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Top 25 Master’s in Human Resources

Human resources professionals are essential to any business because they find, train, and retain vital personnel. The human resources profession is much broader, however than portrayals in popular culture. Human resources specialists and managers don't simply stop by when rules are violated or new staff members are acclimated to the workplace. A human resources team lays the groundwork for new hires by compiling job descriptions, attending recruiting events, and overseeing interview processes. Newcomers to a company are trained on policies and procedures, knowing that a human resources professional is there to answer questions. The human resources department coordinates with payroll to handle financial questions and works with various departments to ensure smooth onboarding processes. The typical specialist or manager also stays tuned to industry trends and attends conferences to understand how they can find and keep the best personnel. Human resources professionals are important to their employers' long-term success because personnel decisions contribute significantly to a company's success or failure.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects 7% job growth for human resources specialists from 2016 to 2026. The BLS also says that jobs for human resource managers will grow 9% during the same period. These growth rates are comparable to job growth across all jobs in the United States, showing the steady growth of the human resources field. Human resources professionals may also find new avenues with the evolution of technological and corporate trends. A specialist with experience in software and virtual recruiting methods will have a better shot at jobs than a specialist with a more traditional resume. The rapid expansion of online recruiting tools has also created substantial growth in applicants that can be overwhelming without the right skills. You could also find a niche in the human resources field for companies expanding into the international market, right-sizing companies, and fully remote firms. Pursuing undergraduate and graduate degrees in human resources can shape your path.

Why Become a Human Resources Professional?

Human resources professionals are well-compensated for their work according to PayScale and the BLS. PayScale's 2019 average salary for a human resources professional was $56,641. This average took into account entry-level salaries of $40,000 and upper-level salaries of $91,000. BLS placed the average income of a human resources specialist in 2018 at $60,880, while the average salary for a manager was $113,300. A manager typically possesses at least five years in the profession, though assistants and specialists can boost their salaries with advanced degrees. Potential salary and benefits are important to understand before pursuing an HR career, though there are other reasons to choose this profession.

You can prove your value to your current and future employers by showing the benefits of good human resources practices. The Work Institute found that replacing an employee in 2017 cost an average of $15,000 in recruiting, training, and lost-time expenses. The institute's survey of 34,000 professionals determined that approximately 75% of reasons for leaving jobs were avoidable through better practices. These reasons included opportunities for career advancement, work-life balance, and poorly developed relationships with supervisors. By learning best practices in human resources, you learn to find and engage employees for long stays in the workplace that save valuable time, energy, and money.

The most important reason why you should consider a human resources career is the satisfaction you can find from connecting people with the right jobs. Successful human resources professionals are treasure hunters, finding valuable assets around the world amidst lots of applications and interviews. Experienced specialists and managers lose count of the times they find the best candidates for the right jobs. To achieve this level of success, you may need to complete a master's degree in human resources. We've compiled the 25 top master's programs in human resources so you can make the right choice for your career needs.

Methodology

Top Management Degrees uses seven data points to rank college programs. Here they are in order of importance:

  1. A Reputation Aggregate Score from other rankings
  2. Graduate Average Salary
  3. Alumni Reviews
  4. Percentage of Admitted Students Who Graduate
  5. Price
  6. Admitted Students' Test Scores
  7. Acceptance Rate

#25. Concordia University – St. Paul – St. Paul, Minnesota

Master of Arts in Human Resources Management

Program Website

Concordia University – St. Paul trains future human resources professionals through its Master of Arts in Human Resources Management. This private college features a 36-credit program that builds student knowledge about the HR field. Students start with courses in human resources leadership, strategic human resources, and recruitment and retention. The College of Business and Technology allows students to choose between an organization development course or a study abroad opportunity. MA students further refine their skills with advanced courses in research methods, finance, and legal issues in the field. The final course for every HR student is a research at work project on a subject relevant to workplace issues.

U.S. News & World Report recognized Concordia University – St. Paul with its No. 94 ranking in Regional Universities Midwest for 2019. The St. Paul campus is one of nine maintained by Concordia University, which serves Lutheran students from New York to California. Students at the St. Paul campus benefit from a thriving business scene in Minnesota's Twin Cities. HR graduate students, in particular, can find work with international companies like 3M, Best Buy, Target, and UnitedHealth Group that is based in the area. Concordia University – St. Paul is also close to sports teams in all major professional leagues along with attractions like the Walker Art Center and the Minnesota State Capitol.

