Masters in School Leadership

Being a leader means having the passion and integrity to influence others, lay the foundation for change, and accomplish related goals. Administrators and principals have the unique opportunity to become leaders of our country’s youth and as such, are some of the most significant and influential leaders today.

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According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 445,400 education administrator jobs in 2008. That number is expected to grow by almost 8% by the year 2018. This projected growth is primarily the result of more children enrolling in school, and the greater administrative responsibilities being placed on schools.

As the need for more school administrators grows, so do their duties and responsibilities. Administrators need a wide variety of skills and knowledge to continuously improve their schools and their students’ learning outcomes. To ensure success at their schools, administrators gain expertise in management and organizational development by earning master’s degrees in school leadership.

How can a master’s program in school leadership help me as an administrator?

The main goal of any school administrator is to establish standard policies and educational goals, while creating a safe and supportive learning environment. Master’s programs in school leadership help educators expand their knowledge of disciplinary policy, curriculum design, and organizational development needed to achieve that goal.

Future administrators learn the best strategies for teaching reading, writing, math, and other core subjects in graduate school classes. This allows them to set the academic tone for their school by recognizing what students need to learn, and how best to implement effective teaching methods in the classroom.

School administrators must stay up-to-date on current practices in education. Graduate school gives potential administrators resources and information on the latest technologies and strategies used for effective instruction. This technology not only benefits student learning, but professional growth for teachers as well.

As leaders, administrators guide teachers and set examples for students to follow. Courses in graduate school are designed to give new administrators the tools needed to lead teachers toward valuable educational practices, so both teachers and students benefit.

Graduate school teaches administrators how to manage effective community and administrative relationships. This allows administrators to practice useful communication with staff and parents, and get the community involved for the purpose of improving the overall quality of the school.

Courses taught in Master’s in Education Leadership programs
  • Foundations in Educational Leadership – These classes are designed to introduce teachers to the theories and practices of school leadership. Administrators learn to develop a deep understanding of the challenges faced by modern educational leaders.
  • School Law – This course is an overview of the legal aspects included in education and school, state, and federal regulations. Administrators learn about the history and recent developments in education law.
  • Change and Innovations in Education – The focus of this class is on the skills and processes needed for planned change in education. Administrators develop an understanding of practical change and planning, the factors that affect change, and educational program innovations.
  • Supervision and Leadership – This type of class focuses on effective communication, encouraging high levels of education, and creating a safe and supportive learning environment. Administrators learn all aspects of managing and supervising staff and students.
  • Field-based Internship – This is generally a school-based internship designed for administrators to practice school leadership and management duties. Administrators will be assigned a mentor or adviser.
How will a graduate degree in school leadership help my students?

School leadership courses offer many opportunities for administrators learn how to become effective advocates for students. It is the principal’s responsibility to make sure that every student in his or her school is receiving the independent help that is necessary for success.

As the leader, it is important for administrators to make sure that all teachers stay current on common learning disabilities and the latest teaching strategies. If a student is struggling in a certain area, principals must ensure resources are available for that student.

Teachers also need to understand and administer assessments, and that starts with the administration. It is the principal’s responsibility to ensure teachers are effectively teaching certain benchmarks needed for every student to succeed.

For example, if teachers are teaching vocabulary, they need to know the best instructional practices for vocabulary. This ensures each and every student is reaching his or her goal. If the majority of the students aren’t learning vocabulary, the fault ultimately lies with the administration.

Learn More

If you’re interested in learning more, research schools offering master’s degree programs in School Leadership.

Schools Offering Accredited Education Programs

Concordia University - Portland offers several fully online 14-month Master of Education (M.Ed.) programs and a fully online Doctorate of Education (Ed.D.) program. You'll learn new strategies and techniques for your classroom while expanding your knowledge and skills as an educator.


  • M.Ed: Curriculum & Instruction: Leadership
  • Master Degree in Educational Leadership
  • M.Ed. in Curriculum & Instruction: Teacher Leadership

You’re serious about success. With your busy schedule and the desire to move your career forward, you can earn an accredited associate, bachelors or master’s degree at a pace that works for you anywhere, anytime, 24/7.

At AIU, the Serious U, you can get started to get ahead.


  • Master's (M.Ed.) - Secondary Education
  • Master's (M.Ed.) - Leadership of Educational Organizations
  • Master's (M.Ed.) - Elementary Education

Earn your graduate degree online with Northcentral University.  We offer online programs focused on doctoral and master’s degrees in the schools of business and technology management, education, psychology and marriage and family sciences.



  • Instructional Leadership - Master of Education
  • Accelerated Educational Leadership-MEd
  • Educational Leadership - Master of Education
  • And more...

Kaplan University is focused on recognizing the achievements of military and veteran students and offers the flexibility of an online education. Eligible students can receive college credit for prior military experience and coursework—up to 75 percent of the credit needed for a Kaplan University undergraduate degree.*


  • MS in Higher Education - College Administration and Leadership
  • MS in Higher Education - Student Affairs

Study online with California University of Pennsylvania. We offer certificate and bachelor's and master's degree programs in a wide variety of fields that can be completed 100% online.


  • Advanced Studies in Secondary Education & Teacher Leadership (Master of Education) - Online
  • Administrative Program for Principals (Master of Education) - Online
  • Administrative Program for Principals (Certification) - Online
  • And more...
Learning at Full Sail University has always centered around interaction and the exchange of ideas. Our online curriculum fully embraces this philosophy. We have developed our own online learning environment with the aim of being the most people-focused education experience on the web.


  • Instructional Design & Technology
Give your career a boost with an education from Southern New Hampshire University. We offer certificates, bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees in over 100 programs in a wide variety of subjects.


  • M.Ed. Curr & Ins - Dyslexia Studies & LBLD
  • M.Ed. Curriculum Instr - Special Ed
  • M.Ed. Curriculum Instr - Technology
  • And more...