Educational Studies

Master of Arts in Executive Development for Public Service

An interdisciplinary and intercollegiate degree, the executive development program prepares graduates to provide educational services in a variety of social, industrial, health and human services, military, and governmental settings. A broad range of courses related to management and public agency administration are offered to prepare students to function in an executive, managerial, or supervisory capacity within government or not-for-profit agencies. The curriculum is not intended to prepare candidates for specific occupations. The master¹s degree program can also be used as a cognate or minor in preparation for entry into the doctorate in Adult, Higher and Community Education. The executive development for public service degree program courses are offered on campus in Muncie, online, and in the Indianapolis area through Ball State's Online and Distance Education. This is not an online degree program. Depending upon course selection, this degree may be possible to complete all courses online.

Online Information Session

Register for an online information session about our Master's in Executive Development for Public Service, held on Campus, greater Indianapolis area, Fort Wayne, or online. To view a past virtual information session, click on ACE and EXEC Dev M.A. Degree Pgms Virtual Info Session.

Students from Other States

If you live in a state other than Indiana, this information regarding state regulatory authorizations for distance programs might impact whether you can take courses from Ball State. 


33rd National Research to Practice (R2P) Conference in Adult and Higher Education will be held in collaboration with Ball State University’s 2nd Annual Adult, Higher, & Community Education Research Conference, Friday, September 19, 2014 and Saturday, September 20, 2014 at Ball State University Student Center, Muncie, Indiana.

Theme: “Innovation in Scholarship and Practice of Teaching and Learning”

If you are interested in joining the local host planning committee or volunteering in any capacity, please contact:

Dr. Ruby Cain: or (765) 285-9126

Admission to the Program

The applicant must be admitted to the Graduate School. Students must hold an earned bachelor¹s degree from an accredited higher education institution and meet one of the following criteria:

  1. An undergraduate cumulative grade point average of at least 2.75 on a 4.0 scale.
  2. A cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale in the latter half of the baccalaureate (the last two years)
  3. A 3.0 grade point average in 9 semester hours of graduate course work approved in advance as a probationary plan of study by the Chairperson of the Department of Educational Studies, and approved by the Dean of the Graduate School, and an acceptable score on the Graduate Records Examination. Acceptable GRE scores are greater than 900 (verbal and quantitative measures combined) or 1350 (verbal, quantitative and analytical measures combined). Such students will be considered probationary students until the conditions of their graduate admission have been met.

Click on: Online Graduate Application Checklist

Tuition Costs

Whether you are studying online or our main-campus, per-credit-hour tuition rates are the same. But, studying on campus means you will pay additional fees for student services, health, recreation, and (potentially) housing.

Main-campus tuition costs

Online tuition costs

Degree Options

*A minor may be earned by successfully completing three additional courses or 9 hours. You must contact the other department and the graduate school for permission.

Master's Degree in Executive Development for Public Service Course Requirements

The M.A. degree program requires at least 30 hours of graduate course work. Students must maintain grade point averages of at least 3.0 on 4.0 scale. Students must take at least 2 courses from Adult Education and may take one course from four of the following eight categories of study:
  • Adult Education, Program Evaluation, and Staff Development
  • Business and Related Areas
  • Communication
  • Gerontology, Health Science, and Wellness
  • Political Science
  • Psychology

It is highly recommended students choose one additional course from adult education, management, communication, political science or psychology courses to complement their skills and competencies and to sharpen their public service and non-profit organizational focus.

Students also must take a research course. And also are able to complete an internship for 3-6 credits if they wish.

Course Selection:

Courses for the Executive Development master¹s degree program may be selected from the following offerings:
Adult Education, Program Evaluation, & Staff Development
 EDAC 629 Psychology of Adult Adjustment (Online only)
3 hrs   
 EDAC 631 Adult and Community Education (Online option) 3 hrs
 EDAC 632 Organizing Adult and Community Education 3 hrs  
 EDAC 634 The Adult as a Learner (Online option)  3 hrs
 EDAC 635 Strategies for Teaching Adults (Online option) 3 hrs
 EDAC 638 Program Planning for Adults 3 hrs
 EDAC 644 Collaborative Learning in AHCE
3 hrs
 EDAC 646 Working with Volunteer Comm Agencies (Online option)
3 hrs
 EDAC 648 The Community Educator (Online only)
3 hrs
 EDAC 655 Continuing Education for Professionals (Online only)
3 hrs
 EDAC 681 Managing Community Education (Online only)
 3 hrs
 EDAC 698 Seminar in Adult and Community Education
3 hrs
 EDST 650 Intro to Qualitative Research
3 hrs
 EDST 655 Intro to Mixed Methods Research
3 hrs
 #EDST 697 The Grant Process and Research (Online only)
3 hrs
 #EDST 671 Evaluation of Educational Programs (Online option)
3 hrs
 EDST 675 Evaluation of Ed. Personnel To Strengthen Curriculum  3 hrs

#Indicates course(s) available to fulfill the research requirement.

Business and Related Areas
Note: (No more than 15 hours may be taken from the College of Business) In order to obtain the Business Certificate, apply with the Grad school at point of admissions and take 12 credits of the following courses.

 ACC 501 Financial Accounting IHETS/ Fall  3 hrs   
 ECON 509 Survey of Economics IHETS/ Fall  3 hrs
 MGT 500 Managing Organizational Behavior IHETS/ Spring   3 hrs
 MKT 505 Survey of Marketing IHETS/ Spring   3 hrs
 ISOM 551 Operations Management  3 hrs
 MBA 601 Business Leadership 
 (Prereq MGT 500) IHETS/ Fall
 3 hrs

Click here to take the Business Essentials Certificate.

