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College of Education

College of Education
006 Bluemont Hall
1114 Mid-Campus Drive North
Kansas State University
Manhattan, KS 66506

785-532-7304 fax

Educational Leadership Master's Degree

The Master of Science (M.S.) degree in Educational Leadership is normally a 36-credit hour professional degree program, designed primarily to satisfy P-12 school-level leadership license requirements. Students who desire a Kansas building-level (principal) license should select this degree program. Additionally, students who intend to assume other significant leadership roles in P-12 school settings, apart from professional leadership licensure, should consider this degree.

Other education professionals may also wish to obtain this degree, but with the intent to apply it in settings where professional licensure is not required. For students not seeking building leadership licensure, a program of study shall consist of a minimum of 30 credit hours as prescribed by the supervisory committee.

Additional program information can be found in the Program Booklet (PDF).

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Course Delivery: Manhattan Campus; Online – hybrid style with web enhanced components and face to face sessions or synchronous videoconferencing sessions
Credits: Master of Science – 30; Kansas Building-Level License – 36
Tuition Information: See the Cashiers and Student Accounts website for tuition and fee schedules.

Start the Application Process

For more information about the program, contact Dr. Jerry Johnson at johnsoj9@ksu.edu.

Additional Program Information


For Kansas building-level leadership initial license aspirants, this program is comprised of the following course sequence. All courses are 3 credit hours unless otherwise noted. All courses in this list are required for those seeking the building-level license.

Leadership Core (9 credits)
  • EDLEA 801 – Ethical Dimensions of Educational Leadership
  • EDLEA 810 – Historical and Philosophical Analysis of Leadership in Education
  • EDLEA 836 – School-Community Relations
Student Learning Needs (6 credits)
  1. EDSP 833 – Administration of Special Education Programs –OR–
    EDSP 886 – Seminar in Special Education

  2. EDCEP 715 – Principles of Assessment –OR–
    EDCEP 816 – Research Methods in Education –OR–
    EDLEA 886 – Seminar in Research for School Leaders
Leadership Operations (21 credits)
  • EDLEA 819 – Introduction to Education Finance
  • EDLEA 831 – Educational Law
  • EDLEA 835 – The Principalship (2 credits)
  • EDLEA 855 – Administrative Leadership in Curriculum
  • EDLEA 865 – Administrative Leadership in Staff Development
  • EDLEA 885 – Technology Leadership for Administrators
  • EDLEA 889 – Practicum in Educational Leadership (1 credit)
  • EDLEA 910 – Educational Human Resource Administration

Building Leadership License

This 36-hour M.S. in Educational Leadership is designed to meet coursework requirements for the Kansas Building Leadership initial license. Upon completion of these requirements and the state licensure exam, a KSDE application must be completed. Students who do not seek the building leadership license may complete the master’s degree in 30 credit hours as described in the program requirements above.

Students who want to apply for this license should contact the College of Education licensure officer Di Murphy at dim@k-state.edu or 785-532-5524. For information about licensing, please see the Licensing and Endorsement Assistance web page. After completing the coursework, applicants for the license must also meet the following additional KSDE requirements:

  1. Take the Praxis exam for the School Leaders Licensure Assessment (i.e., Building Leadership). Go to the PRAXIS: Kansas Test Requirements website for registration information. To have your score sent to Kansas State University, enter code # 6334 when registering for this assessment.
  2. Hold a master’s degree. (It is permitted, but not necessary, to include the required courses as part of the master’s degree.)
  3. Have a 3.25 grade point average in graduate coursework.
  4. Have a minimum of three years accredited teaching experience under a valid professional teaching license.
  5. Have recent teaching experience or coursework (i.e., at least one year of teaching or 8 credit hours within the last six years).

Admission Requirements

Admission to graduate study is granted by the Dean of the Graduate School upon the recommendation of the faculty in the graduate program. Applicants seeking admission to this master’s degree program must submit the information noted below. Before starting the online application, gather all information and documents for all of the admission requirements so that they can be uploaded into the application system. All materials must be received before review will begin.

  • A completed online Graduate School Application
    • Go to the Kansas State University Graduate School home page and click on Start Your Application Now. Follow the prompts for completing the application process.
    • Application Deadlines:
      • U.S. Citizens and Permanent Residents – Applications are accepted throughout the year.
      • International Students – The online application, application fee, test scores, transcripts, financial documents, and all required application materials need to be submitted by the following dates:
        • January 1 for fall (August) enrollment
        • August 1 for spring (January) enrollment
        • December 1 for summer (June) enrollment
  • Graduate School Application Fee
    • Domestic Students – An application fee is required for all domestic students; the application will not be processed without this fee. The fee can be paid by credit card when completing the online application.
    • International Students – An application fee is required; the application will not be processed without this fee. The fee can be paid by credit card when completing the online application.
  • OFFICIAL Transcripts
    • You must upload into the online application a scanned copy (PDF preferred) of the official transcript(s) from each college or university where you received your bachelor's degree(s) and completed any post baccalaureate course work or degrees. Transcripts become part of your records at Kansas State University and cannot be returned. Please be aware that printouts from university student portals are not considered a copy of your official transcript.
    • If you are admitted, you will be required to submit an official transcript for GPA and degree conferral verification from the institution(s) where you received your degree(s) and completed any post-baccalaureate credits.
    • Students whose transcripts are not in English must furnish a translation by an appropriate authority. Failure to list any colleges or universities attended may result in dismissal from the university.
  • Statement of Goals and Professional Experience
    • You must upload into the online application a 1-2 page statement that includes the following information:
      • Career and professional goals and aspirations, and how being accepted to the program will benefit the goals and aspirations
      • Past and present employment within education or related fields
      • Future professional plans
      • If you have a request for a certain advisor, indicate that preference in the statement of goals and professional experience
  • Letters of Recommendation and Evidence of Successful Teaching
    • Two letters of recommendation are needed from college or university educators and/or colleagues or supervisors who are qualified to address your professional skills and your potential for success in the graduate program. Enter the names and email addresses of the recommenders into the appropriate area in the online application. Applicants not possessing teacher education background should contact the department to determine alternative criteria.
  • A Completed Self-Survey for the M.S. Admission Standards Form
    • Applicants must complete the Self-Survey for the M.S. Admission Standards form (PDF). This is a self-assessment by applicants of their standing in relation to selected admission criteria. The form is available as part of the CollegeNet application process.
  • English Language Proficiency
    • To demonstrate competence in the English language, an official report of scores on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), International English Language Testing System - academic exam (IELTS) or Pearson Test of English (PTE) must be sent to Kansas State University for all applicants whose primary language is not English. Enter your scores in the online application and upload the report of your scores.
    • Learn more about English proficiency requirements at: http://www.k-state.edu/grad/admissions/application-process/international/
International Applicants

International applicants must meet the same academic standards for admission as those required of domestic students. When applying for admission, international applicants must provide an Affidavit of Financial Support and documentation of English language proficiency. Detailed information about these issues is provided at the Graduate School Application Process for International Students website.