Educational Leadership and policy Studies (ELPS)

Lead for a better future. Our Educational Leadership and Policy Studies (ELPS) program gives you the tools to tackle challenges at all levels within an educational system, whether you are an aspiring principal, district leader, or policy maker.

Build critical skills through intensive academic and field-based experiences. You will benefit from cutting edge content and clinical/practice-based/in-context/practical experiences that integrates leadership, systems and design thinking, policy, and research. Our programs (CERT/MA, EdD and PhD), faculty, and clinical experiences will empower you to think like an entrepreneur and build leadership capacity for continuous improvement and demonstrable results that impact all students and communities.

A unique component of our program is our focus on transformative and turnaround leadership which is at the core of our degree programs. As an ELPS student, you will learn how to unleash and leverage self, communities, and resources to change the status quo to ensure equitable outcomes for every student.

Degree Programs

For a general information about our programs, please download the Ritchie ELSS Student Overview (PDF).

NOTE: The University of Denver has not yet determined whether the above programs meets licensure requirements in a state other than Colorado or in any U.S. protectorates. For students seeking licensure in a state other than Colorado, students should contact the state’s Board of Education to determine whether the program meets licensure requirements.


The ELPS program at the University of Denver is one of the best of the country.

Learn More About the ELPS Program

Why Study at DU?

There are many reasons to enroll in an ELPS program at the Morgridge College of Education and join the transformative network of students, graduates and faculty. We are committed to improving access to our programs by awarding substantial tuition reductions and scholarships to all accepted on-campus students. Our graduates are successful in obtaining leadership positions upon graduating graduation from our programs and are positively impacting educational opportunities for students and communities across Colorado and the US. Our faculty members are nationally recognized scholars who serve in a multitude of leadership positions within professional organizations and editorial boards and have diverse leadership experiences.  Student/professor relationships are personal, and supportive, and extend past graduation.

Beyond these reasons, you will find that there is no better place to live than Denver. Take the light rail directly from DU to downtown where you can enjoy amazing restaurants, sporting events, and nightlife or take a short drive west for spectacular mountain scenery and recreation. There are plenty of options to make your time at DU even more fulfilling.

NOTE: If you plan to attend the University of Denver with a student visa, view important information about licensure.


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