10 ways an advanced degree in education enhances leadership skills

leadership skills

Education has countless benefits. It is extremely important in shaping an individual’s personality, providing them with confidence, and equipping them with skills that will help them to succeed in different phases and aspects of life. Through school and high school education, an individual also learns to make friends, communicate with others, and maintain relationships. There are countless benefits of education, specifically advanced education, which refers to a bachelor’s degree, a master’s degree, or a Ph.D. level qualification. This article will explore in detail ten ways in which an advanced degree can enhance an individual’s personality, improve their skills, and enable them to thrive in leadership roles. 

Exploring leadership roles

Advanced knowledge

When your education is of advanced level, your knowledge will increase with it. Advanced degrees provide an individual with a deeper understanding of different topics through both theoretical and practical learning. This is very important because such knowledge is what enables future leaders to make informed and evidence-based decisions that can potentially fix the fault in how things work within a community or an organization. 

Research skills

Advanced educational degrees often have a strong focus on building research skills in students. The idea of research is based on certain principles that include defining goals, finding reliable sources, analyzing and synthesizing data, and reflecting on information retrieved to bring about the required improvement. It is crucial for leaders to promote a culture of constant improvement through research. This includes assessing study findings, comments, and outcomes to determine the effectiveness of their tactics. 

Adaptive growth is facilitated by remaining receptive to novel ideas, differing perspectives, and emerging opportunities. The ability to adapt your knowledge and skills to the situation is crucial. For instance, improving your leadership style requires aggressively seeking out helpful feedback, investigating cutting-edge models, and implementing unique techniques. 

Pedagogical expertise

The theory and practice of how students are taught is known as pedagogy. Instructors employ particular interpersonal and pedagogical abilities to interact effectively with pupils. Only individuals who themselves have gained advanced education can successfully learn pedagogical skills and understand their importance. The correct pedagogical capabilities enable teachers to encourage a student’s overall growth while also assisting pupils in better navigating their learning process. This is a fundamental trait to have for individuals who wish to pursue leadership roles to bring about a positive change in a society, community, or organization. 

Many characteristics of a pedagogical leader are geared at enhancing the learning process. Building long-lasting relationships with your team, fostering an environment that values and promotes innovation, and encouraging your team to make use of their learning abilities to enhance performance and outcomes may all be accomplished by using the pedagogical style of leadership. 

A pedagogical leader is someone who supports instructional activities and employs them to create a capable team. Such leaders place a strong emphasis on helping their team members reach their full potential. This includes recognizing each member’s strengths and areas for improvement, as well as fostering an atmosphere that will help them make the most of their abilities and overcome challenges.


A well-structured and well-thought-out course taught at an advanced degree level can significantly help in building problem-solving skills among students. Universities that offer advanced degrees purposefully design their curricula in order to make cross-disciplinary collaboration a basic foundation of their teaching. 

This enables students to tackle real-world problems later on while working in various positions in an organization and also as a member of a community. Creativity and ingenuity are frequently necessary for effective problem-solving. These abilities make leaders more capable of devising original and creative solutions to issues. Additionally, they are more likely to inspire their group to think creatively and independently. Effectiveness can only be increased by having good problem-solving abilities. Leaders with strong problem-solving abilities may spot inefficiencies in their business and put new procedures in place to improve workflow. They can also spot wasteful uses of resources and divert them to more beneficial uses.

Communication skills

High-quality and effective communication is essential in every aspect of life. Good communication skills include a person’s capacity to accurately convey meaning and intention in their words. In every circumstance we face, having practical communication skills is essential. It’s crucial to know how to communicate with others in a courteous manner while being direct and succinct. However, it is essential to note that a person’s communication abilities are heavily influenced by their areas of expertise. A specialist in politics will be able to discuss it with great skill, but they might have less to say about biology, for example. For this reason, learning as much as you can about a subject is the finest thing you can do if you want to learn how to speak professionally about it. 

Learning how to express anything accurately also requires the development of excellent communication skills in general. Poor communication skills training in early life might affect a student’s capacity to express oneself as an adult. One of the best methods to organically improve someone’s communication skills is to provide them the opportunity to work in a team during advanced education through teamwork and group projects.

Leadership requires effective communication as a critical skill. Leaders must continuously use effective communication strategies in order for their teams to succeed. Strong leadership communication skills may motivate others, foster trust, and help team members perform to the best of their abilities.

In order to build a strong sense of community among your team members, effective leadership communication skills are essential. Leaders must be able to communicate effectively with different types of people in a variety of settings. Leaders who are able to communicate well are able to bring about positive change on both a personal and professional level.

Team building

Just as advanced educational programs help to make a person excel at communication, they also help them to work in a collaborative environment through team building. Advanced degree programs often involve collaborative projects and group work, helping leaders develop effective team-building and collaboration skills. Debates, sports events, semester presentations, and subject-related projects are a few of the opportunities that advanced education provides individuals to develop team spirit in students. The ability to build teams is a crucial leadership quality. Good leaders share a few essential characteristics—they place high importance on fostering connections with their employees and are dependable and skilled communicators. Leaders must also have a keen understanding of what is required for their team to operate at peak efficiency.


