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Main Office

Educational Leadership & Policy Analysis
School of Education
UW-Madison
253 Education Building
1000 Bascom Mall
MadisonWI  53706-1326

Tel: 608/262-3106
Fax: 608/265-3135

Email: elpa@education.wisc.edu
or by contact form
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Tell me and I’ll forget; show me and I may remember; involve me and I’ll understand. —Chinese Proverb

Administrative Licensure  


Leadership for Learning for All Students"

The programs emphasize the development of knowledge, skills and dispositions to support leadership for learning for all students. The program is designed with courses offered under the general themes of individual socialization, instructional leadership, and integrative leadership clusters. Course work emphasizes the development of knowledge and skills in the seven state administrator standards, with a strong instructional leadership focus. Students receive training in data-based decision-making, resource reallocation, instructional and cultural leadership, professional development and evaluation, and legal aspects of administrative practice. Students develop a portfolio of their work throughout the program that is used formatively to help shape learning opportunities, and summatively to assess readiness for administrative work.

Graduates of the program serve as administrators in public and private schools throughout the state in diverse settings. They also serve in state and national leadership roles to strengthen and enhance learning outcomes for all students.


Principal Certification 

The principalship provides the foundational course work for all administrative licenses, and focuses on instructional leadership and data-based decision-making. 
The requirements for principal certificate are built into the K12 Master's Cohort degree requirements.  If seeking certification only, the same program requirements are required. 

Adding Director of Instruction Certification

If someone does not hold a principal license, all courses required for principal certification plus the two additional courses listed below (860 and 875) are required.  If seeking a director instruction license as an initial administrative license, a 150 hour field experience is required.
If someone currently holds a principal license, adding the director of instruction license requires completion of the two additional courses listed below (860 and 875) plus a 75 hour field experience.  The additional courses are:

  • ELPA 860 Organizational Theory and Behavior in Education
    Theoretical constructs and empirical research relating to administering organizations in education. Emphasis on administrative behavior with special attention to planning and organizational improvement.
  • ELPA 875 Theory and Practice of Educational Planning
    Theory, research and practice in advanced program planning and evaluation involving elementary, secondary and higher and post-secondary education.

Adding Director of Special Education and Pupil Services Certification


If someone does not hold a principal license, all courses required for principal certification plus the two additional courses listed below (835 and 842) are required.  If seeking a director of special education and pupil services license as an initial administrative license, a 150 hour field experience is required.

If someone currently holds a principal license, adding the director of special education and pupil services license requires completion of the two additional courses listed below (835 and 842) plus a 75 hour field experience.  The additional courses are:

  • ELPA 835 Leadership for Inclusive Schooling
    Examines historical and organizational context of special education administration at the federal, state and local levels. Includes policy implementation, constituency management, coordination, communication, and current issues.
  • ELPA 842 Legal Foundations of Special Education and Pupil Services
    Legal requirements and issues relative to special education and pupil services programs; special education, juvenile justice, programs for English language learners, programs for children who are homeless; examination of applicable federal and state statutes and case law. 

Superintendent Certification


Superintendent certification requires completion of an Educational Specialist Certificate

or the equivalent which is enrollment in a Ph.D. program and completion of all coursework and preliminary exams (approved dissertation proposal).

If seeking superintendent certification in Wisconsin candidate must hold or be eligible to hold a Principal (51) license.

LICENSE SPECIFIC COURSE WORK
(MUST BE INCLUDED IN EDUCATIONAL SPECIALIST CERTIFICATE PROGRAM OR PH.D. PROGRAM)

  • ELPA 785 Staff Personnel Systems
  • ELPA 846 The Superintendency
  • ELPA 860 Organizational Theory and Behavior in Education
  • ELPA 870 The Politics of Education
  • ELPA 875 Theory and Practice of Educational Planning

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