Study Format

  • Face to Face
  • Cohort Format

Program Length

  • 30 Credit Hours

Application Deadlines

Aug, 19

Domestic Students

Fall 2020 Completed File Due. Classes start August 24, 2020.


Features and benefits of the program

  • This program prepares students for superintendent licensure in the State of Illinois. 
  • The Education Specialist (EdS) degree program is a post-master’s course of study that provides students an area of educational specialization with an emphasis on practice.
  • Individuals who have already completed a master’s degree in education or related field are eligible to pursue an EdS. The amount of additional coursework necessary for an EdS degree after obtaining a master’s degree is about the same as that needed to get a second master’s degree.
  • The EdS degree provides an avenue to advance a career in education but does not require a dissertation. 
  • Students in the EdS program are eligible for financial aid. 

What does completing the program qualify one to do?

  • EdS degrees in Educational Leadership qualify individuals for superintendent and principal administrator positions. While principal positions generally only require a master’s degree, many individuals seeking a principal position will obtain an EdS.
  • Individuals seeking program coordinator and department director positions may obtain an EdS in order to gain a competitive edge in terms of qualifications compared to someone with only a master’s degree.

Moving from the EdS to a Doctoral Program

The EdS program is designed for students pursuing a superintendent endorsement who do not desire to earn a doctorate at this time. If at a later time the student wishes to earn a doctoral degree, the 30 hours (ten classes) in the EdS Education Specialist program may be applied to a doctorate in Educational Leadership as follows:

  • To complete an EdD program, the student would need an additional 31 credit hours (10 classes) and a dissertation.
  • To complete a PhD program, the student would need an additional 37 credit hours (12 classes) and a dissertation.

Program Information

The EdS Education Specialist program requires ten (10) courses, constituting a total of 30 credit hours.

On-campus classes

These seven, eight-week courses must be taken in face to face format. An Electronic Portfolio is required for selected assignments from each of these courses. 

  • Strategies of Educational Leadership
  • School/District Improvement Using Data Analysis
  • Policy Analysis
  • Managing Illinois School District Finances
  • Supervisory Theory and Practice
  • Managing Legal and HR Resources Issues
  • Ethics for Educational Leaders 

Off-campus internships

These three 16-week internship courses are taken in school settings. Electronic Portfolio assignments are a required component of the internship experience.

  • Superintendent Internship I: Superintendent as Instructional Leader
  • Superintendent Internship II: Superintendent as Change Agent
  • Superintendent Internship III: Superintendent as HR and Resources Manager

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