As an educational administrator, it will be your job to make sure every aspect of a school runs smoothly. You might work at the elementary, secondary, or collegiate level, but no matter where you are placed, your daily work will allow you to monitor student success and ensure overall achievement by students, faculty, and staff. You could work at a public or private school as a principal, superintendent, dean, or admissions professional – among countless other rewarding, high-paying positions.
What kind of Educational Administration degree should you get?
The best Educational Administration degrees will provide you with real-life experiences in all facets of the discipline. You should look for a program that includes a range of courses taught by diverse, experienced faculty members. You should also find a program that fits within your current life situation and future career goals.
That being said, an online degree is often the most realistic option for graduate students. Aspiring educational administrators often are already working as teachers or university employees, meaning they need to find a degree that will meet their career goals without requiring them to leave their current positions. An online degree will allow you to attend classes and complete coursework on your own schedule, allowing you the best of both worlds.
If you want a program that’s guaranteed to take full advantage of online education, cross-check this list with College Choice’s Best Online Colleges and Universities.
How much money do people make with an Educational Administration degree?
With an Educational Administration degree, you will be qualified to work in a number of settings. In general, most candidates go on to work as high-level managers in a higher education setting, or as a principal, superintendent or other administrator in a K-12 school. If you are working as a postsecondary administrator, you can expect to earn around $92,360 per year, but more as you gain experience.
As an administrator in a K-12 setting, you may earn slightly more, averaging $97,440 per year. Both of these salaries vary widely depending on the state of residence and years of experience. However, the outlook for all positions is excellent, with these fields seeing an average of nine percent growth by 2026.
What can you do with a degree in Educational Administration?
You will be qualified to work in a number of fields with a degree in Educational Administration, especially if you pursue a degree that offers the ability to concentrate in a particular area. For example, if you have a concentration in Higher Education Administration, you may find yourself working behind the scenes at a college or university. You could work in admissions, financial aid, student services, or even athletics.
If you have a concentration in Elementary or Secondary Administration, you might work as a building principal, director of special education services, or even superintendent of schools. You may be in charge of athletics, buildings and grounds, or another important aspect of a school’s overall functioning.
What do all areas, regardless of location, have in common? On a day to day basis, you will be charged with ensuring a school is running properly. You will be in charge of curriculum and program development and budgeting, as well as managing students and other personnel concerns.
What are the requirements for a degree in Educational Administration?
To be eligible for admission to a graduate program in Educational Administration, you will usually need to have a background in another education-related field. That might mean you already possess an undergraduate degree in teaching, learning, curriculum development, or a similar content area. You may already be working as an educator and have experience in a real classroom.
Most programs will require you to submit evidence of a bachelor’s degree, along with standardized test scores and a teaching certificate. While enrolled in a program, you will take classes in topics like management, school finances, and educational law and policy. Look for a program that includes hands-on practicum hours so that you can log some experience in a real school. A capstone course may also be required.
What are the best Educational Administration degrees?
Not all programs are built alike. When we compiled our rankings, we looked at factors like student satisfaction (as determined by retention rates and the quality of student services), tuition costs, faculty credentials, and class sizes.
We also valued student job placement and postgraduate success in compiling our rankings. What results is a list of the highest quality and highest value programs in the country for you to consider as you begin your journey to become an educational leader.
SUNY Stony Brook
College Choice Score: 100
Average Net Price: $13,615
A member of the State University of New York system, SUNY Stony Brook is an excellent choice for studies in Educational Administration. In addition to an 18 credit-hour Advanced Graduate Certificate in the field of educational administration, the 36 credit-hour Master’s of Arts in Higher Education Administration is designed for candidates who want to pursue higher-level positions in universities. It can be completed entirely online or in a hybrid format.
Coursework is highly integrated, requiring students to complete a final seminar course and interdisciplinary project. Though not mandatory for program completion, students are also encouraged to complete a hands-on learning project at a local higher education institution. Other required courses include:
- Foundations of Higher Education Administration
- Survey of College Student Development Theory
- Leadership in Higher Education
- Research and Assessment in Higher Education
This program provides students with a close-knit network of like-minded peers. Each year, about 250 students are enrolled in the major, with each new student assigned to a cohort based on their geographical locations. This allows students to form professional networks and engage in career-building workshops and activities. The program also offers an optional 15-day study abroad program.
College Choice Score: 98.66
Average Net Price: $31,539
Boston University is one of the most culturally diverse schools on this list, offering a range of programs that aim to produce culturally competent professionals who can succeed in a global environment. The online Master’s in Higher Education Administration exists as a curriculum concentration for the M.Ed. in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies. It is designed for previously licensed teachers, as well as those seeking future licensure.
