Master of Education (M.Ed.) in Educational Policy & Leadership

Students working on a project

UNLV Program Links

Admissions Deadline
 November 15
 Apply Now

Leading for Learning - Building Community - Transforming Schools

The Master of Education (M.Ed.) in Educational Policy & Leadership is a 36 semester hour program that prepares future school leaders to meet the challenges they will face in Southern Nevada PK-12 schools in the 21st century. Using a systems approach to understanding leadership, the curriculum combines rigorous and relevant coursework with real-world experiential learning.

The Educational Policy & Leadership program is designed to develop educational leaders who understand the urban environment and the community in which schools exist. Program participants receive a firm foundation of knowledge and skills in order to meet the demands and expectations of school administrators - all within a systems approach for transforming schools within an urban community.

The Educational Policy & Leadership program is grounded in the belief that PK-12 educational leaders must work alongside other community institutions, including government agencies, non-profit organizations, and business and industry, for the well-being of our community's students and families. Twenty-first century urban education leaders must understand the full array of challenges and the interactive and systemic nature of the institutions and organizations they serve.

The Educational Policy & Leadership program meets the requirements for Nevada School Administrator Endorsement and the Nevada Program Administrator Endorsement.

Application and Admissions

Admission will be limited to the most qualified applicants based on a combination of the following:

  • An earned bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited 4-year college or university.
  • A GPA of at least 2.75 overall or 3.00 in the last 60 semester hours of undergraduate study.
  • At least 3-years experience as a licensed teacher or educational professional. Individuals seeking a Nevada administrator endorsement must hold a valid elementary, middle school/junior high, secondary or special teaching license and provide evidence of 3-years of experience as an educational professional in K-12 schools.
  • Graduate Record Exam (GRE): To find out more about the GRE and how to sign up for a test date, please visit
  • On-line application to include:
    • Transcripts. Upload all unofficial university level transcripts when completing the on-line application. For the admission process to be complete, you must also supply an official copy of all transcripts to the Graduate College.
    • Two letters of recommendation (one must be from current principal or district supervisor). Ask your recommenders to write about: (a) your leadership experiences and strengths; (b) your instructional experiences and strengths; (c) your judgment and decision-making skills. Recommenders will submit their letters directly into the On-line application system.
    • Statement of support from applicant's current principal or district supervisor. Download the form from the on-line application and obtain signature. Upload signed form through on-line application system.
    • Resume
    • Statement of Intent/Leadership statement. In no more than 3 pages, write your response to the following: What makes an effective school leader? What are the professional responsibilities of an effective leader in relation to (a) student learning, (b) teacher development, (c) family/community engagement, and (d) one's own professional obligations, reflection, and growth? Upload completed leadership statement through on-line application system.
    • Summary of leadership experiences. Download the leadership experiences form from the on-line application. Once complete upload the form through the on-line application system.
    • Teaching License. Upload a copy of your teaching license when completing the on-line application.
  • Interview. All applicants will be contacted for an interview in late November. Interviews are conducted by a team of faculty and current school administrators.

Begin the application process:

Submit Application

For further information about graduate admission requirements, go to Graduate College.

Review program admission requirements posted in the Graduate Catalog.

This program operates on a differential tuition model. A fee of $175 per credit hour will be charged in addition to normal graduate tuition and fees. Visit the Cashiering site for further information regarding tuition and fees.

Nevada Residency: For tuition purposes, all new graduate students are classified out-of-state until Nevada residency is determined via the residency application process. In order to obtain Nevada residency, you must download the residency application and submit along with the required supporting documentation by the first day of the semester in which you are applying for residency. Residency is determined by the Registrar's Office. Get more information about residency requirements.

Program Features

Integrated Field Experiences

Field-based experiences are central to the program, offering participants the opportunity to immediately apply course-based knowledge and skills to real-world situations. During the third and fourth semesters, aspiring educational leaders will be engaged in the real work of leading school improvement. Aspiring leaders will work at their school sites, under the guidance of their site administrators and university supervisor, to identify a targeted group of students and provide leadership for teachers, parents, and other stakeholders to develop a plan and implement strategies directed at increasing achievement for these students. In addition, aspiring leaders will participate in shadowing experiences at two schools other than their own. Download the Description of Year-Long Field Experience for more information.


In addition to working with the site-based supervisor, each student is assigned an experienced school leader who will serve as a mentor and coach. CCSD educators who are accepted into this program gain automatic entrance into CCSD's Leadership Academy during their last semester of the program. For participants employed in schools outside CCSD, university faculty will work with administrators in their schools to develop similar mentoring opportunities.

Cohort Approach

The program is designed so that students participate in a sequence of classes in which students stay together as a cohort. The cohort approach provides a system of support and network for students as well as other school and district personnel involved in the program.


The M.Ed. in Educational Policy and Leadership curriculum is based on the Nevada Educator Performance Framework and Standards for School Administrators. Thus, program participants will be learning the content and developing skills that will be expected of their performance as entry-level school administrators.

Scheduling Designed for the Working Professional

The program is designed for professionals currently employed as teachers or other school professionals. Students complete the program in less than 18 months. Classes are offered one evening per week and some weekends (no more than once/month). Each major course meets for eight weeks, thus allowing students to focus on one course at a time. In addition, some one-credit courses addressing specific topics are offered as weekend seminars. Download the schedule for the 2017-2018 cohort.


The curriculum is designed around four thematic modules sequenced over four semesters. Each module contains a combination of 1, 2, and 3 credit courses. Download the Course Sequence Document for more information.

Module Title
Module 1 (Spring 1) Leadership to Develop 21st Century Structures
Module 2 (Summer) Financial & Resource Management
Module 3 (Fall) Evidence-based Leadership
Module 4 (Spring 2) Leadership to Develop a Culture of Learning and Equity

News & Events

Mariela Preciado
EPL Administrative Assistant
Phone: 702-895-1781
Room: CEB 319

Dr. Dana Bickmore
Program Coordinator
Phone: 702-895-2560
Room: CEB 316