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Information on Master of Arts (MA) Degree Program in Educational Leadership

Majors Overview July 26, 2015

This article talks about Master of Arts (M.A.) degree programs in Educational Leadership and their educational requirements, coursework, career choices, job and wage outlook, and continuing education choices.

Master of Arts (M.A.) Programs in Educational Leadership

Aspiring principals and school administrators might benefit from enrolling into Master of Arts (M.A.) programs in Educational Leadership. In some programs, concentration areas include higher education, student affairs education, building or district leadership, and preschool through 12th-grade education, among other areas.

Participation in practicum experiences may be an expectation for students. Students may complete the programs within two years; schools may allow students to take the programs in partially online formats. In most programs, graduates can qualify for licensure or certification in administration or principalship.

Educational Requirements

Admission criteria typically require incoming students to have a bachelor’s degree apart from holding licensure in other areas of education. In some programs, incoming students have to submit resumes.


The focus of coursework may be in areas such as diversity, human relations, research, technology, professionalism, and management. The curriculum focuses on educational issues, leadership, and policy development. Students gain a grasp of aspects of organizational behavior, external environments, and school culture that can aid in forming individual educational visions involving collaboration, ethical actions, and management. Various cultural, educational, legal, social, and political influences may be introduced through core coursework in topic areas such as:

•School improvement
•Community Education
•Inquiry processes
•Curriculum design
•Staff development
•Grant writing
•Team building
•Ethical issues

Career Choices

Program graduates may seek leadership positions in educational settings or advancement in their existing careers. They may choose from available job positions such as:

•District Leader
•Assistant principal
•Professional educator

Job and Wage Outlook

Over the 2012 – 2022 decade, a job growth rate of 6% has been predicted for elementary, middle and high school principals (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). During the same period, post-secondary education administrators are expected to see a 15% job growth. In May 2012, education administrators at elementary and secondary schools brought in an average annual wage of $87,760. Those at post-secondary schools earned $86,490 per annum, on average.

Continuing Education Choices

Program graduates who seek continuing education may enroll in doctorate programs that involve the critical examination of educational policies and issues that can help them make informed decisions in leadership positions in schools.

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