Educational Specialist Degree in Instructional Leadership and School Administration Program Details
The Annsley Frazier Thornton School of Education at Bellarmine University offers a principal certification
preparation program for educators who already hold a master’s degree in education. Students will receive an
Educational Specialist Degree in Instructional Leadership and School Administration through participation
in a best practice, research based curriculum with a practical field experience.
Applicants for the Educational Specialist Degree must hold
a valid Kentucky Provisional or Professional certificate or
equivalent at the program level for which the individual is
The field experience, comprising a total of eight credit hours
earned over four semesters, is designed to give the participant
school leadership experiences only available in a school
context. Students are required to spend time before and after
their regularly scheduled assignments, completing a series of
tasks and experiences in elementary, middle and secondary
settings. At least 25% of the 240 field experience hours required
must be completed in grade levels outside the setting
where the candidate is employed.
Throughout the fall and spring terms, special topical seminars
will be offered. These workshops will focus on topics
specific to those hoping to practice in distinct settings such
as a parochial school, the Bellarmine Center for Teaching
Excellence and Leadership, or a setting with early childhood
programs. In addition, extra expertise in school safety and
crisis management, administering with technology, and other
relevant topics will be addressed.
This program uses a cohort approach for scheduling. All participants
must begin the program the first summer and follow
it through the four terms. Students unable to do so would have
to wait an entire year to pick up classes missed during a specific
term. Questions about the program or schedule should be
directed to the Office of Graduate Admission 502.272.7200
- Participating in a program grounded in the ISLLC standards
and KyCLS Dimensions
- Working in a collaborative partnership with local schools
- Learning relevant content through creative programming
and a novel delivery system
- Overcoming the challenges of creating a work climate supportive
of excellence in teaching and learning
- Gaining an understanding of the school as a complex organization
- Understanding the characteristics and challenges of the
- Exploring best practices of school leaders who are increasing
- Participating in four (4) semester field experiences grounded
in the real work of school leaders
- Attaining Levels I principal certification and EdS in 14
- Working with a cohort of professionals in a community of
- Concentrating on instructional leadership in a high stakes
- Attaining knowledge and skills in safe schools and crisis
- Infusing technology as a tool for the twenty-first century
Level II Certification
(Required within five years of securing a job/position requiring
an administrative certification.) Candidates who have completed the EdS and Level I will be
considered for Level II courses. Level II courses must be completed
within five (5) years of receipt of initial certification
(Level I). The six hours required include:
- ED AD 713 - Creating a School Culture that Promotes High Levels of
Student Learning (3 hrs)
- ED AD 714 Emerging Legal and Resource Management Issues for
the Principalship (3 hrs)
Alternative Certification Option VI for
The Annsley Frazier Thornton School of Education at Bellarmine
University has developed University-Based Alternative Certification
(Option 6) for EdS Leadership/Administration – School Principal
Certification (Level 1).
As stated in our agreement with the Kentucky Education Professional
Standards Board (EPSB) pursuant to 16 KAR 9:080, the candidate
pursuing this route must:
- be fully admitted to the EdS program.
- accepted an offer of employment as an assistant principal or principal.
The alternative route to certification will follow the standard Bellarmine
EdS program with some conditions. The candidate must
- maintain continuous enrollment in consecutive semesters.
- complete 50 additional field hours
- prepare an additional site visit
- make any required adjustments at transition points.
The temporary provisional license is typically issued during the first
semester of the EdS program (summer) and is issued for one year.
Candidates must renew this license for one additional year to complete
program requirements during the second summer semester.
Candidates must take and pass the SLLA and KYPT exams as soon
as possible during the renewal year.
The AFTSE reserves the right to withdraw recommendation for principal
alternative certification if for whatever reason candidates are unable to meet
- Complete and submit the application.
- Submit a non-refundable application fee of $40 (unless a Bellarmine
alumna/e). Checks should be made payable to Bellarmine
- A current resume (Note: Three years of successful teaching experience
in a P-12 setting with full teacher certification during
those 3 years is required).
- A copy of valid state issued Professional Teaching Certificate.
- Final official transcript(s) from each college or university attended
should be mailed to the Office of Graduate Admission
and not be marked “Issued to Student”. A previously completed
master’s degree is required with a preferred cumulative GPA of
3.50 from the advanced degree.
- Optional: Official Graduate Record Examination (GRE – www.ets.org/gre) score mailed directly to the Office of Graduate Admission.
- Three recommendations from individuals who are former professors
or who have supervised the applicant in a school setting.
One recommendation must come from the applicant’s current
principal/head teacher. All recommendations must be related to
the professional environment. (Form provided, copy as needed).
- Responses to the four essay questions included in this packet and
an Educational Autobiography (details to the right).
- If your undergraduate degree is from an international institution,
you were born outside the United States, or English is your second
language, you will be required to submit an official TOEFLiBT
(internet-based test) score and receive a total score of 80 or higher
on the internet-based TOEFL (reading, listening, writing, and
26 on speaking). We will also consider an equivalent score on
the IELTS or MELAB tests. The Admission, Progression and
Graduation Committee reserves the right to request a TOEFL
score from any applicant.
- If any transcript(s) or undergraduate degree(s) are from an
international institution you must provide an official copy of a
third party course by course credential evaluation. The following
organizations offer this service and information regarding
processes and fees are available at: www.aacrao.org, www.wes.org and www.ece.org. The Office of Graduate Admission reserves
the right to request a certified copy of the original transcript(s).
- Once completed, mail the application to:
Office of Graduate Admission
2001 Newburg Road
Louisville, KY 40205
- A collaborative interview between the applicant, a School of
Education representative and appropriate school district personnel
will be arranged. A successful interview is required for an
Please complete the items under Procedure for
Admission and submit the following:
U.S. law requires financial statements from a bank
or other financial institution certifying the student’s
ability to fund the cost of attendance for one academic
year minus the amount of any scholarship dollars
received. Figures should be in U.S. dollars and must
be certified as an official document by the bank or
financial institution. A sponsor may be used if the
sponsor attaches a signed affidavit stating that he/she
will financially support the student until completion
of a degree at Bellarmine University. If a sponsor is
used, the sponsor’s bank statement should accompany
the letter. The amount that would need to be
shown for the Educational Specialist Degree
is $29,431. This amount includes tuition and fees
for the summer 2013 semester only (tuition rates for
Fall 2013 and thereafter are not yet established) and
an average cost for living expenses, books, supplies,
health insurance, transportation and personal expenses.
Graduate Tuition Rates
For information on financial aid, click here.
All applicants and correspondence relevant to admission should be directed to:
Office of Graduate Admission
Allen Hall, 4th Floor
2001 Newburg Road
Louisville, KY 40205