Online Master’s in Educational Administration Programs
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Educational administrators help plan and manage school systems. Administrator tasks may include providing leadership, promoting a safe environment for students, and managing human resources.
An online master's in educational administration prepares students for relevant roles by teaching trends in education, practical issues, and theories.
You can choose programs that specialize in K-12 or postsecondary positions. Programs may offer a pathway to achieving state licensure.
Continue on to learn more about popular online master's programs, available licenses, and career paths.
Benefits of a Master's in Educational Administration
Qualify for jobs with high-earning potential.
Learn a diverse skill set that applies beyond the education industry.
Use the degree as a stepping stone to a doctorate or for career advancement.
Pursue a worthwhile career with the potential to impact future generations.
Gain personal satisfaction through supporting students and staff.
Featured Master's in Educational Administration Online Degrees
Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.
Popular Master's in Educational Administration Online Programs
We chose to highlight the following schools based on several factors, including top position in organic or paid search results (as of October 2023), relevancy of program offerings, and categorization as a nonprofit. These programs are listed alphabetically by school and not weighed against each other in our methodology.
|School||Degree Offered||Cost per Credit||Required Credits||Months to Complete||GRE Required||Prepares You for Admin Licensure|
|Ball State University||MA||$451 (in-state)
|California State University San Marcos||MA||$499||30||12||No||Yes|
|Emporia State University||MS||$332||33||12||No||Yes|
|University of Kansas||MS||$595||36||24||No||Yes|
|University of Tennessee||MS||$700 (in-state)
Ball State University (BSU)
- Public university in Indiana
- MA in Education in Educational Administration and Supervision
- 36 credits | $451-676 /credit
Ball State University offers the largest principal preparation program in Indiana. Professors include doctorate-holders and experienced school administrators. Attendees must participate in a six month principal internship at a school within the K-12 levels.
California State University San Marcos (CSUSM)
- Public university in California
- MA in Educational Administration
- 30 credits | $499 /credit
California State University San Marcos's online master's in educational administration helps students earn a master's degree and simultaneously prepare for the Cal APA testing, a requirement for new California school administrators. The program intends to prepare students for California licensure requirements, but does not directly lead to credentials or licensure.
Emporia State University (ESU)
- Public university in Kansas
- MS in Education Administration
- 33 credits | $332 /credit
Emporia State University's master's in educational administration online program prepares students for a building-level licensure in Kansas. Students will learn how to evaluate ideas and analyze curriculums. The school also offers a dual accelerated MS in education administration and MS in curriculum and instruction.
University of Kansas (KU)
- Public university in Kansas
- MS in Education in Educational Administration
- 36 credits | $595 /credit
The University of Kansas MSE program offers both a licensure and non-licensure track. Enrollees in the licensure program will meet Kansas's building leadership endorsement requirements. The program offers a unique interactive virtual school software that allows students to simulate real-world learning environments.
University of Tennessee (UTK)
- Public university in Tennessee
- MS in Education Administration
- 30 credits | $700-775 /credit
Through its Vols Online program, the University of Tennessee offers an online master's in educational administration with concentrations in higher education administration and K-12 instructional leadership. The K-12 instructional leadership program offers a licensure and non-licensure track for prospective educators. Enrollees in the licensure track must complete coursework and in-school fieldwork.
Reasons to Get Your Master's in Educational Administration Online
Flexible class schedule
Convenience of attending from any location
Time saved by not commuting
Easier to balance work and school
Adaptable for neurodivergent learning styles
What Is a Master's in Educational Administration?
Master's in educational administration programs teach leadership theory, relevant laws, and practical issues to help you pursue administrative roles. Institutions can award different types of degrees for this field, including:
- Master of Arts (MA)
- Master of Education (M.Ed.)
- Master of Science (MS)
The education coursework across these degree types tends to be largely the same, though some programs may have nuanced differences.
For example, an MA program may focus on the theoretical problems and solutions of educational administration, whereas an MS program may focus on the technical understanding of the subject.
Common Courses in Online Master's in Educational Administration Programs
- School leadership theory
- Educational law and regulations
- Research in education
- Data-driven leadership
- Human resource management
- Special education leadership
How long does an online master's in educational administration take?
