Lesley University’s International Higher Education and Intercultural Relations graduate program will prepare you to connect with culturally diverse populations and foster mutual understanding across educational and professional settings.
The 36-credit Master's in International Higher Education and Intercultural Relations prepares graduates for today's increasingly interdependent global community by developing culturally aware, collaborative leaders for the field of international higher education and related disciplines. The program provides a strong focus on personal interaction and reflective experience, and integrates in-depth theory with professional skills development.
The program has three principal components: core courses in global perspectives and intercultural relations theory and research, elective courses in specialized topics ranging from immigration law and international student advising to conflict transformation and advocacy, and an internship in a focused area of study.
The six core courses introduce the knowledge, learning experiences, and technical skills that form the foundation of study in international higher education and intercultural relations theory. The program offers an exciting balance of theoretical and experiential training in a culturally rich educational environment. Field-based work is an integral part of the curriculum. A required internship, in the U.S. or abroad, serves as the capstone to integrate academic and professional experiences.
Elective courses allow students to develop skills specific to their areas of professional interest.
Program contact: Jana Van Der Veer, Assistant Director for Advising and Student Services (firstname.lastname@example.org)
The program's focus on International Higher Education incorporates a foundation in Intercultural Relations, while also equipping students with the skills and knowledge to expertly navigate the landscape of contemporary international exchange. Graduates often pursue careers in:
For students wishing to focus on areas other than International Higher Education, an Intercultural Relations focus is ideal for individuals seeking to enter or currently working in an organization and/or community with diverse populations, who wish to enhance their ability to facilitate intercultural interactions. Examples of positions and professional settings our graduates have gone on to work in include:
The 36-credit graduate program has three principal components: core courses, elective courses, and an internship. The six core courses introduce the knowledge, learning experiences, and technical skills that form the foundation of study. Those students who elect to pursue our International Higher Education focus take both core and elective courses in their specialization, while a broad range of Intercultural Relations electives offer the chance for those students not interested in higher education to develop skills in areas such immigration law, managing diverse human resources, and negotiation and mediation.
"Experiential learning is what I learned most — how to produce questions and ideas in the classroom that last beyond the class time. I work with international high school students who have just arrived to the USA. I use methods of cultural understanding in my lessons to reach my students, as well as to help my colleagues better understand our student population."
—Audrey Mbani, Alumna, M.A. in Intercultural Relations
"My M.A. in Intercultural Relations has stood me in good stead many times, either personally since moving to the U.S. from South Africa 18 years ago or in my work in higher education dealing with a large number of international students."
—Joan Whalen, Alumna, M.A. in Intercultural Relations
Branca Telles Ribeiro
Professor of International Higher Education and Intercultural Relations (On Sabbatical during the 2014-2015 Academic Year)
M.A. in International Higher Education and Intercultural Relations
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Abibata Handley, the deputy country director for the Peace Corps, shares her experiences in the Intercultural Relations program and applying her graduate studies to her work in Rwanda. Learn more