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A single teacher can have an impact on the lives of hundreds, if not thousands, of students over the course of their career, one classroom at a time. But that impact multiplies exponentially across an entire school when a teacher steps into an administrative or leadership role. Enacting change on this broader scale takes wisdom, inspiration and hard work—and a set of professional skills that build on existing classroom experience. As an administrative leader, you have the potential to truly make a difference in the lives not just of students but also the teachers who look to you for guidance. These essential roles are also in high demand; the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that employment of PK–12 principals will grow 8 percent from 2016 to 2026.1
Whether you're already on an administrative or leadership track, or if you want to make a career change, an online master's in educational administration* from the University of Kansas can help you get there.
To be an effective leader in education, you need to understand not only pedagogy, but policy development and the political, economic and social forces that influence administrative decisions across the field of education. KU's renowned faculty brings its diverse experience and expert knowledge to each of your classes throughout this program to prepare you with the theoretical and practical understanding you’ll need in your leadership career. Plus, as a student in KU's online educational administration program, you'll also have access to a unique tool to help you explore leadership in a number of different educational settings. Jayhawkville is a comprehensive, interactive virtual school district comprised of more than 30 simulated schools spanning suburban, urban and rural communities, complete with educators and students representing diverse real-world populations and experiences.
In this program, you'll take a top-down approach that encourages you to look at broader issues beyond the scope of a single classroom, at the school. You'll examine the different staff specialists who will compose your team and explore a variety of effective methods to support educators, staff members and students. Ultimately, you'll graduate ready to overcome any challenge you may face as an educational leader.
Note: In order to enroll in any of these programs, a bachelor's degree is required. No program can guarantee licensure. It is each student’s responsibility to determine the licensure requirements in his or her state and to apply for the licenses or endorsements necessary to his or her career goals. Our department staff and licensure officer can provide individual support during the application process to help you understand your state’s requirements.
Our educational administration courses for the online master's in educational administration challenge you to make a difference in the lives of your students and community. This program is for experienced educators looking to make the transition into administration. All courses listed are worth 3 credits.
Please note: Course list and sequence are subject to change.
An introduction to the role, responsibilities, expectations and major duties of elementary, middle and high school building administrators. Students are presented typical problems faced by school administrators through simulations and role playing and are expected, through reflection and discussion, to develop viable solutions.
This course offers an overview of several topics directly related to the principal's role as a data driven leader in the 21st century school. The course focuses on the role and effective use of data and its analysis in making decisions regarding school improvement, meeting the needs of students with exceptionalities, evaluating educational programs, developing student management strategies and using instructional technology.
This course introduces the concepts and skills involved in understanding and analyzing research in education and related areas. The course provides an overview of basic, general knowledge of various research methodologies. Students should expect to study much of this material in greater depth through additional course work before being fully prepared to conduct independent research. However, this course should enhance their ability to locate, read, comprehend and critically analyze research articles and reports. Topics in the course include quantitative and qualitative methods and designs, historical and descriptive research and program evaluation.
A study of the roles and goals of education in the United States, the interrelationships among schools and students, teachers, administrators, and parents, and the culture of schools.
An overview of the theory and practice of the management, recruitment, selection, compensation, placement and development of personnel in the school setting.
This course introduces educators and related service professionals to practical, evidence-based prevention and intervention strategies related to a broad range of antisocial, aggressive and behavioral problems. Approaches focus on understanding and addressing the precipitating factors related to inappropriate behavior, crisis management in immediate situations and problem-solving strategies for longer-term change. Course content will include descriptions of problematic antisocial, aggressive, disruptive and internalizing behaviors; options for classroom interventions; school and system-oriented interventions, and ethical and legal issues involved in various prevention and intervention approaches. Class work will focus on literature, research-based intervention approaches, and case work illustrating specific approaches and programs.
An examination of the sources and uses of fiscal resources in education including underlying concepts from economic theory, the impact of values on fiscal policy, state funding formulas and school budgeting and accounting practices.
A study of children and youth with particular emphasis on demographic characteristics of the population served by schools and implications of those characteristics for schools and schooling.
This is an introdctory course in special education law and policy implementation. It is designed to provide school and district administrators, and other special education stakeholders, with a basic understanding of key points in the history of special education law and policy. It focuses primarily on the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and its core concepts, with particular attention to Least Restrictive Environment (LRE). This course is designed to provide a working knowledge of IDEA's procedural requirements, the preferred practices associated with implementing the procedures in schools, criticism of these practices and their implementation, and ideas for addressing these criticisms in ways that promote more equitable and inclusive special education practices.
An examination of current trends in personnel evaluation with a focus on clinical supervision and adult development. Students will participate in simulation exercises to develop skills in classroom observation, conferencing techniques, evaluation of teaching artifacts and the construction of staff development plans.
Analysis of models of teaching which represent distinct orientations toward students and how they learn. The application of these models is complemented by the study of research evidence on effective teaching strategies.
The on-site development of the skills necessary to effectively function as a school building leader. Activities will be tailored to the needs of individual students in consultation with a university advisor and a field advisor.
These elective courses are for non-licensure track students only, who will choose one of the following courses to replace ELPS 895 from the building leadership track.
The course will emphasize the latest research and practice related to school improvement. Students will function as a member of a school improvement team to assimilate and synthesize research and practice into the development, revision, and/or assessment of a school improvement plan for a specific school site.
This course is designed for educators interested in expanding curriculum and instruction to accommodate diverse learners in the K-12 classroom. Topics include: models, methods and resources for differentiating curriculum and instruction, designing and modifying differentiated curriculum, evaluating student learning, and introducing students, parents and colleagues to differentiation. An evidence-based, practical course for teachers, administrators and support personnel.
This course moves beyond the classroom, providing the knowledge and skills to form useful, collaborative relationships with families, paraeducators, and other educators and service providers to best serve the needs of the student. Learn to implement federal and state mandates for special education and related services programs as they relate to building and maintaining relationships with families of students with disabilities and developing effective school programs. Explore procedures for developing, implementing and evaluating (a) instructional accountability for special education students' participation in district and state assessment; (b) relationships between general and special education personnel and programs; (c) roles and responsibilities; (d) interdisciplinary team planning including families; (e) coordinating, educating, and supervising paraeducators; and (f) general management responsibilities associated with instruction of children and youth with disabilities. Course topics include collaboration in schools, community systems and families, historical perspectives of family life and school involvement, effective relationships between home, school and community, communication among professionals and with families, school-based programs, home-based programs, and multicultural considerations.
This course provides a background in career development and transition education for persons with disabilities from middle school through adulthood. Emphasis is placed on IDEA requirements for transition services, career development and the transition processes, transition services assessment, secondary special education curricular implications, career development and transition service needs, collaborative services in schools and communities to promote quality transition services, and current issues and trends in transition education and services.
The purpose of this course is to provide graduate students in special education and related areas who are specializing in secondary school/transition programs with an overview of career development for youth with disabilities. Emphasis is placed upon theory and practice related to career development, work-based learning, and school and community vocational training models. Prerequisite: SPED 856.
The purpose of this course is to provide graduate students with research evidence of each of the components of universal design for learning within access to the general academic curriculum: multiple means of representation, expression, and engagement. Prerequisite: SPED 856.
The purpose of this course is to provide graduate students in special education and related areas who are specializing in secondary school/transition programs with an overview of models and issues pertaining to school and community engagement for secondary age youth. Prerequisite: SPED 856.