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Master’s Degree Programs in Education Management Overview

Majors Overview August 11, 2015

This article talks about master’s degree programs in education management and their education requirements, coursework, career choices, job and wage outlook, and continuing education and certification choices.

Master’s Programs in Education Management

Instruction in various subject areas related to operating schools is imparted through Master of Education (M.Ed.) programs in Education Management. Apart from practical management skills, students are taught the research methodology and theoretical foundations that are currently in the field. The emphasis of interdisciplinary coursework is on business ideas that apply to schools, in addition to ideas in curriculum design, pedagogy, and behavior management. A thesis project is usually required to be completed by students before they graduate. They are also expected to participate in an internship.

It takes approximately two years to complete these programs, with part-time programs available in some schools, including summer classes. Licensure is compulsory for school administrators. Requirements vary by state, but commonly incorporate completing internships and education requirements, in addition to the passage of an examination.

Education Requirements

Admission criteria typically require incoming students to have many years of prior teaching experience and hold valid teacher certification before they begin their master’s degree coursework. In some schools, applicants are required to submit letters of professional reference and most recent teacher evaluation.


Program coursework involves discussion of topic areas in educational theory, business, and human resource supervision. Students also learn about performing statistical analyzes and conducting educational research. Most coursework is germane to the management of individual schools, and in many programs, there are specializations in postsecondary management. Core coursework may cover topic areas such as:

•Conflict management
•Learning assessment methods
•Professional development and management
•History of education theory
•Academic research methodology
•School finance
•Curricula design
•Educational law

Career Choices

Program graduates can seek supervisory and administrative positions in private and public schools. They can find employment in postsecondary, secondary or elementary schools. They can choose from possible job positions such as:

•Private school program director
•High school principal
•Community college program coordinator

Job and Wage Outlook

Over the 2012 – 2022 decade, elementary, middle and high school principals can expect a slower than average job growth rate of 6% (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). In May 2014, elementary and secondary school education administrators brought in an average annual wage of $91,780 (BLS). Over the 2012 – 2022 decade, postsecondary education administrators are expected to see a 15% job growth (BLS); during May 2012, these professionals earned $86,490 per annum, on average.

Continuing Education and Certification Choices

State certification is compulsory for public school administrators. Every state has its standards, but in order to gain certification individuals must hold a master’s degree, complete an internship and pass a written exam. Completion of periodic continuing education is also a requirement for administrators in many states.

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