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2016-2017 Undergraduate & Graduate Catalog

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Educational Specialist Degree in Leadership

For additional information about opportunities your college offers, please refer to the College of Education section in this catalog.


Mission - Teaching, leading, and learning in a democratic society.

Philosophy - Believing that schools function as social and political entities as well as for the growth of individuals, the College of Education prepares teachers and leaders a) to enhance the academic and personal potential of their students, and b) to evaluate the social and ethical implications of educational policies and practices.

Values -The College of Education values expertise to guide our practice, equity to guide our interactions, liberal education to guide our perspectives, and social responsibility to guide our commitment to democratic education. We value these ideals in our preparation of candidates, our development of faculty, and our relationships with the larger community we serve.

The educational specialist degree in leadership, with a cognate in administration, builds on the master's degree and develops leadership practitioners for school and/or central office administrative positions. The program provides district leaders with meaningful clinical experiences, case methods of teaching, and pragmatic curriculum geared to the specific knowledge and skills required by district leaders and superintendents at different career stages. The program also integrates research designed to build a practical knowledge base for district leaders and policy makers. The primary goal of this degree is to prepare competent and effective leaders for K-12 districts whose management and administrative understandings, skills and dispositions foster quality educational experiences for children and youth.

The courses are listed in a logical sequence for developing greater depth and breadth of understanding. The ideal sequence puts the core courses before the cognate courses. The culminating experience is designed to apply the knowledge, skills and dispositions acquired throughout the program in an internship/practicum during which candidates do action research and prepare a portfolio.


The Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association (NCA)

Minimum number of hours for graduation: 30

Admission to Educational Specialist Degree in Leadership Program

  • A master's degree with at least a 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale.
  • Official GRE scores.
  • Essay/personal statement.
  • Three letters of recommendation. Two from a professional, addressing your leadership skills and success. One from an individual who can address your academic/scholarly capabilities.
  • Current resume must include the following:
    • Title of master's project or thesis, degrees received with dates, institutions, majors and minors.
    • Listing of employment.
    • Description of leadership experience, dates, and location.
    • Presentations, publications, memberships, and professional development.


Graduate Outcomes

Student success is measured using the Educational Leadership Constituent Council (ELCC) standards. These standards are applied throughout the program and within the final culminating "Theory into Practice" experience. Students demonstrate their success in the education specialist program through practitioner research, internship, and development of a professional portfolio.

Required Core Courses (18 credits):

Required Educational Administration Cognate (9 credits):

Educational Specialist in Leadership Culminating Experience

This 3 credit hour culminating experience is likely to take the form of a practicum that will result in a portfolio, containing documents that address the standards and provide evidence of the understanding and ability to apply leadership concepts to practice.

If you are in need of assistance please submit any questions or comments.