This fast-paced program is designed in an accelerated fashion, with each course lasting seven weeks. Students are only asked to take two courses per semester and can study at all times throughout the year. This enables most students to complete their studies in less than two years. Required classes include:
- Perspectives on Higher Education
- Contemporary Issues in Higher Education Administration
- Legal Issues in Higher Education
- Strategic Planning and Administration
Boston University has offered a Master’s In Higher Education Administration for over 25 years, and its transition to the online course platform has been seamless. Students are able to gain an intensive, theory-to-practice education in administration that constantly changes to reflect the contemporary higher education environment. Classes are offered entirely online and through both asynchronous and flexible live sessions. Students enjoy a low, part-time tuition rate, and can start their studies at any time.
George Washington University
College Choice Score: 98.02
Average Net Price: $39,562
Recognized as a leader in educational research and development, George Washington University has offered exemplary undergraduate and graduate programs in education since 1904. The Graduate School of Education and Human Development organizes a Master’s in Education Administration that is available completely online. This degree is one of few that prepares students for school administrator licensure in most states.
Requiring 30 total credits for graduation, this program prepares students by equipping them with the communication, technological, and analytical skills necessary to be successful as a high-level manager. Internships are also required, with most students finishing the entire program in about two years. Offered classes include:
- Supervision of Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment
- Foundations of K12 Educational Leadership
- School Law and Policy
- Leadership for Equity and Social Justice
George Washington is unique in that it strives to keep its class sizes low. With maximum program enrollment of only 21 students, this selective program is taught by superb faculty who have backgrounds as superintendents, educational officers, and even professional authors and scholars. Starting at just $995 per credit-hour, this program is a high-quality bargain that provides students with one of the very best educational experiences.
College Choice Score: 96.45
Average Net Price: $39,021
The Master of Science in Educational Administration at Drexel University, headquartered in Philadelphia, PA, does not provide a cookie-cutter approach to degree completion. This program is a great choice for aspiring principals and other supervisors, as well as those seeking dual or non-certification options. While it is offered entirely online, students are encouraged to attend on-campus events like leadership seminars. All online students have access to excellent resources, like military tuition discounts, career development resources, and a writing center.
Drexel divides its academic semesters into four 10-week quarters each year. This division prepares leaders to manage schools as well as to mentor future teachers. Regardless of whether you pursue a certification, 45 credits are required. Required classes include:
- Leading in Urban, Rural, and Suburban Settings
- School Leadership and Decision Making
- School Law and Politics
- School Finance and Facilities
This exemplary program is taught by the very best instructors in the field. All courses are taught by full-time Drexel faculty who also teach on campus, with about 86 percent holding terminal degrees in their fields. Each student is required to work with their faculty advisors to complete a final action research project, which allows candidates to compile a leadership portfolio and prepare for the Pennsylvania state PRAXIS examination.
College Choice Score: 95.63
Average Net Price: $24,794
As the largest Christian college in the world, Liberty University is a leader in online education, with nearly all of its 100,000 students enrolled online. The Master’s in Education in Administration and Supervision allows candidates to study with professors who teach from a biblical worldview. This worldview encourages close collaboration and mentorship and provides students with the credentials and experience necessary to take on big leadership roles.
This collaborative program requires three campus visits, all of which enable students to interact with peers and faculty to perform collaborative, hands-on work. An internship at a local school is required. Other required courses, all of which can be completed in fewer than five years, include:
- School-Community Relations
- School Finance and Management
- Principles of Behavior Management
- Curriculum and Methods for the Middle School
Liberty is highly affordable, offering online students one of the best bargains in distance education. Students enjoy a low tuition rate and can receive discounts such as those provided by the TEACH grant. Liberty is also hailed as one of the most affordable and highest quality schools for military veterans and active duty service members. These individuals are eligible to receive a 30 percent discount on tuition and fees.
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
College Choice Score: 95.48
Average Net Price: $16,683
The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is large, serving over 44,000 students from its home campuses in Urbana and Champaign. That being said, the school’s Master’s of Education in Educational Administration and Leadership provides anything but a cookie-cutter approach. With a mixture of online and in-person courses, the degree leads to licensure as a school principal in both elementary and secondary schools.
This hands-on program fully engrains each student in the school setting, allowing them to make professional networks with their peers in their chosen geographical locations. This program can also be attempted in conjunction with an MBA program. Required classes include:
- Political and Cultural Context of Education
- History of American Education
- Historical and Social Barriers
- Professional Ethics in Education
Enrolled students enjoy unique perks at this university and are given access to research facilities, career services, and even 24/7 technical support. All online courses are taught by the same exemplary faculty members who teach on-campus. The program requires only two years of experience as an educator and can be completed on a full- or part-time basis. Most candidates complete the degree in less than two years.
Texas A&M University
College Choice Score: 94.92
Average Net Price: $15,455
Located in College Station, TX, Texas A&M University provides students with an online Master’s in Educational Administration that gives candidates in-depth training in educational practice. It requires 26 credits of coursework, along with a field internship. This program is cohort-based and has an optional bilingual principal program for qualifying, interested students.
