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Advantages of an M.A.Ed. in Educational Administration

What is an M.A.Ed. in Educational Administration?

An M.A.Ed. in Educational Administration is a graduate degree that will improve an educator’s understanding of multiple facets of school improvement, school district organization, and state policy.

Concordia University Irvine’s (CUI) master’s program not only informs but also tasks students to:

  • Practice research
  • Evaluate data
  • Communicate findings
  • Develop action plans

In the M.A.Ed. program, you must apply what you are learning to realistic situations you have encountered in your profession. This involves class presentations, discussions, and papers.

Your final showcase of learning is in the form of a capstone action research project and presentation, where you will identify a problem to solve, research, and create your solution to evaluate after administering.

In surplus to the master’s degree, you may also choose to pursue eligibility for the California Preliminary Administration Services Credential concurrently. This additional endeavor includes two practicums totaling 100 hours. Practicum experiences include a variety of leadership and learning foci, including district-level, community-based, and site-centered activities.

What You’ll Learn in an M.A.Ed. in Educational Administration Program

In a program centered on administration, you will reflect on many leadership styles and philosophies. At Concordia University Irvine, you will develop a strong understanding of servant leadership and how you can model transformational leadership. In addition, you will have courses in curriculum choices, best practices in instruction, human resources, legal aspects, financial resources, and research.

If you register to become eligible for the Preliminary Administration Services Credential, during the administrative practicum, you are required to perform various administrative tasks and projects. These will further your practical learning and hone your flexibility and decisiveness. The experiences will round out your preparation and inform you more globally of administrative roles within schools, communities, and districts.

After time in the CUI program, you will communicate more knowledgeably among stakeholders and display skills and competencies as professional leaders. You will learn to observe education through local, state, and federal lenses.

Advantages of an M.A.Ed. in Educational Administration

Achievement of Career Goals

When one initially considers attending graduate school, they may do so for the motivating “carrot” of an increased salary. Education is a field of employment that monetarily rewards its’ employees’ advancement of learning. Therefore, depending upon the requirements of a specific district, one may acquire column advancement through credit or degree completion.

However, in addition to improving financial compensation, an educator may aim to broaden job opportunities or acquire a new position, which may require a graduate degree. In pursuing such a degree, not only will you build your knowledge, but you will also synchronously enhance your resume’s attractiveness to potential employers. Experiences gained through the program can help help bolster your resume and facilitate more interview content regarding your skills, knowledge, and competencies.

Improvement of Instruction

Unquestionably, one of the foci of CUI’s master in education is instruction. Although there was a three-unit course specifically designed around instructional and transformational leadership and another on curriculum design and evaluation, Concordia also provided further development.

CUI School of Education Leadership Symposia is one of my favorite aspects of the program. Students are invited to attend three one-unit, half-day symposia highlighting influencers in education who are well-versed in current issues and best practices across various topics. Symposia are required of the graduate program but are also a valued perk of alumni.

Symposia topics are relevant, and speakers are highly-experienced. For example, through the symposium on brain science, attendants could learn current research regarding brain-based teaching and learning as well as how environments intentionally assembled for the senses (colors, sound, etc.) affect behaviors and learning. I found this useful within my classroom and when on panels for decision-making for redesigning our school.

Another symposium centered itself on the concept of innovation. As an educator in a school that was one of the first in the district to have one-to-one technology called “Innovation Middle School”, I was particularly eager to attend this course. The innovation symposium pressed me to evaluate myself as an instructor, especially within a school with a name demonstrative of our value of an innovative culture.

I had to question if I was genuinely using technology or if it was just a tool to streamline my workflow and post content and assignments digitally. Was I allowing it to disrupt my patterns of instruction and student learning? Was I only using it as a tool to engage, or were students empowered by it? 

The above are just a few examples of how Concordia intricately balances the presentation and sharing of research with self-reflection of practices and visions.

Advancement of Essential Leadership Skills

Another advantage of the M.A.Ed. program at CUI is my advancement in leadership skills.

I am more confident in sharing what I have learned with colleagues, principals, and families about the educational system and resources and proactive when trying to find solutions.

By starting the graduate program, my principal became aware of my leadership interest and discovered I could be an asset to our school’s leadership team. This allowed me a seat at the table to help develop school-wide policies and initiatives and be included on hiring panels.

Through presentations to my CUI colleagues and professors, I developed my “elevator pitch.” This has helped me as a department chair when advocating for our department’s needs and funding of programs. Throughout the courses, I learned how to determine “implementation drivers” and utilize data and implementation fidelity to strengthen our positions to keep costly instructional programs in our school budget.

Furthermore, through coursework, we learned how to conduct a culture action plan where we receive input regarding our school culture, identify specific needs, and develop a plan to implement necessary changes leveraging appropriate support from responsible personnel.

The literature and professors emphasized the value in interviewing stakeholders pre-implementation and post-implementation to ensure multiple perspectives are taken into consideration. This has strengthened my skills of fostering change.

Whether it is to prepare to pursue another position, advance a salary, improve instruction, or acquire stronger leadership skills, the M.A.Ed. in Educational Administration at CUI can provide a solution.