TMD Ranking Score: 79.38

 

#24. University of Colorado – Denver – Denver, Colorado

Master of Science in Management and Organization

Program Website

The University of Colorado – Denver offers a Human Resources Management concentration as one of 10 specializations in its Master of Science in Management and Organization program. Students in all concentrations complete four core courses in organizational design, leadership, and competitive management. The HR concentration includes four advanced courses in the field along with two electives from other areas of the program. The university's Business Schools encourages MS students to pursue dual degrees in accounting, health administration, and eight other disciplines. HR graduates can also count on the university's Business Career Connections system for workshops, networking opportunities, and interview coaching throughout their career.

National publications like Forbes and U.S. News & World Report touted the University of Colorado – Denver in its 2019 rankings. Forbes placed the school No. 180 in its America's Best Value Colleges rankings. The financial magazine also ranked the university No. 450 in Top Colleges and No. 85 in America's Best Midsize Employers. U.S. News & World Report ranked the university No. 112 in Top Public Schools and No. 205 in National Universities for 2019. The Denver campus of the University of Colorado offers world-class research facilities due in part to the success of its medical campus. Denver's metro area offers numerous internship and job opportunities for MS graduates including notable firms like DISH Network and Qdoba.

TMD Ranking Score: 83.73

 

#23. Columbus State University – Columbus, Georgia

Master of Science in Organizational Leadership – Human Resources Management

Program Website

Columbus State University's Master of Science in Organizational Leadership features a Human Resources Management concentration. This MS program requires 15 credits of organizational leadership courses, 15 credits in human resources classes, and two elective courses. Core courses include global management and conflict resolution. The human resources concentration trains future workplace leaders through classes in employee development, recruiting, and labor relations. Graduate students interested in improving their leadership skills can choose electives like coaching and organizational ethics. A student who wants to incorporate a different discipline into their human resources management track can work with the program director to find appropriate electives.

The campus of Columbus State University is located near the Chattahoochee River and Georgia's border with Alabama. Columbus State University accommodates students at the main campus just outside of the city, the downtown RiverPark campus, and a satellite facility at Fort Benning. Students at this university can pursue additional courses or find resources at the other 25 campuses that form the University System of Georgia. U.S. News & World Report lauded the school's creative approaches to education with a No. 19 ranking in Most Innovative Schools for 2019. The publication also placed Columbus State University No. 22 in Best Undergraduate Teaching and No. 42 in Top Public Schools.

TMD Ranking Score: 83.74

 

#22. Azusa Pacific University – Azusa, California

Master of Arts in Business Management

Program Website

Azusa Pacific University added a Human Resource Management concentration to its Master of Arts in Business Management program in 2014. Human resources students at this private university benefit from the program's flexibility and customization. The School of Business and Management hosts six sessions of eight-week courses each year. Azusa Pacific University offers courses at its main campus along with three satellite campuses and its online platform. Every student in this program complete 10 core courses including managing human capital, applied research, and ethical leadership. The HR concentration features courses in labor law, human resource law, and compensation system design. Azusa Pacific University encourages working professionals to complete this MA with a five-year window following registration.

Azusa Pacific University began teaching Christian students in 1900. The main campus in Azusa is joined by seven regional campuses in cities like San Diego, Los Angeles, and Murrieta. The university welcomes a diverse student body with Hispanic, Asian, and black students representing just under 50% of students in 2019. A third of all students at Azusa Pacific University received federal grants for low-income applicants in 2019, according to the U.S. Department of Education. The school received praise from Forbes in its 2019 America's Top Colleges rankings including No. 383 in Top Colleges and No. 76 in the West. U.S. News & World Report placed Azusa Pacific University at No. 205 in National Universities and No. 261 in High School Counselor Rankings in 2019.

TMD Ranking Score: 84.19

 

#21. University of Tennessee – Knoxville, Tennessee

Master of Science in Management & Human Resources

Program Website

The University of Tennessee designed its Master of Science in Management & Human Resources to accommodate working professionals of all backgrounds. MS courses are available in the evenings during the fall, spring, and summer sessions. The university notes that applicants with any academic background can learn to become an HR leader through this course. Students are also accommodated with accelerated one-year, traditional two-year, and flexible three-year curriculum plans. This program features concentrations in personal leadership development, business skills for managers, and strategic human resource management. Each concentration includes a set of specialized courses including data-driven decision making, rewards management, and ethical issues in management.