Thirty total credits are required for graduation, with students acquiring fundamental skills and background knowledge in areas like curriculum design, management, and educational law. Courses are delivered both synchronously and asynchronously, with candidates pursuing coursework in areas like:
- Principles of Professional Practice in Education
- School Principalship
- Foundations of Education Administration
- Developing School-Community Partnerships
This program is one of few that has a temporary on-campus requirement. Students are required to attend campus for a 12-credit residency that allows them to interact with faculty and peers. Students may also choose to partake in study abroad programs in locations like Costa Rica, the United Kingdom, and other domestic destinations. With a short program length of just two years, these experiences can all fit seamlessly within any student’s degree plan.
College Choice Score: 94.23
Average Net Price: $9,510
Housed within the Austin W. Marxe School of Public and International Affairs, Baruch College’s higher education administration program is designed for professionals seeking to advance in any aspect of higher education management. This program was the first to receive accreditation from the Network of School of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration – a testament to its overall quality and innovative nature.
This interdisciplinary program requires 36 total credits, with students possessing prior work experience exempted from an internship requirement. The program also features two options for degree customization, allowing students to specialize in institutional research and assessment or higher education and public administration. Required classes include:
- Public and Nonprofit Management
- Administrative Services in Colleges and Universities
- Student Services in Higher Education
- The Financing of Higher Education
All courses in this program are taught by full-time public affairs professors. These individuals have extensive backgrounds in higher education scholarship, with many holding high-level positions as college administrators. This flexible program may be started at two different points per year and can be pursued either full- or part-time in an entirely online setting. Each program ends in a mandatory capstone course that allows students to further synthesize their newly acquired knowledge.
College Choice Score: 90.89
Average Net Price: $19,044
Post University has offered personalized degree programs in in-demand areas for well over 125 years. The program in higher education administration, with a high level of industry relevance and prominence, is no exception. This degree is designed for new higher education professionals as well as those seeking to advance within the field.
All courses in this program are offered 100 percent online, with the goal of accommodating busy working professionals. The school provides one-on-one academic advising to all students throughout every step of the educational process. Core coursework includes:
- Foundations and Emerging Trends in Higher Education
- The New Post-Secondary Student
- Assessment and Evaluation
- Leading Change in Higher Education
This program offers several various concentrations, with students able to choose from extended studies in Student Affairs or Administrative Leadership to best suit their future career goals. The unique tailoring of each program is just one reason why Post was ranked as one of the top non-traditional schools by Victory Media. The university has repeatedly been recognized for providing phenomenal education and student services to all students, but in particular to military members and other non-traditional students.
University of Massachusetts Amherst
College Choice Score: 90.01
Average Net Price: $20,093
The online Master of Education in Education Administration at the University of Massachusetts Amherst is one of the best of its kind. In this program, each course is taught by a full-time faculty who is an expert in the field. These faculty members bring their diverse experiences to online class discussions, and while courses are offered asynchronously – meaning students can log in and work at any time – they have access to faculty and technical support at all times.
The curriculum of this program consists of ten specialized graduate courses, all of which can be taken online. Each candidate must have five years of K-12 teaching experience, and while the program does not lead to licensure in all states, it does provide the prerequisite knowledge needed to do so. Students will take classes such as:
- The Inclusive School
- Role of the Curriculum and Instructional Leader
- Principles of Supervision
- Principalship PK-12
This program was ranked as one of the Best Online Programs by U.S. News and World Report for 2018, a testament to the school’s dedication to student success. The curriculum is unique in that students are divided into specific cohorts upon enrolling, meaning they take the same sequence of courses with a group of like-minded peers. This fosters a great sense of community and collaboration among all students and increases the likelihood of students finding rewarding jobs immediately upon graduation.
College Choice Score: 89.27
Average Net Price: $11,755
Lamar University, headquartered in Beaumont, TX, offers an online M.Ed. in Education Administration designed for service-oriented individuals aspiring to become principals or superintendents. The school offers dozens of programs within the College of Education and Human Development. It prepares educators to work at all levels, from preschool to college. The school has partnerships that enable students to be successful at any point in their careers.
This program is the largest fully-online graduate program offered at Lamar and prepares students with prerequisite coursework in human resources, instructional design, and leadership. It even provides a pathway to certification for interested candidates. Lamar requires 30 total hours of study for degree completion. Students will take a range of classes, including studies in:
- School/Community Relations
- Curriculum Management
- Leadership for Accountability
- Human Resources
Lamar offers over 100 programs of study and enrolls nearly 15,000 students a year. This fast-growing campus has surprisingly low student-to-faculty ratios and small class sizes, enabling all students to develop lasting connections with faculty and peers – even when learning from afar. With a low tuition rate of just $705 for each three-hour course, enrolling at Lamar is a no-brainer.
West Virginia University
College Choice Score: 88.71
Average Net Price: $10,814
Located in idyllic Morgantown, West Virginia, the online program in Higher Education Administration is ranked as one of the best of its kind. This program emphasizes the development of leadership skills as well as the acquisition of fundamental knowledge in topics like student affairs and academic management. Each student is given the opportunity to create a personalized program of study, working closely with a faculty advisor to do so.
