The 25 Best Master’s in Educational Leadership Online for 2019

Best College Reviews - Editors Choice - Top Online Master's Degrees-01By BCR Staff
October 2018

Educational leadership qualifies individuals for senior administrative level roles in the sector. It involves the collaboration of educators, administrators and public policy makers with parents, students, and other stakeholders. The main focus of this role is to ensure the academic success of each student and the district as a whole. They do this by working with teachers to improve educational processes in elementary, secondary and postsecondary institutions through process, material and training improvements. There is immense potential in this field. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, jobs in this sector will increase by 6% through 2025.

Graduates with a master’s degree in educational leadership gain employment for various administrative and teaching positions at K-12, postsecondary and graduate schools. After gathering some experience, they go on to be employed as school principals, administrators, department chair or academic dean. Demand for an online master’s degree in educational leadership has grown exponentially in the sector which is continually looking for a talented resource. The online format is also popular because of the ease and flexibility which allows busy teachers to gain an advanced degree while they continue to work as full or part-time teachers.

In this article, we shall look at the top 25 colleges which offer a comprehensive curriculum for a master’s degree in educational leadership online or related degree programs.

If you are looking for more general information on online learning visit our ranking of the best colleges online.

Featured Online Masters Programs in Educational Leadership

Methodology:

Tuition Points:

  • Under $25,000—1 point
  • Under $20,000—2 points
  • Under $15,000—3 points
  • Under $10,000—4 points

US News and World Report Recognition

  • Top 10— 4 points
  • Top 25 —3 points
  • Top 50 —2 points
  • Top 75 —1 point

Customization Options

  • Format Customizations (e.g., Hybrid/Online, Full-time/Part-time, Accelerated, Degree Completion, etc.)—1 Point Per Customization Option
  • Content Customizations (e.g., Minors, Concentrations, Specializations, etc.)—1 Point Per Customization Option (5-point cap)Wow Factor
  • 1 point awarded for each unique feature or program that “wowed” us

    #25 University of West Florida

    Pensacola, Florida

    Online Master’s in Educational Leadership

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    Points: 8

    The University of West Florida offers an online master’s in educational leadership that prepares students to shape the future of education and their institutions. The flexible, affordable program is delivered 100% online and is taught by the same professors who instruct on campus. The 33 credit program includes courses like data-driven decisions using standardized student achievement data, introduction to educational leadership, leadership in education-school improvement theory and practice, foundations of measurement, and principles of curriculum development. The course can be completed in 18 months, or students can opt for the 8-week accelerated format to finish sooner.
    Tuition:$12691.8

    #24 Montclair State University

    Montclair, New Jersey

    Online Master’s in Educational Leadership

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    Points: 8

    Montclair State University offers a master’s degree in educational leadership online that prepares students to become effective leaders in the educational space. The 100% online is flexible and affordable and can be completed in two years without the student having to take multiple courses simultaneously. The 36-credit program offers multiple specializations, certifications, and has the option of an accelerates progress toward a degree. The program includes courses like effective leadership in a diverse society, education law, leadership, and the learning organization, school and community relations, ethical leadership and decision making, and theory and research in administration. Montclair State is ranked as the 176th best national university by the U.S. News and World Report in the country. Its online graduate education programs are ranked #47.
    Tuition:$21,900

    #23 University of South Dakota

    Vermillion, South Dakota

    Online Master’s in Educational Leadership and Administration

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    Points: 9
    University of South Dakota
    The University of South Dakota offers a masters’ degree in Educational Leadership and Administration online that is designed for educators who wish to go back to school and gain leadership experience. Students are challenged to explore core themes and content and gain exposure to professional and academic objectives in various education settings through 32 credit hours. The 100% online program is known to be flexible and affordable with highly accessible faculty and advisors which makes it one of the top school administration programs in this space. Students have the option to tailor their degree per their niche interests by choosing concentrations like the adult and higher education, pre-K through 12 principal or school district superintendent. The University of South Dakota ranks high as one of the top national universities, and its online graduate education programs have earned recognition.
    Tuition:$14,428.8

    #22 Indiana State University

    Terre Haute, Indiana

    Online Master’s in School Administration and Supervision

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    Points: 9

    Indiana State University offers a Master’s in School Administration and Supervision degree online that offers existing teachers a unique opportunity to train as senior administrators. The 33-credit hour program includes courses like foundations of educational leadership, legal aspects of educational administration, leadership for learning – curriculum and instruction, school and community collaboration for effective schools, along with the school principal-leadership for changing schools. The affordable and flexible program is only available to Indiana residents and can be completed in two years. The same faculty teaches courses as the on-campus program. The university ranks high as one of the top national universities, and its online graduate education programs are ranked #113.
    Tuition:$13,596