The Knoxville campus of the University of Tennessee dates back to the 18th century. This public university has developed a national reputation over the years thanks to rankings by Forbes and U.S. News & World Report. The University of Tennessee placed No. 145 in America's Best Value Colleges from Forbes in 2019. U.S. News & World Report ranked the school No. 100 in Best Value Schools and No. 115 in National Universities during the same year. Students and alumni take pride in the Volunteers athletic programs including successful runs by the women's basketball and men's football teams. The university has also produced prominent alumni including Tyson Foods CEO Donnie Smith and radio host Dave Ramsey.

TMD Ranking Score: 85.59

 

#20. DePaul University – Chicago, Illinois

Master of Science in Human Resources

Program Website

DePaul University has produced hundreds of business leaders through its Master of Science in Human Resources. This MS program builds a foundation for future success with core courses in compensation, training, and organizational behavior. Every student selects four electives in the human resources field covering topics like life coaching and employment law. Students can pursue internships as electives to bolster their resumes prior to graduation. The Graduate School of Business also requires three business electives to help HR students prepare for management, technological, and planning issues. DePaul University accommodates the schedules of working and traditional students with four intakes per year.

Recent graduates of DePaul University can pursue work with the city's 36 Fortune 500 companies including Caterpillar, Allstate, and McDonald's. The school serves students in the beautiful surroundings of Chicago's North Side and the bustling environs of the Loop. U.S. News & World Report ranked DePaul University No. 54 in Best Value Schools for 2019. The publication also placed the school No. 119 in National Universities. Forbes joined the accolades for DePaul University with a No. 243 ranking in Top Colleges and No. 271 in America's Best Value Colleges. The school is notable for producing business executives like former Los Angeles Dodgers executive Dan Evans, former Kellogg CEO James Jenness, and former McDonald's CEO Jack Greenberg.

TMD Ranking Score: 86.13

 

#19. Eastern Michigan University– Ypsilanti, Michigan

Master of Science in Human Resources and Organizational Development

Program Website

Eastern Michigan University's Masters of Science in Human Resources and Organizational Development attracts students with customization features. The program allows students to complete their work part-time or pursue full-time studies. Eastern Michigan University also presents online, hybrid, and evening courses to meet program requirements. Students pair five core courses with a thesis or practicum before advancing to four elective courses. Electives range in topics from organizational staffing to employment law. The Human Resource and Organizational Development program also houses three certificate programs and a joint MS/JD program with Michigan State University. This program received a LEAD Award in 2017 for outstanding achievement in leadership development.

Eastern Michigan University dates back to the early years of Michigan's statehood with students first enrolled in 1849. The Ypsilanti campus of Eastern Michigan University provides easy access to regional metro areas like Ann Arbor and Detroit. The university also maintains seven satellite campuses from Traverse City in the north to Jackson in southern Michigan. U.S. News & World Report ranked the school No. 237 in High School Counselor Rankings and No. 230 in National Universities. In 2018, The Princeton Review ranked Eastern Michigan University among its Best Midwestern Colleges. The school's athletic programs have produced professional athletes including former NFL player Charlie Batch and NBA legend George Gervin.

TMD Ranking Score: 86.52

 

#18. University of Louisville – Louisville, Kentucky

Master of Science in Human Resources and Organization Development

Program Website

The University of Louisville maintains flexibility in its Master of Science in Human Resources and Organization Development program. Students can complete MS requirements through the university's Fort Knox campus or the Clifton Center in Louisville. Working professionals can also balance their jobs with their studies by completing the program entirely online. Course locations differ for students who pursue specializations in health professions education and career and technical education. Six core courses are required for all students including organizational analysis and strategic human resources. Electives in instructional design, performance improvement, and advanced leadership theory help students understand the ins and outs of the human resources field.

