Students may enter the Training and Development program from a variety of backgrounds and enroll in courses to help them develop competencies in training and development. Coursework includes both required and elective courses in training and development. Students select one of two areas of professional practice, training or human resource development, as a focus for their electives in the training and development program. Weekday courses are scheduled for the evening, while some courses are offered in the weekends and online to accommodate part- and full-time students. 

Capstone Requirement

Students must choose one of two capstone experiences. The Paper capstone experience requires the completion of a master's paper (TRDEV 587) and a total of 33 credits at the 400 level or higher with a minimum of 6 credits at the 500 level. The Non-Paper capstone experience does not require a master's paper, but does require Research Designs Applied in Training (TRDEV 588) and an additional 3-credit elective in Training and Development for a total of 36.


The purpose of the Professional Experience Requirement is to ensure that every student who graduates with the M.Ed. in Training and Development from Penn State Harrisburg has a baseline of practical, field-relevant experience. This baseline is a minimum of 240 hours of hands-on work. This experience can be focused on:

  • Training and Instruction
  • Human Resource Development (HRD)
  • Organization Development (OD)
  • Or a combination of these areas.

Any students who enter the program without 240 hours of work experience relevant to the field will be required to undertake an internship. At roughly the mid-point of their plan of study, students should work individually with their adviser to arrange the Internship. The Internship experience should be designed on a case-by-case basis to account for the student’s professional goals. The intention is to strengthen the viability of the student in the employment marketplace by providing them a means to demonstrate to prospective employers that they have had practical experience.

Students who entered the program prior to Fall 2014 with 240 hours or more of field-relevant experience who wish to complete the M.Ed. program without doing a structured internship must apply for an Internship Waiver. Students entering the program in Fall 2014 or later will not need to submit a Waiver. Rather they will regularly contribute to a Career Engagement Portfolio (CEP) over the course of their plan of study. At the approximate the mid-point the student and adviser will meet to discuss whether the CEP demonstrates that the experience requirement of 240 or more hours of field-related work experience has been met. If it has not, the student will be advised to enroll in the Internship Elective, TRDEV 595.

Arrangements are made to provide a quid pro quo experience for the intern and for the organization providing the field site for the experience. The intern provides a helping hand while learning how a training unit within an organization operates on a day to day basis. An internship may be paid or unpaid and the type of internship (paid or unpaid) must be reflected in the letter of agreement.

Read more about the internship (TRDEV 595) planning process.

An internship formally begins when at least one representative from the organization in which the internship will be housed meets with the intern and a representative from the M Ed., Training and Development Program. The three parties agree on the specifics of the internship experience and the objectives, which are customized to each intern.

Career Engagement Portfolio (CEP)

Students maintain a Career Engagement Portfolio (CEP) throughout their time in the program to build an online presence connected to their professional practice. This process coheres student experiences, both in the program and in professional practice, to sculpt an identity as a scholar-practitioner in Training and Development. Students work with their Adviser to ensure that the work in the CEP is sufficiently robust to meet the program’s requirement for field-relevant experience. Every student must meet a baseline of 240 hours of hands on work to complete the program. Students whose experience is not at the baseline will choose TRDEV 595 Internship as one of their electives.

What will go in it?

  • Student Goal Statement from the program application.
  • Record of practical field experience coming into the program such as a resume or CV, including work samples as appropriate.
  • Record of practical field experience accumulated as the student is participating in the program.
  • Reference letters that substantiate the quality of contributions to practice.
  • Record of all course work.
  • Reflections on the influence of coursework on professional identity and practice (if applicable).
  • Work product produced in the context of course work (individual and group, properly credited) that would be of interest to prospective employers.
  • Final reflection on the arc of the program experience, especially relative to the Student Goal Statement.

Students should begin to develop their CEP as soon as possible. Read more about the process for acquiring the CEP template and accessing the CEP instructional materials.  

This page is not a part of the official Penn State University Bulletin.