Degrees & Programs

Educational Leadership

The insights you’ve gained as a teacher have given you a unique understanding of the challenges students and schools face. With a graduate degree in educational leadership, you can prepare to take on leadership roles in your school, district, or other educational organization. Our degrees also prepare you for licensing as a building-level administrator, superintendent, or director of exceptional needs.

Overview

Educational Leadership 

Our curriculum was developed in partnership with schools and districts to address the specific challenges the next generation of education leaders will face. Build upon your classroom experiences to develop innovative solutions that will build stronger organizations that serve students, teachers, and staff more effectively. Click the Degrees tab above to learn more about our educational leadership programs that can prepare you to lead future generations. 

Education Law

Legal issues arise in schools on a daily basis, and school personnel must make decisions in response.  When educators are uninformed about the law, they often make decisions that only serve to exacerbate the issues. Every year administrators, districts and institutions invest time and resources tending to issues that could have been avoided with a better understanding of legal issues in education. Investigate the programs that can provide you with expertise in education law and policy.  

Degrees

The IU School of Education offers the following degrees in Educational Leadership:

Certificate in Education Law

Educational legal issues affect teachers and administrators on a daily basis. This 15-credit hour online program was designed for professionals who want to develop a deeper knowledge base of educational legal issues. The program includes four required courses and one elective course. Special education is the most litigious area of school law. As a result, A675 Leadership in Special Education is a required course in this program.

Required Courses (12 credit hours)
  • A600 Problems in Educational Leadership
  • A608 Legal Perspectives in Education
  • A615 Advanced School Law
  • A675 Leadership in Special Education

If you would like to substitute A675 for another course that is narrowly tailored to your area of interest or future career plans, you may submit a petition to your faculty advisor. 

Elective Course (3 credit hours)

You may choose a graduate-level course offered through the School of Education, School of Public and Environmental Affairs or Maurer School of Law. Select a course that is focused on your research or career interests. Some courses may not be offered online. Please see the delivery method in the course listing to confirm. 

M.S.Ed. in Educational Leadership (online)

Earn your master’s degree and prepare for licensing as a building-level administrator from anywhere you live and work. This program also offers you the option to become a teacher leadership specialist. Course work is delivered completely online through IUconnectED.

You can begin your studies by registering for course work through IUconnectED as a non-degree-seeking student if you want to take an online course before committing to a degree program. If you are later admitted to the program, your course work will apply toward the degree. Contact Barbara Erwin at the School of Education for more information. 

Degree Requirements

Complete course descriptions and detailed degree requirements may be found in the IU Bloomington School of Education Graduate Bulletin.

Foundation Area (9 cr.)

  • H504 History of American Education
  • P507 or A629 Educational Assessment or Data Informed Decision Making for School Leaders
  • P540 Learning and Cognition in Education

School Administration Track or Teacher Leadership Track (24 cr.)

You may choose to focus on either School Administration or Teacher Leadership in this program. The coursework for both tracks is the same, but the assignments and practicum experience will be tailored to fit the track that you choose. 

  • A500 Introduction to Educational Leadership
  • A510 School-Community Relations
  • A608 Legal Perspectives on Education
  • A624 The Principalship K-12
  • A635 Public School Budgeting and Accounting
  • J500 Instruction in the Context of Curriculum
  • A515 Teacher Development and Evaluation (Includes skills based on state teacher evaluation models)
  • A695 Practicum in Educational Leadership

Electives (3 cr.)

  • 3 Credit Education Graduate Course with grade of at least a B.  In consultation with advisor, courses can also be taken in Kelley Business School, School of Public and Environmental Affairs, and Law School. A720, summer workshop, can also be taken.  This is a two-day conference, held in June each year. 
M.S.Ed. in Educational Leadership (hybrid)

Looking for a way to have an impact on the future of education? Become a school leader!  

Earn your master’s degree and prepare for licensing as a building-level administrator. You may also choose to become a teacher leadership specialist through this program. Courses are taught by the same award-winning faculty who teach the residential graduate programs. You may complete the program in two years if desired. 

