What Degrees are Available in Educational Leadership?

Candidates who want to play an important role in education and the education system often choose to pursue a degree in educational leadership. Once they decide this is what they want to do with their career, determining what degrees are available is often the next step. Finding a good educational leadership program depends on what the individual wishes to do upon graduation. Here is some information on the various education leadership degrees available.

Bachelor’s Degrees

Educational leadership is often a field that requires a master’s degree, but there are still options available at the baccalaureate level. Candidates who want to pursue a career where they can become education leaders without a graduate degree often choose a bachelor’s degree in education leadership or a bachelor’s degree in educational leadership and administration.

This program typically takes four years to complete but can be completed in less time if it’s taken as an online program. The bachelor’s degree program teaches students how to meet the many challenges in the education system. Graduates may pursue jobs in elementary schools, secondary schools and postsecondary schools.

Master’s Degrees

The master’s degree is the degree level most common among individuals interested in a career in educational leadership. One popular choice is a Master’s in Education with a concentration in educational leadership. The master’s degree may be offered as an on-campus or an online program. Candidates who are already teachers often pursue this degree if they aspire to become educational leaders such as principals, deans, superintendents or school administrators.

Many of the programs are acceptable for licensure in that particular state. Master’s degree programs usually take two years to complete if the student already has a bachelor’s degree, but can take less or more time depending on the school and if the program is taken through distance learning or on an actual campus. Some colleges offer this program through an accelerated degree track, in which case it can be completed in one year.

Doctoral Degrees

A Doctorate in Educational Leadership is generally a three-year program for those who already have a master’s degree and wish to advance their education and training to the highest level. Students can choose a customized core curriculum based on their area of interest in the education system. Students complete coursework, a research-based dissertation, and an internship.

They may also have the option of completing a residency is an educational setting. The doctoral degree program is often offered as an online program as well. Graduates of this degree program are qualified for the research positions or leadership positions at the highest level.

Online vs. On-Campus

Online programs have become very popular in recent years because they allow students to earn a degree while continuing to meet their other obligations. This is especially true for educational programs such as these. Most educational leaders have begun their careers working as teachers, and many of these teachers only have bachelor’s degrees. By completing educational leadership programs through distance learning, they’re able to continue teaching and maintain their status and their seniority. The work they do as teachers may also go towards the internship or residency requirements a program may have.

Related Resource: Top 20 Most Affordable PhD in Educational Leadership Online

With the addition of online programs, many aspiring educational leaders are choosing to earn their degrees online according to U.S. News & World Report. The online programs are often the ideal solution for a candidate that is teaching and wants to continue teaching and still earn a degree in education leadership.