The curriculum consists of 30 credits, with an ample amount of time dedicated to research. Students will be given the opportunity to pursue statistical methods and program evaluation, as well as to explore topics of personal interest, such as higher education finance or diversity issues. Required courses include:
- History of Higher Education
- Higher Education Administration
- Contemporary Issues in Higher Education
- College Student Development
This program is one of the most career-focused on the list, requiring candidates to initiate and undergo a placement at an internship site, create a portfolio and journal, and to attend monthly online group meetings. Students may choose to attend classes in a fully online or hybrid setting, with most students completing their studies in around two years.
Louisiana State University
College Choice Score: 88.57
Average Net Price: $15,095
Louisiana State is one of the state’s premier research institutions. With over 30,000 students around the country, the university is one of the best at training future educators and administrators. The online Master’s of Arts in Education with a Higher Education concentration is designed for candidates seeking to work in any aspect of college and university administration, such as admissions, financial aid, or advising.
Only 36 credit-hours are required for graduation, allowing students to complete their studies in as little as 15 months. Each course lasts seven weeks, and each student must also complete a 14-week internship in some aspect of educational administration. Other required classes include:
- Foundations of Higher Education
- Understanding and Applying Research in Education
- College Students in the United States
- Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education
One of the major perks of studying online at Louisiana State University is that all students pay the same low tuition rate, regardless of residency. At just $481 per credit-hour, this program is a bargain that cannot be passed up. Candidates receive extensive training in topics such as Greek affairs, student activities, academic support, athletics, and more, giving them the freedom necessary to pursue work in any higher education division upon graduation.
College Choice Score: 87.91
Average Net Price: $16,804
As the state of Mississippi’s oldest higher education institution Mississippi College knows a thing or two about training professionals in Education Administration. With a focus on administrative theory and practice, the program is just one of many integrative graduate programs offered entirely online and based out of the school’s Clinton, MS campus.
This hands-on program, which includes two practicum experiences in an actual higher education setting, takes most students fewer than 18 months to complete. Courses are offered asynchronously, utilizing technologies such as Moodle, Blackboard, and online proctoring services. Students will take classes such as:
- Research – Methods and Procedures
- Basic Effective Leadership
- Law and Higher Education
- Student Development Theories/Ethics and Inquiry
Students at Mississippi College have access to dozens of resources, enjoying the same benefits experienced by on-campus students. Digital learners receive access to research databases, librarian chat services, online proctoring, and online libraries. Students are given great flexibility in designing their coursework and may study during the summer, part-time, and within an entirely online setting.
Michigan State University
College Choice Score: 87.86
Average Net Price: $14,970
As one of the largest universities of its kind in the country, Michigan State, headquartered in East Lansing, MI, educates over 50,000 students a year both on-campus and online. The Master’s in Education Administration is available as a fully online program, as an on-campus program, and in a hybrid format. Students must attend campus four times per semester, but the school provides a variety of satellite campuses to make the journey more convenient for students from all over the United States.
This online program is one of the most innovative and advanced of its kind, incorporating a variety of instructional technologies to help students succeed. Candidates will attend classes through a combination of live meetings, asynchronous coursework, and hands-on activities. Sample courses include:
- Leading Teacher Learning
- Special Populations
- International Education
- Leadership for Urban Education
This program leads to administration certification within the state of Michigan and allows students to take classes back-to-back to maximize the learning experience. Over 25 different scholarships are available to students in this program, helping to offset the cost of this already-inexpensive degree program. With 30 credits required to graduate, it takes most students about two or three years of part-time work to complete their studies.
Concordia University Wisconsin
College Choice Score: 86.27
Average Net Price: $25,764
Concordia University has nine locations throughout the state of Wisconsin. Among them, the online campus is one of the most popular. The Department of Graduate Education operates a Master of Science in Education-Educational Administration that helps students obtain the skills necessary to be successful in any educational environment. This flexible program can be started at any time, with an optional accelerated component available.
This program, which requires between 33 and 39 credits for completion, prepares students for enriching careers as principals, counselors, and educational administrators. Both full- and part-time options are available, with required classes including:
- Leadership for Change
- Educational Governance and Administration
- School Business Administration
- Curriculum Leadership
Concordia is unique in that it offers students Preferred Educational Partnerships benefits. Students from certain cohorts are eligible to receive a 24 percent tuition discount. Individuals currently working in Christian K-12 schools can receive an additional 25 percent discount, making this an affordable option for students seeking certification in the state of Wisconsin as well as those studying from other locations.
Fort Hays State University
College Choice Score: 86.03
Average Net Price: $11,993
Fort Hays State University, located in Hays, KS, is a public institution with over a century’s worth of demonstrated success. This medium-sized school enrolls around 12,000 students per year and hosts affordable in-state tuition of just $14,832 per year – even less for state residents. The forward-thinking Master of Science in Educational Administration is designed for budding Building Principals. Two options, both a degree and non-degree endorsement program, are available.
