2018-2019 Graduate Catalog

About the University


Ball State University will be a national model of excellence for challenging, learner-centered academic communities that advance knowledge and improve economic vitality and quality of life. (Ball State University Strategic Plan Task Force Report 2007–2012)


Ball State University is an innovative, supportive academic community that inspires students by:

  • Offering action-oriented learning including immersive out-of-class experiences, research, and study-abroad 
  • Providing extraordinary access to and collaboration with professors who create scholarship to advance knowledge, improve teaching, and transform learning
  • Engaging state, national, and international communities to enhance educational, economic, and cultural development. (Ball State University Strategic Plan Task Force Report 2007–2012)


Ball State University was founded as Indiana State Normal School, Eastern Division, in 1918. Its antecedents, all housed in what is now the Ball State Administration Building, were also normal schools, owned and operated under various names. In 1918, the Ball brothers, a prominent Muncie industrial family, bought the property and donated it to the state of Indiana, which, in turn, transferred control of the school to the board of trustees of the Indiana State Normal School in Terre Haute. In 1922, in recognition of the generosity of the Ball brothers, the board added Ball Teachers College to the school’s name. In 1929, the Indiana General Assembly separated the two colleges, naming the campus in Muncie Ball State Teachers College.

On February 8, 1965, the general assembly renamed the institution Ball State University in recognition of its phenomenal growth in enrollment and physical facilities; of the variety and quality of its educational programs and services; and in anticipation of the much broader role it would be expected to assume in the future.


Ball State University is a comprehensive, publicly assisted institution of higher education that provides relevant immersive learning experiences, engaging high-caliber students in intense interdisciplinary projects both in and out of the classroom. It is located in Muncie, Indiana, a city of approximately 70,000, 56 miles northeast of Indianapolis. Although its primary concern is for the citizens of Indiana, it offers programs with appeal to regional, national, and international audiences.

Ball State University offers a strong undergraduate liberal and professional education and selected graduate programs of high quality. Ball State students can choose from a comprehensive range of academic programs at the associate, baccalaureate, and master’s levels, as well as doctoral programs in areas where the university has special competence. In addition to core academic programs in the arts, sciences, and humanities, the university offers more than 240 undergraduate major and minor areas of study and 11 pre-professional programs through its seven colleges: Architecture and Planning; Miller College of Business; Communication, Information, and Media; Fine Arts; Health; Sciences and Humanities; and Teachers College.

The university has a selective admission policy; in some areas, such as architecture, the university is very selective. Exceptionally well-qualified undergraduate students may enroll in the Honors College for more intellectually demanding programs of study. Undergraduate students who have not decided on a major or who may need to strengthen their learning skills can take advantage of the special academic assistance and intensive educational counseling offered by University College.

As part of Ball State’s commitment to excellence in education, the university offers students a friendly, collegiate atmosphere; a full range of out-of-class activities; and excellent, well-planned academic, residential, and recreational facilities. An impressive array of student support services contributes to the personal, social, and intellectual development of all students.

Although Ball State University is primarily a residential academic community, it also supports programs that reach students well beyond the immediate campus. Through interactive telecommunications, online courses, and live off-campus courses, Ball State’s distance education program provides many Concentrations to students who wish to take courses and pursue degree programs but face challenges of time and access to campus. The university has a strong commitment to cultural diversity and international programs. It offers exchange programs with universities throughout the world and a wide variety of opportunities for students to study abroad.