Press Release: MS in Education Leadership Offered

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News Brief - 1/22/08

Master of Science in Educational Leadership Offered by Western Governors University

Unique Degree Program Leading to Licensure as School Principals

SALT LAKE CITY -- Western Governors University (www.wgu.edu) is now offering a new and unique degree program, the Master of Science in Educational Leadership. This program becomes available as the nation begins to experience a shortage in qualified principals because a large number of principals are planning to retire in the next ten years. This program presents excellent opportunities for current teachers. The M.S. Educational Leadership program at WGU is aimed at those already-licensed and working teachers who want to become both administrators and instructional leaders as school principals. Those who are not licensed teachers but have extensive administrative experience may be admitted to the program depending upon specific state requirements.

This degree program is unique for several reasons. WGU's M.S. Educational Leadership program provides the only two-year, (four six-month terms) accelerated program that is competency-based. While program pace is ultimately determined by the individual student, the program is designed to be completed in two years.

The program prepares teachers to qualify as highly effective, instruction-focused, certified principals by integrating an "on-the-job" case-study approach that will enable prospective principals to design and implement standards-based educational improvement plans. The case-study approach will use the WGU student's own school as a case study for three terms. The final term, a full 450-hour applied principal internship, will include an interactive WGU capstone project in which the WGU student will propose and implement a school outcome plan, in cooperation with their case-study school. Students will engage in a series of administrative and leadership activities employing various forms of technology, including PDAs and wireless internet for data collection and analysis.

The entire M.S. Educational Leadership program is based on Baldrige Education Criteria for Performance Excellence; that criteria is infused into the coursework to make sure that principals, as instructional leaders, will have clearly defined goals in their career settings. This knowledge should greatly assist principals and their schools in showing the yearly progress and school improvement required for performance measures such as No Child Left Behind regulations.

Tuition for the program is very affordable at $2,790 per 6-month term or just $5,580 per year — less than half of what many other reputable for-profit online and traditional universities charge. There is an additional $1,000 Practicum Fee for the fourth term, to cover expense associated with the in-school practicum. For more information, go to: www.wgu.edu/edleadership