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Colleges and Schools

Admission Requirements

Admission requirements to the master of arts in educational leadership (MAEL) are intended to help you meet the Illinois state requirements for the principal or teacher leader endorsement on your educator’s license upon completion of your program.

Apply now to join the MAEL program. Cohorts start each fall, typically in September.

Two-Phase Admission Process

To assist future principals in meeting Illinois state requirements for principal and teacher leader preparation programs, the School of Education has designed a two-phase admissions process for the master of arts in educational leadership (MAEL).

Phase One

Applicants must meet the admission requirements below and may be asked to sit for an interview with an admission committee.

  1. Complete our convenient online, no-fee application
  2. Hold a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution, generally with a GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  3. Have at least two years of teaching experience on a current, valid Illinois teaching license
  4. Provide names and contact information for three individuals who can provide professional letters of recommendation on your behalf, one of whom must be your current principal
  5. Request official transcripts from all colleges and universities you have attended, and have them sent directly to North Park University:

North Park University Admissions
3225 W Foster Ave., Box 19
Chicago, IL 60625

GPA Requirement

Generally, only students with 3.0 out of 4.0 GPA in undergraduate work will be considered for admission to this program. However, candidates with lower GPAs may be considered if they submit strong GRE or MAT exam scores.

Phase Two

If you successfully pass Phase One of the process, you’ll enroll in EDUC 6030: Educational Leadership.

During this course, your instructors will work with you to develop an Admissions Portfolio that will demonstrate how you successfully meet the requirements for Phase Two admission, which are designed to prepare you for the State of Illinois for principal endorsement and include:

  • An updated resume
  • Evidence of leadership roles and descriptions of your impact on your classrooms, school or district, or constituents served
  • Demonstration of at least two years of teaching experience on a valid and current Illinois license, with demonstrated student growth within two of the last five years
  • An in-person interview with full-time faculty members in the School of Education and representatives from partner schools and districts
  • An on-site written response to a scenario presented by the interviewers

Once you can develop this Admission Portfolio and meet the requirements for Phase Two, you’ll be granted full admission into the MAEL and can enroll in the continuing coursework.

Review our complete graduate education application process for more details on the process and timeline of your application.