Sep 23, 2023  
2023-2024 SGPP Catalog and Student Handbook 
2023-2024 SGPP Catalog and Student Handbook

Educational Leadership, M.A.

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Program Description

Meaningful and sustainable change is dependent upon strong leadership. The Master of Arts in Educational Leadership program at Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota is designed to prepare educational professionals to become effective leaders and administrators in organizational training and development, higher education, and/or K-12 education. This degree provides a strong foundation in leadership, management, and supervisory practice; educational strategies for learners of all ages; communication, creativity, and personal coaching skills; today’s diversity issues; and current trends in ethics and law. Students develop strategies for becoming effective change agents within an organization.

This degree opens career opportunities in

  1. higher education administration;
  2. administration in private, parochial, and charter schools;
  3. dean of students, administrative intern, team leader, or athletic director; and
  4. organizational trainers and developers or chief learning officers.

Program Outcomes

Graduates of the Master of Arts in Educational Leadership are expected to be able to do the following:

  1. Innovative Leadership: Provide educational leadership through the use of leadership principles and technology applicable to educational organizations.
  2. Communication and Collaboration: Communicate effectively to facilitate professional learning communities.
  3. Curriculum and Instruction: Evaluate and design curriculum and instruction to ensure and enhance the growth of all learners, especially adults.
  4. Today’s Diversity: Foster cultural competency by leveraging diversity to ensure growth of the educational organization.
  5. Management: Manage a safe and effective learning environment utilizing creative supervisory principles and research-based management styles.
  6. The Ethical Leader and the Law: Embrace ethical values to act with responsibility and accountability.
  7. Assessment: Assess educational effectiveness by utilizing data-driven practices and technological strategies.
  8. Educational Research: Examine ways to improve education through quality data collection and analysis.
  9. Developing Self and Others: Empower and nurture employees through effective staff development principles and adult learning theories.

Program Structure and Delivery

The Master of Arts in Educational Leadership program consists of 33 semester credits. Students may transfer up to six graduate semester credits from regionally accredited institutions of higher education if the credits were earned during the 5 years before admission, are administrative in nature, have been approved by the program director and the dean, and have not been used as part of another degree program. After acceptance into the program, all subsequent courses must be taken from Saint Mary’s University.

Prior to graduation, each student is required to complete an action research study, write a summary paper of the research, and provide a presentation of the study. The action research project provides students an opportunity to substantiate their academic work and demonstrate how they have integrated their coursework into their professional life.

Courses in the program are delivered fully online.

Degree Requirements

Administration, Coaching, and Team Building 24 cr.
Process of Change 9 cr.
Total 33 cr.


The faculty members for this program have earned doctorate or master’s degrees. Faculty are selected for their combination of educational and professional experience and expertise.

Admission Requirements

Applicants may apply for admission to master’s degree programs at any time during the year. Applicants must have completed an undergraduate degree from a regionally accredited institution and maintained an overall grade point average of 2.75 on a 4.00 scale. Applicants must demonstrate the language proficiency necessary for successful graduate coursework. Applicants may complete an interview with a program administrator as part of the admission process.

Application Process

Applicants must submit the following:

  1. Completed application form with the nonrefundable application fee (fee not required for alumni or students seeking readmission or veterans and active military personnel), and
  2. An official transcript(s) issued to Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota from the institution posting the applicant’s completed bachelor degree and other relevant transcripts documenting program prerequisites and potential transfer credits. (An official transcript is one that is sent to the university by the credit-granting institution. Transcripts from countries other than the U.S. must be evaluated on a course by course basis by a university accepted evaluation service, such as World Education Services, Educational Credential Evaluators, Educational Perspectives, or One Earth International Credential Evaluators and be deemed equivalent to accredited U.S. university standards).  Evaluations from an approved member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services ( will also be accepted.
  3. A reflective essay which includes the following:
    1. brief description of the applicant’s background, training, and experience; and
    2. statement indicating the career goals of the applicant and their reasons for seeking admission to the program; and
    3. description of the areas the applicant considers to be their strengths and areas in which the applicant wishes to develop greater strengths and abilities; and
    4. personal information the applicant wishes to share.
  4. Letter(s) of recommendation that verify professional and/or volunteer experience and academic ability; and
  5. A current résumé listing educational background and work experience.
  6. Applicants with international transcripts may require an English language proficiency exam (TOEFL, IELTS, PTE or MELAB accepted.)

Please Note: Application materials should be sent to the attention of the Office of Admission on the Twin Cities Campus.

Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota
Office of Admission
2500 Park Ave S
Minneapolis, MN  55404

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