Frequently Asked Questions

What do I have to do to be admitted?
You can apply to the program here through the College of Graduate Studies with an online application, application fee, official undergraduate transcripts showing a GPA of 2.75 or higher, and immunization documentation. Our program also requires a resume and a 500-word personal statement. Once all application materials have been received by Graduate Studies, your application will be forwarded to the Coordinator of the Experiential Education program for acceptance approval. Notification of acceptance will be emailed to you from Graduate Studies. The Coordinator of the Experiential Education program will also email a welcome letter from your assigned advisor. The letter will ask you to make personal contact with your new advisor in order to begin to outline your individualized Plan of Study.

Is the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) required?
There are no examination requirements for acceptance.

Where and when do classes take place?
Classes for the MS in Experiential Education degree are held in-person at our main campus in Mankato where they meet weekly or bi-weekly for about 3 hours as evening classes Mondays through Thursdays. In Summer of 2021, we started a new low-residency (mostly online) cohort option based out of MInneapolis at MSU's satellite site. Info about it is posted on our website

When can I start the program?
While most people begin the Mankato face-2-face program in Fall semesters, you can begin in Fall or Spring. The new low-residency cohort program starts a new cohort ech summer in June.

What can I receive credit for?
This is a question that can only be answered individually. Generally, credit is granted for new learning experiences that are personally and professionally relevant to the career goals of the individual. Credit is not granted for experiences that have been done in the past or that were undertaken before acceptance into the program. However, most new experiences that are connected with your personal and professional growth can generate credit.

How much coursework do I have to take?
The MS in Experiential Education degree consists of 34 credits. At a minimum, students are required to take four EXED core courses (12 credits) from the program's Plan of Study. In addition to the core classes, a research course (3 cr.), Capstone Project (3 cr.), and Portfolio (1 cr.) are required. Remaining credits are chosen by students as electives or independent learning courses.

Can I transfer credit into the program?
Yes, up to 10 graduate credits can be transferred in from other accredited colleges or universities. In some circumstances, up to 16 graduate credits may be transferred from another department or other Minnesota State universities. Transfer credits must have a grade of "B" or higher. All credit counting toward an MSU graduate degree, including all transferred credit, must be completed within a six-year time limit.

Do you have any Graduate Assistantships?
We apply for funding for our graduate assistantships each year, so assistantship positions are not always available. However, we have been approved to offer a fulltime position for the past several years that is focused on teaching undergraduate sections of Introduction to Experiential Education and helping with marketing of the ExEd program. We usually complete our hiring process in April of each year for the following Fall semester. Our assistantships, plus others that are available, can be found at:

How about internships and other practical training opportunities?
Students who want to improve their knowledge, skills, and dispositions have several options to earn credit for internships, practicums, and other types of training and professional development. Your advisor can help identify some of these options for you. We encourage individuals to seek out their own internship possibilities.

How marketable is this degree? What kind of a job will I get?
Since our program is so individually tailored, it is impossible to give a definite answer to this question. However, our graduates are among the national leaders in experiential education. Some own and operate their own programs. Others are in public schools or university positions. Others are working for various nonprofit, for profit, or privately-owned experience-based education programs. You can learn more about career possibilities from the Association for Experiential Education and their Jobs Clearinghouse. Also take a look at the National Society for Experiential Education and their job postings .

How appropriate is the Experiential Education Master's program as a foundation for doctoral work?
Graduates of the Experiential Education Master's degree have experienced a high admission rate into doctoral programs. Some of the fields they have entered include Educational Leadership, Higher Ed Administration & Policy, Curriculum and Instruction, Recreation, Kinesiology, and Educational Neuroscience. A partial list of universities that our students have attended for doctoral work include: University of Minnesota, University of Utah, University of Wisconsin, Michigan State University, Harvard University, University of Washington, and University of Virginia.

I am interested in experiential learning but I am not an outdoors person. Is there room for non-outdoor types?
Absolutely! Although our historical roots are in outdoor adventure settings, experiential education is widely applicable to all educational settings -- outdoors, indoors, or otherwise.

Is there anything else I should know?

In completing our program, you will become an honored member of our family of amazing alumni who hail from the U.S. and several countries around the globe including (so far) India, Australia, Taiwan, Japan, Columbia, Ecuador, Canada, Sri Lanka, South Korea, United Arab Emirates, and Mexico. Check out some of their testimonials and accomplishments.