Our development practice programs meet the urgent need for a new generation of development practitioners.

Regis University Development Practice prepares you to collaborate effectively with a variety of development actors from an integrated, inter-sectoral and global perspective. With this education, you will be able to facilitate holistic development solutions, ranging well beyond the silo of a single discipline. With an eye to social justice, you’ll navigate economic, political, and cultural complexity for lasting development impact. Moreover, your degree will set you on a path of lifelong learning through a discipline of critical reflection.
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Development Practice (Graduate)

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Why should I study Development Practice?

The Regis MDP is premised on the understanding that tackling development challenges requires many kinds of knowledge and multiple points of view, interacting within an interdisciplinary approach. Regis MDP courses draw on a range of disciplines, including health, engineering, climate, ecology, economics, communications, mapping, culture, gender, finance, management and governance to explore a common theme. Our global classroom brings development theory into dialogue with students’ own experience, resulting ultimately in more creative and robust real-world practice for our graduates. 

Is Development Practice for me?

Radically affordable and accessible, the Regis MDP attracts students of all ages, across a wide range of cultures, geographic location, and experience. The collaborative dimension of the program ensures students actively benefit from this diversity, both personally and professionally. With many students already engaged in full-time development work, the Regis MDP community simultaneously constitutes a rich and ever-expanding network within the development world.

What will I learn in the Master of Development Practice Program?

MDP courses draw on a range of disciplines, including global health, engineering, climate, ecology, economics, communications, mapping, metrics, culture, gender, finance, management and governance, to explore a common theme.  Our approach also means that we challenge development theory with students’ own practical knowledge gleaned from on-the-ground experience. To this end, the MDP includes significant field immersion, as well as the participation of instructors who are also practitioners. Additionally, the program now includes 1-credit professional development courses in a variety of topics, including monitoring and evaluation, qualitative research methods, and program design, as part of the degree requirements.

Is Regis' Master of Development Practice degree Accredited?

Regis University, founded in 1877, is a regionally accredited university, and the Regis MDP program is a member of the Global Association of MDPs.

What class formats are available?

All Regis MDP courses occur in the Global Classroom at the Posner Center for International Development. Classes are synchronous and may be attended in person or remotely, from anywhere on Earth. Class time is concentrated into two weekly class periods of two hours each that fall outside of sleeping and generally, working hours, no matter where students are located.

When do classes start?

Classes begin in late August, at the beginning of the fall semester of the academic year.

Career Opportunities

What careers can I pursue with a Master of Development Practice?

The Regis MDP equips students to work in a wide range of development contexts with skills in community engagement, program and project planning, monitoring and evaluation, fundraising, marketing, education and capacity building, advocacy, communications and more.  Consistent with the global framework of the SDGs, the Regis MDP extends the concept of sustainable development to communities everywhere, including those of the so-called developed world in North America and Europe.  Regis MDP students work in universities, ecotourism, international adoption and social services, as well as in NGOs and grassroots development organizations.

Salary and employment information can be researched at the Bureau of Labor Statistics.  

Career support from Regis

The Center for Career and Professional Development at Regis provides you with the resources, training and advice to help you establish and meet your career goals. That means we’ll help you choose an academic major, explore and find a new career path or create the tools for a successful job search that will promote your career. To learn more, visit our Center for Career and Professional Development page.

Program Requirements

Total semester hours: 42

Year One
Introduction to International Development (3 SH)
Participatory Planning (3 SH)
Gender, Intersectionality and Agency (3 SH)
Research for Learning and Development Practice (3 SH)
Skills Modules (3 SH)*

Year Two
Climate and Ecology (3 SH)
Food, Water and Energy Nexus (3 SH)**
Human Dimensions of Natural Resources (3 SH)**
Indigenous Knowledge (3 SH)**
Urbanization, Infrastructure and Service Delivery (3 SH)**
Field Placement (3 SH)

Year Three
Health and Development (3 SH)
Communications, Advocacy and Marketing (3 SH)       
Just and Sustainable Education: Making It Last (3 SH)
Thesis Planning (0 SH)
Thesis (3 SH)

*Skills Modules Options Include: Monitoring & Evaluation I & II, Mapping I & II, and Program Design
**Offered on an alternating basis as elective options in both Years 2 and 3

Please note that recent course requirement updates may not be reflected in the list above and you should contact an admissions counselor at 800.944.7667 for recent changes and updates.

Additionally, Regis University now offers 1-credit professional development courses in a variety of topics, including monitoring and evaluation, qualitative research methods, and program design.


How to Apply

Take the next step in your Regis experience and connect with a Regis admissions counselor for information and assistance.

Apply Now!

Admission Criteria

  • Completed undergraduate degree from a regionally accredited institution
  • International documentation (if applicable)
  • Faculty interview
  • If you are a current Regis undergraduate student applying for this program, it is recommended that you have a GPA of 3.5 or above.

