Education Specialist in Instructional Leadership Licensure


Major Instructional Leadership
Degree Educational Leadership (Ed.S.)
Concentrations Instructional Leadership with Licensure


Admission to the program requires the applicant to have a master’s degree from an accredited university, a graduate cumulative grade point average of 3.25 or better on a 4.0 scale on the last graduate degree. If the graduate degree is not in educational leadership, or a related area, the student will be required to have a total of nine (9) hours of prerequisites in educational leadership at the master’s level.) 

Candidates in the Educational Specialist program must establish academic residency by completing a minimum of eighteen (18) hours over a period of four (4) academic year semesters or two (2) academic year semesters and two (2) summer registrations (2 sessions per one summer equals one registration) of courses in the EDAD department. 

Additional Admissions Requirements for Licensure Concentration 

In addition to the requirements listed above, licensure applicants are required to submit a district recommendation form that provides evidence of the following (a) successful completion of an Educator Preparation Program, (b) a valid teacher’s license from Tennessee or a State other than Tennessee (c) a minimum of two years of qualifying education experience as defined by department, (d) demonstrated effectiveness as an educator in most recent two years as evidenced by a state-approved evaluation model or similar measures for educators employed in schools that do not use the state approved evaluation model, (e) disposition form , (f) three letters of recommendation on official employment letterhead; (g) an acceptable score on an interview conducted by a program admissions committee inclusive of LEA representation. 

Each student must be interviewed by a committee of professional administrators prior to admission to the program. The admissions committee will review and evaluate the entire academic and professional record in making the admission decision. Each student must inform his or her advisor early in the program that Principal/Supervisor licensure is being sought. All candidates must complete and successful defend a required Action Research Project. 

Conditional Admission 

Applicants who do not meet the admissions criteria may submit a letter of appeal. The applicant may submit an appeal request form and must include the following: (a) an acceptable work record (resume or curriculum vita), three written letters of recommendation indicating probable success in the program, and completion of the appeals request form to be considered as a conditional student. The appeal’s form will be submitted to the Department Chair. The department chair will provide a recommendation for approval. The Dean will make the final decision. 


The student must remove conditional status in the first nine hours of graduate courses; failure to do so will result in dismissal from the program. 

 All application materials must be submitted to the Graduate School by the deadlines below:

Fall Admission

July 1st

Spring Admission

 November 1st

Summer Admission

February 1st

Transfer Credits

Candidates wishing to transfer credit(s) toward the Ed.S. program may transfer a maximum of six (6) relevant graduate credit hours from an accredited institution for courses that correspond to program/state requirements.  All transfer courses must be reviewed and approved by both the academic advisor and the department chair.

Program of Study

General Education Core- 15 Hours

EDAD 6010

Theory and Principles of Educational Administration                        

EDAD 6060

Administration of Instructional Programs                         

EDAD 6070

Legal Personnel Problems                                                            

EDAD 6300

Communication Skills for School   Executives                                    

EDAD 6110

Human Resource Management            

Major Concentration – 18 hours

EDAD 6580

Action   Research                                                            

EDAD 6120

Assessment for Professional Licensure                                         

EDAD 6200

School Principalship K-12                                                           

EDAD 6280

Financial Management & Administration                            

EDAD 6515

Administrative Internship   I                                                         

EDAD 6516

Administrative Internship   II                                                        


(EDAD 6515-Prerequisite for EDAD 6516)

EDAD 6517

Administrative Internship   III                                                      


(EDAD 6515 & 6516-Prerequisite for EDAD 6517)

EDCI 6100

Curriculum Planning and Programs                                              

 Total Degree Requirement     33

*Please see your advisor before registering for courses. Programs of study may vary dependent upon individual date of admission.


Candidates for the Ed.S. degree must take a minimum of 33 hours of course work, pass the comprehensive examinations in the field of general education and educational administration, and pass the School Leaders Licensure Assessment (SLLA). The program of study must be completed after nine (9) hours or coursework.  Grades of “C” or lower cannot count toward the degree.  Students can only retake a course a maximum of two times.  Students not successfully completing a course with a grade of “B” or better after the second attempt may be dismissed from the degree program.

All candidates must meet with their advisors prior to registration each semester.  Courses must be taken in order as determined by program requirements.  All students must complete a Comprehensive Examination Application one semester prior to their intended examination date.  All applications must be approved by your academic advisor and the department chair.  All examination dates can be located on the Graduate School Academic Calendar.

For More Information Contact:  Dr. Eleni Elder,   


Important Resources

Ed.S Comp Study Guide 2024

Graduate School

Tuition and Fees

Financial Aid

2021-2023 Graduate School Catalog

2019-2021 Graduate School Catalog

2017-2018 M.Ed./Ed.S Practicum Guide

International Students

Apply for Graduate Assistantship













webpage contact:
Department of Educational Administration