Human Resource (HR) Degree in Arkansas


HR professionals benefit from increased economic growth as companies ramp up their hiring.  Both local and national economists predict economic gains for Arkansas in the according to Talk Business & Politics.  In particular, Jonesboro and Northwest Arkansas should see strong economic growth according to Kathy Deck, the Director of the Center for Business and Economic Research at the University of Arkansas. 

The number of positions for HR managers in Arkansas is expected to grow 21.7% faster than the national average between 2012 and 2022 according to the state’s Department of Workforce Services. 

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HR Degrees Available Through Private Universities and State Schools in Arkansas

Both public and private universities and colleges in Alabama offer an array of degree options for HR professionals at all levels.  Among these options are bachelor’s and master’s degree programs that enable existing HR specialists and generalists to advance to management positions.  Some of Alabama’s programs are dedicated solely to HR management, while others are business programs that incorporate HR training into a broad education on business practices. 

Master’s degrees in human resources or human resource management are designed to accommodate professionals from a variety of backgrounds as long as they have a bachelor’s degree and a talent for working with employees to accomplish strategic business goals.  In addition, specialized MBA programs in Alabama are tailored to professionals seeking high-level management positions.

Business professionals from any background can tailor their education to meet their career goals by choosing from the large number of degree options available online and at campus locations in Arkansas.

Bachelor’s Degrees in Human Resources - Designed for those preparing to become HR recruiters, labor relations specialists, and training and development specialists, among others

Bachelor of Science in HR Management – Conway

  • 120 credit hours
  • Professional Adult College Education (PACE) program

Bachelor of Science in Business with HR Management – Little Rock (Online)

  • 120 credit hour minimum

Bachelor of Science in Business with HR Management – Rogers (Online)

  • 120 credit hour minimum

Bachelor of Science in Business Administration HR Management Track – Batesville

  • 24 credits of HR and 30-31 credits of business core courses

Bachelor of Business Administration HR Major – Searcy

  • 128 credit hours
  • 30 credits of HR courses and 38 hours of business core courses

Bachelor of Business Administration with an HR Management Emphasis – Little Rock

  • 120 credit hours
  • Students must have completed College Algebra and Composition II to be admitted into the College of Business

Bachelor of Science in Management with an HR Concentration – Jonesboro

  • 120 credit hours
  • Requires at least 45 upper division credit hours
  • 50% of business requirements must be completed at this university

Bachelor of Science in HR and Workforce Development Education – Fayetteville (Online)

  • 120 credit hours
  • Must have 3 or more years of any full-time work experience or equivalent to be admitted to the HRWD major

Master’s Degree in Human Resources - Designed for those preparing to become HR managers or training and development managers, among others

Master of Education in HR and Workforce Development Education – Little Rock (Online)

  • Does not require an HR bachelor’s degree
  • Requires GRE to apply
  • Must complete a master’s level statistics course in this program

MBAs with a Concentration in Human Resources Management - Designed for those preparing to become HR Directors or VPs, among others

MBA with a Concentration in HR Management – Little Rock (online)

  • Does not require an HR bachelor’s degree
  • 48 credit hour minimum

MBA with a Concentration in HR Management – Rogers (online)

  • Does not require an HR bachelor’s degree
  • 48 credit hour minimum

Doctoral Degree in Human Resources and Workforce Development Education - Designed for those preparing to become academic researchers in the HR field

Doctor of Education in HR and Workforce Development Education – Little Rock (Online)

  • Requires GRE to apply
  • Dissertation required
  • Seven years allowed for completion
  • Faculty teaching the dissertation seminar course determines the schedule and amount of time spent on campus (as of 2013, the average was one week on campus)

Arkansas’ Largest Employers of HR Professionals

The gross state product of Arkansas was $124 billion as of November 2014 according to Forbes.  The presence of a number of high-profile companies in Arkansas is responsible for this level of production.  The US Department of Labor ranked the major employers of HR professionals in Arkansas as of 2014 to be:

  • Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (Corporate HQ) in Bentonville - 11,000 total employees
  • University of Arkansas in Fayetteville - 10,001 total employees
  • UAMS Medical Center in Little Rock - 10,000 total employees
  • Glazer Wholesale Distributors in Springdale- 6,000 total employees
  • O K Industries, Inc. (Wholesalers) in Fort Smith - 5,500 total employees
  • Baptist Health Medical Center in Little Rock - 5,300 total employees
  • Weyerhaeuser Corporation in Hot Springs National Park - 5,200 total employees
  • Sam’s Club Division (Corporate HQ) in Bentonville - 5,000 total employees
  • University of Arkansas—Fayetteville - 4,008 total employees                       

Salary Ranges for HR Professionals in Arkansas

Experienced HR professionals in Arkansas earned substantially higher salaries than those just starting out according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. The values shown range from the starting salaries at the bottom 10% (typically entry-level professionals) to the average salaries for those in the 90th percentile (typically experienced professionals):

  • Human Resource Managers: $48,260 - $147,830
  • Training and Development Managers: $38,760 - $134,390
  • Human Resources Specialists: $28,550 - $75,360
  • Labor Relations Specialists: $16,960 - $94,710
  • Compensation, Benefits and Job Analysis Specialists: $29,410 - $76,210
  • Training and Development Specialists: $26,310 - $75,620
  • Payroll and Timekeeping Clerks: $23,390 - $47,420
  • Human Resources Assistants, Except Payroll and Timekeeping: $23,060 - $48,450

Job Growth Projections for Arkansas’s HR Professions

Business and professional services is one of the largest employment sectors in Northwest Arkansas according to Talk Business & Politics.  As of mid 2015, this sector had consistent job growth, and this is only expected to continue. 

Predictions from the Arkansas Department of Workforce Services suggest that there will be strong job growth in a number of HR professions between 2012 and 2022:

  • Human Resource Managers: 15.82%
  • Training and Development Managers: 11.45%
  • Human Resources Specialists: 6.62%
  • Compensation, Benefits, and Job Analysis Specialists: 6.07%
  • Training and Development Specialists: 13.4%
  • Payroll and Timekeeping Clerks: 10.14%

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