The University of Louisville reaches beyond the state of Kentucky with MBA programs in Greece and Asia along with a campus in Panama. Forbes ranked the university No. 429 in its Top Colleges in 2019 along with No. 277 in America's Best Value Colleges. U.S. News & World Report joined the accolades with a No. 91 in Top Public Schools and No. 171 in National Universities. The school also placed No. 148 in the publication's High School Counselor Rankings. The University of Louisville garners national attention for the successes of its men's football, men's basketball, and women's basketball programs. Prominent alumni range from Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Lamar Jackson to former Connecticut Senator Christopher Dodd.

TMD Ranking Score: 87.57

 

#17. Marquette University – Marquette, Wisconsin

Master in Management

Program Website

Marquette University's Master in Management program combines human resource management with other aspects of business leadership. This 30-credit graduate degree requires completion of courses in leadership coaching, human capital strategy, and negotiations. Aspiring human resource professionals also select two electives to prepare for specific industries or types of jobs. The final step for every student in this program is a capstone project involving real-world business situations. Marquette University emphasizes the program's accommodation for working students by providing in-class and online courses. Students can also opt for a full-time path that takes two years to complete or a part-time path with a flexible endpoint.

Marquette University is located in downtown Milwaukee, perfectly situated for students who want access to entertainment and Lake Michigan. U.S. News & World Report listed the university No. 49 in its Best Value Schools for 2019 and No. 89 in National Universities. The publication also touted the school's veteran-friendly programs with a No. 53 ranking in Best Colleges for Veterans. Forbes also placed Marquette University in its 2019 rankings with a No. 175 in Top Colleges and No. 91 in Research Universities. Marquette's athletics programs have a track record of success including basketball, track and field, and soccer teams that have won conference championships in the recent past.

TMD Ranking Score: 88.43

 

#16. Loyola University Chicago – Chicago, Illinois

Master of Science in Human Resources

Program Website

Loyola University Chicago designed its Master of Science in Human Resources to help professionals balance work and school. The program holds classes on weeknights so that students with full-time jobs can still advance their careers. Loyola University Chicago also offers in-person instruction at its Water Town campus and online instruction. The MS program starts with 10 core courses covering topics like global human resource management and business ethics. Students can bypass the internship requirement if they have at least three years of experience in human resources. Loyola University Chicago smooths the path to certification by the Society for Human Resource Management with two preparatory electives.

Loyola University Chicago extends its reach beyond six Chicago campuses with satellite programs in Italy and Vietnam. The school has acquired a reputation for academic excellence since its founding in 1870. U.S. News & World Report placed the school No. 89 in National Universities and No. 53 in Best Colleges for Veterans in 2019. The publication also ranked the school No. 60 in Best Value Schools, balancing the university's private school tuition with long-term returns for students. Forbes also celebrated the school's reputation as a good employer with a No. 57 rank in Best Employers for Diversity and a No. 19 in America's Best Midsize Employers.

TMD Ranking Score: 88.64

 

#15. Pepperdine University – Malibu, California

Master of Science in Human Resources

Program Website

Pepperdine University's Master of Science in Human Resources allows students to complete their degrees online, part-time, or full-time from the West Los Angeles location. Full-time students can complete the degree in one year with courses broken into three trimesters. The part-time option spreads the work over five trimesters. Courses in analytics, digital platforms, and talent management prepare graduate students for current trends in human resource jobs. For full-time students, the culmination of the MS program is the completion of a summer practicum and internship. Pepperdine University also allows MBA students to complete this MS program easily by waiving up to three required courses.

Pepperdine University is a private university that goes beyond its Malibu campus to train future leaders. The school maintains six campuses in California and a satellite location in Washington, D.C. Pepperdine University also teaches international students at locations in six countries from Argentina to China. U.S. News & World Report placed the school No. 46 in National Universities and No. 34 in Best Undergraduate Teaching for 2019. The university also appeals to veterans of military service with a No. 20 ranking in Best Colleges for Veterans. Forbes ranked Pepperdine University No. 125 in Top Colleges and No. 269 in America's Best Value Colleges.  

TMD Ranking Score: 89.04

 

#14. University of Rhode Island – Kingston, Rhode Island

Master of Science in Labor Relations and Human Resources

Program Website

The University of Rhode Island allows students to customize their career paths through its Master of Science in Labor Relations and Human Resources. Of the program's 12 courses, students are able to select seven electives including the business of benefits and public personnel administration. Graduate students also select labor relations or human resources as their concentration after completing five core courses. Each student needs to complete a capstone presentation in their final semester to show the synthesis of previous coursework. The Schmidt Labor Research Center encourages students to look beyond the classroom with participation in groups like the Rhode Island Labor History Society and the Labor and Employment Relations Association.