Materials Needed for Application and Admission*

  • Complete the online graduate application
  • Application fee: $50 non-refundable application fee
  • Current resume
  • Completed essay prompt
  • Submit official degree-bearing transcript. If your undergraduate degree is from outside the U.S., a course-by-course International Credential Evaluation is required.
    • International Credential Evaluation* - Submit an official academic, course-by-course transcript evaluation of foreign educational undergraduate credentials from one of the approved agencies, found at www.naces.org. NACES® is an association of independent, nongovernmental organizations providing credential evaluation services to individuals who have completed part or all of their education outside the United States. Through stringent membership requirements, NACES® ensures that its members are dedicated to ethical standards and providing high-quality, reliable evaluations that are prepared with integrity. While Regis does not endorse any particular outside agency, most often our students use the following NACES® approved agencies for their credential evaluations:

Photocopies of the evaluation are not acceptable. Official transcript evaluations should be sent to the following address: 

Regis University Admissions
3333 Regis Boulevard, A-12
Denver, CO. 80221-1099

*If you are an international student and received your undergraduate education outside the U.S., please ensure you submit your transcripts to be evaluated for U.S. equivalency through an approved NACES credentialing agency, as noted above. This process can take between 2-6 weeks, depending on the agency selected. Please contact admissions via email at RUadmission@regis.edu if you have questions or concerns about the evaluation process.

Applicants to the Master’s degree program may be provisionally admitted to the Development Practice Certificate program without an evaluation. Provisionally admitted students have until December 15 of the same year to submit their official credential evaluations to Regis University, at which point they will be allowed to continue in program and move to the Master’s degree track; failure to provide the evaluation by the December 15 deadline may result in discontinuation of Development Practice courses. Please contact admissions via email at RUadmission@regis.edu if you have questions about the evaluation process.

If English is not your native/first language, you must meet the following language requirement via the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) or equivalent English language test.

Minimum scores for English language competency tests are as follows:

  • TOEFL: Internet-based - 87
  • TOEFL: Computer-based - 227
  • TOEFL: Paper-based - 567
  • IELTS: 5
  • Cambridge: First Certificate in English (FCE), minimum Grade B
  • Cambridge: First Certificate in English (FCE)

If your undergraduate degree was taught in English but obtained in a country outside the U.S., an official letter from your university’s registrar’s office stating your university taught courses in English will suffice as proof of English language competency. Send this official letter or proof of English proficiency through one of the above to:

Regis University
Office of Admissions
Mail Code: A-12
3333 Regis Boulevard
Denver, CO 80221-1099

Electronic official copies may be sent to sendtranscripttoRU@regis.edu

NOTE: Applications that are incomplete and/or missing information will NOT be processed. An applicant not meeting the above requirements may submit a request for special consideration by the Admissions Committee.

The application process is competitive and all interested candidates are encouraged to apply as soon as they become interested. Enrollment is capped annually to admit a maximum of 28 of the most qualified applicants to begin class in August.

PRIORITY APPLICATION DEADLINE:          May 1
Admissions decisions finalized by May 15.

FINAL APPLICATION DEADLINE:                 July 15
Applications received after May 1 will only be reviewed if there is space available.

Classes begin in late August each year. Visit the Academic Calendar to view start dates.

*Your application file including all requirements, documents and fees, must be completed by the application deadline.

Tuition

Visit the Cost of Attendance webpage and select the Graduate and Certificate Programs tab.

Development Practice Financial Support Policy:

Financial support is available to those who qualify. The Regis MDP is committed to bringing a diverse, international cohort of students together for deep and ongoing engagement leading to truly global development education and solutions. This requires financial accessibility for students from a wide range of local economies. The Regis MDP will work within its available resources to make participation in the program feasible for all qualified students.

For U.S. citizens and permanent U.S. residents, please see more information about federal financial aid options.

For non-citizens and non-residents of the U.S., federal financial aid is not available. However there is additional support available. Scholarship opportunities exist to help offset the cost of tuition and are based on need for qualified applicants. Scholarships are awarded annually and must be applied for and renewed each academic year. 

Statement of Financial Situation:
To be considered for financial support, regardless of citizenship status or residence, all students admitted into the program are to submit a Statement of Financial Situation including:
  • A letter from your employer, on company letterhead, verifying your employment, job title and annual salary.
  • Personal Statement of Financial Commitment and Need, in which you describe your personal economy, including what you are able to contribute to your own education and what level of support you feel you need.

Email all financial documents to mdp@regis.edu

The scholarship committee reviews the submitted scholarships annually to determine who is eligible. Recipients awarded the scholarships will be notified at least three weeks prior to starting classes at Regis University.

FAQ

Learn more about the MDP program partnership with the The Paul D. Coverdell Fellows Program for Returned Peace Corps Volunteers.

Class Format

HOW DO PEOPLE AROUND THE WORLD ATTEND REGIS MDP COURSES AT POSNER CENTER?