This 36 credit-hour program helps students learn how to deal with prospective challenges related to leading a school and addressing the needs of students and faculty. No thesis is required, and students can be at any stage in their careers to pursue this degree. Courses can be taken in four, eight, or sixteen-week segments, with required courses including:
- Innovative Technology Integration
- Educational Research
- School Law
- Supervision and Evaluation of Personnel
This entrepreneurial university combines excellent opportunities for hands-on learning with the wisdom of mentor teaches. Professors help students graduate with the skills and confidence necessary to land top jobs. Over 95 percent of Fort Hays students find a job or are enrolled in further studies upon graduation. As a result, the school is ranked as one of the best Regional Universities in the Midwest by U.S. News and World Report.
Ball State University
College Choice Score: 85.70
Average Net Price: $13,369
With over 22,000 students around the world, Ball State Teacher’s College is hailed as one of the best in the country. Students may choose from on-campus or online educator preparation programs, including the Master of Arts in Education in Administration and Supervision. This program, the largest principal preparation program in the state, gives students the education and credentials necessary for principal licensure in the state of Indiana.
In addition to 36 credits of coursework, each student must also complete a two-semester internship at an elementary or high school of his or her own choosing. Most students can complete the degree in fewer than 20 months. Required classes, all of which can be completed asynchronously, include:
- Human Resource Development
- Educational Decision Making
- Supervision of Instruction
- Educational Finance and Ethics
Nearly 50 percent of all Ball State students take classes online. As a result, the university offers extensive online resources, including digital access to a writing center, tutoring, tutorials, library, and research services. Ranked as one of the country’s Top Public Schools by U.S. News and World Report, Ball State has a small student-to-faculty ratio of just 14:1.
Sam Houston State University
College Choice Score: 85.64
Average Net Price: $12,365
Founded in 1879, Sam Houston State is a public university in a rural setting. With over 20,000 students and 140 different degree programs, it is a community-centered organization with high research activity. Sam Houston State University’s Master of Education in Administration is designed for individuals seeking Principal Certification. The university is one of the most wired universities in the country, and as a result, offers online students some of the best educational technologies out of any school on this list.
Degrees at Sam Houston State are surprisingly versatile, allowing candidates to earn a degree by accumulating course credit-hours from courses earned in-person, online, or from another university. The courses are fully accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. Students will take classes such as:
- Administration and Organization of Public Schools
- Communication for Educational Leaders
- Program Evaluation for School Improvement
- Culturally Proficient School Leadership
This program was ranked as one of the best, according to U.S. News and World Report’s list of the Best Online Graduate Education Programs. Its alumni tend to earn high starting salaries, benefiting from a small student-to-faculty ratio of just 23:1 while enrolled in their studies. Degrees earned online from Sam Houston are identical to those earned on campus. Final transcripts do not indicate that the degree was earned remotely, giving graduates an extra advantage.
Old Dominion University
College Choice Score: 85.26
Average Net Price: $15,218
Founded in 1930, Old Dominion University is an urban university with a commitment to educating students from all backgrounds. The university enrolls over 25,000 students from 116 countries and including students from every state in the United States. A wide variety of graduate degree programs are offered within the Darden College of Education, most notably the online Master of Science in Education in Educational Leadership-Administration and Supervision K-12.
The degree requires 30 total credit-hours for degree completion, including 120 internship hours that are embedded within the program’s coursework. Classes are live, regularly scheduled, and can be accessed from any location. Courses are cohort-based, meaning students take classes with the same group of peers throughout the duration of their studies. Required classes include:
- Leadership and Management for School Improvement
- Accountability and Organizational Improvement
- Strategic Communication and External Relations
- Learning Theories and Professional Development
The school is famed for its exceptional faculty, with 31 of the university’s staff named as some of the best in the state of Virginia. The university has won multiple accolades for its dedication to fostering personal growth through leadership, service, and extracurriculars. Old Dominion is one of the largest providers of distance education in the entire country and offers over 5,600 practical experiences, study abroad programs, volunteer and entrepreneurial programs to students every year.
University of Southern Mississippi
College Choice Score: 84.83
Average Net Price: $11,916
The University of Southern Mississippi was founded as a teacher’s college in 1910. Since then, the school has rapidly expanded, adding hundreds of research opportunities and countless new programs each year. The school enrolls around 14,000 students, many of whom take advantage of the campus’ exceptional distance learning platform. The M.Ed. in Educational Administration and Supervision is both affordable and convenient and fully accredited through both the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education and the Educational Leadership Constituent Council.