This hybrid program combines the flexibility of online course delivery with the personal experience of face-to-face classes. Some courses will be offered completely online while others will meet for 3 - 4 Saturdays during the semester. Saturday classes meet from noon - 6 pm at the School of Education on the Bloomington campus. In essence half of your course work will be online, and half will be in a face-to-face environment. 

You may begin your studies by registering for course work through IUconnectED as a non-degree-seeking student. If you are later admitted to the program, your course work will apply toward the degree. Contact Barbara Erwin at the School of Education for more information.

Degree Requirements

Complete course descriptions and detailed degree requirements may be found in the IU Bloomington School of Education Graduate Bulletin.

Foundation Area (9 cr.)

  • H504 History of American Education (online)
  • P507 or A629 Assessment in Schools (online)
  • P540 Learning and Cognition in Education (online)

School Administration Track or Teacher Leadership Track (24 cr.)

You may choose to focus on either School Administration or Teacher Leadership in this program. The coursework for both tracks is the same, but the assignments and practicum experience will be tailored to fit the track that you choose. 

Online Courses

  • A624 The Principalship
  • J500 Elementary/Secondary School Curriculum
  • A695 Practicum in Educational Leadership

Saturday Courses (Tentative Schedule)

  • A500 Introduction to Educational Leadership 
  • A510 School-Community Relations
  • A608 Legal Perspectives on Education
  • A515 Supervision of Elementary/Secondary Schools 
  • A635 Public School Budgeting and Accounting 

Electives (3 cr.)

  • A720 IU Summer Workshop
    You may attend this two-day conference, held in June each year, for elective credit.
  • In consultation with your advisor, you may take an approved course from the Kelley School of Business, School of Public and Environmental Affairs, or the Maurer School of Law. 
M.S.Ed. in Educational Leadership (Urban Principal Track)

Understand the unique challenges of urban schools and develop the skills and knowledge to become a leader for these schools and communities. The one-year Urban Principal program is designed for working educators. Classes meet during two five-week summer sessions, with online course work during the school year, and a practicum that runs throughout the entire program.

Degree Requirements

Complete course descriptions and detailed degree requirements may be found through the IU School of Education–Indianapolis.

Contact Us

For more information about this degree program, contact Brendan Maxcy at bmaxcy@iupui.edu.

Ed.S. in Education (Educational Leadership Track)

Stay ahead of new developments in Work toward a superintendent license by earning the Ed.S. in Educational Leadership. This degree prepares you for leadership in these settings:

  • Public and nonpublic schools
  • State departments of education
  • Intermediate school service units
  • National and state professional associations

Course work includes faculty-directed research and field studies in school districts. You’ll have ample opportunity to apply what you’ve learned in the classroom to solve real-world challenges.

You must have at least two years of classroom experience to enroll in the program.

Degree Requirements

Complete course descriptions and detailed degree requirements may be found in the IU Bloomington School of Education Graduate Bulletin.

Major (24 cr.)

  • A560 Political Perspectives of Education (3 cr.)
  • A615 Advanced School of Law (1–3 cr.)
  • A631 Microeconomics Applications to Education (3 cr.)
  • A638 Public School Personnel Management (3 cr.)
  • A640 Planning Educational Facilities (3 cr.)
  • A653 Organizational Context of Education (3 cr.)
  • A671 Planning and Change in Educational Organizations (3 cr.)
  • A672 Moral Dimensions of Leadership (3 cr.)
  • A754 Epistemology of Knowledge and Thought in Educational Leadership Research (3 cr.)

Inquiry (6 cr.)

  • Y502 Intermediate Statistics Applied to Education (3 cr.)
  • Y520 Strategies for Educational Inquiry (3 cr.) or Y535 Evaluation Models and Techniques (3 cr.) or Y635 Methodology of Educational Evaluation (3 cr.)

Electives (20 cr.)

  • A600 Problems in Educational Leadership (3 cr.)
  • Other course work chosen with the guidance of your academic advisor

Minor (9 cr.)

  • H631 Social and Political Philosophy and Education or comparable elective (3 cr.)
  • J630 Curriculum Theory and Practice (3 cr.)
  • J760 Culture and Gender Issues in Education (3 cr.)

Capstone & Practicum (6 cr.)