All Courses offered via IHETS Distance Ed TV or Webcasting through Continuing Education.

Gerontology, Health Science, and Wellness

 GERO 515 ­ Technology and Aging Fishers/Greenfield  3 hrs 
 GERO 535 ­ Aging in Communities Fishers/Greenfield  3 hrs
 GERO 540 ­ Women and Aging Fishers/Greenfield  3 hrs
 GERO 605 ­ Aging Well: A Systems Approach Fishers/Greenfield  3 hrs
 GERO 630 ­ Health, Wellness, and Aging Fishers/Greenfield  3 hrs
 GERO 635 ­ Adaptations in Later Life Fishers/Greenfield  3 hrs
 WELN 625 ­ Community Collaboration &
 Service Learning in Wellness Mgmt 
 3 hrs
 WELN 635 ­ Wellness Coaching  3 hrs
 WELN 650 ­ Foundations of Wellness  3 hrs
 HSC 510 ­ Teaching and Learning in Health Education  3 hrs
 HSC 562 ­ Health Promotion in the Worksite  3 hrs
 HSC 568 ­ Consumer Health Issues  3 hrs
 HSC 569 ­ Health and Aging  3 hrs
 HSC 571 ­ Death and Dying  3 hrs
 HSC 572 ­ Women and Health  3 hrs
 HSC 581 ­ Stress Management Internet  3 hrs
 HSC 582 ­ Environmental Health  3 hrs
 HSC 585 ­ Community Health Methods  3 hrs

Political Science and Public Administration

 POLS 532 The American Chief Executive  3 hrs  
 POLS 554 Administration of Local Government Budgets  3 hrs
 POLS 555 Administrative Law  3 hrs
 POLS 537 - Gov and Politics in Indiana Fishers  3 hrs
 POLS 561 - Community Planning and Its 
 Administration Fishers
 3 hrs
 POLS 565 Labor-Management Relations in Government  3 hrs
 POLS 572 ­ Political Campaigns Fishers  3 hrs
 POLS 573 ­ American Political Parties Fishers  3 hrs
 POLS 615 ­ Western Political Theories Fishers  3 hrs
 POLS 633 - American Judicial System Fishers  3 hrs
 POLS 642 Problems in Public Policy  3 hrs
 POLS 648 Policy Analysis  3 hrs
 POLS 650 Public Administration  3 hrs
 POLS 651 Administrative Organization and Management  3 hrs
 POLS 652 Personnel Administration in Government  3 hrs
 POLS 653 Public Financial Administration  3 hrs


 CPSY 610 Career Theories and Realities   3 hrs  
 CPSY 631 Introduction to the Study of Personality
 3 hrs
 EDPS 603 Psychology of Human Development Internet  3 hrs
 EDPS 611 Development of Creative Thinking Internet  3 hrs
 EDPS 629 Psychology of Adult Adjustment  3 hrs
 #EDPS 640 Methodology of Educational and Psychological  
  Research - Internet 
 3 hrs
  #EDPS 641 Statistical Methods in Educational & Psychological
  Research -Internet
 3 hrs
  PSYS 573 Industrial Psychology  3 hrs
  SOPS 610 Social Psychology  3 hrs
  SOPS 660 Contemporary Social Psychology  3 hrs

# Indicates that it fulfills the research requirement

Public Relations and Communication Studies

 PR 660 Public Relations: Theories & Applications Internet Option   3 hrs 
 PR 666 Public Relations Campaign  3 hrs
 COMM 610 Studies in Persuasion  3 hrs
 COMM 635 Interpersonal Communications  3 hrs
 COMM 640 Interpersonal Communications in Contexts  3 hrs
 COMM 651 Organizational Communication:
 Interpersonal and Intrapersonal Processes
 3 hrs
 COMM 652 Organizational Communication:
 Systems, Culture, and Critique
 3 hrs
 COMM 654 Group Communication  3 hrs

Research Requirements
In addition, in order to meet their research course requirements, students often elect one of the following courses on campus, online or in the Indianapolis area. The research requirement cannot be a transfer course from another higher education institution.

 EDPS 640 Methods of Educational and Psychological Research (Online option)  3 hrs 
 EDST 697 The Grant Process and Research (Online only)  3 hrs
 EDST 660 Ethnographic Research in Education  3 hrs
 EDST 671 Evaluation of Educational Programs (Online option)
 3 hrs
 EDST 650 Introduction to Qualitative Research  3 hrs
 EDST 655 Introduction to Mixed Methods Research
 3 hrs
 EDPS 641 Statistical Methods is Educ. and Psych. Research
 3 hrs

Students may elect a 2 or 3 credit hour internship with a business or not-for-profit firm under the graduate course heading: 

EDAC 699-Internship in Adult and Community Education.
This field experience or internship is under joint supervision of the university (supervisor) and an experienced practitioner in an approved business or non-profit agency setting. Permission of the program director and/or department chairperson is required. 6 hours of credit may be earned.

Meeting Times:
Classes meet in the evenings, weekends (Five full Saturdays over the semester), online, or in a blended format. The majority of our students are working practitioners. These class times provide ultimate flexibility for the working student.

Social Media:
Twitter: @BallStateACEDPS
Facebook: Ball State University (BSU): Educational Studies
LinkedIn group: Ball State University M.A. Degree Programs in Adult and Comm Ed and in Exec Dev for Public Service

For additional information about Graduate Programs in Executive Development for Public Service Department of Educational Studies, contact: Dr. Ruby Cain or Keri McCormick