The school's main campus in Kingston is joined by campuses in Narragansett, Providence, and West Greenwich to reach students throughout the state. The Rams athletic programs have achieved recent success including back-to-back NCAA tournament appearances by the men's basketball team. The University of Rhode Island's reputation has grown over the years thanks to consistent placement in college rankings by national publications. Forbes placed the school No. 288 in its America's Best Value Colleges for 2019. The financial magazine also ranked the school No. 453 in Top Colleges. U.S. News & World Report featured the University of Rhode Island throughout its 2019 rankings including a No. 80 in Top Public Schools and No. 148 in High School Counselor Rankings.

TMD Ranking Score: 89.12

 

#13. Michigan State University – East Lansing, Michigan

Master of Human Resources & Labor Relations

Program Website

Michigan State University's School of Human Resources and Labor Relations emphasizes balanced knowledge through its Master of Human Resources & Labor Relations. Graduate students are asked to select two courses each in seven subcategories including labor relations, workplace law, and strategy. The program allows emphasis on international human resources or labor relations by completing a study abroad opportunity and an additional course. Students can also opt for a strategic change and leadership concentration through additional coursework. The graduate school has placed interns with international firms like BP, Dow, and Lockheed Martin during summer sessions. Michigan State University also offers a dual degree program for human resources students who want to pursue law degrees.

Michigan State University has grown from an agricultural institute in 1855 to a world-class university. The Spartans athletics programs have achieved recent success including national titles for the men's basketball, football, and hockey teams. The school's reputation for producing future business leaders, doctors, and politicians is confirmed annually by college rankings. Michigan State University is a member of the Association of American Universities, which recognizes excellence in university research. U.S. News & World Report placed the school No. 85 in its National Universities ranking for 2019. The publication also ranked Michigan State University No. 49 in Best Colleges for Veterans and No. 43 in Best Undergraduate Teaching.

TMD Ranking Score: 91.07

 

#12. University of Texas at Arlington – Arlington, Texas

Master of Science in Human Resource Management

Program Website

The College of Business at the University of Texas Arlington hosts a Master of Science in Human Resource Management. This MS program is available in both thesis or non-thesis options depending on a student's career path. Every student completes six core courses including organizational consulting and human resource law. Students also complete two research courses and a capstone seminar in strategic management. Thesis students complete their research and writing to conclude their degrees, while non-thesis students register for three electives. Graduates of the program have interned with Bell Helicopter, the Federal Reserve Bank, and other companies during their enrollment. The University of Texas Arlington also touts human resource management alumni who work for companies like American Airlines and T-Mobile.

The Arlington campus is one of eight universities in the University of Texas system. College Factual rated the university's diversity as above average with international and minority students forming almost 60% of the student body. The student body at the University of Texas Arlington is almost predominantly female with women comprising 61.6% of all students. The school dotted 2019 rankings from the U.S. News & World Report including No. 221 in National Universities and No. 126 in Public Schools. Forbes ranked the University of Texas Arlington No. 146 in America's Best Value Colleges and No. 517 in Top Colleges.

TMD Ranking Score: 91.43

 

#11. Case Western Reserve University – Cleveland, OH

Master of Science in Positive Organization Development & Change

Program Website

Case Western Reserve University takes a different approach to human resources training through its Master of Science in Positive Organization Development & Change. This MS program divides coursework into five residencies that are each completed in one week. Each residency includes four courses and residencies are designed to move from theory to practice. Students complete field experiences during the second and fourth residencies to see HR leadership in action. Between the fourth and fifth residency, students complete an international study tour to encourage multicultural knowledge. The school schedules residencies up to three months apart to accommodate busy student schedules. After 18 months of study, program graduates can boast professional experiences and skills that may not be available from other institutions.

Case Western Reserve University is a nationally renowned research university with well-regarded professional schools. The school provides a good launching pad for graduate careers because the school partners with local employers like the Cleveland Clinic and the Cleveland Museum of Art. U.S. News & World Report placed Case Western Reserve University No. 42 in its National Universities ranking for 2019. The publication also ranked the school No. 42 in Best Value Schools and No. 40 in High School Counselor Rankings. Forbes ranked Case Western Reserve University No. 95 in Top Colleges and No. 245 in America's Best Value Colleges in 2019.

