Become an educational leader who understands how learning happens, inside and outside the classroom.

Focused primarily on K-12 populations, the Teaching, Learning, and Leadership master's program is designed for individuals who wish to work in educational and leadership capacities both in and outside of formal classroom settings. You will choose one of two areas of specialization: Teaching & Learning or Educational Leadership.

What Sets Us Apart

  Tailor your program of study to your areas of interest
120 hours  Gain in-depth experience in out-of-school learning environments in our program internship experience
  Benefit from partnerships with Philadelphia’s premier museums and educational non-profits

About the Program

With small student cohorts that emphasize collaborative learning, the Teaching, Learning, and Leadership master's program provides you with the opportunity to tailor your studies to your interests.

Application Deadline
Final Deadline: April 15, 2022
Entry term(s)
Course requirements
10 courses (7 required, 3 elective)
Typical course load

Fall: 3-4 courses; Spring: 3-4 courses; Summer: 2 courses

Internship experience60 hours 

Culminating experienceMaster’s Capstone Project

  • Full-Time
  • Part-Time

The program is designed so that you graduate with the ability to work in an informed way in both formal and informal educational settings. Students may enroll on a full-time or part-time basis. This program is highly student-driven, and you will work closely with your academic advisor to tailor your particular program of study to your interests.

Coursework is just one facet of the graduate experience in the Teaching, Learning, and Leadership master's program. All students receive an internship placement in an out-of-school environment such as a museum, cultural institution, or library.


The master's degree in Teaching, Learning, and Leadership requires completion of 10 course units of approved graduate-level work, an internship, and a final Master's Capstone Project. For more information on courses and requirements, visit the Teaching, Learning, and Leadership M.S.Ed. program in the University Catalog.

Internship Program

Our Internship Program gives you an in-depth understanding of how learning occurs in out-of-school environments, such as the Franklin Institute science museum, the Philadelphia Mural Arts Program, the Philadelphia Zoo, and the Free Library of Philadelphia. Over the course of the academic year, you will work at your internship site and, in parallel, are enrolled in a seminar that addresses informal learning, site-specific topics, and reflexive practice. In previous years, interns have prepared workshops, designed communication materials, curated exhibitions, and written literature reviews for publication.

Teaching, Learning, and Leadership’s close-knit partnerships leverage a range of Philadelphia organizations – including major science institutions, small museums, and after-school organizations – to provide dynamic internships that engage students with sites of informal learning with K-12 populations. Each partner organization is characterized by dedicated staff who work in established informal learning programs. The internship is designed so that you can draw on your experience for your Master’s Capstone Project, allowing you to synthesize your core coursework, applied internship, and professional interests into a powerful learning experience.

The internship program provides students with an in-depth experience. Our program is competitive, and we can only accommodate sites that are able to meet the program’s requirements. The program selects partner sites based on an established set of criteria, and potential partners are vetted for close fit with our program. We will match you with a partner institution based on your interests, availability, and site preferences. Early in the internship, you will observe work at your site, establish weekly hours, and sign an internship contract. We work closely with part-time students who hold regular employment to ensure that your internship placement complements your schedule.

On-site supervisors at partner institutions advise students every two weeks. You are expected to work a total of 60 hours; you determine your internship schedule in collaboration with your supervisor. Both site supervisors and interns complete an exit survey at the end of the internship.

Our Faculty

Our faculty study teaching, learning, curriculum, and leadership in a variety of contexts. These range from formal educational settings – such as classrooms – to out-of-school environments and international sites. With grant-funded projects, as well as ties to Philadelphia schools and institutions, the faculty offer students direct access to nationally significant research work on education. Their work connects closely to Penn GSE’s broader focus on equitable access to education across social strata.

Penn GSE Faculty Andrea M. Kane
Professor of Practice, Education Leadership
Ph.D., Northcentral University
Penn GSE Faculty Veronica E. Aplenc
Adjunct Assistant Professor
Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania
Penn GSE Faculty Yasmin B. Kafai
Lori and Michael Milken President’s Distinguished Professor
Ed.D., Harvard University
Penn GSE Faculty Ed Brockenbrough
Associate Professor and Calvin Bland Fellow
Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania
Penn GSE Faculty Sarah Schneider Kavanagh
Assistant Professor
Ph.D., University of Washington
Penn GSE Faculty Sharon M. Ravitch
Professor of Practice
Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania
Penn GSE Faculty Rand Quinn
Associate Professor
Ph.D., Stanford University
Penn GSE Faculty Michael C. Johanek
Senior Fellow
Ed.D., Teachers College, Columbia University
Penn GSE Faculty Janine Remillard
Ph.D., Michigan State University
Penn GSE Faculty Abby Reisman
Associate Professor
Ph.D., Stanford University
Penn GSE Faculty Susan A. Yoon
Ph.D., University of Toronto
Penn GSE Faculty Ryan S. Baker
Associate Professor
Ph.D., Carnegie Mellon University

"My professional growth wouldn’t have been possible without my experiences at Penn GSE and the power of the network I created there.”

Colin Angevine

Teaching, Learning, and Leadership M.S.Ed., 2017

Our Graduates

Recent graduates from our program have gone on to find employment in after-school programs, museum settings, and educational nonprofits.

Alumni Careers

  • Associate Director of Online Learning, University of Pennsylvania
  • Co-founder,
  • Curriculum Manager, Moving Traditions
  • Director of Admissions, Commonwealth School
  • International Student Advisor, Green River College
  • Teaching Artist, Artwell

Admissions & Financial Aid

Please visit our Admissions and Financial Aid pages for specific information on the application requirements, as well as information on tuition, fees, financial aid, scholarships, and fellowships.

Contact Information

Contact us if you have any questions about the program.

Office of Admissions and
Financial Aid

Graduate School of Education
University of Pennsylvania
3700 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104
(215) 898-6415

Program Contact

Veronica E. Aplenc
Program Manager
Adjunct Assistant Professor
(215) 746-2566

Kate Moran
TLL Program Coordinator
(215) 573-5051

Please view information from our Admissions and Financial Aid Office for specific information on the cost of this program.

Penn GSE is committed to making your graduate education affordable, and we offer generous scholarships, fellowships, and assistantships.

A person views an exhibit at the Franklin Institute science museum, where Penn GSE students intern.

Internship Experience

SCOTT JOFFE, M.S.Ed., 2014
Urban Blazers

Founded in 2005, the nonprofit Urban Blazers provides students from Philly’s under-resourced communities the opportunity to explore nature together. Activities such as rock climbing, hiking, camping, whitewater rafting, canoeing, and skiing are used to engage youth in teambuilding and character development. The program’s goals place just as much emphasis on developing non-cognitive skills and healthy team dynamics as they do science and conservation education. Urban Blazers partners with schools to teach environmental education lessons and help foster positive classroom climates.

My favorite project was developing a student character strength assessment because it will continue to be used by both Urban Blazers and their school partners. The assessment tool is an efficient way to measure students’ selected non-cognitive skills, focusing on learners’ potential to be successful people in addition to successful students.

The three most important things I learned from this experience were professional communication, interview skills and a greater sense of Out-of-School Time.