  • A680 Education Specialist Seminar (Educational Leadership) (3 cr.) or A795 Dissertation Proposal Preparation (1-3 cr.)
  • A785 Internship in Educational Leadership (1–6 cr.)
Ed.D. in Educational Leadership

Prepare for senior-level leadership positions in K-12 education, including the superintendency. Effective school leaders need the skills and theoretical framework to critically analyze issues of importance to educators in the 21st century. In this challenging program, you'll develop the skills to make data-driven decisions about issues at the school, district, state, and national level.

The 60-hour Ed.D. in Educational Leadership is the right choice if you prefer project-based research to the more theoretical orientation of the Ph.D. program. The rigorous curriculum demands a significant period of sustained study with full access to the intellectual resources of Indiana University. The program was designed with working professionals in mind. It is delivered in a blended learning environment and structured to offer you accessibility to colleagues in the program regardless of their geographic location. 

Classes meet one weekend per month in Bloomington during the fall, spring and summer semesters. Instruction continues online between the weekend classes. In June of each year, you and your colleagues will participate in an intensive four-day seminar held on the Bloomington campus. The seminar provides a unique opportunity to engage in project-based research with your peers and faculty.  

Degree Requirements

Complete course descriptions and detailed degree requirements may be found in the IU Bloomington School of Education Graduate Bulletin.

Major (27 cr.)

  • A560 Political Perspectives of Education (3 cr.)
  • A615 Advanced School of Law (1–3 cr.)
  • A631 Microeconomic Applications to Education (3 cr.)
  • A653 The Organizational Context of Education (3 cr.)
  • A671 Planning and Change in Educational Organizations (3 cr.)
  • A672 Moral Dimensions of Leadership (3 cr.)
  • A754 Seminar in Research in Educational Leadership (3 cr.)
  • A638 Public School Personnel Management (3 cr.)
  • A640 Planning Educational Facilities (3 cr.)

Inquiry (9 cr.)

  • Y520 Strategies for Educational Inquiry (3 cr.) or Y535 Evaluation Models and Techniques (3 cr.) or Y635 Methodology of Educational Evaluation (3 cr.)
  • Y502 Intermediate Statistics Applied to Education (3 cr.)
  • Y611 Qualitative Inquiry in Education (3 cr.)

Elective (6 cr.)

  • H504 History of American Education (3 cr.)
  • A600 Problems in Educational Leadership (3 cr.)

Minor (9 cr. in a topic area to be determined)

Dissertation (9 cr.)

  • A795 Dissertation Proposal Preparation (3 cr.)
  • A799 Doctoral Thesis in Educational Leadership (6 cr.)

 

Ed.D. in Educational Leadership (hybrid)/M.S. in Strategic Management (online)

Aspiring superintendents and district leaders can combine the Ed.D. in Educational Leadership with a master’s degree in strategic management from the IU Kelley School of Business.

In addition to the requirements of the Ed.D., students will take 18 hours of business course work online through Kelley Direct. Courses for the Ed.D. in Educational Leadership meet one weekend per month on the Bloomington campus.

Because both degree programs count some hours from each program toward the degree requirements, you can earn both degrees in less time and at less expense.

Degree Requirements

Complete course descriptions and detailed degree requirements may be found in the IU Bloomington School of Education Graduate Bulletin.

Major (27 cr.)

  • A560 Political Perspectives of Education (3 cr.)
  • A615 Advanced School of Law (1–3 cr.)
  • A631 Microeconomic Applications to Education (3 cr.)
  • A653 The Organizational Context of Education (3 cr.)
  • A671 Planning and Change in Educational Organizations (3 cr.)
  • A672 Moral Dimensions of Leadership (3 cr.)
  • A754 Seminar in Research in Educational Leadership (3 cr.)
  • A638 Public School Personnel Management (3 cr.)
  • A640 Planning Educational Facilities (3 cr.)

Inquiry (9 cr.)

  • Y520 Strategies for Educational Inquiry (3 cr.) or Y535 Evaluation Models and Techniques (3 cr.) or Y635 Methodology of Educational Evaluation (3 cr.)
  • Y502 Intermediate Statistics Applied to Education (3 cr.)
  • Y611 Qualitative Inquiry in Education (3 cr.)

