The core professional degree for a career improving the quality of life for all people

Best Masters in Human Services 2020 Award Graphic

The M.A. in Human Services (HMS) will prepare you for management and leadership positions in the growing human and social services fields. You will develop an appreciation of contemporary and historic human characteristics, issues, and problems as the foundation for designing, delivering, and evaluating interventions and services to improve the quality of life for all people.

With America's aging population and nearly 13% of people living in poverty, there is an increasing need for experienced human and social services professionals.

Program Facts

Join us and become a manager and leader with the knowledge and skills to ensure that "need-based" populations get support and care backed by evidence-based research.

33 Credits
Online & On-Campus Options
Earn your degree online, in-person, or a hybrid of both.
24 Months
Accommodates the Schedules of Working Professionals
#4 Best Schools
for Masters in Human Services

Our HMS Students Learn to ...

Advocate on behalf of those in need through an in-depth understanding of human service roles, functions, and methods of advocacy

Understand individual needs, and analyze the scope of the populations you serve to deliver the services they need

Identify and implement effective strategies built on the theoretical and philosophical values of the human services profession

Evaluate information, including the interpretation and analysis of data, to help deliver appropriate services


The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects the community and social service occupations to grow 12 percent from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations, adding about 348,600 jobs. See SPMP Career Outcomes for our recent graduates.

HMS Curriculum

Our core courses teach the skills and concepts that all human services professionals need. Students develop a specialized expertise by choosing from one of four concentrations:


Child & Family Studies

Learn to address the complexities of developing and administering services for children and families. Focus on human development, resiliency, family theories, and advocacy. Learn more about the Child & Family concentration.

Alcohol & Substance Abuse

The Illinois Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse Professional Certification Association, Inc., has accredited the alcohol and substance abuse concentration in the M.A. in Human Services. Students who complete this concentration may be eligible to take the Certified Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse Counselor examination. Learn more about the Alcohol and Substance Abuse concentration.

Nursing Home Administration

Prepare for Nursing Home Administration, where the median salary is over $100,000. In addition to vital administration skills, the curriculum addresses the challenges inherent in aging, including ageism and implicit bias. Learn more about the Nursing Home Administration concentration.

Social Services Administration

Gain the knowledge and skills to work with diverse funding sources (e.g., fundraising and grant writing), supervise staff, and develop and administer programs that address community needs. Learn more about the Social Services Administration concentration.


Gain an in-depth understanding of the biological, psychological, sociological, and economic processes of aging. Develop the skills to critically analyze the policies and programs in existence and observe, evaluate, direct, and improve the operation of existing services and programs for older adults. Learn more about the Gerontology concentration.

Graduate Certificates

Human Services Fundraising

Courses cover fundraising principles, gift-giving, cause-related fundraising events, online fundraising, planned-giving, managing fundraising, volunteers, grant writing, financial management, and legal and ethical issues. Learn more about the Human Services Fundraising certificate.

Alcohol & Substance Abuse

HMS offers individuals who wish to become certified in the substance abuse counseling profession the option to complete the coursework without participating in a formal degree program. Learn more about the Alcohol and Substance abuse certificate.

Contact Us

Human Services Email:

Tuition & Fees

We are committed to making higher education accessible and affordable. Estimate your education costs.

Internship Experiences

Earn a stipend and cover most of your education costs w/ our Graduate Public Service Internship Experience & Illinois Legislative Staff Internship.

Aid & Scholarships

See the financial aid and scholarships that are available to help fund your education.

Oct 04, 2023
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