Educational Administration and Leadership

Other Information

Graduate Catalog: ELHE

  • Admission requirements
  • Program details
  • Course descriptions

Application Deadlines

Department: Educational Leadership and Higher Education

Graduate Director:
Dr. Frances Kayona

Program Overview

The educational leadership program develops leaders for Minnesota's schools — teachers, principals, special education directors, community education directors, superintendents, and central office personnel committed to providing the finest learning opportunities for K-12 students. Courses offered focus upon developing the skills and personal traits necessary for successful school administration. In addition, field-based learning experiences are an integral, crucial aspect of the program.

Programs have been approved by the Board of School Administrators for meeting the professional preparation requirements for licensure in the following areas: K-12 school principal, director of special education, school district superintendent, and director of community education. In addition, the department participates in the development of special studies programs which lead to graduate degrees in other areas of educational administration.

  • Provides the first step in pursuing educational administration licensure.
  • Upon completion of the M.S. a graduate may choose to pursue: sixth-year graduate certificate licensure tracks, a specialist degree program or a doctoral program.

The Profession

The educational administration and leadership program prepares students for a profession in education administration for K-12 school organizations. Specifically, these positions include principals, superintendents, special education directors, and directors of community education.


Graduates will be able to seek employment in public and private K-12 school settings, area education agencies or regional educational service units, and positions at the state department level.

Accreditation specific to the program

  • National Council for Accreditation and Teacher Education (NCATE)
  • Minnesota Board of School Administrators

Admission Information

  • Undergraduate GPA is closely reviewed. A large emphasis is placed on scholarship within the undergraduate education core.
  • Admission decisions are made throughout the year as completed application files are received. Students may be admitted for fall, spring and summer terms. 
  • Applicants to the M.S. program should note that rolling admissions is available. Throughout the year, as the department receives a completed application an admission decision will be made immediately and a student will be offered the next available start date. The program admits students for fall, spring and summer terms.
  • For priority consideration, applicants are encouraged to apply by the deadlines posted. If space remains in the program, applications will continue to be reviewed after the posted priority deadlines. 
  • The master's degree can be pursued by applicants who do not hold teaching licensure.  Alternative licensure requirements are available for students without three years of teaching experience.

Length of Program — Measured by Semesters

  • Part-time student: four to five semesters taking six credits per semester.
  • Full-time student: three semesters taking 12 credits per semester.
  • During the academic school year courses are scheduled on weekends and evenings.
  • Summer courses are scheduled in one-week blocks. 

Graduate Assistantship Overview

  • Two graduate assistantship positions are generally sponsored each year, and are available both fall and spring semesters. Some summer hours may also be available.
  • Graduate assistants do a variety of activities, including assisting faculty in various research and instructional preparation tasks. 

Minnesota Administrative Licensure Requirements

Currently the state of Minnesota requires that applicants for administrative licensure have at least three years teaching experience or be eligible to apply for alternative licensure. Licensure requires a Masters of Science in Educational Leadership/Administration plus 30 semester credits, obtainable through the sixth-year graduate certificate licensure tracks or the specialist degree program. A final portfolio assessment is also required of licensure candidates.