Specialist in Education: Teacher Leadership
Quick Program Overview
Full Program Overview
The Teacher Leadership Ed.S. Degree is an advanced degree that prepares educators to meet the GaPSC Teacher Leadership standards providing a foundation for effective collaboration with students, parents, and colleagues. These standards are related to curriculum and instruction, assessment, a school culture that fosters excellence in teaching and learning, modeling best practices in instruction, working with others to design assessments, and using data to work with colleagues in collaborative efforts to improve instruction for all students. By completing this online degree and passing the appropriate Georgia content assessment, candidates will be eligible for the new Teacher Leadership (level 6) certification (see GaPSC Certification below). One of several paths of electives in this program allows completion of the Educational Leadership pre-service requirements or acquisition of an endorsement in Reading, Gifted Education, or Online Teaching. Other electives are available.
This 27- hour program can be completed in three to four consecutive semesters - about 12 to 16 months - with full-time enrollment. Courses are offered on a continuous basis, allowing for part-time enrollment. No campus visits are required to complete the program.
Special Requirements: Students must be employed teachers or employees of an educational agency -- (access to teachers and students are required to complete the program)
- Delivery: The program is fully online, with no on-campus attendance requirements. Students conduct all work online, including team projects, exams, discussion posts, and case studies. Students have access to online academic resources, such as the library. Courses are asynchronous; there are no scheduled online meetings except those one might make with peers for group work.
- Technology: Students must purchase the LiveText portfolio assessment application and should have high speed internet access. Additional software may be required.
- Transfer credit: No more than 9 semester hours of post-master’s academic work may be transferred from another institution into the program. Transfer credit will be evaluated after admission by the department upon entry. To be eligible, credit must be no more than seven years old prior to completion of the degree.
- Cost: Please see the Fees / Aid link for details.
- Financial Aid: Student loans are available through the VSU Office of Financial Aid - 229-333-5935.
- GaPSC Certification: By completing this online degree and passing the Georgia content assessment in Teacher Leadership, candidates will be eligible for the new Teacher Leadership (level 6) certification, as long as they meet the additional certification requirements of one year of successful classroom teaching experience and a recommendation from their employing Local Unit of Administration (LUA) (505-2-.149 TEACHER LEADERSHIP).
Adding Teacher Leadership certification through this program provides a level 6 certificate upgrade for any Georgia educator currently certified even if the educator is not assigned to a leadership position.
- Fall Semester – July 15th
- Spring Semester – November 15th
- Summer Semester- April 15th
The Teacher Leadership program is a Georgia On My Line program (GOML). Please visit the VSU GOML Calendar for semester deadlines. Submitting an application prior to the deadline does not guarantee processing for your desired semester. Your application cannot be processed until all required documents are received by the Valdosta State University Graduate School. Admission into the Teacher Leadership program is for a specific semester. Teachers and employees of an educational agency will be admitted to this program with the same criteria as used for on-campus Ed.S . degree programs.
Full Admission Requirements:
- Submit the application and fee to the VSU Graduate School.
- 1 year of teaching experience required
- Official transcript from the school where you obtained your highest college degree and any transcripts from schools where graduate coursework was taken. Official transcripts bear an official seal and signature and are sent to the VSU Graduate School in the original sealed envelopes. VSU transcripts will be obtained by the VSU Graduate School.
- A cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required. See below for alternative admission pathway options.
- Must hold a clear renewable (Induction, Professional, Advanced Professional, or Lead Professional Teaching certificate, leadership certificate, service certificate or Life certificate), Georgia teaching certificate at the bachelor’s level 4 or higher. Individuals with certification from states other than Georgia must provide documentation of the appropriate certificate. Eligibility will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
- Submit a Letter of Assurance form from a current school administrator (form required). The form should provide verification that your school superintendent or superintendent's designee:
- Supports your decision to pursue the degree
- Recommends you for participation in this program
- Agrees to provide the necessary resources for successful completion of the degree requirements, including time and access to teachers and stakeholder groups so that candidate can observe, mentor, conduct research, and provide professional learning, among other things.
- Be employed teachers or employees of an educational agency able to spend a minimum of 20 hours per week in a classroom.
- Submit the Distance Learning Exemption of the VSU Medical Form.
Applicants not meeting the GPA requirement may be eligible for admission by the alternative pathway. Alternative pathway requirements are a GPA between 2.75 and 2.99 on a 4.0 scale; and competitive scores on the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) or the Miller Analogies Test (MAT). Recommended scores for admission:
- GRE: 145 Verbal and 139 Quantitative
- MAT: 380
For additional admission information, please contact the VSU Graduate School at (229) 333-5694 or by email email@example.com. All required documents must be submitted prior to close of business on the application deadline. Please review the link below on how to submit your admission documents.
Program of Study
Offered only in:
Fall, Spring & Summer
Professional Orientation - Required non-credit course that must be successfully completed at entry to advanced programs. Candidates are required to establish an electronic portfolio and provide evidence that all advanced entry requirements have been satisfactorily met.