    #21 University of Cincinnati

    Cincinnati, Ohio

    Online Master’s in Educational Leadership

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    Points: 9

    The University of Cincinnati offers an educational leadership master’s online that prepares experienced school professionals to become future leaders in education. The 30-credit program includes courses like educational leadership theory, curriculum development and data analysis, instructional supervision, school finance, human resources administration in education, and school law. The 100% online program is taught by the same professors who instruct on campus. Students need to complete an internship as a part of the curriculum. The university is ranked by U.S. News and World Report as the 135th best national university. Its online graduate education programs are ranked #43.
    Tuition:$21,870

    #20 Kansas State University

    Manhattan, Kansas

    Online Master’s in Educational Leadership

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    Points: 9
    Kansas State University
    Kansas State University offers an educational leadership degree online that is designed to prepare students with the foundation they need for leadership roles in the professions and also to enroll in a doctoral program. The 30-credit program includes courses like administrative leadership in curriculum, ethical dimensions of educational leadership, educational human resources administration, historical and philosophical analysis of leadership in education, and school-community relations. The accredited and affordable program has online and even hybrid style options via face-to-face sessions and web-based components. Kansas State ranks high as one of the top national universities, and its online graduate education programs are ranked #61.
    Tuition:$17,037

    #19 Arizona State University

    Tempe, Arizona

    Online Master’s in Educational Leadership

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    Points: 9

    Arizona State University offers an educational leadership master’s degree online that is considered as one of the top-ranking in the country. The 100% online program helps students develop the skills they need as aspiring principals and administrators to manage, engage, and strengthen their school communities. It also prepares them to meet Arizona teaching and licensure standards. The 36-hour credit program includes courses like competency and performance in educational administration, school finance and human resources, instructional supervision, critical issues in educational leadership, leadership in curriculum and assessment, and school law. The rigor and faculty of the program are the same as the on-campus version. Students need to complete an applied project and internship as well. Arizona State is ranked 129th best national university by the U.S. News and World Report. Its online graduate education programs are ranked #40.
    Tuition:$26,208

    #18 Southern New Hampshire University

    Manchester, New Hampshire

    Online Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction in Education Leadership

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    Points: 9

    Southern New Hampshire University an educational leadership master’s degree online that is designed for licensed teachers seeking endorsement as educational leaders. The ranked and accredited program is highly affordable and requires no GMAT or GRE scores for admission. The 36-credit program includes courses like school facilities and finance, curriculum development, school and community relations, learning through technology, and school organizational leadership. Southern New Hampshire University is recognized by U.S. News as the #1 most innovative institution and ranked as the 101st best regional university in the North. The university is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.
    Tuition:$22,572

    #17 Ball State University

    Muncie, Indiana

    Online Master’s in Educational Administration and Supervision

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    Points: 10
    ball-state-university
    Ball State University offers an online master’s in Educational Administration and Supervision that is designed to prepare educators for future school leaders. The 36-hour degree program includes courses like introduction to educational leadership, educational decision making, human resource development, the methodology of educational and psychological research, educational finance and ethics, and the school principal. Noted as one of the most affordable graduate programs in this space, it can be completed in just 18-20 months. The 100% online program is taught by the same university professors teaching on campus. Ball State ranks high as one of the top national universities, and its online graduate education programs are ranked #16.
    Tuition:$14,760

    #16 University of Arkansas

    Fayetteville, Arkansas

    Online Master’s in Educational Leadership

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    Points: 10

    The University of Arkansas offers an educational leadership master’s degree online that prepares current educators to become future leaders in the space. The 33-credit hour program includes courses like effective leadership for school improvement, analytical decision making, ethical leadership, school law, instructional leadership and planning/supervision, school principalship, school organization, and administration. The 100% online course may be completed in two years and is taught by the same instructors who teach on campus. The University of Arkansas is ranked as the 135th best national university by the U.S. News and World Report and its online graduate education programs are ranked #47.
    Tuition:$13866.26

    #15 University of Massachusetts

    Lowell, Massachusetts

    Online Master’s in Educational Administration

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    Points: 10

    The University of Massachusetts offers a Master’s in Educational Administration online which is considered to be one of the top programs in the field and admission is highly competitive. The 30-credit program includes courses like managing resources and finances, school policy and the law, program evaluation, principles of supervision, and leading the professional learning community. The 100% online program is designed to equip experienced educators to deepen their knowledge in administration and become future leaders. All courses are taught by the same faculty as the on-campus program. The university is ranked high by the U.S. News and World Report along with its graduate education programs, rank #16.
    Tuition:$17,100

