Program Overview

The program in Educational Leadership offers a Master of Education, Education Specialist,  Doctor of Education and Doctor of Philosophy in Education. The Master of Education (MEd) degree is designed to meet the needs of those who desire positions in school leadership: K-12 Principal or Curriculum Director. The MEd degree allows candidates to gain certification in Montana as a K-12 Principal.  Once candidates complete the MEd degree and earn principal certification they may take additional coursework to obtain superintendent licensure.  This can be accomplished through earning an Education Specialist (EdS) degree or completing the School Superintendent Certificate program.

The Doctor of Education (EdD) degree is designed to prepare graduates to assume district leadership positions in large school districts, or in university school leader preparation programs. The emphasis of this program is that of the scholar-practitioner where students are engaged researching problems encountered in practice related to K-20 educational organizations and educational leadership. Graduates will develop the rich knowledge base in educational theory and practice and leadership theory needed to conduct practical educational research and engage in service to the greater education community.  The program offers multiple opportunities to engage in research grounded in cutting-edge educational issues and collaborative activities in diverse educational settings, including faculty from other disciplines.  

The Doctor of Philosophy in Education (PhD), Educational Leadership degree is designed for graduate students seeking faculty positions in higher education programs to educate and prepare K-12 school leaders. Specifically, this PhD program prepares students to develop knowledge and conduct research related to six (6) major areas of strength among our existing faculty: (1) Leadership and Policy Analysis, (2) Leader Identity and Authenticity, (3) Leadership for Social Justice and in Indigenous Contexts, (4) Leader Self-Efficacy/ School Collective Efficacy, (5) Instructional Leadership in Rural Contexts, (6) Education Evaluation, Assessment, Research Design and Analysis. Special emphasis in these major research areas addresses topics specific to Montana including working with rural communities and Native Americans on state and other educational issues. Graduates of this PhD program in education will be well-positioned to directly and positively affect the data driven culture related to improving the K-20 educational systems.