Frequently Asked Questions

We’ve put together answers to the most common questions from applicants interested in earning a graduate degree or certificate in educational leadership and policy.

Do you still have questions? Please be sure to contact us!

How do I apply?

Students must submit an application to the university graduate school.

Once the application has been reviewed individuals will be contacted from someone from the department and a telephone interview may be requested to finalize the application process.

When are application due?

Applications should be submitted by their respective term deadline. The deadlines are as follows:

  • February 15th (Summer)
  • July 1 (Fall)
  • October 15th (Spring)

All application material should be received by the deadline.*

*Domestic students only. International student deadline is March 15.

What is the scholarly paper requirement?

This information pertains to degree programs in Educational Leadership.


The scholarly paper requirement provides a measure of your potential and current ability to write at the graduate level. While student skills will increase through exposure to our program, we seek evidence that you can coherently present a thesis, develop an idea, and present your ideas on paper. Students may write on any topic in the general field of K-12 or Higher Education learning, teaching, critical issues or leadership the student deems important. Regardless of topic, the paper must include citations and a reference list.

For the M.Ed. program, the length of the paper is no more than 3-5 pages.

When will admission decisions be made?

Admission to the program is a collaborative decision between the program faculty. Admission decisions are made on a rolling basis, typically beginning three to four weeks after the application deadline. Decisions will continue to be made until all spaces in the program have been filled.

What is the cost of attending?

The current graduate tuition and fees can be found here.


Please Note: The only additional requirement for students is to purchase an account in LiveText.

Is there financial aid available for this program?

Students are encouraged to apply to the UF Office for Student Financial Affairs for assistance with loans, grants, and fellowships.

How far in advance to I need to apply for financial aid?

Financial aid information is available from the UF Office of Financial Aid.  The financial aid process can take up to several months from submission to approval and disbursement.  This should be incorporated into the student’s plan for admission and done well in advance of acceptance and the begin date for the program.

How many credits are required to complete this degree program?

Typically students enroll in two classes (6 credits) each semester.  36 credits are required for graduation.

With the class enrollment noted above, a student should expect to complete the degree requirements within two years. If a student enrolls in more or fewer classes a semester, the program can be done quicker or slower. The specific Program Plan is developed between the student and the program coordinator.

Is teaching experience or certification required for admission into this program?

The MEd can be pursued in one of two tracks – the degree with corresponding eligibility for Florida Level 1 certification in Educational Leadership OR the degree without corresponding eligibility for Florida certification in Educational Leadership. Students entering with at least three years of teaching experience are eligible for the certification track, though those entering with less can transition to the certification track upon completion of three years of teaching.

Please note this program does not provide teacher certification, but rather Florida Principal’s Certification.

What is the field experience requirement for this program?

For students seeking to earn their Florida Principal Certification, the M.Ed. Online program offers this field experience in a course entitled EDA 6948 Supervised Practice in School Administration, which is normally taken within the last two semesters for the degree. This practicum course requires a student to work with a site supervisor who holds principal certification from the State of Florida and a university supervisor, who is the instructor for the course. The state required 150 hour minimum of field experience is completed by the student in a school setting. The site supervisor and university supervisor together evaluate the student on completion of the field experience.

Should I pursue certification track, non-certification track, or systems leadership track?

If you intend to lead a school of any kind (public, private, or charter), you should pursue the School Leadership Track. If you intend to lead a public school, you should pursue the school leadership track with certification.

I am not interested in leading a school, but I am interested in taking on another leadership role. What is my best option?

If you do not intend on leading a school, then you may be interested in the Systems Leadership track. Systems leadership provides students with an opportunity to specialize in a particular area, such as digital transformation, data leadership, policy, and more.

If I pursue non-certification track or systems leadership track. Do I still get the same degree?

Yes. All graduates will receive a masters degree in educational leadership.

I am not located in Florida. Will the certification track lead to certification in my home state?

School leadership certification is managed state to state, with requirements varying widely. In some cases, a state only requires an educational leadership degree, while in others it may require a series of specific courses. You are encouraged to connect with your respective credentialing body to determine if this program will lead to certification in your context.

Is an M.Ed. degree in educational leadership available without certification?

Students can earn the M.Ed. degree without certification. In the place of field experience, students will take an additional elective or practicum.

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