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M.Ed. Degree with a Major in Educational Leadership

  • Total Credit Hours: 30
  • Degree Format: Online

About this field

The Educational Leadership Master’s Degree Program is a comprehensive program of study including course work and related field experiences leading to a Tier I Georgia certificate in Educational Leadership.  The candidate will undertake activities addressing curriculum development, student and program evaluation, staff development, scheduling, interpretation and use of statistical data for school improvement planning, budgeting procedures, school/community relations, facility maintenance and operations, and the uses of technology for administrative and instructional purposes

The Valdosta State Difference

Through the combination of course work and field experiences, candidates will be able to develop the necessary competencies to become an entry-level leader.  The primary goal of the Internship Experience in the Master’s Degree or Certification-Only (Tier 1) Educational Leadership program is to link the theoretical and philosophical frameworks of educational leadership to actual practice.  This is accomplished with field experiences included as a part of the candidate’s program of study and documented through the candidate’s Inventory of Leadership Experience (ILE).

What You'll Learn

The goal is to develop the candidate’s leadership and management abilities by engaging in problem analysis, collecting relevant data, collaborative problem-solving, participating in curricular and instructional activities, and participating in instructional supervision

Admissions Requirements

To be considered for admission the applicant must:

Have a bachelor’s degree or higher from a regionally accredited college or university.  

Have a cumulative undergraduate or graduate grade point average of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale calculated on all work attempted in which letter grades are awarded.  Verification is required in the form of official transcripts.  Applicants having a cumulative grade point average between 2.5 and 2.99 on a 4.0 scale for an undergraduate degree, or a cumulative grade point average between 2.75 and 2.99 on a 4.0 scale for a graduate degree, must submit an acceptable Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or Miller’s Analogy Test (MAT) score.  Recommended scores for admission are:

  • GRE - 145 Verbal and 139 Quantitative   
  • MAT - 380 

Complete the Georgia Ethics for Educational Leadership Assessment (Program Entry Test 370).  A copy of a Certificate of Completion should be submitted with the application packet.

Submit a career goal statement serving as a writing sample.  The statement must demonstrate 1) the ability to organize and articulate thoughts, 2) writing skills including grammar and punctuation, and 3) the ability to set goals consistent with one’s desired career path.  The statement must address the applicant’s career goals, how the degree contributes to reaching these career goals, and why VSU was selected for this graduate work.  This career goal statement should be no more than 250 words and is to be submitted to the Graduate School with the other application materials. 

Provide evidence of a passing score on the GACE Program Admission Assessment or GACE Basic Skills assessment is to be provided.  NOTE:  Professionally certified educators (valid or expired) are not required to meet the Program Admission Assessment requirement to enroll for the purpose of adding a new field of certification.  Applicants may submit a copy of the official score report meeting the following thresholds on the following exams as documentation of a GACE Program Admission Assessment exemption for state certification requirements:

  • GRE taken before August 2011: 1030 (Verbal + Quantitative)
  • GRE taken August 2011 or later: 297 (Verbal + Quantitative)
  • SAT: 1000 (Verbal + Quantitative)
  • ACT: 43 (English + Math)
  • SAT and ACT scores may be documented by an official high school transcript, official college transcript with scores posted, or a score report from the testing service.

Be employed with a system/agency having an active partnership with Valdosta State University to supervise a residency experience for the candidate. Click here for a roster of partnerships.

Program of Study

Area A: Leadership - 12 hours

Course Number & Title Credit Hours
LEAD 7310 Leadership for Community & Public Relations 3
LEAD 7420 Ethical & Legal Issues for Leadership 3
LEAD 8030 School Culture, Change & Organizational Dynamics 3
LEAD 8240  Managing Resources for School Improvement 3

Area B:  Curriculum & Instruction - 12 hours

The faculty advisor will collaborate with candidate and school system partners to identify an appropriate elective.

Course Number & Title Credit Hours
RSCH 8000  Advanced Research Methodology 3
CIED 7060  Curriculum, Instruction & Technology Integration 3
LEAD 7120 Instructional Leadership & Supervisory Practices for Improved Teaching & Learning 3
LEAD 7130  Technology Leadership for School Improvement 3

Area C: Field Based Activities - 6 hours

Field-based activities must be conducted at either the building or system level. The two tracks are differentiated by the performance component—the level at which the residency is completed.

Course Number & Title Credit Hours
LEAD 7920 Leadership Field-Based Experiences II 3
LEAD 7930  Leadership Field-Based Experiences III 3


  1. Provide candidates with the opportunity to acquire practical experience in school leadership;
  2. Allow for the linkage of theory and practice for the candidates, staff, and practitioners;
  3. Provide integrating experiences for candidates in problem resolution and decision-making and selected aspects of educational leadership
  4. Allow the candidate to experiment with new ideas, approaches, and strategies in a low-risk, supportive environment;
  5. Provide candidates a basis for assessing their professional strengths and their needs for further development; and,
  6. Enable the university to evaluate its leadership preparation programs through clinical applications.


A VSU Leadership Advisor and a Leadership Mentor (chosen by the system or the candidate) are assigned to follow the candidate through the entire program.  The role of the Leadership Mentor is to assist in the formative and summative evaluation of the candidate’s performance through continuous feedback, coaching, and a support structure to facilitate the development of the candidate’s leadership skills.  The trained Leadership Mentor, who will be a school principal or other appropriate educational leader at the school site, assumes direct responsibility for supervising the activities of the candidate in conjunction with the VSU Leadership Advisor.

Both the VSU Educational Leadership program and school system shall provide clearly defined expectations for mentors to be addressed during mentor orientation.  In agreeing to serve in this capacity, The Leadership Mentor commits to completing the VSU Online Mentor Training module.  Upon completion of the training module, mentors should print the Certificate of Completion and provide copies to the respective candidate and VSU Educational Leadership program coordinator.

  • 229.333.5633
  • 229.259.5094
  • Curriculum, Leadership, and Technology Building
    Second Floor
    1310 N. Patterson St.
    Valdosta, GA 31698