A woman in hijab and glasses consults with a student.

Educational Leadership (Graduate)

Gain important skillsets to prepare for positions of educational leadership, either as a K-12 principal, a curriculum director or district superintendent within the primary school system.

Educational Leadership – Master of Education (M.Ed.), Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) or Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

The Educational Leadership program at Montana State is specifically designed to prepare students who want to step into roles of primary school leadership, focusing on K-12 principals, curriculum directors or superintendents. The Master’s of Education program prepares candidates to gain certification in Montana as a K-12 principal and additional coursework will enable candidates to gain vital experience to apply towards professional specializations. In the Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) program, candidates further prepare for leadership positions at the helm of large school districts, university preparation programs and other institutions.




Lecturers in the Education Leadership program include associate professor Dr. Christine Stanton, who recently received four awards –the Early Career Award, the Outstanding Paper Award, the Teresa Veltkamp Advocacy Award for Excellence in Indian Education for All award and the National Technology Leadership Initiative Fellowship Award – for her work with indigenous communities throughout the state of Montana.



Illustration of an open eye.

The Educational Leadership program participates in the Indian Leadership Education and Development (I LEAD) Project, designed to recruit, educate, certify and place American Indian educators into administrative positions in schools with high populations of Native American students.

Illustration of a letter block, the letters "A," "B" and "C" printed on each plane of the block.

CPED Member
The College of Education, Health and Human Development is a proud member of the Carnegie Project on the Education Doctorate.

Illustration of a guide post, with signs pointing out at all directions.

Adventure Awaits
LendEDU has ranked MSU #1 in Outdoor Recreation, due to its proximity to world-class skiing, blue-ribbon rivers for fishing and seemingly endless hiking opportunities, as well as access to rental equipment from the ASMSU Outdoor Recreation Program.




Fund Your Education

The Graduate School at Montana State is dedicated to helping students secure funding during their time at MSU. Some resources the Education department and Graduate School offer includes:

Additionally, most of our incoming graduate students are funded with graduate assistantships throughout the fall and spring semesters, with the possibility of summer employment as well. More information, as well as a list of available graduate assistantships and their job descriptions, are available on the Department of Education website. 

Superintendent Certificate

Montana State's Educational Leadership program offers the School Superintendent Certificate to prepare candidates to complete all state requirements for licensure as a School Superintendent in Montana. The program starts with an intensive summer program and is followed by a semester-long internship.

The School Superintendent Certificate is comprised of 15 credits and is designed to take two semesters to complete. For more information, including application requirements and deadlines, reach out to the Department of Education Graduate Program or read more on the Educational Leadership program's website.




Admissions Requirements

Each program within the Graduate School at Montana State has its own particular requirements for admission, and the Educational Leadership program is not different. Below are the criteria and admissions material that should be used as a guide to help as you apply to our graduate programs:

  • Resume or curriculum vitae
  • Submission of GRE or MAT scores for both M.Ed. and Ed.D. applicants. There is no minimum score requirement and are considered holistically as part of the entire application. Test scores may not be over five years old at time of application
  • An official transcript from all universities attended
  • A personal essay, 2-3 pages double-spaced. Briefly describe your background, prior professional and leadership experience, why you are interested in our program, and how you plan to use your degree
  • Three professional references. All letters should be from individuals qualified to assess your ability and potential as a graduate student and/or be able to attest to your work ethic and professionalism
  • For international applicants: a TOEFL score of 80, IELTS score of 6.5 or PTE score of 54 is required if you come from a country where English is not the official language. Additionally, submitting evidence of financial support or proof of funds, a copy of the applicant's passport and degree certificates will be required

Although the Graduate Program at Montana State does practice rolling admissions, the Education Leadership program follow these deadlines for each semester:

  • Priority for graduate assistantships: February 1 for all applicants
  • Fall: April 1 for all applicants