    #14 Iowa State University

    Ames, Iowa

    Online Master’s in Education Leadership with Principal Licensure

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    Points: 10

    Iowa State University offers a master’s in educational leadership degree online that is designed to prepare mid-career faculty, other educational staff to be administrators for advanced administration roles in community colleges. The 36-credit program includes courses that focus on the growth of skills and knowledge in assessment and research, equity, student development, diversity, and inclusion, along with administrative leadership. Students can choose from concentrations like Community college leadership, Intercollegiate athletic leadership/administration, and Higher education administration. The 100% online program is taught by the same university professors who teach on campus. Iowa State ranks high as one of the top national universities, and its online graduate education programs are ranked #163.
    Tuition:$18,612

    #13 University of Iowa

    Iowa City, Indiana

    Online Master’s in Educational Leadership

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    Points: 10
    The University of Iowa
    The University of Iowa offers an educational leadership master’s degree online that prepares students to excel as principals, senior administrators, and supervisors in educational settings. The 36-credit program includes courses like contemporary management strategies for the K-12 principal, research for effective school leaders, administration of students with special needs, legal aspect of school personnel, and supervision and evaluation. The comprehensive program is affordable and known as one of the best training offered in the space. The master’s degree also provides optional principal licensure which includes clinical coursework. The faculty consists of university professors with relevant experience in the field. The University of Iowa ranks high as one of the top national universities, and its online graduate education programs are ranked #16.
    Tuition:$20,160

    #12 Northeastern University

    Boston, Massachusetts

    Online Master’s in Higher Education Administration

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    Points: 10

    Northeastern University offers an online master’s in school administration that helps teachers and educators gain the necessary knowledge for higher education leadership roles. The 30-credit program includes courses like education law and finance, the landscape of higher education, globalization of education, the demographics of higher education and advanced education. The 100% online program is accredited and ranked 39th best national university and 7th most innovative school by the U.S. News and World Report. Students can choose from several electives to tailor the degree per their interests and become proficient in their niche. The program requires no application fee or GRE test scores.
    Tuition:$31,400

    #11 Liberty University

    Lynchburg, Virginia

    Online Master of Education in Administration and Supervision

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    Points: 11

    Liberty University offers a Master of Education in Administration and Supervision degree online that is designed to prepare educators for effective leadership roles in K-12 schools and colleges. The 36-credit hour program includes courses like foundations for educational leaders, curriculum development, foundations for exceptionality, principles of behavior management, learning theory, and school finance and management. The 100% online program also requires an internship before completion and provides students with specialized preparation for senior-level K-12 positions and to become Specialists or Doctorates of Education. Liberty Online University is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education Standards. The university ranks high as one of the top national universities, and its online graduate programs are ranked #174 by U.S. News.
    Tuition:$14,940

    #10 Minnesota State University

    Mankato, Minnesota

    Online Master’s in Educational Leadership

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    Points: 11
    Minnesota State University '
    The Minnesota State University offers an online degree in educational leadership that prepare students to take on effective leadership roles in K-12 schools and college settings. The 34-credit hour program includes courses like leadership studies, equity and education, organizational and systems change, multicultural leadership, and women in leadership. Students can also opt for the hybrid instructional model that has conveniently scheduled courses for Saturdays and weeknights. Students can take their time or opt for an accelerated format to complete the course in a shorter time. Minnesota State is ranked as the 103rd best regional university in the Midwest and 29th top public school by the U.S. News and World Report.
    Tuition:$13,222.6

    #9 Indiana University

    Bloomington, Indiana

    Online Master’s in Educational Leadership

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    Points: 11

    Indiana University offers a master’s in educational leadership degree online that prepares students to take on leadership roles in educational organizations, schools, and districts. The 36-credit program includes courses like educational leadership principalship K-12, data-informed decision making for school leaders, legal perspectives on education, public school budgeting and accounting, introduction to educational leadership, and school community relations. The 100% online program is flexible and affordable and comes with concentrations that train students for real-world administrative experiences. The university is ranked as the 86th best national university by the U.S. News and World Report and its online graduate education programs are ranked #22.
    Tuition:$17939.16

    #8 University of New England

    Biddeford, Maine

    Online Master’s in Educational Leadership

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    Points: 11

    The University of New England offers an online master’s in educational leadership that allows busy K-12 teachers to get an advanced degree while they are working. The 30-credit program provides a comprehensive curriculum that prepares them for senior-level jobs in school administration. Courses include organizational theory and strategic planning, school law, school finance, supervision and evaluation of instructional personnel along with the fundamentals of educational leadership. The expert faculty is the same as the on-campus program as is the rigor of the curriculum.
    Tuition:$16,800

