Course Delivery:

The program will launch with two classes in June for 9 days via intensive sessions on Baylor's Waco campus. We will meet for one additional intensive class for 4 days the following June. The remaining courses will use online and asynchronous learning deliveries using Baylor’s learning management system and instructional technology.

June Intensives:

The intensive classes will consist of four 8-hour days to build cohort cohesion and to build a culture of collective instructional leadership. This will be essential for establishing trust and networks. These intensives could align with Baylor’s Center for School Leadership (CSL) Academy for Transformational Learning, bringing some of the strongest Christian leaders in education to campus from Sunday to Tuesday. This will allow MA cohort members to interact with other leaders from diverse contexts. Additionally, MA students will have the opportunity to present their research at the Academy. Registration for the Academies will be covered as a component of tuition.

Online Coursework:

Online coursework will consist of asynchronous or synchronous work throughout the week with weekly 90-minute Zoom check-ins and collaborative work. Classes will last for eight weeks and will not be taken concurrently.

Core Courses 
  • EDL 5435 Fundamentals of School Leadership (9-day Y1 June intensive on campus)
  • EDL 5301 Christian Faith and Education (9-day Y1 June intensive on campus)
  • EDL 5300 Research in Education (Fall)
  • EDL 5302 Instructional Leadership (Fall)
  • EDL 5363 Administrative Theory and Educational Leadership (4-day Y2 June intensive on campus)
Texas Certification Cohort
  • EDL 5353 The Principalship (Summer Online)
  • EDL 5V64 Internship in School Administration (Spring Online)
  • EDL 5359 School Law and Governance (Spring Online)
  • EDL 5344 School Business Management and Finance (Spring Online)
  • EDL 5303 Capstone (Independent with mentors - Y2 Fall)
Independent School Cohort 
  • EDL 5353 The Principalship for Independent School Leaders (Summer Online)
  • EDL 5V64 Internship in School Administration (Spring Online)
  • EDL 5359 School Law and Governance for Independent School Leaders (Spring Online)
  • EDL 5344 School Business Management and Finance for Independent School Leaders (Spring Online)
  • EDL 5303 Capstone (Independent with mentors - Y2 Fall)

The following narrative provides a partial description of the courses being proposed.

EDL 5345: Fundamentals of School Leadership

The primary purpose of this course is to examine leadership competencies that focus on and enhance human flourishing, social justice, equity, and academic growth in diverse school environments. This course will expose students to research in high leverage turnaround leadership, dynamics of schools in decline, and leadership coaching based on the core tenets of improvement science. Course work will provide opportunities for self-reflection in areas of personal leadership and Christian ethical beliefs.

EDL 5302: Instructional Leadership

The primary purpose of this course is to have aspiring school leaders learn to fulfill education leaders’ responsibilities for planning, implementing, monitoring, and evaluating assessment, curriculum, and instruction in public and independent schools for diverse learners. Topics include the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, relevant legislation at the state and national levels, balanced assessment, curriculum, models of instruction, and multi-tiered support systems. Students will examine current practices in assessment, curriculum, and instruction as well as how to use data to make informed decisions, monitor student progress, and provided accountability.

EDL 5300: Research in Education (Data Informed Decision Making)

The primary purpose of this course is to prepare aspiring leaders to effectively facilitate a wide range of initiatives around continuous improvement and data-informed decision making. Tasks in this course are oriented to cover both state and national professional standards and indicators. Aspiring leaders will explore the supports and barriers pertaining to the effective use of data and evidence in schools. As such, students will examine the appropriate and inappropriate uses of summative and formative assessments; the principles of inquiry cycles among educators; and the effective use of data information systems.

EDL 5301: Christian Faith and Education

The primary purpose of this course is the integration of faith, teaching, and educational leadership. This integration is vital for both public and private school teachers and manifests itself through excellence in instruction and learning that promotes human flourishing. This course will connect a theology of education to outcomes for students made in the image of God that will ground the leadership and educational theory in this course.

