The University of Louisiana at Lafayette has launched a hybrid master’s degree program in educational leadership.
The program is geared toward elementary and secondary teachers who are interested in leadership roles, such as principal, assistant principal, and other positions in school systems.
It blends elements of online instruction with face-to-face interaction between faculty and students, said Dr. Frank Del Favero, an associate professor in the College of Education, who coordinates the program.
“The hybrid program provides students with the best of both worlds — 24/7 access to online course content and valuable time with faculty and peers. Time spent on campus, however, is minimal,” Del Favero explained.
Students complete a total of 12 courses over six semesters as part of the program. They enroll in two courses per semester and attend a three-hour evening class once each week.
Each semester, students attend one classroom session for a particular course one week, and receive online instruction for the other course that same week. The next week, the schedule is reversed, an alternating pattern that continues throughout the semester.
“In the past, students would have to attend classes twice per week, which was a little more demanding for students with career and family responsibilities,” Del Favero said.
About 45 students are enrolled in the program, which the Louisiana Board of Regents approved last fall.
The College of Education also has begun partnering with school districts, which single out potential future leaders to participate in the program at centralized locations within the school district.
“Each district vets its teachers, then asks good candidates for future leadership to apply to the program. Then, we deliver the program in the school districts. So, the students don’t come to us, we go to them. We currently have a cohort in Rapides Parish, and another in Vermilion Parish,” Del Favero said.
The master’s degree in educational leadership curriculum is designed to provide students with in-depth knowledge about a range of topics. It covers everything from legal and ethical issues to community engagement to using data to effect change.
“We also can tailor the content of our courses, to an extent, to address initiatives that the school district might have. If a district is working on, for example, clinical supervision models, we can meld that into our curricula,” Del Favero said.
Learn more about the hybrid master's degree in educational leadership.