Advancing leadership capacity

Preparation of early childhood leaders in Australia through a coursework masters degree

Manjula Waniganayake, Suzana Stipanovic

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


In Australia, positional leadership in the Early Childhood (EC) sector is flourishing propelled by legislative obligations connected with the implementation of the National Quality Framework (ACECQA 2011a) requiring the employment of educational leaders in EC centres. This paper explores the preparation of EC leaders through postgraduate coursework studies at a masters level based on a content analysis of course information dealing with leadership and management of EC settings. Currently, there is limited research based evidence on the formal preparation of these educational leaders. Australian universities offer a range of coursework masters degrees focusing on educational leadership studies. The plethora of options available is confusing for those seeking employment as an educational leader in the EC sector. Findings reported in this paper provoke discussion about the relevance of postgraduate studies for advancing leadership capacity necessary in the EC sector.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)268-288
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Early Childhood Education Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Early Childhood
  • leadership preparation
  • qualifications
  • training
  • Australia

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