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Education and Human Development

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Educational Leadership - Masters/C.A.S. Cohort Program

Masters Degree/Certificate of Advanced Study in Educational Leadership Cohort Program

* The most recent cohort began Fall 2010 *
Master’s degree/CAS in Educational Leadership for educators interested in building skills for effective school leadership and administration.  Meets in regional groups and at Orono on some Wednesday evenings and some Saturdays.  For more information contact JoEllen Carr.

Purpose: The cohort program offers students a sequence of courses designed to build broad and deep understanding of leadership theory and practice. The group forms a learning community in which both professors and students co-construct the experience.

Schedule: Classes are offered over a three-year period, beginning in the fall of even years. Classes meet on selected weekend evenings, 5:00-8:00 (usually 2 times each month) and Saturdays, 8:30-2:30 (usually once each month).

Location: The cohort is based in Orono, but we do divide into smaller regional groups and “colleague consulting group” (CCG’s).  Groups are formed geographically, so the exact locations are determined by the composition of the cohort.

Course Credit: The cohort provides 30 credit hours.  Nine other credits depend on your own program of study.

Benefits: Because the cohort goes through the classes in a sequence, you always know the course you need will be available. Professors get to know students better and design sessions to develop individual strengths. Students become a support network for one another.

Site-Based and Off-Campus Programs
The PK-12 Educational Leadership Program currently offers these options for graduate studies at the Masters and CAS levels.

Option 1:  Cohort/Site-Based Program: This is an innovative graduate program, designed to prepare leaders to enhance the performance of schools. The learning makes connections between theory and practice, focusing specifically on the cognitive, interpersonal and intrapersonal dimensions of school leadership.  We begin a cohort in the fall of even years. Classes meet most often in Orono, but may convene in other locations, depending upon the geographic distribution of the group. The classes are held on designated week days (2/month) evenings and Saturdays (1/month).  Semester schedules are published well in advance. A commitment to the entire three-year program of leadership development is expected.

Option 2:  Off-Campus Cohorts: This option is similar in philosophy to the one described above although the actual coursework may differ to some extent.   With prior instructor approval students living in the area may elect to register for a particular course if it helps to meet their career and professional goals.  Presently we have a cohort in Aroostook County (Presque Isle) and another in Kennebec County (Gardiner).

For information about these programs and future locations please contact: JoEllen Carr, 207-581-2455, or email at

Frequently Asked Questions:

Do I need to apply to the Graduate School – YES. You must apply to the Graduate School and fulfill all their requirements for acceptance.

Must I take the GRE or Miller’s Analogy Test (MAT)? – YES, either one. The Graduate School requires it, but test scores are only one factor in being considered for the program. Prior to mailing your Graduate School Application you must have either taken one of these tests or have it scheduled (indicate the date you will take the test on your application).

Can I pick and choose the cohort courses I wish to take? – NO. If you want to participate in the cohort, you need to commit to taking the program in sequence. If this is not something that you feel you can do, it is better to go through the program on an individualized basis.

Does the cohort program fulfill all requirements for administrative certification and for the degree? – No, but almost. In addition to the cohort sequence you will need three additional courses to fulfill these requirements. These include School Law (EAD 531), Resource-Based Decision Making (EAD 616), and one other course you choose in an area that will help round out your knowledge and skills. This might be in curriculum, technology, supervision, staff development, teacher leadership, etc.

When should I take these additional courses?  You may have already taken some of these, but if not, you can take these courses prior to the cohort beginning, or during the summer sessions while you are in the cohort experience. You could also take them after the cohort is complete, but it will mean you will graduate a little later.

Who will be my advisor? – When you receive your acceptance letter from the Graduate School you will be assigned an academic advisor from the Educational Leadership faculty.

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National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education

Contact Information

Education and Human Development
5766 Shibles Hall
Orono, ME 04469
Phone: (207) 581-2412
The University of Maine
Orono, Maine 04469
A Member of the University of Maine System