The degree requires 34 credits, allowing students to explore topics such as instructional leadership and foundations of school management. Most students will complete internships within local school systems, while others may choose to attend optional on-campus programming. Other popular courses include:
- Foundations of School Leadership
- Leading Diverse School Populations
- Introduction to Leadership for Organizational Effectiveness
- Socio-Political Issues and Educational Leadership
The University of Southern Mississippi offers extensive financial aid and allows online students to pay in-state tuition regardless of where they live. With low tuition of just under $8,000 per year, the affordability of this school can’t be beaten. The University of Southern Mississippi is ranked as one of the best National Universities by U.S. News and World Report, with students enjoying a small student-to-faculty ratio of just 17:1.
University of South Carolina
College Choice Score: 83.31
Average Net Price: $19,913
Though only one of many schools in the University of South Carolina system, the online school is arguably one of the best at providing high-quality programs to future educators. The Master’s in Education Administration is designed for certified teachers and prepares them to work with a diverse student population. Each year, the university educates over 35,000 students, providing online training in an asynchronous format. Students benefit from multiple formats, including video, recorded lectures, and more.
All coursework in this program can be completed on an individual student’s own schedule. Steep tuition discounts are available for South Carolina educators completing fewer than twelve hours a semester. In addition to two internship courses, required classes include:
- Introduction to Exceptional Children
- Human Growth and Development
- Classroom Assessment
- Introduction to Research in Education
With over 200 different graduate degrees, the University of South Carolina knows a thing or two about preparing professionals for lifelong success. Online students pay the same tuition as in-state students, and with discounts for current educators as well as other scholarship opportunities. Kiplinger’s and Forbes ranked this globally-recognized university as one of the best values in higher education in the entire country.
Concordia University, Nebraska
College Choice Score: 81.44
Average Net Price: $19,335
With a whopping 85 percent of its students enrolled online, Concordia is an expert in providing quality distance education programs. This private Christian university was founded in 1894 and operates several campuses throughout the country. The 36-credit program in Educational Administration is designed for aspiring K-12 principals and is a great choice for current certified K-12 teachers.
This program comes equipped with an optional dual certification track, allowing candidates to take an additional nine credit-hours to receive certification in both elementary and secondary administration. Accelerated coursework is also available, all of which is offered through the Blackboard distance learning system. Required classes include:
- Contemporary Thought in Education
- Research Evaluation and Design
- Psychological Foundations of Teaching and Learning
- Curriculum Design and Evaluation
At just $425 per credit-hour, Concordia is an affordable option for any student. Students receive an average $20,000 of institutional scholarships each year, helping to lower that cost further. Classes start every eight weeks, and a hybrid option is available to allow interested students to study on-campus as well. With a student-to-faculty ratio of just 13:1, Concordia is a smart option for students seeking greater interaction with their instructors and peers.
Angelo State University
College Choice Score: 81.03
Average Net Price: $10,943
If you are seeking a responsive, hands-on degree that will enable you to pursue a rewarding career as a principal, superintendent, or other school administrator, Angelo State University has the program for you. This public school, located in San Angelo, TX, stresses the importance of personal contact and career advising and is one of the best schools on this list at fostering nurturing relationships between faculty and students.
Students at Angelo State have the opportunity to engage in extensive research and faculty-mentored projects. All courses are offered in eight-week chunks, each existing entirely online. Most students can finish their studies within two years of full-time coursework, as well as through experiencing extensive hands-on work through internship and practicum opportunities. Required classes include:
- Social and Cultural Influences
- Tests and Measurements
- Legal and Ethical Principles
- Professional Writing for Educators
With tuition starting at just $8,000 for in-state students, Angelo State is a financially savvy pick. The school offers gift aid to 73 percent of its students. The school also offers over 100 different student organizations, such as Kappa Delta Pi, the ASU Student Reading Council, and the Texas State Teachers Association, to help students make the most of their time in school. As a result, the university is ranked as one of the best Regional Universities West by U.S. News and World Report.
University of Oklahoma
College Choice Score: 80.54
Average Net Price: $17,966
The University of Oklahoma in Norman, OK is well-known for its commitment to conducting world-class research. However, this school offers much more. The Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education, accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation, houses a spectacular 36-credit Master’s Education in Educational Administration, Curriculum, and Supervision. This program is cohort-based and leads to principal certification in the state of Oklahoma.
While most classes in this program can be taken online, the curriculum is supplemented by once-a-month classes on the Norman campus. Thesis and non-thesis options are available, but most students will be required to complete a comprehensive portfolio. Each student also conducts a principal internship in their local school. Other course requirements include:
- Organization of Education
- Financial Leadership in Schools
- School Level Instructional Leadership
- Inquiry for Performance Improvement
This program emphasizes student networking through its innovative cohort model. Students are encouraged to interact with the course material and with their peers through this model, enjoying the attention of expert university faculty with a student-to-faculty ratio of just 17:1. As a result, the university has a high retention rate, with an average student satisfaction rate of 86 percent – much higher than average.
University of Houston-Clear Lake
College Choice Score: 76.85
Average Net Price: $11,628
The University of Houston – Clear Lake may be a young institution, founded only in 1974 as a public institution, but it’s a classic choice for professionals seeking training in educational administration. With 46 different graduate majors, as well as countless undergraduate and doctoral degrees, this school offers diversity and quality in its academic choices. The Master of Science in Educational Management is an innovative degree program for aspiring leaders.
