Shaping the future of education

Our Department

Welcome to the UW–Madison Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis (ELPA), where our courses and research give students a deep understanding of educational organizations, educational policy, and policy systems. In ELPA master’s and PhD programs, students can specialize in one of three areas: K-12 leadership, higher education, or educational policy analysis and evaluation. No matter which unique strand you choose, when you graduate, you will be an effective leader, prepared to pave the way to better education for all students.

UW–Madison School of Education again in top 5 of U.S. News rankings

#2 Educational Administration and Supervision
#10 Higher Education Administration

2023-2024 MS Cohort Program Calendar
Summer 2023
June 19-22; July 17-20; August 7-10
Fall 2023
September 8-9; September 22-23; October 20-21; November 3-4; December 1-2
Spring 2024
January 26-27; February 9-10; March 1-2; April 5-6; April 26-27
Summer 2024
June 17-20; July 15-18

In fall and spring courses are taught on Friday evenings and Saturdays on the dates listed.


LEADS is directed by graduate students. Activities and events are chosen, designed, and executed by our graduate students.  LEADS serves an important and needed function in fostering community and building skills within ELPA.  For a conversation with current students contact LEADS.

The purpose of the Higher Education Student Advisory Board is to provide professional development opportunities and social networking for students in the Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis (ELPA) Masters of Higher Education track in the School of Education. This group will focus on providing opportunities for professional growth and connections in higher education at the University of Wisconsin-Madison (UW) and across other institutions.