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ERIC Number: EJ1043383
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Aug-5
Pages: N/A
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-1938-5978
"Yes, Master's": A Graduate Degree's Moment in the Age of Higher Education Innovation
Gallagher, Sean
New England Journal of Higher Education, Aug 2014
Over the past decade, enrollment in professional master's degree programs has grown substantially, and this category has outpaced the overall recent flattening of college enrollment. Today, 5 million more U.S. adults hold a master's degree compared with a decade ago, and in some circles the master's is being referred to as "the new bachelors," given its increased prominence in the professional job market. The growth of the master's degree as an increasingly demanded professional credential appears to be driven by the continued prominence and resilience of knowledge work and the division of the job market, with graduate-level education increasingly valued in the middle and top tiers of the job market. As master's degree attainment is being more greatly rewarded in the job market, this demands more analysis, policy attention, and thought leadership. At many major employers, master's degrees have become the de-facto credential for leadership roles. The master's degree deserves a more prominent place in the national dialogue about educational attainment and innovation in higher education, which may have implications for graduate education funding and financial aid frameworks, the tax-deductibility of employer-provided tuition assistance, and the mechanics of occupational licensing and credentialing. The author states that, rather than relegating the notion of partnering closely with employers to community colleges and short-term workforce development activities, universities should engage in a more active dialogue and alignment with employers, recognizing that major companies have substantial pressing talent development and recruiting needs at the advanced educational level.
New England Board of Higher Education. 45 Temple Place, Boston, MA 02111. Tel: 617-357-9620; Fax: 617-338-1577; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A