicum). Summer attendance is mandatory.

Start Dates

The M.S. in College Student Affairs is available to start in August.

Delivery Options

The Master of Science in College Student Affairs is offered online or on campus in Fort Lauderdale/Davie on a full-time or part-time basis.

Earning Potential

Dean of Students

$104,386 Average Salary per Year

Director of Student Affairs

$74,458 Average Salary per Year

Academic Adviser

$49,864 Average Salary per Year


Cutting-Edge Curriculum

Learn the different facets of a student affairs administration and apply what you learn through practical experience. Gain an understanding of the diverse groups of students you’ll meet with courses like “The 21st Century College Student” and “Student and Adult Development in College.” 
Get in-depth understanding of the issues you may come across in your field and how to approach them with courses like “Current Issues and Trends in Higher Education” and “Communication Dynamics in Dispute Resolution.”

M.S. in College Student Affairs

Course Descriptions
Required Courses (36 Credits)
CSPA 5001
The 21st Century College Student (CSPA 5001 / Credits: 3 )
CSPA 5002
Current Issues and Trends in Higher Education (CSPA 5002 / Credits: 3 )
CSPA 5003
The College Student and the Law (CSPA 5003 / Credits: 3 )
CSPA 5004
Administration in College Student Personnel (CSPA 5004 / Credits: 3 )
CSPA 5006
Student and Adult Development in College (CSPA 5006 / Credits: 3 )
CSPA 5007
Research Design & Assessment in Student Affairs (CSPA 5007 / Credits: 3 )
CSPA 5040
Communication Dynamics in Dispute Resolution: The Human Factor (CSPA 5040 / Credits: 3 )
CSPA 5100
Mediation Theory and Practice (CSPA 5100 / Credits: 3 )
CPSA 6140
Facilitation Theory and Practice (CPSA 6140 / Credits: 3 )
CSPA 6130
Practicum I (CSPA 6130 / Credits: 3 )
CSPA 6160
Practicum II (CSPA 6160 / Credits: 3 )
CSPA 6350
Capstone in Student Affairs (CSPA 6350 / Credits: 3 )

Apply Theory to a Practical Framework

To complete the M.S. in College Student Affairs, you must complete a total of 130 hours of practicum. You are responsible for documenting practicum hours, and you must have these hours verified and signed by an on-site supervisor. The practicum experience is designed to provide you with an experiential opportunity to utilize student affairs theory and practice within a diversity of professional settings. 
Some practicum sites require a background check before the practicum placement can begin. Generally, the background check is at the student's expense and should be done as soon as possible before the practicum term.
Get the opportunity to explore a breadth of student affairs functions. Gain exposure, knowledge, and experience in the variety of programs and services that make up a college/university division of student affairs. These include residential life, housing, career services, student union, student activities, leadership development, recreation and wellness, volunteer services, special events, judicial programs, and the office of the dean of students.
Gain in-depth exposure, knowledge, and experience in a selected area of specialization in student affairs that supports your professional goals and prepares you to work in a professional student affairs position. Practicum II has a specific focus on career development in the College Student Affairs profession. Practicum experiences may take place at NSU or another college or university.

Graduate Assistantships will be available in the diverse functions within the Office of Student Affairs at NSU to residential students enrolled full-time in the CSA program.

Assistantships are 12-month appointments and offer partial tuition remission, a stipend, meal plan, and housing for those living on campus. Students accepted to the full-time CSA program may apply for a Graduate Assistantship position by contacting Dr. Brad Williams, Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of the College of Undergraduate Studies. 

Additional information on the Assistantships can be found at

Get Immersive Training in Student Affairs with a Graduate Certificate

The Certificate in College Student Personnel Administration (CSPA) explores important topics in the field of Student Affairs including diversity, student development, student services, judicial affairs, administration, on-campus and campus life, Greek affairs, peer counseling, and crisis intervention. The program is appropriate for those who seek graduate training in CSPA, as well as those who have already earned a degree in their professional field but would benefit from academic training in the applications of college student personnel administration to their current professions.

  • 15-credit graduate certificate program - Offered in both on-campus and online formats.
  • Each course must be successfully completed with a grade B or better to be eligible for a certificate
  • Previous coursework does not guarantee acceptance into the Master of Science in College Student Affairs degree program but it may be transferable. If after taking three courses in the certificate program a certificate-seeking student decides to pursue the College Student Affairs degree program, the student must submit a new and complete application and must meet all requirements for admission to the program.

Explore the CSPA Program

Admission Requirements

Ready for the Next Step?

We’re thrilled you’re applying to NSU’s M.S. in College Student Affairs program.

This program accepts students for the fall term only, and applications must be submitted prior to August 1.

NSU recommends that you start the application process at least 1–2 months prior to the deadline date.

Have the following items ready to submit with your online application:

  • $50 application fee
  • Transcripts from all schools attended 
  • Admissions essay of 500–1,000 words
  • Academic writing sample
  • Two academic or professional letters of recommendation
  • Resume or curriculum vitae (CV)
  • TOEFL scores (if applicable)
You may also be asked to complete an interview for admission.
Transfer students must meet the program admissions criteria. Up to nine graduate credits may be transferred into this program. The courses that may be transferred into the program will be determined on a case-by-case basis and must be deemed comparable in level, content, and rigor to those within the M.S. in College Student Affairs program.
Foreign nationals who reside outside the United States at the time of application and whose native language is not English must present evidence of proficiency in English by satisfactorily completing the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). 
  • Score requirements are the same as undergraduate admissions and are as follows: 
  • Minimum paper score = 550
  • Minimum computerized score = 213
  • Minimum internet score = 79
A score of 6.0 on the International English Language Testing System (ILETS) exam is accepted in lieu of the TOEFL.
Applicants who have attended foreign universities or colleges are required to have their academic credentials evaluated for U.S. institutional equivalence. While there are several credential evaluators, the most widely used companies are listed below or visit NACES.
World Education Services, Inc.
P.O. Box 745
Old Chelsea Station
New York, New York
(212) 966-6311
Josef Silny & Associates
7101 SW 102nd Avenue
Miami, Florida 33173
(305) 273-1616
Educational Credential Evaluators, Inc.
P.O. Box 514070
Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53203-3470
(414) 289-3400
International students are encouraged to contact the Office of International Student Services at (954) 262-7240 or 800-541-6682, ext. 27240, or by emailing International Students or visiting the International Students web page.
Resident alien students are required to submit a copy of their Resident Alien card.
Please note that NSU reserves the right to rescind or place conditions upon admissions offers should information become available that calls into question an admitted student’s academic performance or character, including that which reflects a violation of NSU’s Code of Student Conduct.

Gain the NSU Edge

Get an edge in your career with an academic community that is here to support you and guide you as continue your education journey and further your career.

As a student at NSU, you’ll have a competitive advantage among your peers with a flexible, individualized learning experience, funding for your tuition, community connections to career opportunities, and access to a globally established alumni network.

Learn More About the NSU Edge

NSU graduate smiling in cap and gown