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Washington State University Graduate School

Chapter Fourteen

Professionally Oriented Master’s Degree Programs

A. Professionally Oriented Master’s Degree Program Overview

A professionally oriented master’s degree program is an academic graduate degree that prepares the student for a particular profession by emphasizing competency in a set of skills needed to practice in the profession.  These professions are typically licensed or government-regulated and often require academic programs that prepare their professionals to be externally accredited. Professions such as nursing, architecture, engineering, accounting, audiology, speech-language pathology, and education often, but not necessarily, require a degree for licensing.  The professionally oriented master’s degree program relies heavily on curriculum and may include required internships, practicum, fieldwork or clinical hours, and/or a final capstone experience that applies the professional knowledge, skills and training to a problem within the profession.  Unlike the professionally oriented degree, the Master of Science and Master of Arts degrees generally provide experience in research and scholarship and often require a written thesis or research project and often take longer than two years to complete.

B. Program of Study

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C. Faculty Advisory Committee for Professionally Oriented Master’s Program of Study

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D. Academic Evaluation of Students

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E. Capstone Project and/or Examination Requirements

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