Online master’s in educational administration can take 12-24 months for full-time students and approximately two years for part-time students. Programs usually include 30-36 credits, which may include core, elective, and fieldwork credits. You may have the option to earn a dual degree or specialized concentration within a similar timeframe.
How much does an online master's in educational administration cost?
According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), the average annual tuition and fees for an online master's degree in education is $8,155. In contrast, the average annual tuition for graduate degrees across all subjects was $19,749 in the 2020-2021 school year.
Do Online Master's Degrees in Educational Administration Lead to Licensure?
Master’s in educational administration online programs may offer separate paths for licensure and non-licensure. Licensure track programs attempt to meet state requirements for licensure, which may include specific classes or fieldwork.
Many programs recommend you contact local licensure boards before signing up for a program, to ensure that program meets specific state's licensure requirements. You may need official testing before obtaining licensure, but not to graduate the program.
Licensure Tracks for Popular Online Master's in Educational Administration Programs
- PK-12 building-level administration and supervision license
- Preliminary Administrative Services Credential
- Kansas building-level license
- Kansas building leadership license
- K-12 Tennessee education licensure
Does Accreditation Matter for Online Educational Administration Master's Programs?
Before applying to any online master's program, you should always confirm that the institution is accredited, which demonstrates that it meets a certain standard of education.
Institutional accreditation is required if you plan on receiving federal financial aid. You may be unable to transfer credits or pursue further graduate studies if you earned your master's degree from an unaccredited college or university.
Programmatic accreditation differs from institutional accreditation in that it extends only to a specific program or department within an institution. For education-related programs, this type of accreditation serves as an additional marker of high quality, though it is not necessarily a requirement.
The Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) and Association for Advancing Quality in Educator Preparation (AAQEP) are the main programmatic accreditors for master’s in educational administration online programs.
|School||Institutional Accreditation||Programmatic Accreditation|
|BSU||Higher Learning Commission||CAEP|
|CSUSM||Western Association of Schools and Colleges||none|
|ESU||Higher Learning Commission||CAEP|
|KU||Higher Learning Commission||CAEP|
|UTK||Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges||CAEP|
What Are the Admission Requirements for an Online Master's in Educational Administration Program?
Master's in educational administration programs have various requirements for graduate admission. Institutions may require you to complete most or all of the following:
- A bachelor's degree from an accredited institution with a GPA of at least 2.5-3.0
- Online application (with an application fee)
- A teaching credential (Other relevant credentials including school psychologist or school counselor may also be considered)
- Multiple years of experience in the teaching field
- Official transcripts
- Letters of recommendation
- Essay or personal statement
- Schools may require a GRE, depending upon the program
What Can You Do With a Master's in Educational Administration?
Since your skills will be most appropriate for working with students and faculty, you can pursue various administrative roles at the K-12 or postsecondary level, including assistant principal, principal, director of admissions, and dean.
But it's a broad enough degree that can also apply to other fields. Education administrators can work in human resources, facilities management, and even public relations — all of which could benefit from your degree's experience and knowledge.
Note that some career paths, such as those in the K-12 public school system, may require teaching experience and a state-issued license to practice.
|Job||Median Salary (2022)||Outlook (2022-2032)|
|School Principal (K-12)||$101,320||+1%|
|Postsecondary Education Administrator||$99,940||+4%|
|Administrative Services or Facilities Manager||$101,870||+5%|
|Human Resources Manager||$130,000||+5%|
|Public Relations or Fundraising Manager||$125,620||+6%|
Is a Master's in Educational Administration Worth It?
If you have a passion for education and wish to pursue an administrative role in the field, an online master's in educational administration program may be worth the time and effort.
Specific administrative or leadership roles, such as school principal, may require a master's degree. This degree can also open doors to other potentially lucrative education careers, such as school district superintendent, and serve as a stepping stone into a doctoral program in education.
You can also use the program to meet state licensure requirements. If you plan on obtaining licensure in your state, a master's degree can offer a fixed curriculum and help you meet your goal.
Page last reviewed October 17, 2023. The programs highlighted on this page were preselected by the BestColleges Team. The review of this content by Samantha Fecich, Ph.D., does not constitute an endorsement or recommendation of the aforementioned programs.