Elective (6 cr.)

  • H504 History of American Education (3 cr.)
  • A600 Problems in Educational Leadership (3 cr.)

Minor (9 cr.)

  • Successful completion of the M.S. in Strategic Management will fulfill the minor requirement 

Dissertation (9 cr.)

  • A795 Dissertation Proposal Preparation (3 cr.)
  • A799 Doctoral Thesis in Educational Leadership (6 cr.)

In addition to the course work outlined for the Ed.S. in Education (Educational Leadership Track), students will also complete the business courses below. See detailed degree requirements for the online M.S. in Strategic Management.

  • Strategic Management and Leadership (3 cr.)
  • Organization Designs for Strategic Advantage (3 cr.)
  • Strategic Management of Technology and Innovation (3 cr.)
  • Strategic Competitive Advantage (3 cr.)
  • Developing Strategic Capabilities (3 cr.)
  • First Year Kelley Connect Week (in residence) (1.5 cr.)
  • Decision-Making and Leadership Clinic or Global Talent Challenge Clinic (1.5 cr.)
  • Strategic Entrepreneurship (3 cr.)

 

Ph.D. in Educational Policy with Concentration in Educational Leadership

If you are specifically preparing for a career in university teaching and research, the Ph.D. in Educational Leadership is the right degree for you. This 90-hour degree includes a core education in the concepts and issues of educational policy, as well as a concentration in these areas:

  • International/comparative education
  • Higher education
  • Educational leadership (U.S. elementary and secondary education)

The Ph.D. also requires a minor outside the School of Education, in a field such as public and environmental affairs, sociology, anthropology, or history.

Degree Requirements

Complete course descriptions and detailed degree requirements may be found in the IU Bloomington School of Education Graduate Bulletin.

Major (36 cr.)

  • Policy Core (18 cr.)
    • Two courses from the list below:
      • H504 History of American Education (3 cr.)
      • H510 Methodology of Educational Inquiry (3 cr.)
      • H525 Anthropology of Education (3 cr.)
      • H540 Sociology of Education (3 cr.)
      • A560 Political Perspectives of Education (3 cr.)
      • H560 Education and Change in Societies (3 cr.)
      • H631 Social and Political Philosophy and Education (3 cr.)
      • H637 Topical Seminar (3 cr.)
    • H620 Seminar in Educational Policy Studies (3 cr.)
    • H622 Seminar: Issues in Education Policy (3 cr.)
    • H623 Education Policy Research Seminar (1 cr.)
    • A631 Microeconomics Applications to Education (3 cr.)
  • Educational Leadership Policy Context (12 cr.)
    • i. Educational Leadership Concentration
      • A653 The Organizational Context of Education (3 cr.)
      • A672 Moral Dimensions of Leadership (3 cr.)
      • A720 Workshop on Selected Problems in Educational Leadership (1–3 cr.)
      • Choose one of the following:
        • A560 Political Perspectives of Education (3 cr.)
        • A608 Legal Perspectives of Education (3 cr.)
        • A670 Topical Seminar in Educational Leadership (1–3 cr.)
        • A671 Planning and Change in Educational Organizations (3 cr.)
        • A754 Seminar in Research in Educational Leadership (3 cr.)
    • The following courses may be taken for credit in any of the concentration areas:
      • H551 Comparative Education (3 cr.)
      • C655 Higher Education and Public Policy (3 cr.)
      • A653 The Organizational Context of Education (3 cr.)
    • Inquiry in the Major (6 cr.)
      • Directed Research – Choose one course from the following:
        • H/A/C590 Independent Study (1–3 cr.)
        • C760 Internship in Administration (1–6 cr.)
        • A695 Practicum in Educational Leadership (1–3 cr.)
      • Linkage Course – Choose one course from the following:
        • H504 History of American Education (3 cr.)
        • H525 Anthropology of Education (3 cr.)
        • H530 Philosophy of Education (3 cr.)
        • H540 Sociology of Education (3 cr.)
        • H552 Comparative Education II (3 cr.)
        • A608 Legal Perspectives on Education (3 cr.)
        • H601 Historical Inquiry in Education (3 cr.)
        • C788 Seminar in Research in Higher Education (3 cr.)

