Why Get a Degree in Education Leadership

All careers in education can benefit from a degree in educational leadership. This degree provides the training and understanding about not only how to teach and instruct, but how to guide others along the path to the goals of the institution. Those with a degree in educational leadership are typically employed in administrative positions and have a key role in leading their respective schools. They can work on a variety of levels, from elementary school through post-secondary school as well as in a variety of specialty schools such as boarding schools or athletics departments within their institutions.

Education Requirements

Degrees in educational leadership are typically offered as master degrees. This means the student must already possess a bachelor degree. To obtain the bachelor degree, the student must have a high school diploma and have a solid load of coursework that includes three to four years of the core subject areas. It is a good idea for the bachelor’s degree to be related to the type of educational environment that the student would like to work in, such as elementary education, secondary education, or post secondary education.

Many institutions offer educational leadership degrees as a part of a specific concentration depending on the specific type of educational environment the student is interested in. This concentration will greatly affect the types of courses they will take. Some common courses include subjects such as school finances, organizational planning and strategy, adult learning, student affairs, professional development, leadership, and community relations. It is also common to have required internships and research activities during the course work to help prepare the students for their futures within the industry. The courses are carefully designed to enhance problem solving, communication, and organizational skills for their careers. Once the degree is complete, it is also common for states to require educational leaders to be licensed by the state. To keep these licenses current, the educators must also complete continuing education credits throughout their career.

Career Options: What you can do with a degree in educational leadership

There are a variety of options available for those interested in educational leadership. It is common for those who pursue the degree to enter administrative roles within education. Common positions include principals, assistant principals, curriculum specialists, directors, supervisors, college provosts, dean of students, dean of faculty, university registrar, district administrators, and more. Athletic directors and related leaders of sub-specialties also tend to carry these advanced degrees. These various positions all play key roles in guiding educators and students to academic success, enforcing discipline, and keeping the school organized and running smoothly. They have not only a mind for academics, but also for the business side of education.

What to consider if you pursue a degree in educational leadership

There are a wide variety of occupations available for those interested in educational leadership, and each profession will have a slightly different salary average and projected job outlook. Here is an overview of the most common professions that are chosen for those on this career path.

Principals in elementary, middle, and high schools have a projected job growth of 10 percent, which matches the average of all careers across the nation. This is projected because of expected increases in student enrollments, although this will vary greatly by region. The enrollment is going to grow fastest in the southern and western portions of the country, remain steady in the Midwest, and decline in the northeast. It is expected that the need for principals will reflect the local growth. The median annual wage for principals across the country is $86,970, though this will be heavily dependent on local budgets.

Curriculum specialists or instructional coordinators are expected to have a job outlook of about 20 percent over the coming years, which is higher than the average for all occupations. Schools are placing greater emphasis on teacher effectiveness and holding teachers accountable for student performance. These factors mean that districts will be hiring curriculum specialists to improve standards. They have a median annual wage of $58,830, though this is again heavily dependent upon local budgets.

Post-secondary education administrators have a projected job growth rate of nineteen percent in the coming years because of expected growth in university enrollment. People are seeking higher education to help them improve their job prospects, and as enrollment increases more administrators will be needed. The median average salary for this position is $83,710.

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