Courses in this program are offered in both traditional and hybrid formats. This allows candidates to become effective as they gain knowledge and experience in all aspects of educational management. Students will take classes such as:
- Applications of Technology
- Administration of Special Programs
- The Principal and School Community Relations
- School Resource Management
This program is one of only 14 educator preparation programs in the state of Texas to hold accreditation by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation. The school has over twenty online-only programs, and a demonstrated track record of success in training distance learners. With tuition starting at just $9,974 per year, this school is an affordable option for any candidate.
Iowa State University
College Choice Score: 76.69
Average Net Price: $13,623
Founded in 1858, Iowa State University is a public institution with a global reputation. With over 100 different academic majors, students have plenty of disciplines from which to choose. The online Master’s in Educational Administration can be completed as a Master’s of Science or a Master’s of Education, allowing students flexibility in how they want to complete their final projects. Candidates may choose from a thesis, non-thesis creative project, or portfolio of student work, but all options lead to initial principal certification.
This program includes a whopping 400 hours of supervised clinical experience, requiring candidates to work at both the elementary and secondary levels. The online program is hybrid, including online courses and two on-campus meetings each week. Other classes include:
- Principles of Educational Administration
- Educational Research
- Supervision for Learning Environments
- Current Issues in Site-Level Leadership
Faculty and staff at Iowa State are passionate about learning and teaching, offering a culturally-proficient program for students from all backgrounds. It is ranked as one of the Best Value Schools and Best Colleges for Veterans by U.S. News and World Report and has high student satisfaction ratings with retention rates over 87 percent.
Columbia College (Columbia International University)
College Choice Score: 75.48
Average Net Price: $20,206
Located along the idyllic Broad River in Columbia, SC, Columbia College is an accredited Christian college with a history of providing quality degree programs. The Educational Administration degree at Columbia College is one of two tracks within the Master’s of Education program, the other being a concentration in Instruction and Learning. Either degree can be completed within as little as two years.
This program takes two to four years to complete, with candidates given the option between teaching in K-12 schools, Christian schools, or further academic work. Each course is designed with a Christian educator in mind and incorporates a biblical worldview. Course requirements include:
- History and Philosophy of Education
- Curriculum Development and Instruction
- Educational Research
- Authentic Assessment
This program is one of the most collaborative of its kind, allowing students to utilize real-life situations to develop familiarity with common educational issues. Faculty and staff provide both academic and spiritual support, offering a program that is in line with the requirements of the Association of Christian Schools International. With an international alumni network that is over 18,000 strong among 150 different nations, students have no shortage of professional connections upon graduation.
College Choice Score: 74.84
Average Net Price: $29,330
With over 25 different campuses around Washington State and the university’s home state of California, Brandman offers an impactful online program in Educational Administration. This program is one of many within Brandman’s extensive online learning platform, which educates over 12,000 students a year.
With a student-to-faculty ratio of just 15:1, students enjoy small class sizes and close attention from dedicated instructors. Best yet, the program is affordable, with over half of all students receiving some kind of financial aid. The program requires 30 credits for graduation, with core coursework including:
- Seminar in Learning Theory
- Seminar in Comparative Education
- Democracy, Education, and Social Change
- Research and Evaluation Methods
Brandman was originally founded to provide education to non-traditional students such as adult learners and Marine Corps military members. Now, the program continues to serve nontraditional students through its 52 undergraduate, graduate, and certificate programs. The online campus is top-ranked and is one of the country’s most military-friendly schools.
University of South Dakota
College Choice Score: 73.81
Average Net Price: $16,502
As one of the country’s oldest public institutions, the University of South Dakota is a rural school with big-city diversity. This school offers a fully online Master of Arts in Educational Administration and Leadership that provides flexible scheduling for working adults. It is taught by accessible faculty who ensure that graduates are sought-after candidates in the competitive post-graduation job search environment.
This program exists as a combination of field-based experiences and online coursework. Two concentrations are available: one in Pre-K-12 Principal and one in Adult and Higher Education. PK-12 Principal licensure is available for most students upon completion of the principal certification program, with required classes including studies in:
- Educational Administration
- Principal Leadership
- Instructional Leadership
- Curriculum Leadership
The University of South Dakota is well known for providing quality programs and has received top accolades from ranking affiliates such as U.S. News and World Report. The school has been recognized as providing the best High School Counselor programs as well as for being one of the top National Universities and Top Public Schools in the nation. Students enjoy low student-to-faculty ratios – on average just 18:1 – and experience some of the highest average starting salaries in the nation.
College Choice Score: 73.04
Average Net Price: $20,972
As a small private institution of just 2,353 students, Tiffin University is committed to providing its students with a close-knit approach to higher education. The Master of Education with a concentration in Higher Education Administration at Tiffin is designed for natural born leaders. The program integrates essential knowledge ranging from human resources to crisis management, all designed in a flexible format for professional learners.