The Global Classroom at Posner Center is equipped with state of the art video conferencing technology enabling live, interactive, virtual-visual classes that connect students from around the world with those attending in person. No one need relocate to Denver for full and inclusive participation in these applied graduate studies.

SOUNDS FASCINATING, BUT HOW DOES IT WORK?

If you’re new to the Regis MDP, attending a class, whether in person or virtually, will be a very different experience from classes you have attended before. Because MDP classes are so different we conduct an orientation, called Base Camp, to ensure students are prepared to be full and active participants in the Global Classroom, whatever their location.

WHAT IS THE CLASS SCHEDULE?

Class meeting times have been arranged to accommodate the many international locations of our students. For example, classes for each cohort meet two days per week for approximately two hours per session. Below is an example of how the same two hours fall out across multiple time zones; be sure to calculate an hour adjustment for your individual time zone. 

Denver, USA: 7 - 8:50 a.m. 
Sao Paulo, Brazil: 10 - 11:50 a.m. 
Kigali, Rwanda: 3 - 4:50 p.m. 
Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam: 6 - 7:50 p.m.

Costs and Financial Support

ARE THERE ANY FEES ASSOCIATED WITH BEING AN MDP STUDENT?

Regis MDP students are required to pay a one-time application fee ($50) and annual technology fees of $250. Master’s degree seekers pay a $50 graduation fee to receive their diplomas.

ARE THERE ANY OTHER COSTS I SHOULD EXPECT AS AN MDP STUDENT?

Regis MDP classes are synchronous, and the learning model demands all students be in attendance. Therefore students are responsible for obtaining and maintaining connectivity throughout their course of study. For some, this may mean purchasing an internet hotspot and periodically loading it with data for continuous, reliable access from their location. Because the Regis MDP strives to make all texts digitally available at no cost to students, purchasing texts is not required.

WHAT FINANCIAL SUPPORT IS AVAILABLE TO ME?

International access is core to the mission of the Regis MDP. We want everyone who is qualified and passionate about development at the table, whatever their resources. Therefore we are committed to assisting students with financial support keyed to their individual economies. Annual financial assessments provide a full picture of each student’s situation, and guide fair distribution of our resources. All Regis MDP students are eligible to receive this support, regardless of residence.

Learning Communities

WHAT IS A LEARNING COMMUNITY?

A learning community is a group of people who share common academic goals and attitudes, who meet regularly to collaborate on classwork. Such communities have become the template for a cohort-based, interdisciplinary approach to higher education. Effective communities are both aspirational and practical. They connect people, organizations, and systems that are eager to learn and work across boundaries, all the while holding members accountable to a common agenda, metrics, and outcomes. These communities enable participants to share results and learn from each other, thereby improving their ability to achieve rapid yet significant progress.

WHAT ARE REGIS MDP LEARNING COMMUNITIES LIKE?

Regis MDP Learning Communities are a subset of between 4 or 5 students of the same cohort with diverse backgrounds who meet regularly to collaborate, talk through ideas and assignments, and help each other navigate and grow in the MDP. Regis MDP Learning Communities provide students with deep cross-cultural experience and continuous opportunities for communication and collaboration. Think of them as your academic home.

Resources

Posner Center for International Development

Posner Center for International Development is the principal partner and physical home of the Regis MDP. The first collaborative space of its kind in North America, Posner Center facilitates lasting development solutions among 60 organizations working in more than 100 countries, many of which provide MDP students with field immersion opportunities and ongoing mentorship.

Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)

The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers provides student scholarships, connectivity solutions via the Global Classroom at Posner Center, and access to the Smart Village Program, IEEE's own ongoing renewable energy project for the developing world.

Global Association of Master's of Development Practice Programs (GAM)

The Regis MDP is included in the Global Association of Master's of Development Practice Programs, a consortium of universities and organizations setting standards among contemporary development education programs worldwide.

Students Alumni and Advisory Council (SAAC)

The Regis MDP is represented among The Students and Alumni Advisory Council of GAM, which provides a professional platform for job opportunities, networking, and promotion of the MDP brand to employers, and creates forums for discussion, global projects, and idea sharing among students.

Libraries

The Regis University Library provides a full range of online and on-campus library services and resources to students, faculty, staff, alumni and community members. Within the library resources is a "Development Practice" library guide specifically designed as a research reference source for MDP students. Additionally, The Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities, of which Regis is a member, provides 24 hour access to reference librarians and library resources to all Regis MDP students.

The Learning Commons

The Regis University Learning Commons links MDP students to a network of academic support at no extra cost. Designed to promote student confidence and success, its writing center, tutoring services and academic success workshops assist with writing, studying, and a range of subjects through one-on-one and group sessions.

Professional Development Skills Courses

Regis University now offers 1-credit  professional development courses in a variety of topics, including monitoring and evaluation, qualitative research methods, and program design.