Inquiry (12 cr.)

  • H510 or Y520 Strategies of Educational Inquiry or Y521 Methodological Approaches to Educational Inquiry
  • Choose one of the following:
    • Y502 Intermediate Statistics Applied to Education (3 cr.)
    • Other approved beginning/intermediate course in quantitative analysis (e.g., PSY P553, SPEA V507)
  • Choose one of the following:
    • Y611 Qualitative Inquiry in Education (3 cr.)
    • Y612 (for students who plan to take Y613 as their additional inquiry course)
    • Other approved beginning/intermediate course in qualitative analysis (e.g., SOC S659)
    • One approved intermediate/advanced research methods course appropriate to the planned dissertation (e.g., Y604, Y613, Y635, Y750, H601, PSY P654, BUS K605), with advisor approval

Minor (12 cr.)

The minor must consist of a coherent sequence of courses in a field outside the School of Education. Examples of fields chosen for the minor include sociology, anthropology, economics, philosophy, political science, history, and public and environmental affairs.

Electives (15 cr.)

The program enables students to tailor their electives in consultation with the Advisory Committee. Electives may be taken in fields inside or outside the School of Education.

Dissertation (15 cr.)

  • A/C/H795 Dissertation Proposal Preparation (3 cr.)
  • A/C/H799 Doctoral Thesis (12 cr.)
Minor in Education Policy with Maurer School of Law Degree

The School of Education and the Maurer School of Law have a concentration of faculty with expertise in education law. The schools have partnered to create the Minor in Education Policy, which is designed for law students who are interested in education law and policy.

Attorneys with a background in education law are employed in a variety of settings including private practice, governmental agencies, higher education institutions, and non-profit organizations. Their expertise is sought in matters ranging from employment to education reform. 

Enrollment is open to Maurer School of Law students only. 

Program Requirements

Maurer School of Law

  • 82 hours of course credit as outlined in the requirements for the Doctor of Jurisprudence degree 
  • 6 credit hours of law courses that satisfy the School of Education requirements and are approved by the Dean

School of Education

  • A608 Legal Perspectives on Education
  • A615 Advanced School Law
  • 6 credit hours of courses from the School of Education and approved by the Dean

Areas of focus for these courses will include:

  • Administrative Law
  • Civil Rights Issues
  • Constitutional Law II
  • Employment Law
  • Jurisprudence
  • Labor Law
  • Law and Education 
  • Mediation
  • Negotiations
  • Non-profit Corporations
  • Race, American Society & the Law
  • Seminar on Antidiscrimination in Education
  • Seminar in Constitutional Law: First Amendment
  • Seminar in Constitutional Law: Law and Religion

Course availability will vary somewhat by academic year. 

Contacts

 or for further information. 

Licensure

The IU School of Education offers licensure in the following:

Building Level Administrator Licensure in Educational Leadership

This 24 credit-hour program prepares you for K-12 building-level leadership positions, including principal or assistant principal.

To earn this license, candidates must:

  • Hold a master’s degree
  • Hold a proficient or accomplished practitioner license, or a valid equivalent out-of-state license
  • Complete the 24-credit hour program, including the A695 practicum course (at least 18 credits must be earned through IU Bloomington or IUPUI)
  • Maintain a GPA of at least 3.0 in all licensure course work taken at Indiana University
  • Achieve a qualifying score on the ETS School Leaders Licensure Assessment

To become eligible for a five-year Proficient Practitioner license, the Indiana Professional Standards Board requires candidates to complete an induction program during their first two years of service as an administrator.

Program of Study

Licensure course work encompasses 24 of the 36 credit hours required for a Master's of Science in Educational Leadership. It is possible to take all principal licensure courses online.

Full course descriptions are available in the IU Bloomington School of Education Graduate Bulletin.

