Masters/C.A.S. Cohort Program

The Masters/CAS cohort in Educational Leadership is for educators interested in building skills for effective school leadership and administration.  The Masters degree is for students who are just beginning graduate study in this field; the Cohort CAS is available to students who have a Masters degree in a related field, but not in Educational Leadership.

Masters Degree Or Certificate Of Advanced Study In Educational Leadership Cohort 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. The group forms a learning community in which both professors and students co-construct the experience.

The Masters degree is for students who are just beginning graduate study in this field; the Cohort CAS is available to students who have a Masters degree in a related field, but not in Educational Leadership.

Classes meet on Saturdays in Orono and convene in regional groups depending on the geographic distribution of the cohort. The classes are held on designated weekdays (2/month) evenings and Saturdays (1/month). Classes are also held during the summer (May and June). Students may take electives during the summer also Semester schedules are published well in advance. A commitment to the entire three-year program of leadership development is expected.

The cohort program provides 28 credit hours. Twelve other credits depend on your own program of study.

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.

Occasionally we offer off-campus cohorts in a region of the state. This program 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. We have or have had cohorts in Aroostook County (Presque Isle), Kennebec County (Gardiner and another one in Fairfield), and the Hutchinson Center (Belfast).

For information about these programs and future locations please contact: Jo-Ellen 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 the Miller 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), Special Education Law (SED 520) 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.