MASTER'S

Educational Leadership and Policy

Overview & Requirements
Applying
Careers & Internships

The Educational Leadership and Policy program is centered on the collaborative practice of continuous improvement. It is anchored deeply in theory and research on school leadership, improvement, social justice, and leadership development. We bring together a diverse cohort of students with shared interests in understanding and improving schools, instruction, and K-12 students’  educational outcomes.

Increasing both the excellence and equity of public schools must be a national priority. To address this imperative, state and national education reform efforts are increasingly focused on improving the professional knowledge base and preparation of educational leaders, as catalysts for improvement.

Our master’s level Educational Leadership and Policy program is a 30-credit program that prepares students to:
  • Analyze student outcomes, classroom instruction, the school organization, and external environments.
  • Devise and implement strategic plans for systemic, instructionally-focused improvement. 
  • Demonstrate the identity, dispositions, and values instrumental to enacting collaborative school improvement.
  • Opportunities to engage with leading researchers, local active administrators, and faculty members of a top-rated school of education that is focused on the improvement of teaching and learning through practice-based teacher education and research and committed to the twin imperatives of excellence and equity.
  • Access to all the coursework, resources, and opportunities of a preeminent public research university. For example, master’s students may take electives from any school within the university.

Additional Certificate and Endorsement Opportunities
Learning Experience Design Certificate

Requirements

The Educational Leadership and Policy (LeadPol) thread is designed to bring multiple perspectives to bear on the practice and study of school improvement in the U.S.

Total Credit Hours Required
30

Core credits

7

Students complete the following courses:

  • EDUC 570 – Professional Development Seminar in Education
  • EDUC 649 – Foundational Perspectives on Educational Reform
  • EDUC 695 – Research and Educational Practice

Thread-specific courses

6

Students complete the following courses:

  • EDUC 551 – School Organization and the Policy Environment

Students also complete one of the following courses:

  • EDUC 552 – Instructional Leadership in Schools
  • EDUC 553 – Administrative Leadership in Schools
  • EDUC 555 – Financial and Legal Policies in Schools

Elective credits

15

Students elect 15 credits of additional coursework from available U-M offerings, both in and outside the SOE.

Internship credits

2

Students complete an internship of at least 100 hours, in addition to the following courses:

  • EDUC 638 – Internship and Directed Field Experience

Questions?

Questions?

Frequently Asked Questions

Prospective students

Prospective Students

2018 Ed Studies masters cohort poses in front of School of Education building
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Educational Studies

Connect with ES

Contact

Phone: (734) 763-9497
Master's: edstudiesma.info@umich.edu 
Doctoral: edstudiesphd.info@umich.edu  

Location

610 E. University Avenue
Room 4218
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-1259

Office Hours

Monday–Friday
8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Application Deadlines

We only accept applications to begin the program in Fall term, which begins in early September. Applicants are notified in late February. Admitted students who applied in Round 1 will receive priority for scholarship funding and have the opportunity to attend Campus Visit Day in March. After December 1, applications are reviewed on a rolling basis with decisions returned within 6–8 weeks of the date on which all application materials are received and complete.

Priority
December 1
Domestic, International
Final
April 1
International
July 1
Domestic

Application Process

Step 1: Prepare your application materials

To submit a successful application for admission, you need to provide the following:

  • Academic Statement of Purpose
    • Part-Time Admission: Applicants seeking admission to a master’s program may attend on a part-time basis. Please indicate this by answering the “part-time” question on page 9 of the application. 
    • The Academic Statement of Purpose serves to demonstrate a fit between your background/interests and the Educational Studies master’s program’s philosophy, structure, and offerings. The statement should take the form of a concise and coherent essay, approximately 2-3 pages in length, double-spaced. 
    • Please be sure to address the following elements in your statement with regard to the specific thread of the Master’s in Educational Studies degree to which you are applying: 
      • A clear statement about the opportunities, issues, and/or problems of education that motivate you to pursue your chosen thread of the Master’s in Educational Studies. 
      • A concise summary of relevant academic or professional experience. Please explain the connection between your academic or professional experience and the opportunities, issues and/or problems of education introduced in #1. 
      • An overview of your short-term and long-term career goals. Please introduce how you will go about addressing the opportunities, issues, and problems of education introduced in #1. 
      • A clear statement explaining how you expect that program thread will allow you to better understand the opportunities, issues, and problems of education that motivate your graduate studies and on which you will focus your career. Please make specific reference to details such as course offerings, experiential learning opportunities, campus resources, and the expertise of specific faculty members.
  • Personal Statement 
    • 500 word limit
    • How have your background and life experiences, including cultural, geographical, financial, educational or other opportunities or challenges, motivated your decision to pursue a graduate degree at the University of Michigan? For example, if you grew up in a community where educational, cultural, or other opportunities were either especially plentiful or especially lacking, you might discuss the impact this had on your development and interests. This should be a discussion of the journey that has led to your decision to seek a graduate degree. Please do not repeat your Academic Statement of Purpose. 
  • Three (3) letters of recommendation
    • We strongly encourage two of your letters come from individuals who are familiar with your academic performance. The third may be from a professional reference.
    • Register your recommenders' names and contact information on the online application so that they will be sent instructions for submitting their letters via the application system. Let your recommenders know that they need to upload a letter and that it is required by the program. 
    • As soon as you click "save" on the page of the application where your recommenders' contact information is entered, they will receive an email with instructions for completing the process. Proceed to this point in the application process as soon as possible to trigger that email.
  • Resume or CV
  • GRE Test Scores (valid 5 years from test date)
    • Provide ETS with the U-M Institutional Code of 1839 and your scores will be sent directly to the university.
    • If you are applying as a dual degree candidate to our MA/MBA program we will accept GMAT scores in place of GRE scores.
  • TOEFL, MELAB, ECPE, or IELTS scores (for non-native speakers of English only; valid 2 years from test date)
Step 2: Create an ApplyWeb account, managed by Rackham Graduate School

Create an account with Rackham Graduate School.

