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!

Are all the courses delivered online?

All courses will be delivered in an online format that blends synchronous (Zoom) meetings with asynchronous course content. Students will attend two synchronous online weekend meetings per semester providing real-time interaction with faculty and cohort mates.

What is the expected time to completion and what kind of timeline can I expect?

The program plan consists of a structured cohort-based model. Classes each term are pre-determined. Students will take 2 classes per term (6 credit hours), Fall, Spring and Summer. Students finish coursework in 3 years with a 4th year devoted to completing the dissertation.

How many credits are required to complete this degree program?

Typically students enroll in two classes (6 credits) each semester. 90 credits are required for graduation. This includes 15 credit hours of transfer/elective courses, 36 hours of department courses, 15 hours of research courses, and 24 hours of dissertation hours.

Does the LEAD Ed.D. program result in certification for being a principal or assistant principal?

The LEAD EdD program is not a principal preparation program. Students interested in Level 1 certification for school administration may consider our MEd and EdS programs.

What are the equipment requirements and technical skills needed for the online classes?

Course content and delivery varies by professor, but most courses are managed through an online Learning Management System. Some professors use web conferencing with their students during the class sessions. To participate in class session’s students will need to have administrative privileges on their machine to download software required for the program. A high-speed Internet connection is strongly recommended. Once admitted to the program, students will be given appropriate assistance with online class setup.

Please review the computer requirements on the Office of Distance Learning website.

Where can I find more information about the online/distance state authorization process?

For more information about online/distance state authorization, please visit the UF Distance Learning information page about this process.

Will any of my existing credits transfer?

Students may expect to transfer a maximum 15 credits from previous coursework into the LEAD program, subject to approval by advisor. Regardless of which course credits transfer, all students will be expected to take the full sequence of courses along with their cohort. Transfer credits will be applied to elective courses only.

How do I apply?

Students must submit an application to the university graduate school. For more details visit the application process page.

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 are due by March 15th. To ensure that your application is reviewed, all application material should be received by the application deadline including transcripts.

Are GRE scores required?

Beginning with the Fall 2024 cohort, GRE scores are no longer required for application.

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.

The length of the paper is no more than 7-10 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 are the eligibility requirements for acceptance into the LEAD program?

To apply to the UF graduate school individuals must have a master’s degree for acceptance into the program.

What is the cost of attending?

The current graduate tuition and fees can be found here.

Are there any financial aid opportunities, scholarships, or fellowships offered to help students in the LEAD program?

LEAD students are often sponsored by their school or institution. There are currently no specific scholarships or fellowships for the LEAD 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.

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