AcademicsLow Residency Degree Programs

Low-Residency Degree Programs

Get a contemplative education that fits your life.

At Naropa University, we recognize that not everyone can relocate to Boulder, Colo. That’s why we’ve created distance-learning programs that combine the high engagement of our campus experience with online classes.

What Is a Low-Residency Degree Program?

Low-residency programs give you the flexibility of taking most of your classes online. By combining online learning with in-person intensives, which immerse you in contemplative practice and coursework—and build community—you can maintain your work and personal life and live the experience of contemplative education.

Choose from five master’s programs in the low-residency format:

Quick Facts


MA Ecopsychology
MFA Creative Writing
MA Yoga Studies


To Completion


75% of Graduate
Students Receive
Federal or
Institutional Aid

The Beauty of Low-Residency
Master’s Programs at Naropa

Each low-residency degree program brings you to Colorado for in-person, in-depth experiences, while also allowing you to continue your work and community engagements.

For example, the Ecopsychology master’s starts with a thirteen-day residency, continues with a five-day campus intensive later in the program, then culminates in a rite-of-passage wilderness experience. The Yoga Studies program asks you to attend two in-person retreats that offer meditation immersion and introduce courses for the upcoming semester.

Naropa University’s Low-Residency Degree Programs

At the intersection of nature and mental health is the discipline of Ecopsychology. This two-year master’s degree in psychology online, offered in a low-residency format, explores the idea that people’s health and planetary health are inextricably intertwined.

Housed in the storied Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics, Naropa’s two-year MFA in Creative Writing low-residency program is an open-genre program grounded in the school’s history of experimental writing.

Naropa’s two-to-three-year master’s in Yoga Studies offers an experiential and intellectually rigorous look at yoga’s history, philosophy and practices along with exposure to contemporary issues in the field such as cultural appropriation.

Naropa’s three-year master’s in Mindfulness-Based Transpersonal Counseling takes a multidimensional approach to online degrees in counseling, emphasizing meditation practice, Gestalt principles, Jungian studies and body awareness.

Rooted in Buddhist philosophy, Naropa’s 3.5-year MDiv program combines theoretical religious studies and personal growth with practical chaplaincy experience.

Student, Transformed

Studying Ecopsychology through the combination of contemplative practice and academics appears to take education beyond just knowing about a subject, topic or field of study. I am finding that the combination of contemplative practice and academic study helps me to develop more personal discipline, an ability to cope with the challenges of life and a creative discovery of what makes me most alive.”—Christopher Quiseng, MA Ecopsychology, 2011

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This is where experiential learning meets academic rigor. Where you challenge your intellect and uncover your potential. Where you discover the work you’re moved to do—then use it to transform our world.

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Naropa Campuses Closed on Friday, March 15, 2024

Due to adverse weather conditions, all Naropa campuses will be closed Friday, March 15, 2024.  All classes that require a physical presence on campus will be canceled. All online and low-residency programs are to meet as scheduled.

Based on the current weather forecast, the Healing with the Ancestors Talk & Breeze of Simplicity program scheduled for Friday evening, Saturday, and Sunday will be held as planned.

Staff that do not work remotely or are scheduled to work on campus, can work remotely. Staff that routinely work remotely are expected to continue to do so.

As a reminder, notifications will be sent by e-mail and the LiveSafe app.  

Regardless of Naropa University’s decision, if you ever believe the weather conditions are unsafe, please contact your supervisor and professors.  Naropa University trusts you to make thoughtful and wise decisions based on the conditions and situation in which you find yourself in.