The mission of the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis (ELPA) is to create, evaluate, exchange, and apply knowledge about leadership, learning, and organizational performance to prepare scholars and scholar practitioners who cultivate equity and educational opportunity in a diverse and changing world.
While maintaining high-quality programs to prepare educational leaders and scholars, the department will:
- Expand and enhance the focus on equity, diversity, and difference in instruction, as well as within the faculty, staff, and student body.
- Provide professional development opportunities and research-based support to the profession that advances the quality of administrative practice and policy.
- Continue to build on and integrate our strengths in research productivity, extramural funding, and high-quality teaching, including the expanded use of technology in administrative practice.
The department mission is expressed and affirmed in our commitment to:
- Leadership: The preparation and ongoing development of scholar-practitioners who are reflective and change-oriented leaders engaged in continuous reexamination and improvement of professional practice.
- Connected teaching and learning: The personal and intellectual growth of students and faculty alike through teaching and learning experiences that seek to connect theory with practice by drawing on the knowledge, experiences, and perspectives of program participants and practicing professionals.
- Pursuit and advancement of knowledge and understanding: The pursuit of knowledge, understanding, and insight through active participation by the faculty and students in the generation and rediscovery of knowledge through scholarly inquiry, teaching and learning, and professional service.
- Diversity: A learning community that celebrates wholeness while, at the same time, values the richness of differences in life experiences, cultural backgrounds, ways of knowing, and perspectives of its individual members. The department seeks to renew itself continually by attracting faculty and students who contribute to this diversity as well as enhance the larger community.
- Ethic of service: The belief that serving the larger interests of society – local, state, regional, national, and international – is a privilege, not merely an obligation, for both faculty and students.
- Challenge: Mutually shared expectations for intellectual rigor and challenge which encourage students and faculty to engage in active learning and inquiry, invest in their own and other’s growth and development, and to think more critically, reflexively, and holistically.
- Support: A supportive and collaborative learning environment in which a climate of trust, mutual support, and respect for others’ views encourages program participants to question orthodoxies and take risks in ways that help them to expand the boundaries of their potential.
- Freedom of inquiry and expression: Freedom of inquiry and expression and to the rights and obligations of faculty and students to pursue knowledge and understanding wherever their search may lead.
- Just community: A just community in which all members are expected to treat each individual with respect and fairness and hold themselves accountable to the highest professional and ethical standards.
- Individualization within community: The belief that while everyone should be involved in activities related to research, teaching and service, community members may contribute differently to enacting the mission of the department on the basis of individual differences.