TMD Ranking Score: 93.07

 

#10. Ohio State University – Columbus, Ohio

Master of Human Resource Management

Program Website

Ohio State University's Master of Human Resource Management offers part-time and full-time options for early-career HR professionals. This graduate program features a thesis option ideal for transitioning into a doctoral program. Students can also gain experience in the field with the practicum option, which requires completion of an internship or faculty-guided tutorials. The Fisher College of Business makes the transition from undergraduate to graduate studies easier with a five-year bachelor's/master's program. First-year courses in talent management and staffing organizations provide the groundwork for advanced studies in the second year. Graduates of this master's program have entered the workforce with large companies like Shell and Visa.

The main campus in Columbus is joined by satellite campuses in five Ohio cities. Ohio State University is known throughout the country for successful athletics programs including their men's football and women's basketball teams. The school is also among the best in the country based on student performance in the classroom. U.S. News & World Report ranked the school No. 56 in National Universities in its 2019 rankings. The publication also placed Ohio State University No. 126 in Best Value Schools and No. 28 in Best Colleges for Veterans. Forbes placed the school No. 97 in its America's Best Value Colleges list and No. 122 in Top Colleges.

TMD Ranking Score: 93.52

 

#9. Florida International University – Miami, Florida

Master of Science in Human Resource Management

Program Website

Florida International University developed a Master of Science in Human Resource Management program for current HR professionals. This accelerated graduate program can be completed in one year thanks to weekend courses. Florida International University also allows students to finish this degree in two years through part-time work. MS students complete their courses at the main campus in Miami or a satellite campus in Miramar. The core courses for this program include human resource management metrics, wellness management, and conflict management. Each student completes a seminar on HR finance before selecting a career services seminar or an internship. Florida International University touts graduates who have interned or worked with every Fortune 500 company.

Florida International University is in the top five for enrollment among universities in the United States. Global campuses in Italy and China expand the school's reach to international students. The university boasts a diverse student body with 67.3% of students identifying as Latino and a majority of students older than 22 years old. Forbes ranked Florida International University No. 164 in America's Best Value Colleges and No. 459 in Top Colleges for 2019. The magazine also noted the school's stellar record as an employer with a No. 34 rank in America's Best Employers. U.S. News & World Report placed Florida International University No. 100 in Top Public Schools and No. 187 in National Universities.

TMD Ranking Score: 93.88

 

#8. Villanova University – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Master of Science in Human Resource Development

Program Website

Villanova University's Master of Science in Human Resource Development is available through in-person and online courses. MS students complete nine core courses on topics ranging from critical evaluation and HR analytics. Each course takes place over an eight-week period to ensure student focus on important principles in the field. To complete this MS program, students choose from internships, departmental written exams, or completion of certification exams from national organizations like the Society of Human Resource Management. Villanova University helps students meet business professionals through its HRD Mentoring Program and a spring networking reception with employers. HR professionals who want to strengthen specific skills can complete graduate certificates in analytics and research, leadership, organization development, and business partnership.

Villanova University has been a fixture in Philadelphia's higher education scene since enrolling students in 1842. The school's athletics programs experienced recent success including two national championships in three years for the men's basketball team. Forbes placed the university No. 70 in Top Colleges and No. 199 in America's Best Value Colleges for 2019. U.S. News & World Report highlighted Villanova University's return on investment for students with a No. 48 rank in Best Value Schools. The magazine also highlighted the school's national reputation with a No. 49 in National Universities. Famous alumni of Villanova University include former Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell and Hall of Fame football player Howie Long.

TMD Ranking Score: 95.07

 

#7. Texas A&M University – College Station, Texas

Master of Science in Human Resource Management

Program Website

Texas A&M University's Mays Business School helps students seeking the Master of Science in Human Resource Management complete their work in less than two years. This 37-credit MS program starts with a year of courses in topics like talent management and financial analyst modeling. All courses in this program are developed for real-world applications through a partnership between the school's Center for Human Resource Management and area businesses. Every student completes an internship during the summer session after the first year to gain valuable work experiences. The final semester of work includes a capstone course customized to a student's career interests.

