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Educational Leadership & Policy Analysis

About ELPA's Graduate Programs

The graduate programs in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis are designed to meet the specific educational needs of the student in a particular area of emphasis. Graduates find employment in a wide range of settings including colleges and universities, public schools, policy agencies, professional associations, government and business and industry.

The PhD Program in ELPA requires a minimum of 60 hours beyond the master’s degree. The goal of the PhD program is the preparation of professional researchers and scholars who have high levels of competence in conducting research that adds to the knowledge base.

The program also has a goal of meeting the student’s individual career goals and interests through the development of an appropriate plan of study. Each emphasis area has slightly different requirements and areas of focus; however, all 3 emphasis areas require a department-wide core; emphasis area coursework; electives; a research core; and the completion of a minimum of 6 hours for the dissertation.

The Statewide Cooperative EdD Program in Educational Leadership is designed to enhance the knowledge and competencies of educational leaders so they provide optimal leadership in organizations that educate a wide range of learners from youth to adult. The program’s curriculum is designed to prepare leaders who are inquiring, reflective practitioners who are competent in defining and solving complex problems in education.

The Educational Specialist (EdSp) Program is designed to enhance the knowledge and competencies of PK-12 educational administrators and to lead to advanced principal certification and/or superintendent certification. The program has a thematic, integrated, problem-based curriculum intended to prepare school and district leaders who are inquiring, reflective practitioners. The curriculum is aligned with state standards for certification.

The department’s master’s programs are intended to provide initial preparation for leaders in a variety of educational contexts, including higher education and PK-12 schools. Programs vary according to emphasis area and are designed to meet student’s individual career goals and interests — e.g., student affairs administration, initial principal certification, and general higher education administration.

A minimum of 33 credit hours is required for the M Ed or MA in Higher Education and a minimum of 30 hours is required for the M Ed in PK-12 Educational Leadership and Administration.

Satisfactory Rate of Progress
All ELPA students are expected to make satisfactory progress toward their degrees. Satisfactory progress of students will be determined through an annual review by the director of graduate studies, graduate students’ academic advisers and their committees. Judgments about satisfactory progress will involve consideration of the following:

  • Graduate School time limits for programs
  • GPA for departmental courses
  • Continuous enrollment and active engagement in course work or research (EdD and PhD)
  • Student performance in research credits
  • Timely resolution of incomplete grades

Degrees Offered

MA in ELPA with emphasis area in:

  • Higher Education

MEd in ELPA with emphasis areas in:

  • Higher Education
  • PK-12 Educational Leadership and Administration, Elementary and Secondary Principal, Certification

EdSp in ELPA with emphasis areas in:

  • PK-12 Educational Leadership and Administration, Elementary Principal, Certification
  • PK-12 Educational Leadership and Administration, Secondary Principal, Certification
  • PK-12 Educational Leadership and Administration, Elementary and Secondary Principal, Certification
  • PK-12 Educational Leadership and Administration, Superintendent, Certification
  • PK-12 Educational Leadership and Administration, Elementary Principal and Superintendent, Certification
  • PK-12 Educational Leadership and Administration, Secondary Principal and Superintendent, Certification
  • PK-12 Educational Leadership and Administration, Elementary and Secondary Principal and Superintendent, Certification

EdD in Educational Leadership

PhD in ELPA with emphasis areas in:

  • Educational Administration
  • Educational Policy Studies
  • Higher Education

Graduate Certificates

Contact Information

College of Education
202 Hill Hall
Columbia, MO 65211
573-882-8221
573-884-5714 (fax)
Educational Leadership & Policy Analysis website