HR student with laptop

Our Curriculum Will
Meet Your Needs

1. All core and guided elective courses are offered online.

2. The course curriculum has been nationally recognized and approved by SHRM.

3. You can put what you learn in class immediately into practice.

4. You may choose from a variety of elective courses.

5. All courses are taught by instructors with years of online teaching experience.

6. The most up-to-date technology (Blackboard) is used to deliver the courses to your desktop.

7. You have the opportunity to learn with and from other national and international human resources (HR) professionals.



Graduate Academic Calendar

Graduate Catalog


91 Killian Building Lane, Room 214
Cullowhee, NC 28723
828.227.3380 tel


HR Program Curriculum

MSHR Mission:
To provide an exceptional learning experience for our students that enhances their knowledge of and passion for the potential of people in organizations.
* To be one of the premier graduate human resources program worldwide.
* To be the premier graduate human resources program in NC.

Playbutton Dr. Marie-Line Germain talks about student involvement as consultants in non-profit organizations.

HR Curriculum Overview

By completing only 12 courses (36 credit hours) offered online over the Web, you can earn your master’s (M.S.) degree in human resources at Western Carolina University. 

The curriculum consists of 7 required courses that all students take and 5 elective courses (see below). HR 605, HR 602, & HR 610 are taken at the beginning of the program; HR 683 & HR 698 are usually taken during a student's last semester in the program. Students with more than 5 years of full-time human resources-related work experience may substitute another WCU HR course for HR 683.

To find out what books are being used for the current semester, please visit the bookstore at

View our three-year course schedule to help you plan a course of study.

All courses have been designed to align with particular HR content areas, personal competencies, and business/policy knowledge applications recommended by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) in their Graduate HR Curriculum Guidelines.  

Required Core Courses

  • HR 601: "Organization, Planning & Execution for HR Professionals"
  • HR 602: "Human Resources Research & Evaluation Methods"
  • HR 605: "Orientation To Human Resources"
  • HR 610: "Human Resource Development"
  • HR 645: "Employee and Labor Relations"
  • HR 683: "Field Experience in Human Resources" (see Field Experience FAQ - PDF) 
              Please think about identifying your internship site and completing required paperwork
              the semester prior to when you will be taking the class.
  • HR 698: "Seminar in Human Resources"
        * You may take HR 683 and HR 698 in the same semester.

Popular Electives Courses

  • HR 613: "Performance Management"
  • HR 614: "Staffing"
  • HR 615: "Organization Development"
  • HR 660: "Talent Management"
  • HR 662: "Compensation & Benefits"
  • HR 666: "Legal Issues in Human Resources"
  • HR 675: "Leadership in Human Resources"
  • HR 693: "Selected Topics in Human Resources"

Graduation Information


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