FAQs for M.S.Ed. in Educational Leadership (online) Students

FAQs for M.S.Ed. in Educational Leadership (online) Students

We are currently offering A500, A624, A635 and A608 each fall, spring and summer. A510, A515, A629, A695 and J500 are offered every fall and spring.  PLEASE NOTE: A695 will be offered in the fall/spring and spring/fall. A695 (the practicum) is taken over two consecutive semesters. You will enroll for one credit the first semester and the remaining two credits the second semester. It is a three credit hour course. It is highly beneficial for students to have taken A500, A510, A515 and A624 prior to taking A695.

No. It is recommended that students begin with A500 but this is not a requirement. Also, please see above to learn how A695 is structured.

HESA Strand: The three HESA strand courses are only offered in the summer. The courses are C565, U544 and U556.

School Law Strand: A710 is offered in the summer, A675 is offered in the fall, and A615 is offered in the spring.

Learning Sciences Strand: P540 is offered online every semester. P507 and P574 are offered online typically just once a year. These three courses do not require authorization and will fill quickly. Students need to try to add these courses on their registration appointment dates.

You can also create your own strand (with advisor approval). It is up to the student to identify the three courses and explain to the advisor why they should be approved. None of our strands will be listed on your transcript. They can be listed on a resume.

You may take your strand courses anytime during your course work. You do not need to finish your Educational Leadership courses (A courses) prior to taking strand courses.

The online courses that are offered through the School of Education are primarily asynchronous, meaning that, for most activities within a given week, you would be able to participate whenever the time is most convenient for you. The online classes are structured, in that, there will be certain expectations of the student every week of the course (readings, participating on the discussion board, etc.) and there are due dates for all of your assignments. The syllabus for the courses outline what is expected from the student and gives a clear picture of what you can expect of the semester. We encourage our students to contact their instructors to see what additional requirements there might be for the class. The online classes follow the same guidelines and semester schedule as that of the on-campus classes. The flexibility that comes with online classes is in your studying and being able to adjust it around your schedule.

You can take this program at your own speed. Most students find that 1-2 courses in the fall and in the spring semester is a full load if they are employed full time. In the summer, students sometimes take 2-4 courses, depending on their schedules. Please note that this is a graduate program at a nationally ranked school. Our courses will be rigorous and instructors demand high expectations. Students should expect to spend at least 120 hours for each class on outside readings and assignments.

It is possible to transfer up to 9 credits from another master’s program. It is up to the advisor to decide whether the credits will transfer. In order to transfer, the coursework cannot be more than seven years old by the time you graduate. Also, the course that you are requesting to transfer in must be deemed an equivalent of what we require in our master’s program. Thus, you should supply a syllabus of the course from the other institution to your advisor. Your advisor will then decide if the course is equivalent to what we require (see Request for Transfer Credit here)

Yes. Although the vast majority of our students are teachers who would like to become teacher leaders or principals, we do occasionally accept students into the program with no teaching experience. Students who fall into this category need to very clearly explain why this degree would be useful to them. For example, we have had some students who want to work in education policy or work with data at a state department of education. We would expect prior work experience in this area, which you should be sure to discuss in your personal statement.  Likewise, if you have never been a K-12 teacher but have led youth groups in other contexts, please be sure to elaborate in your statement.  Students in this program are expected to connect with schools as part of the requirement for some of the courses in this program.  We need to see that you have the relevant background experience to be able to participate in these course activities.

Please also note that you would not be eligible for Indiana principal licensure if you fall into this category  of having no prior teaching experience.


Please visit this page and select the appropriate program of study form under 'Educational Leadership and Policy Studies'. If you choose to create your strand, please select 'Educational Leadership (no specified strand)'. Email this completed form to Dr. Wally Bourke (wbourke@indiana.edu) by the beginning of your third semester.

Students should check this page for the exact cost at the time of registration.

Although our program is completely online, a student may have the opportunity to take a face-to-face or hybrid course, if the student chooses to do so. For example, J500 is often taught face-to-face, in addition to online. Students might also develop a strand of interest (9 credits) that includes some face-to-face or hybrid courses. It is up to the student to locate face-to-face or hybrid courses on One.iu.

Yes. Please note, however, that you would either need to complete the Education Law Certificate program BEFORE earning your master’s degree or at the same time you complete your master’s degree. In other words, you can’t graduate with a master’s degree and then return to IU for this certificate and transfer courses in. IU has a policy that credits from a higher degree can’t transfer to a lower degree. For those of you who choose the education law strand in the master’s program, you would not need any additional courses.

Yes. The 24-credit hour Indiana principal licensure courses are included in our master’s program. Please note that if you are employed in another state, it is up to the student to learn if the license will be accepted in that state. IU makes no guarantees that it will transfer. If you are unsure if you are eligible for the for the Indiana principal’s license, please contact the Indiana Department of Education to discuss your particular situation.

According to the latest U.S. News and World Report rankings, we are the #13 Educational Leadership Program in the U.S. (and the highest ranked program in the state). See all of our rankings here.

It is highly beneficial for students to have taken A500, A510, A515 and A624 prior to taking A695.

Yes. All master’s students must apply online to graduate. If you are in licensure only, you do not need to apply. The student is responsible for submitting this form before the required deadlines (see the Master's Student Portal for further instructions)

This document was last updated on April 5, 2019. It includes a tentative schedule for courses and we will continue to revise based upon student enrollment numbers.