Online MS in Educational Leadership & Administration

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The 39-credit Online MS in Educational Leadership and Administration degree program is designed for Christian educators who are interested in taking on a leadership role in their school or district.

The program can be completed in seven semesters if two courses are taken each semester; candidates who receive advance standing for Bible/theology courses can complete the program in six semesters as shown below. Online courses range in length from 7 weeks to 14 weeks. Courses with EDL or SPE prefixes each require 15-18 hours of field placement in a school setting.

Program Highlights

  • This program offers online coursework combined with extensive hands-on access to the life of PK-12 schools.
  • Extensive field work allows students to gain experience in data management, budget development, daily operating procedures, and human interactions. Students will be able to complete academic requirements while still attending to their professional responsibilities at their own school site.
  • Opportunities exist for advance standing:
    • At the discretion of the program advisor, three to six credits for prior learning (“CPL”) can be awarded for students with extensive backgrounds in areas addressed by specific courses.
    • Advance standing may be granted for Bible or theology credits earned at an accredited Bible college, Christian liberal arts college or university, or seminary. Credits will be granted on a course by course basis.
  • If all coursework required for Pennsylvania state certification is completed and the student passes the PRAXIS school leaders licensure assessment, the student is eligible to apply for the Principal PK–12 certification from the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE). If a student desires to obtain certification in a state other than PA, he/she is advised to check with that state’s Department of Education for specific details and reciprocity potential.
  • This program qualifies the candidate to apply for Pennsylvania (PK-12) and/or Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI) Principal (all levels) certification after fulfilling PA testing requirements. Additional certification program entry and exit requirements can be obtained by contacting Graduate Admissions.
MS in Educational Leadership and Administration


To enter the program, the candidate will:

To complete the program, the candidate will:

  • Successfully complete all required coursework with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0
  • Successfully complete the Action Research Project (EDL 791), a capstone project similar in scope to a Master’s Thesis. This school intervention project includes a minimum of 90 hours of on-site field experience.

For more information about the online MS in Educational Leadership & Administration degree program, contact Kristina O’Connell, Admissions Counselor, at

Learn about the time and technical requirements for Cairn University online programs.

Program Curriculum

Semester Course
Fall #1

EDL 741 Principalship PK-12
EDU 745 Organizational Theory and Team Building

Spring #1

EDU 703 Teaching Models and Instructional Strategies
EDU 712
Curriculum Theory, Design & Assessment

Summer #1

EDL 744 School Law
SPE 664 
Issues in Special Education for School Leaders

Fall #2

EDU 713 Educational Research 
EDU 717
Theoretical & Philosophical Foundations

Spring #2

EDL 742 Data Management and Technology Integration for School Leaders PK-12
EDL 743 Financial and Business Management

Summer #2

THE 601 Overview of Christian Theology
BIB 621 Biblical Integration for Educators

Fall #3

EDL 791 Action Research Project

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