Texas A&M University reaches beyond its south-central Texas roots with campuses in Fort Worth, Galveston, and an international campus in Qatar. Forbes ranked the university No. 45 in America's Best Value Colleges and No. 108 in Top Colleges for 2019. The school's academic record runs in parallel to athletic successes. U.S. News & World Report included Texas A&M University in several 2019 rankings including a No. 44 in Best Value Schools and a No. 50 in High School Counselor Rankings. The Aggies football team has won three national titles and 18 conference championships, while women's soccer, women's volleyball, and men's baseball regularly compete in national tournaments.

TMD Ranking Score: 96.81

 

#6. New York University – New York, New York

Master of Science in Human Resource Management and Development

Program Website

The Master of Science in Human Resource Management and Development at New York University allows students to concentrate their studies in four areas. Aspiring HR professionals choose from human resource management, organizational effectiveness, executive coaching, and global talent management to guide their work. Eight core courses tie together all of the concentrations with lessons in financial management and business strategy. The School of Professional Studies also requires students to complete four courses in their specialties. New York University and Hewlett-Packard oversee a program to connect excellent graduate students with placement in the Human Resources Management Associate Program. New York City provides thousands of opportunities to thrive for graduates of this program.

New York University is a global university with 14 locations spread from Accra to Sydney. The school is still focused on the city, however, with campuses in Brooklyn and Manhattan. This private university counts among its diverse alumni a former president of Taiwan, the inventor of the laser, and Academy Award recipients. U.S. News & World Report placed New York University No. 30 in National Universities and No. 56 in Best Value Schools. Forbes ranked the school No. 48 in Top Colleges and No. 187 in America's Best Value Colleges. Employee satisfaction also placed New York University No. 56 in the publication's list of America's Best Employers.

TMD Ranking Score: 96.93

 

#5. Cornell University – Ithaca, New York

Masters in Human Resource Studies

Program Website

Cornell University's ILR School features a Masters in Human Resources Studies that combines traditional coursework with lectures by business leaders. This 48-credit program includes six core classes along with electives selected in consultation with faculty advisors. Cornell University allows students to specialize in Human Resources and Organizations, which substitute six electives for courses in the concentration. Students can amplify their credentials while experiencing another part of the world through internships with Cornell Abroad or Cornell-in-Washington. Cornell University also offers international experiences like a semester in Dublin to develop global perspectives. Graduates of this master's program are ready to pursue their careers or advance to the school's Ph.D. in Human Resources.

Students at Cornell University enjoy a beautiful campus dating to 1865 and an Ivy League education. The university has produced winners of Nobel Prizes, Turing Awards, and Fields Medals throughout its existence. Cornell University extends beyond its Ithaca campus with locations in New York City, Qatar, and Puerto Rico. U.S. News & World Report placed the school No. 16 in National Universities for 2019. The school also placed No. 3 in Best Colleges for Veterans. Forbes ranked Cornell University No. 13 in Top Colleges and No. 43 in America's Best Value Colleges. The financial magazine also recognized the school's role as an employer with a No. 86 ranking in America's Best Employers.

TMD Ranking Score: 97.32

 

#4. University of Minnesota – Minneapolis, Minnesota

Master of Arts in Human Resources & Industrial Relations

Program Website

The University of Minnesota's Master of Arts in Human Resources & Industrial Relations placed 93% of its graduates in jobs within six months of graduating as of 2018. This MA program can be completed on a full-time or part-time basis. The Carlson School of Management starts students with courses on HR metrics and collective bargaining in the first year. MA students are expected to complete internships following their first year with exceptions for experienced professionals. The University of Minnesota keeps it flexible in the second year, allowing students to complete their degrees via electives and field experiences. Graduate students can network with students, faculty, and business leaders in the Twin Cities through the Graduate Society of Human Resources Leaders.

National publications placed the University of Minnesota toward the top of their rankings for 2019. U.S. News & World Report placed the school No. 76 in National Universities and No. 86 in Best Value Schools. The publication also recognized its success in teaching veterans with a No. 42 in Best Colleges for Veterans. Forbes ranked the University of Minnesota No. 89 in America's Best Value Colleges. The school also placed No. 70 in Best Employers for New Grads from the financial publication. Famous alumni of the University of Minnesota range from former Vice President Walter Mondale to writer and former radio host Garrison Keillor. The university has a strong following among sports fans in the Twin Cities with successful hockey, basketball, and football programs.

