It is important to consider the qualities of a good online educational leadership degree program because this degree should lead to state licensure and employment. Below introduces some of the most important qualities and benefits that online educational degrees should offer students.
The Right Admissions Standards
Accredited degree programs will expect an application to include things like short essay questions and statements of purpose. A resume may be required to prove the candidates have the required professional experience, such as two to three years of direct contact with staff or students. At least one to two letters of recommendation should be required from a previous work supervisor or academic leader. Most educational leadership degree programs require GRE, GMAT or standardized test scores for graduate-level programs. Some graduate programs may require students to have a bachelor’s degree in a related field, such as education, psychology or management.
The Right Program Objectives
Educational leadership programs will help students develop skills in designing and implementing school programs, curriculum and instructional initiatives. Students should be exposed to current educational research and technology trends. These degree programs should prepare students to be able to assess teachers, classrooms and school environments in order to make appropriate recommendations for improvement. Students should be ready to provide the kind of leadership that encourages academic excellence from students and professional excellence from teachers. This is accomplished through effective mentoring and coaching. Graduates should know how to provide district-wide leadership that equally supports staff, students, teachers, parents and communities.
The Right Curriculum
The curriculum of educational leadership degree programs should focus on developing the right core competencies. This should include the leadership skills needed to evaluate academic systems, teaching processes and continuous improvement programs. It should also include content that teaches students how to advocate for staff and students while protecting the interests of the school and community. Classes should teach students how to integrate personal strengths with current best practices and legal standards. For example, a class on ethical leadership may study management models, vocational standards, leadership values and common inaccurate assumptions. Students may be challenged to identify and consider their own character, personal values and ethical biases. Other classes may include topics like educational research, community partnerships, student achievement and teacher development.
The Right Accreditation
Degree programs should be regionally accredited by one of the six regional accrediting bodies. This should result in accreditation through the Higher Learning Commission and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). State-level recognition may be through the Department of Education. One of the most important private accrediting bodies for educational degrees is the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), which is accredited by the Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. Other notable national organizations include the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC) and the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).
A good online educational leadership degree program will result in students being self-aware and self-confident. Graduates should be assertive about the decisions they make and have the ability to use research and logic to defend their actions.