College of Education Core Courses (15 Semester Hours)
Fall, Spring & Summer
prerequisite: Admission to the Ed.S Teacher Leadership program
Foundations of Teacher Leadership-A survey of theories and current research that supports innovative practices and teaching strategies to improve the effectiveness of teacher leaders in K-12 school settings.
Fall & Spring
prerequisite: EDET 5999
Teacher Leadership Residency I- Clinical practice related to Teacher Leadership Standards. Candidates complete residency requirements in the areas of curriculum, assessment, and conducting and applying research.
Developing and Leading a Community of Diverse Learners - Examination of the impact of cultural, multicultural, diversity, and exceptionality issues on adults' and children's relationships, communication, and educational practices in American schools. Appropriate verbal and nonverbal communication techniques are addressed.
prerequisite: EDET 5999
Teacher Leadership Residency II-
Fall & Spring
prerequisite: EDET 5999
Teacher Leadership Residency III-
Capstone Experience (3 Semester Hours)
Fall, Spring & Summer
Capstone Seminar - Required as partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Teacher leadership degree. .The course will emphasis integrating knowledge and skills related to adult learning, collaboration, professional practice, mentoring, educational research, and advocacy.
Electives/Specialization – Must be 5000-level courses or above.
Total Required for the Degree
Tier I Educational Leadership Certification Add-on in Information Conjunction with the Ed.S. in Teacher Leadership
The Department of Curriculum, Leadership, and Technology and the Department of Teacher Education, which offers the Ed.S. in Teacher Leadership, have provided a pathway to receiving a Tier I Educational Leadership Certificate added to the T-6 certificate. Several courses offered in the Teacher Leadership program can be applied to the Tier I certification-only program.
***Your employed county must have a partnership as one of the admission requirements for the Tier 1 Add-on program. Please click here to see a list of partnerships for the Tier 1 Add-on program.
The following courses from the Ed.S. program can be applied to the respective leadership coursework:
EDET 8030: Developing & Leading a Community of Diverse Learners for LEAD 7310: Leadership for Community & Organizational Dynamics
Three of the following four courses are to be taken to fulfill the elective portion of the Ed.S. in Teacher Leadership program of study. The remaining course will become part of the Tier I certification add-on program:
1. LEAD 7120: Instructional Leadership & Supervisory Practices
2. LEAD 7130: Technology Leadership for School Improvement
3. LEAD 7420: Ethical & Legal Issues for Leadership
4. LEAD 8240: Managing Resources for School Improvement
Three additional courses beyond the Ed.S. program of study requirements are to be completed upon admission to the Tier I Certification Add-on program:
1. The remaining course noted above (as part of the elective requirement)
2. LEAD 7920: Leadership Field-Based Experiences I
3. LEAD 7930: Leadership Field-Based Experiences II
NOTE: LEAD 7920 & LEAD 7930 cannot be used to fulfill the elective component of the Ed.S. program of study in Teacher Leadership. These two courses fulfill the residency element of the Tier I Educational Leadership program. Completion of the two courses may extend over three to four semesters.
In approaching the final semester of the Ed.S. program for Teacher Leadership, candidates must apply for admission to the Tier I Educational Leadership Certification Add-on program. This is required in order to undertake the two residency courses (LEAD 7920 & LEAD 7930). Once completed, you are eligible for the Tier I Leadership certificate.
After completing the elective courses, if you have any questions specifically about the Tier 1 Add-on program, then please contact the program coordinator Dr. Bochenko at firstname.lastname@example.org .
More Frequently Asked Questions
Retention, Graduation, Dismissal & Readmission Policies
1. No more than 9 semester hours of post-master’s academic work may be transferred from another institution into the program. Transfer credit will be evaluated after admission by the department upon entry. To be eligible, credit must be no more than seven years old prior to completion of the degree.
2. The maximum time allowed for completion of the education specialist degree is seven calendar years. No work completed more than seven years prior to degree completion will be accepted toward the degree, except with special permission from the student’s major professor and the Dean of the Dewar College of Education and approval from the Dean of the Graduate School.
3. To graduate from this program, a student must have a cumulative institutional graduate GPA of 3.0 or higher.
4. Earning grades below “B” in graduate courses will result in the following consequences:
Students admitted Fall 2011and thereafter will be dismissed from the Graduate School if they accumulate three or more academic deficiency points unless otherwise indicated by individual program policy. A grade of “C” (although it may be credited toward a degree) equals one deficiency point. A grade of “D,” “WF” or “F,” or “U” (none of which will be credited toward a degree) equals two deficiency points.
Candidates admitted BEFORE Fall 2011 and receiving two grades below “C” (“D”, “F”, “WF”,“U”) will be dismissed from the program. One grade below a "C" results in a warning.
If dismissed from the program, a student must not be enrolled for two semesters. Application for readmission may be initiated during the second semester. Readmission is not guaranteed, and prior academic performance and student conduct/disposition in the program will be considered. The academic program reserves the right to place specific conditions and contingencies on any offer of readmission.
Program Contact for Inquires
Ms. Crystal Marshall