Educational Leadership

Master's in Educational Leadership Admissions

Admission Requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree with a cumulative grade point average of 2.5 (on a 4.0 scale)
  • Applicants who do not have a 2.5 overall GPA must enclose a letter asking for special consideration, in which they provide evidence of an ability to complete graduate studies successfully. Without such a letter, applicants who fail to meet eligibility requirements may be automatically denied.
  • In the administrative strand, applications are expected to have two years of teaching experience with the expectation of completing a third year of teaching during USM graduate study. The Maine Department of Education requires three years of teaching experience for administrative certification.

Application Materials
Candidates should submit all application materials to the USM Office of Graduate Admissions, PO Box 9300, Portland, ME 04104-9300.

A complete application consists of:

  • A submitted online graduate admission application
  • An application fee of $65.00 made payable to USM
  • Two sets of official transcripts from all colleges or universities attended, including USM
  • Three recommendations attesting to the applicant’s knowledge of current scholarship, capacity to connect theory and practice in posing and solving educational problems, achievement of excellence in educational practice, and demonstrated capability and motivation to engage in advanced graduate study.Recommendations must be received either directly from the recommender or forwarded by the applicant on the official recommendation form (pdf) and in sealed envelopes with the recommender’s signature over the seal.
  • A brief essay (300-500 words) stating your reasons for pursuing graduate study, your professional goals, and how you think this program of study will contribute to these goals. You may include a statement of any special interest you would like to pursue in your study. This should be a well-written, thoughtful personal statement.
  • Your current resume
  • Proof of Teacher Certification using the Teacher Credential Form (pdf)
  • Certification of finances (international students only)
  • TOEFL scores (international students whose first language is not English)

Educational Leadership program applicants pursuing administration are required to submit evidence of at least three years of teaching experience.

You should submit the actual application and fee first and then Graduate Admissions will start a file on you. Graduate Admissions will track your materials as the rest of the pieces come in. Once all your materials are received, Graduate Admissions will send your file to the Program Chair for review. The entire process takes about a month, starting when your whole application packet is complete. Graduate Admissions will send you a login and password for MaineStreet so you can check the status of your application.

Testing Requirement: Applicants are not required to submit GRE or MAT test scores.  Submit official TOEFL scores of 550 or higher on the paper-based test, 79 or higher on the Internet-based test, or 213 or higher on the computer-based test if the applicant is an international student whose first language is not English.
International students who have received their undergraduate degree from an English-speaking institution may apply for a waiver of this requirement.

Transfer Credit: Previously completed graduate courses may be approved for transfer into a graduate program within the educational leadership program if credits for the courses were earned no more than five years prior to matriculation, with grades of B or better. A syllabus for each course submitted for transfer credit must be provided upon application.

For previous work completed through the University of Maine System (UMS), up to twelve (12) credits may be accepted if the courses meet the requirements above and they are equivalent to core courses or elective courses in the relevant USM program of study. Up to six (6) graduate credits completed at institutions outside of the University of Maine System may be accepted if the courses meet the requirements above and are equivalent to core courses or elective courses in the relevant USM program of study.

Transfer of more than twelve (12) University of Maine System credits or six (6) non-University of Maine System credits may be approved by the program coordinator and faculty. These credits may include certificate of graduate study program courses and professional development in-service graduate courses. Requests for the transfer of credits taken more than five (5) years prior to matriculation may also be evaluated and approved by the program coordinator and faculty.