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Social Sciences

Mindfulness Studies

Master of Arts (MA), low-residency graduate program

Become a more mindful citizen of the world.

Immerse yourself in the mindfulness movement that’s making an increasingly significant impact on the western world.

Our Mindfulness Studies master’s degree program—the first of its kind in North America—will prepare you to enrich your life as well as the lives of others through rigorous study and intensive meditation practice. Whether you’re interested in health and wellness, education, social action, leadership, or business, you’ll deepen your personal practice while exploring how to apply mindfulness to your career.

Our low-residency format and online courses make it possible for you to participate in classes from your home on your own schedule. You’ll study the Buddhist roots of contemplative practice, mindful communication, and leadership. And you'll immerse yourself in burgeoning research that shows the impact of mindfulness on stress reduction, as well as studies that link meditation practice to enhanced brain function, emotional regulation, and our innate capacity for compassion.

Lesley's faculty bring varied and comprehensive expertise in mindfulness teaching and mindfulness-based stress reduction; Buddhist studies, including ethics; leadership and social change, contemplative neuroscience, mindfulness in education, qi gong, and more. Our interdisciplinary curriculum ensures that you’ll graduate with a solid foundation in the origins and history of mindfulness, as well as the expertise to apply mindfulness in your field of endeavor.

Not interested in pursuing a master's degree? Learn about our 15-credit Graduate Certificate in Mindfulness Studies.

At this time, residents of Georgia, Kentucky, Nevada, North Carolina, and Oregon are not eligible to enroll in our low-residency Mindfulness Studies master's degree program. All others may apply.

Program Structure

2-Year, Full-Time, Low-Residency Program

36 Credits
Students engaged in mindfulness poses
Summer Residency
mindfulness yoga stretch
Hands-On Applications
"The world needs you to bring the fullness of yourself to your work. That work could be anything; incorporating mindfulness with integrity, humility, and grace can only benefit you and whatever work you do in the world."
Margaret Fletcher ’17, Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Teacher/Teacher Trainer
Richard Biehl mindfulness alum
Student & Alumni Stories
Richard Biehl ’18
Policing is a stressful occupation. Police deal with everything from active shooters and threats of terrorism to the opioid crisis and domestic violence. Police Chief Richard uses his Mindfulness Studies training to help officers build resiliency and make better decisions.“I tell recruits: ‘You will see a lot of human suffering. And to endure a career of that, and not be tainted with cynicism or overwhelmed by the sheer magnitude of the difficulties you see every day, you’re going to need a self-management tool. You’re going to need a body-mind practice, whether it’s mindfulness meditation or yoga or something else,’” says Richard.
Charles Morris
Student & Alumni Stories
Charles Morris ’19
These words stopped Charles Morris in his tracks: “You don’t need to change your job. You need to change the mind you bring to your job.” At the time, Charles was struggling to find his place in Microsoft’s competitive environment. After hearing this advice, Charles, a practitioner of Tibetan Buddhism, chose to focus on transforming his mindset at work, rather than believing that the only solution was to find a new job. That decision made all the difference. Today, using the principles he’s learning in Lesley’s Mindfulness Studies program, he’s spearheading a mindfulness program for Microsoft employees.
Margaret Fletcher
Student & Alumni Stories
Margaret Fletcher ’17
Margaret describes her career change from financial services to teaching meditation and mindfulness as “a big leap into the unknown.” What began as a personal practice turned into a professional passion when Margaret took her first Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) course. From there, she pursued the teaching training pathway at the Center for Mindfulness and earned her master’s degree in Mindfulness Studies from Lesley. “I landed in a situation where I can apply long-developed skills in business and more recently developed mindfulness teaching skills,” says Margaret. “I’m fortunate to be able to help train aspiring and developing MBSR teachers."
Brian Thompson
Student & Alumni Stories
Brian Thompson ’19
Brian is passionate about inspiring change in the lives of young people. After years of helping children and adolescents through social work, he’s shifted his focus to public school systems. Using what he’s learning at Lesley, he’s working toward developing a leadership program rooted in mindfulness practice for high school students. In doing so, he intends to empower young adults to pursue the futures they’ve dreamed of. “My hope is that by the time these students apply for college, they have a greater understanding of themselves, and that the decisions they make in terms of their future are made with intention,” says Brian
Careers & Applications
Where Mindfulness Skills Are In-Demand
From healthcare and education to business and the military, a growing number of sectors are embracing mindfulness to alleviate stress and develop more productive learning and working environments.

Those who are trained in mindfulness will be in increasingly high demand in areas where their training can positively affect the wellbeing of others. Lesley’s programs emphasize the integration of mindfulness in a variety of professional practice settings, to provide you with a solid foundation in your chosen field.


Total approximate cost for this master's degree program.
Mindfulness Studies
  • Tuition
    $975/credit x 36
  • Fees
    Residency Fee
    Registration Fee
    Materials Fee
    Degree Completion Fee
  • Total
Estimated Cost

Review all graduate tuition and fees, and what they cover.

Tuition and fees are subject to change each year, effective June 1.

Our Mindfulness Studies programs require students to attend a 5- to 8-day meditation retreat. The fee for this retreat varies, depending on the location and number of days, but is typically $750–$1,000. This fee would be in addition to the tuition and fees listed above.

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Total approximate cost for this master's degree program. Tuition and fees are for the 2017-2018 academic year.
Use our step-by-step guide to apply for federal, state, and university funding. Scholarships, grants, Work-Study, and loans. It’s all right here.

Next steps to apply

Ready to get started? We're here to make the application process as smooth as possible. Just answer a few quick questions, and get your customized application guide.