EDL 5363: Administrative Theory and Educational Leadership

The primary purpose of this course is to provide aspiring leaders with a solid foundation of the theory base for the field of educational leadership. This course introduces students to a comprehensive set of historical and current theories, concepts, and approaches in educational leadership. The foundational theories presented in this course are meant to provide students with an understanding of how organizations, behavior, and management associate with desired outcomes in public and independent educational settings.

EDL 5V64: Internship in School Administration

The primary purpose of this course is to provide on-the-job learning and professional development experiences for future administrative and supervisory personnel. Seminars are held periodically under the direction of the University Coordinator. This course allows aspiring leaders to demonstrate efficacy in leading administrative and supervisory activities. Students with a P-12 focus must align clinical learning experiences with state and national educational leadership standards. The internship consists of 160 hours in your school context. The hours will be connected to classes in both the spring and fall semester of the first year of the program.

At this point in the program, the two cohorts split. The course numbers remain the same but the content will be addressed by two separate professors at different class times based on two different contexts. The principal certification cohort will use Texas public schools as the context for the course, while the school leadership cohort will study the concepts in the context of independent school leadership.

EDL 5353: The Principalship

The primary purpose of this course is to examine the diverse array of responsibilities of the modern school leader, with an emphasis on the development and growth of the principal in the area of strategic leadership as it relates to improvement science and continuous school improvement. This course provides an overview of the roles and responsibilities of the contemporary principalship through participation in real-time, contextually specific activities and job-embedded experiences allowing the student to develop a more comprehensive understanding of the role of a school leader within the context of a 21st century education environment in public and independent schools.

EDL 5359: School Law and Governance

The primary purpose of this course is to present aspiring leaders with legal principles on all major facets of school and institutional operation. This course examines the relationship between law, public policy, ethics, and current issues in P-12 education. In order to adequately prepare leaders, a basic understanding of school law is crucial. By developing a deeper understanding of legal and ethical requirements as well as multi-tiered systems of support, school leaders will be better prepared to lead in schools where each student is able to flourish. School leaders must understand school legal issues in order to create sound policies and to make sound decisions in public and independent schools.

EDL 5344: School Business Management and Finance

The primary purpose of this course is to help students develop a working knowledge of school finance.  Students will explore adequacy, efficiency, and equity and how these issues influence school finance from the federal, state, district and school level.  This course will explore the revenue sources and the funding process used to finance education for students in the state of Texas.  The course will provide students an opportunity to learn how state funds are distributed to school districts, give them a working knowledge of the formulas used for that purpose, and provide them with an understanding of how to develop, maintain, and evaluate an individual school budget. Students will have knowledge of how to relate state funding to district and building level budget preparation. Independent school leaders will develop skills in fund-raising, board facilitation, and budget preparation based on their own contextual needs.  

EDL 5303: Capstone in Educational Leadership

The primary purpose of this course is to develop candidates’ abilities to design, conduct, and report the findings of an action research project within the context of school administration.  Emphasis will be given to understanding administrative problems of school principals and formulating solutions to address them.  Additional practical emphasis is given to how principals and principal candidates “make sense” (i.e., “theorize”) about the difficulties of balancing the demands of managing schools with the mandates of state and national educational policies. In this final course aspiring leaders will examine the complex realities of administration in public or independent schools by developing and implementing an action research capstone project.  Working with the university advisor and the site supervisor, each candidate will use data analysis and leadership skills to identify a problem of practice in a school.  The candidate will gather pertinent information from the school environment and the literature to further refine the problem and generate an action plan for addressing the problem.  The candidate will implement the plan, present a written action research paper, and defend the project to a panel of university faculty and practicing school administrators.

Baylor University MA in School Leadership

School of Education
Marrs McLean Science Building
One Bear Place #97312,
Waco, TX 76798-7312

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