This program, like all of the School of Education's graduate programs, is administered through the University of Michigan's Horace H. Rackham School of Graduate Studies. Rackham offers a host of resources and administrative support to help see you through from submitting your application to completion of your degree.

Step 3: Complete pages 1-5 of application using ApplyWeb
  • After completing page 5 of the application, you will receive an e-mail with your U-M ID. A U-M ID number will be issued to you via email within 5 business days of completing pages 1-5 and advancing to page 6 of the ApplyWeb application. Having your U-M ID number to include on all your application materials ensures accurate and timely processing, so we encourage you to complete pages 1-5 early in the process.
  • If you need to submit your application before you receive your U-M ID number, you may still complete the application. Include your date of birth and the program’s name on your application materials.
  • Current and former U-M Ann Arbor students, alumni and employees: You do not need to obtain a new U-M ID number. Use your previously obtained U-M ID number.
  • If your personal information has changed (for example, legal name, gender), make sure the personal information you submit with your application matches your previous Ann Arbor campus record. If your previous Ann Arbor campus record does not display your current personal information, contact the Registrar’s Office or the Shared Services Center to change your personal information before you apply.
Step 4: Upload academic statement of purpose, the personal statement, and a curriculum vitae (CV) or resume to the ApplyWeb application

Include at the top of each document:

  • The type of document (Academic Statement of Purpose, Personal Statement, or Curriculum Vitae or Resume)
  • Your name
  • The name of the graduate program
  • Your 8 digit U-M ID (if known)

Make sure margins are at least one-inch so nothing is cropped when you upload the documents to the application.

Step 5: Submit test scores
GRE Test Scores (valid 5 years from test date)

  • Provide ETS with the U-M Institutional Code of 1839 and your scores will be sent directly to the university.
  • If you are applying as a dual-degree candidate to our MA/MBA program, we will accept GMAT scores in place of GRE scores.
  • If you have participated in the M-ARC program and are applying to an Educational Studies Master of Arts, please email soegradcoordinators@umich.edu for a GRE waiver.
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TOEFL, MELAB, ECPE, or IELTS scores (for non-native speakers of English only; valid 2 years from test date)

Step 6: Submit transcripts
  • Upload an electronic version of your official transcript(s) for each Bachelor’s, Master’s, Professional, or Doctoral degree earned or in progress through your ApplyWeb application account (part of the Rackham application system). Do not upload academic records printed from your school’s website or student portal.
  • You are not required to send official transcripts at the time of application. If you are recommended for admission, the Rackham Graduate School will require official transcripts. Admitted applicants will receive an email notification when the official transcripts are required.
  • Students who have studied in a country outside of the U.S. should review the required credentials from non-U.S. institutions. For all degrees obtained at non-U.S. institutions—Request that degree-granting institutions submit official transcripts/records to the Rackham Graduate School at the time of application.
  • Information for submitting official transcripts can be found on the Rackham Graduate School website.
Step 7: Check that letters of recommendation have been submitted
  • We strongly encourage two of your letters come from individuals who are familiar with your academic performance. The third may be from a professional reference.
  • Register your recommenders' names and contact information on the online application so that they will be sent instructions for submitting their letters via the application system. Let your recommenders know that they need to upload a letter and that it is required by the program.
  • As soon as you click "save" on the page of the application where your recommenders' contact information is entered, they will receive an email with instructions for completing the process. Proceed to this point in the application process as soon as possible to trigger that email.
Step 8: Create a U-M Friend Account

Check on your application status. If you’ve been accepted, you will receive an email with information on how to send your official transcripts.

Step 9: Respond to admission offer

Quick Facts

GRE general exam required

Waivers available for applicants who have already completed a graduate degree.

Yes

Average GRE scores of applicants

There is no minimum GRE score; see below for additional information on holistic review.

Undergraduate GPA guideline

Applications are evaluated using a holistic process, which means that reviewers carefully consider all materials provided and no single factor is used in either accepting or denying an applicant for admission.

Financial aid available

Yes

Applications for part-time students

Yes

Online, evening, or weekend courses

No

Starting term

Fall term only

CONNECT WITH US

Contact

(734) 764-9470
 

Location

610 E. University Avenue
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-1259

Office Hours

Monday–Friday
8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.

Careers

Graduates of the Educational Leadership and Policy program alumni are successful changemakers who apply their skills in a variety of professional and academic settings. Some alumni impact student learning directly as instructional coaches and school leaders, while others develop vision and strategy as administrators in school districts and charter management organizations. Many of our graduates contribute to the education sector as entrepreneurs and nonprofit leaders or use data to influence decisionmakers as education policy analysts and researchers of educational policy, improvement, and leadership.

90%

of known graduates found full time employment in education

100%

of known graduates found employment within 6 months

$40–45K

average first year salary
Graduates typically go into these industries
  • Government
  • Higher Education
  • K–12 Education
  • Non-profits
  • Policy & Leadership
  • Teacher Education

 

Graduates often work as
  • College and Alumni Support
  • Consultant
  • Department Chair
  • Finance Director
  • Policy Analyst
  • Program Administrator, Director, Coordinator, or Specialist
  • Teacher or Coach

Internships

The Educational Leadership and Policy program requires an internship of at least 100 hours be completed during the winter semester accompanied by a two-credit seminar. There are vast opportunities available to students that connect them to organizations on campus, as well as local non-profits, and both formal and informal educational settings. Working teachers typically complete their internships at their place of employment. 
 

Examples of recent placements