A person who is flexible can swiftly and effectively approach new situations without experiencing excessive resentment, worry, or stress. When faced with conditions they can’t foresee or control, those who are flexible can function effectively and may even flourish. Resilience and adaptability go hand in hand. Students who learn to be flexible and resilient through advanced education are better equipped to overcome life’s various obstacles and succeed in their objectives. People look to leaders for guidance during times of upheaval and uncertainty. Every day, leaders must overcome obstacles, and their success depends on their capacity for adaptation. Adaptable pupils frequently become leaders in the classroom and subsequently in life. In fact, adaptability is a key component of becoming a successful leader. 

Leaders who are adaptable and flexible welcome challenges rather than avoiding confrontation. Instead, they meet the difficulties head-on because they are aware that mistakes and obstacles may teach us a lot. Adaptable leaders are also able to quickly change their leadership style from one to another based on the kind of people they are interacting with to achieve better outcomes in the workplace, as well as at home.

Cultural competency

Cultural competence is another thing students learn in an advanced degree program. Not only is the importance of cultural competence taught in the classroom, but many institutions welcome students from across the globe, and when people from different parts of the world come to the same institute, attend the same classes, learn, and flourish in the same environment, they learn to respect each other’s racial, ethnic, religious, and cultural backgrounds. 

Living with and learning with people from different nations allows the exchange of culture, which is important to combat all the negative prejudices and biases people may hold. Through advanced degree programs, people learn to be forgiving, empathetic, and tolerant of others. They learn that it is unacceptable to make someone feel uncomfortable because of their color, race, religion, or any other factor. Students learn that everyone is human, and that no human should be treated better or worse than another on account of anything that is not in their own control. Everyone should be given a fair chance to learn, explore, and explain their point of view, which opens up minds immensely. 

Cultural competency learned at the university level is something that follows individuals throughout their lives. It is a trait that helps them to succeed in any leadership role because they are able to lead a team without taking into consideration their color, race, ethnicity, religion, or socio-economic background. Such leaders are able to understand the problems of someone from a certain population group and plan to make things easy for them instead of ignoring their issues. Cultural competence in a leader makes them empathetic and compassionate, which are both very important when working with a diverse workforce. Eventually, the understanding leaders show for their colleagues reflects back through the employees’ performance at work. 

Leadership theories

Advanced educational courses also focus on teaching students the various leadership theories to prepare them to become responsible leaders in the future. In fact, leadership theories are a fundamental part of business and management-related courses. In order to evaluate and comprehend the process of leading schools and teachers, academics build frameworks called leadership theories in education. They offer distinct viewpoints on how objectives are created and achieved through various leadership and administrative philosophies and methods. Under the positivist research paradigm, four conventional theories of leadership were created and are used in higher education. They are power and influence, behavioral, trait, and contingency. Positivism upholds a realist ontological perspective.

Leadership theories focus on teaching how to lead a certain group of people based on their behavior and traits. Learning different kinds of leadership theories teaches future leaders to understand the psychological and behavioral patterns of different kinds of people so that they are able to lead them according to their needs to get fruitful outcomes from them. By learning about these ideas, people may develop their leadership abilities, change how they respond to various circumstances, and become more cognizant of how they affect teams and organizations. Most significantly, leadership theories assist companies in spotting and developing future leaders, fostering the development of a strong and flexible leadership cadre that can influence positive change and help a business reach its objectives.

Perspectives in leadership

Different perspectives on effective leadership are provided by a variety of leadership theories, stressing success-influencing characteristics, actions, and contextual factors. Successful leaders recognize that no one strategy works in every situation and adjust their views to meet the circumstances. By incorporating diverse ideas, leaders may build a varied skill set that promotes individual development and improves team performance. Understanding that choosing the correct theory and approach relies on team makeup, goals, and organizational context allows for effective leadership.

For people wishing to become agents of change in educational leadership, Marymount University offers a uniquely designed PhD-level course that is taught completely online. This course provides aspiring leaders the opportunity to achieve a Doctorate in Leadership (Ed.D.) with no GRE requirement. The course syllabus is accredited and comprehensive, covering the various theories discussed in this article, thus ensuring students understand leadership theories and are able to perform well in a community and at an organizational level.

Advocating change

The act of standing up for someone else is called advocacy. Whether it’s women’s rights, animal welfare, or educational reform, anyone who speaks out in support of a cause is termed an advocate. The core of advocacy is speaking up for things that one is passionate about. As they discover how to read, evaluate critically, and write effectively about a subject, students get their first taste of cooperation, and with that comes self-assurance and research skills that are crucial in advocacy. 

According to research, people who develop strong advocacy skills early in life are better equipped to tackle new obstacles than people who do not know how to speak up for themselves or fight for what they want and need. Despite their importance, these skills are often not taught in schools at an early age. For this reason, it is vitally important that aspiring leaders choose a respected and comprehensive advanced degree program that recognizes and teaches the importance of advocacy. 

Honing your capacity to lead

The capacity to enable people to realize a shared set of objectives for a progressive future is the essence of leadership. Although advocacy and leadership can be explained in a variety of ways, my two definitions offer two examples. Advocacy and leadership frequently go hand in hand and may be employed successfully to complete a number of goals. Additionally, a key component of effective advocacy and leadership abilities is the development of self-determination skills. 

Become an agent of change

Honing the ability to adapt, build a team, encourage others to be more independent and help people realize their true potential are the core values of a good leader. Not only do leaders advocate for better experiences for their peers, colleagues and family, but they also advocate change for themselves. A good education is the best standing point for someone wishing to empower others. By developing these key skills while studying a Ph.D., one can really hope to thrive in any leadership roles.

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