TMD Ranking Score: 97.50

 

#3. University of Wisconsin – Madison – Madison, Wisconsin

Master of Business Administration in Strategic Human Resource Management

Program Website

The University of Wisconsin – Madison offers a Masters of Business Administration with a specialization in Strategic Human Resource Management. The standard path for an MBA student is to complete two years of courses in business strategy, data-driven decisions, and labor-management relations. The School of Business encourages MBA students to add certificates in business analytics, social responsibility, entrepreneurship, and strategic innovation to strengthen post-graduate job opportunities. Students work with graduate faculty to arrange field studies with regional businesses to show classroom lessons in action. A strategic human resource management student can also network with their colleagues in student groups like the Joint Venture Club and the Artful Business Collective.

Madison provides access to job opportunities with a nonprofit, hospital, tech, or manufacturing organization in central Wisconsin. The flagship campus in Madison is joined by 11 four-year schools and 13 two-year schools to educate future leaders throughout the state. The University of Wisconsin – Madison was ranked No. 117 in America's Best Value Colleges for 2019 by Forbes. The magazine also ranked the university No. 75 in Top Colleges and No. 17 in Public Colleges. U.S. News & World Report placed the school No. 49 in National Universities and No. 43 in Best Undergraduate Teaching. The University of Wisconsin – Madison has produced 12 Nobel laureates and dozens of professional athletes from its successful football and basketball programs.

TMD Ranking Score: 98.80

 

#2. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign – Champaign, Illinois

Master of Human Resources and Industrial Relations

Program Website

The University of Illinois at Urbana – Champaign features traditional and online versions of its Master of Human Resources and Industrial Relations degree. This graduate program can also be completed part-time over a five-year period. Every student is required to complete courses in employment relations systems and quantitative methods in labor. Students in the 48-credit non-thesis program complete four courses in human resource specializations along with six electives. The 48-credit thesis option swaps out two electives for a thesis project. The School of Labor and Employment Relations also offers joint MBA and JD programs to bolster student career prospects. Graduates of this master's degree program have gained employment at HR departments for Boeing, Honeywell, and other major corporations.

National publications placed the University of Illinois at Urbana – Champaign toward the top of their 2019 rankings. The school achieved a No. 43 in Best Undergraduate Teaching and No. 46 in National Universities from U.S. News & World Report. Forbes recognized the university for providing a good return on investment with a No. 50 rank in its America's Best Value Colleges list. The financial publication also ranked the university No. 56 in Top Colleges. The University of Illinois at Urbana – Champaign has educated business leaders like basketball executive Jerry Colangelo and YouTube co-founders Steve Chen and Jawed Karim.

TMD Ranking Score: 99.13

 

#1. Vanderbilt University – Nashville, Tennessee

Master of Business Administration in Human and Organizational Performance

Program Website

Vanderbilt University's world-class Master of Business Administration (MBA) program features a concentration in Human and Organizational Performance. Every student who pursues this concentration completes courses in human alignment strategy and organizational effectiveness. Students are also asked to complete eight elective credits selected from a range of business courses like negotiation and innovation strategy. The MBA class of 2020 showed Vanderbilt University's ability to attract diverse students with 16 countries represented. This program also attracts students with an average career length of 5.4 years, showing Vanderbilt's ability to serve early-career professionals. The Owen Graduate School of Management builds camaraderie among students with organizations like the Asia Business Association and the Owen Sports Club.

National publications like Forbes and U.S. News & World Report placed Vanderbilt University among its top universities in 2019. The school placed No. 28 in the Forbes America's Best Value Colleges and No. 32 in Top Colleges for 2019. Vanderbilt University was also recognized as a good employer with a No. 85 in America's Best Employers. U.S. News & World Report ranked the university No. 14 in National Universities and No. 7 in Best Value Schools. Students and faculty enjoy the interactions of Vanderbilt's downtown Nashville campus with a large arboretum. The school has produced business leaders throughout its existence with alumni leading notable companies like NASDAQ, Sotheby's, and the Boston Consulting Group.

TMD Ranking Score: 100.00

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