With a student-to-faculty ratio of just 14:1, students receive access to dedicated faculty attention that is unrivaled by any other institution of its kind. The university features excellent support services and high employment rates after graduation. Students are required to take classes such as:
- Issues in Student Affairs
- Educational Leadership
- World History of Education
- Student Enrollment and Retention
Tiffin structures its courses so that students enroll in two 7-week terms each semester, allowing maximum flexibility in regards to starting and completing courses. This program is one of the best in the nation, with graduates going on to work in fields such as admissions, financial aid, athletics, and more. It is ranked as one of the best Regional Universities in the Midwest by U.S. News and World Report.
College Choice Score: 72.29
Average Net Price: $22,377
National University is a young institution, having only opened in 1971, but since its inception, it has educated over 150,000 students. The school was designed with nontraditional students in mind, as it was founded by a retired Navy lieutenant who saw the value in providing high-quality programs to students learning from afar. The school now offers over 100 programs, including an innovative Master of Science in Higher Education Administration.
As the flagship school of the National University System, established in 2001, National University online is a champion in the field of distance learning. The curriculum of the Higher Education Administration program consists of 45 credits, including a thesis project. Students will take core requisite courses such as:
- Leading and Managing Change
- Policy and Accountability
- Community Development in Higher Education
- Higher Education Law/Politics
National has provided quality online courses for well over 20 years and excels at offering flexible courses with its unique four-week class format. Because of this university’s roots in the American military, the university is incredibly accommodating toward military personnel. Applicants with military experience may receive tuition discounts and scholarships, as well as student success-related academic and extracurricular services.
Emporia State University
College Choice Score: 71.97
Average Net Price: $12,939
Emporia State wasn’t just the first public university in the state of Kansas – it was also originally founded as a teacher’s college. This school, dating back to 1863, is one of the finest in the country at educating licensed teachers to prepare them for roles as principals, superintendents, and other school leaders. Students may reach their career goals in as little as twelve months by studying entirely online.
This degree program is highly integrative, requiring students to complete two separate four-hour practica experiences. This allows them to further their understanding of real-world management issues in the school setting. Other required classes include:
- Supervision and Evaluation
- School Leadership Theory
- Cultural Influences and Educational Practice
- Educational Law and Regulations
All courses in this program can be completed asynchronously through the Canvas platform. Students receive access to Emporia’s unique program, GradShare, which provides an integrative community for distance learners. Students can engage in discussion forums and enjoy other resources related to job hunting, research, writing, and tutoring without ever leaving the comfort of their own homes. With tuition starting at just $334 per credit-hour, this university is one of the best at providing a practical, valuable experience in educational administration.
Georgia Southern University
College Choice Score: 71.96
Average Net Price: $16,121
Located in Statesboro, GA, Georgia Southern University has a population of 20,000 students, many of whom are enrolled in online studies. The Master’s of Education in Higher Education Administration program is broad-based and allows students to gain experience in all aspects of higher education, including business, academic affairs, and counseling. This degree is designed with busy working adults in mind and features a variety of flexible course scheduling and completion options.
This program requires 36 credit-hours of study. Most of these credits require students to articulate their own responses to common higher education dilemmas and to develop solutions that integrate their newly acquired knowledge. Required classes include:
- American Higher Education
- Higher Education Law
- College Student Development
- Learning Theories and Applications
This program is highly affordable, with tuition starting at just $277 per credit-hour for in-state students. Candidates may study either part- or full-time, giving them the flexibility to continue with other responsibilities and employment. With 141 programs and over 200 student organizations, Georgia Southern doesn’t just provide a degree. It provides students with lifelong access to broad student and faculty networks, along with the opportunity to pursue areas of interest-both inside the classroom and out.
College Choice Score: 71.56
Average Net Price: $16,538
A large proprietary institution, Capella University is dedicated to serving a mostly online population of students. Capella’s Master of Science in Education features multiple concentrations, with one of the most common being the Leadership in Educational Administration specialization. In this specialization, students learn how to promote student success and to develop a culture of learning that extends beyond the books and is carried on in each student’s post-collegiate life and career.
This program features a fully online curriculum with four core, three specialization, and three emphasis courses, along with an integrated internship experience. Students take up to three classes throughout each ten-week quarter and engage in weekly assignments and discussions. Students only pay for the classes they take, instead of a flat tuition rate. Some of the most popular classes include:
- The Funding of Educational Institutions
- P-12 Principalship
- Education and the Law
- School Leadership: Data, Decision-Making, and School Improvement
This program is nationally recognized by the Educational Leadership Constituents Council for its quality and value. It is recognized by multiple states as providing adequate preparation for principal certification licensure and grants students exclusive access to some of the best and most innovative learning tools of its kind. Students are familiarized with the school simulation tool, a one-of-a-kind technology that gives students examples and situations that they are likely to experience in a real-world educational setting.