    #7 Concordia University

    Portland, Oregon

    Online Master of Education in Educational Leadership

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    Points: 11

    Concordia University offers a master’s degree in educational leadership online that is designed for future leaders in education, both in the K-12 and the higher education spaces. The 34-credit program includes courses like Character and the Ethics of Leadership, Theories of Teaching and Learning, Community of Learners, Contemporary Educational Thought, School and Community Partnerships, Case Studies in Law and Ethics, Strategies for Enhancing Student Achievement, Organizational Change. Students need to complete research-based capstone projects to get their degrees. The 100% online course is taught by an expert faculty and combines theories with best practices to prepares students for their career in senior administration.
    Tuition:$23,698

    #6 Florida State University

    Tallahassee, Florida

    Online Master’s in Educational Leadership and Administration

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    Points: 12
    Florida-State-University
    Florida State University offers an accredited online master’s in school administration program that prepares education professionals to gain advanced knowledge and progress in their careers. The 100% online master’s program helps them provide leadership for future teaching and learning. The 33-credit program includes courses like leadership for diversity, data-driven school improvement, resource management for educational leaders, planning effective instruction, and teacher leadership development. Florida State is ranked 92nd best national university by the U.S. News and World Report and its online graduate education programs are ranked #3. The university is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges (SACS), and the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE.)
    Tuition:$15817.56

    #5 University of Florida

    Gainesville, Florida

    Online Master’s in Educational Leadership

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    Points: 12
    University of Florida Top Online Bachelor's in Sports Management
    The University of Florida offers an online master’s in educational leadership degree program that is designed for educators and teachers who want to gain more knowledge and experience to become leaders in their professions. The 36-credit program includes courses like educational organization and administration, communication in educational leadership, supervised practice in educational administration, administration of school personnel, and technology leadership. The 100% online program is taught by experienced principals and superintendents along with their nationally recognized faculty. Students have the option of the Florida principal certification track and the Doctoral Degree in Leadership in Educational Administration (LEAD) for high-achieving students. The university is ranked 48 out of 201 universities by the U.S. News and World Report and its online graduate education programs are ranked #1 in the nation.
    Tuition:$26,424

    #4 Louisiana State University

    Shreveport, Louisiana

    Online Master’s in Educational Leadership

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    Points: 13

    Louisiana State University offers an online master’s in educational leadership program that is designed for working teachers and educators. The flexible program can be completed in as little as 15 months. Students can also opt for an accelerated format to complete the course in a shorter time. The 13-course program includes topics like introduction to school improvement, administration of school personnel, best practices of principal leadership, advanced school improvement and action research, and understanding and applying research in education. The courses are taught by nationally recognized faculty, and each run seven weeks in length. The university ranks high as one of the top national universities, and its online graduate education programs have earned recognition.
    Tuition:$11,374

    #3 Saint Leo University

    Saint Leo, Florida

    Online Master’s in Educational Leadership

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    Points: 14

    Saint Leo University offers a master’s in educational leadership degree online that prepares existing teachers to assume leadership roles in public and private educational settings. The 100% online program is one of the most affordable and boasts of a comprehensive curriculum. The 36-credit program includes courses like building school and community relations, decision making for instructional leadership, data-driven instructional decisions, leadership in a learning culture, school management, leading curriculum for special populations, and values and ethics in educational leadership. The faculty consists of university professors with years of experience in the field. The University of Iowa is ranked as the 62nd best regional university in the South and the 26th best value school by the U.S. News and World Report, and its online graduate education programs are ranked #149.
    Tuition:$17,820

    #2 West Texas A&M University

    Canyon, Texas

    Online Master’s in Educational Leadership

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    Points: 15

    West Texas A&M University offers an online master’s in educational leadership program that is designed for working teachers who want to become principal or superintendent in the future. The 30-credit program includes courses like introduction to educational leadership, educational leadership and technology, educational law, instructional leadership development and teacher evaluation, multicultural education, along with school business management and finance. The 100% online and flexible curriculum is taught by the same professors who instruct on campus. West Texas A&M is ranked s a top public school and best regional university in the Westby U.S. News and World Report.
    Tuition:$13,950

    #1 Penn State World Campus

    University Park, Pennsylvania

    Online Master’s in Educational Leadership

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    Points: 16
    Penn State World Campus
    Penn State World Campus-Pennsylvania State University offers an online master’s in educational leadership program that equips educators and teachers to become the future school leaders. The 30-credit program includes courses like introduction to educational leadership, curriculum design theory and practice, leadership for inclusive education, school improvement, principles of instructional supervision, and application of technology in educational leadership. Students need to complete an internship at the end of the program. The 100% online program is taught by the same faculty as the on-campus program.
    Tuition:$26,580

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