University Fordham University
Degree type Master
Academic title M.Sc. Master of Science
Location United States
Methodology blended
Commitment Full time
Duration 24- months
Tuition fee Visit GSAS Tuition and Fees / 1,516 $ per credit
Deadline 14. August 2020
Language English

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With the unprecedented rise globally of conflict-induced and climate-induced disasters, the need to ensure collective, effective responses to humanitarian crises that meet the needs of disaster-affected communities has never been more pressing. Addressing the multidimensional challenges of humanitarian action requires well-trained professionals who possess multi-sector knowledge, cultural understanding, and practical skillsets.

A Master of Science in Humanitarian Studies (MSHS) from Fordham University’s Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (GSAS) will educate you to make meaningful contributions to humanitarian operations.

Built on social justice values and humanitarian principles, this 30-credit interdisciplinary program is uniquely focused on the theory and practice of humanitarian relief, and is centered on equipping you with a wide range of skills and competencies necessary for a dynamic career in the sector.

You will be challenged to examine critically the political, social, economic, and legal foundations of the contemporary humanitarian sector, and to master various techniques to engaging holistic and sustainable responses to protracted and rapid onset humanitarian crises.

Course Syllabus

  • Fundamentals of Humanitarian Action
  • Contemporary Issues in Humanitarian Action
  • Information Management
  • Humanitarian Resource Management and Administration
  • Monitoring and Evaluation in Humanitarian Response

Four required courses from one of the following concentrations:

Human Rights

Courses in this concentration examine the preservation of human rights in humanitarian activities. A clear understanding of these rights and privileges is critical to those working within the humanitarian sector, and students concentrating in this area will emerge with skills and critical thinking in how to preserve those rights and privileges in those who are at risk. Courses that fulfill this concentration include:

  • Protection for Vulnerable Populations
  • Access to Education during Crisis and Conflict
  • Alternative and Advocacy Journalism
  • Conflict Resolution
  • Trauma and Family Violence
  • Contemporary Social Theory
  • Independent Study

Communities and Capacity Building

Courses in this concentration examine humanitarian response at the subnational level, including how processes are created, relationships are founded, skills are shared, and institutions are built, strengthened, and stabilized. Students concentrating in this area will work through practical skills to mitigate and respond to complex emergencies at a local level. Courses that fulfill this concentration include:

  • Disaster Risk Reduction
  • Gender Integration in Humanitarian Action
  • Epidemics and Development
  • Persuasion and Public Opinion
  • International Communication
  • Global Mental Health
  • Global Cities
  • Independent Study

Livelihoods and Institutions

Courses in this concentration area examine humanitarian response through a macro-structural lens, incorporating global processes and a critical exploration of how international actors can support and enrich national and local societies in times of crisis. Students concentrating in this area will focus on causality and larger response mechanisms. Courses that fulfill this concentration include:

  • Urban Disaster and Displacement
  • International Responses to Migration
  • Environment History
  • Migration, Microfinance, and Poverty
  • Foreign Aid and Development
  • Ethics and Economics
  • Ecological Ethics
  • Issues in Urban Studies
  • Independent Study

Admission Requirements

Candidates for the M.S. in Humanitarian Studies are expected to have a 3.0 or higher undergraduate GPA based on a 4.0 scale. Completed applications will include each of the following items:

  • Official degree transcripts confirming prior degree conferral are required for all applicants, regardless of matriculation status. These should be ordered at least one month prior to the application deadline for your program of interest, and should be sent directly to the Office of Admissions ( via secure electronic delivery. If electronic delivery is not available, please request that your transcripts be submitted directly via post, in a sealed envelope, to: Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Office of Admissions, Fordham University, 441 E. Fordham Rd., Bronx, NY 10458. Please note: you may upload unofficial copies of your transcripts to your application while the Office of Admissions awaits receipt of your official transcripts.
  • Resume/CV (submit via the online application)
  • Official Graduate Record Examination (GRE scores) (should be sent directly by the testing service to the Office of Graduate Admissions, Fordham University, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences – Code #2259)
  • Statement of intent (up to 500 words, submitted electronically, via the online application)
  • Writing sample (5 – 20 pages, submitted electronically, via the online application)
  • Three letters of recommendation (two of which must be academic, submitted directly by referees via the online application)

English Proficiency
International applicants whose native language is not English are required to complete and submit to GSAS prior to matriculation their official scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). GSAS will also consider a student’s International English Language Testing System (IELTS)—Cambridge English Proficiency Level language testing results.

Official TOEFL or IELTS scores should be sent directly by the testing service to the Office of Graduate Admissions, Fordham University, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences – Code # 2259. Please consult the English Proficiency web page on the GSAS web site for additional information. Competitive applicants will have earned TOEFL scores above 100 and/or an IELTS score of 7.5 or higher.

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