  • A500 Introduction to Educational Leadership
  • J500 Instruction in the Context of Curriculum
  • A510 School-Community Relations
  • A515 Educational Leadership: Teacher Development and Evaluation
  • A608 Legal Perspectives on Education
  • A624 Educational Leadership: The Principalship K-12
  • A635 Public School Budgeting and Accounting
  • A695 Practicum in Educational Leadership (currently taken over two semesters)

Contact Us

For more information about this degree program, contact Barb Erwin at bajerwin@indiana.edu.

Director of Exceptional Needs Licensure in Educational Leadership

This 36-credit hour program prepares you for leadership roles in exceptional needs at the school and district levels.

To earn this license, candidates must:

  • Hold a master’s degree in special education, communication disorders, or school psychology. A master's degree in educational leadership or other related field will suffice if the undergraduate degree is in special education, communicative disorders, or school psychology.
  • Have at least two years of full-time teaching experience
  • Complete the program course work, including 18 credit hours in educational leadership, three (3) credit hours in program evaluation and assessment, and 8–12 credit hours in special education

Candidates from school psychology and communications disorders majors will require 12 credit hours of special education course work. Special education majors will require eight (8) credit hours of special education course work.

Program of Study

Full course descriptions are available in the IU Bloomington School of Education Graduate Bulletin.

  • Educational Leadership
    • A500 Introduction to Educational Leadership or A653 Organizational Context of Education
    • A608 Legal Perspectives on Education
    • A635 Public School Budgeting and Accounting or A631 Microeconomic Applications to Education
    • A675 Leadership in Special Education Programs
    • A735 Building Unified Systems Inclusive of Students with Disabilities
    • A695 Practicum in Educational Leadership
  • Special Education
    • Special Education Majors: eight (8) credit hours of course work selected in consultation with your faculty advisor
    • Communications Disorders/School Psychology Majors: 12 credit hours of course work selected in consultation with your faculty advisor, which should include K525 Assessment and Instruction
  • Program Evaluation and Curriculum Assessment
  • J660 Evaluation of School Programs or Y535 Evaluation Models and Techniques

A675, A695, and A735 are taken as a group. Students typically complete these courses by December of that year. Monthly meetings are part of this program and meet on a weekday from January–May and September-December, typically in the Indianapolis area.

Contact Us

For more information about this degree program, contact Sandi Cole at cmcole@indiana.edu.

Superintendent Licensure in Educational Leadership

This 36-credit hour program prepares you for for district-level leadership positions, including (but not limited to) superintendent. If you are licensed as a superintendent, you may also serve as building-level administrators in schools serving those grades in which you have at least three years of teaching experience.

To earn this license, candidates must:

  • Hold a proficient practitioners license
  • Earn an Ed.S. or Ed.D. degree*
  • Complete this 36-credit licensure program

*Licensure course work overlaps substantially with both the Ed.S. and Ed.D. program.

Program of Study

Full course descriptions are available in the IU Bloomington School of Education Graduate Bulletin.

  • A560 Political Perspectives of Education
  • A600 Problems in Educational Leadership
  • A615 Advanced School Law
  • A631 Microeconomic Applications to Education
  • A653 Organizational Context of Education
  • A638 Public School Personnel Management
  • A640 Planning Educational Facilities
  • A671 Planning and Change in Educational Organizations or
    • A672 Moral Dimensions of Leadership
  • H504 History of American Education
  • J630 Curriculum Theory and Practice (or other curriculum course)
  • P507 Assessment in Schools
  • A785 Internship in Educational Leadership
Faculty

Our faculty includes leading researchers in education policy who actively conduct field studies at the district level. This gives our students the opportunity to apply the theory and knowledge they’ve gained in the classroom to solve practical problems at area schools. They also bring a wealth of real-world experience as consultants to state and federal agencies, leaders of professional associations, and as senior-level administrators.

Careers

Our graduates are working as school superintendents and assistant superintendents, principals, professors, personnel directors, and business managers of school systems.

Photo of Emily Richardson

Emily Richardson

PhD in Education Policy
Photo of Justin Bathon

Justin Bathon

PhD in Education Policy


Contact

For detailed program information, please contact:

Cindy Wedemeyer
W. W. Wright Education Building, Room 4228
Bloomington, Indiana 47405-1006
Phone: (812) 856-8371
Fax: (812) 856-8394
Email: cwedemey@indiana.edu