Education Specialist (Ed.S.)

Concentration in Educational Leadership

Why choose the Education Specialist degree at Saint Leo?

The Graduate Education program at Saint Leo University offers the Specialist in Education degree with a concentration in transformational school leadership. This degree is for individuals holding a master’s degree in education or a related field of study (e.g., guidance and counseling, social work, human services, organization leadership, etc.).

Courses within the Education Specialist degree program have been identified to ensure that students complete a relevant and rigorous program of study. All courses infuse the Saint Leo University core values, thus helping students grow in body, mind and spirit.

The curriculum for this program of study is aligned with the Professional Standards for Educational Leaders advanced by the National Policy Board for Educational Administration (NPBEA), formerly Interstate School Leadership Licensure Consortium (ISLLC), Council of Chief State School Officers. The Professional Standards focuses on seven aspects of transformational leadership that enable innovative initiatives which: support effective practice and research that maximizes student learning and demonstrations of achievement outcomes; facilitate staff members ability to drive instructional practice for student success; build collaborative school cultures; and create a community of stakeholders invested in academic success and personal well-being of every student.

The program is for those who hold administration and/or teaching certification or who are eligible for such certification and who seek to advance their career, grow their knowledge base and enhance their professional practice. The program is 39 hours beyond the master’s offered in the online format.

Saint Leo is a non-profit University, providing online programs to meet the needs of working adults since 1998. U.S. News & World Report named Saint Leo University among the top universities in its 2016 “Best Online Programs” edition. It was recognized for its excellence in the graduate education online programs.


What can you do with an Education Specialist (Ed.S.) degree?

The Education Specialist degree is beyond the Master’s Degree and is a leadership degree that prepares individuals to assume professional roles in administration and supervision. Graduates will be qualified to work in a variety of establishments: primary and secondary schools, community colleges, universities, technical schools, governmental and adult schools, as well as, non-profit and advocacy organizations. Some educational leaders put their skills to use in the business world, developing training programs for Fortune 500 companies. Educational Specialist graduates can fill any number of highly rewarding positions:

  • School building leadership positions
  • School district leadership positions
  • Higher education positions
  • Non-profit and advocacy organizational leadership positions
  • Continue your studies in a doctorate in education (Ed.D.) program

View Admission Requirements

Take the next step in your career. Apply for Saint Leo's Education Specialist (Ed.S.) program today.

Degree Requirements

School Leadership Concentration (39 credits)

  • Course
  • Course Name
  • Credits
  • EDU 701 Ensuring Quality ESE Services 3

    The legal, research, and programmatic frameworks for ESE services are explored as are prevailing best practices. The responsibilities and role of the principal in ensuring the delivery of high-quality ESE services are thoroughly examined.

  • EDU 702 Effective Reading and ESOL Instruction 3

    Research-based strategies for effective reading and ESOL instruction and prevailing best practices are studied. The specific role of the principal in ensuring effective reading and ESOL instruction across the school program is examined.

  • EDU 703 Applied Educational Statistics 3

    This course considers the computation and interpretation of applied descriptive (e.g., measures of central tendency, variability, and position) and inferential statistics (e.g., t-tests, correlation, AVOVA, and multiple regression) used in education.

  • EDU 704 Assessment, Accountability & Analytics 3

    State and federal accountability frameworks are studied as is the use of assessment data to improve curriculum, instruction, and student achievement. Strategies to communicate assessment data to various stakeholder groups are explored. Emphasis is based on Florida’s public education accountability system.

  • EDU 706 Instructional Technology 3

    The role of instructional technology as well as the role of the principal in ensuring effective deployment of such technology to foster improved curriculum, instruction, and student achievement is examined, with special attention given to reading, math, and science education.

  • EDU 707 Leading the School Organization 3

    The historical development of public K-12 education in the United States and internationally is reviewed. The modern U.S. K-12 school is thoroughly examined as is the role of the principal in fostering a school culture and ethic supportive of continuously improving curriculum, instruction, and student achievement.

  • EDU 710 Analytical Leadership 3

    This course is designed to provide school leaders with the knowledge and skills to successfully analyze roles and relationships, organizational structures, and use effective leadership strategies to assist stakeholders in decision making that supports student achievement. The course aligns 2015 ISLLC standards for transforming and sustaining schools through effective leadership strategies.

  • EDU 712 School Leadership Topics 3

    Under the guidance of a high-performing school leader and faculty member, the student engages in a 160-clock-hour leadership experience employing all ten of the Florida School Leadership Standards. An applied project aimed at improving a specific school’s curriculum, instruction, or student achievement is conducted.

    Prerequisites: Permission of Director

  • EDU 713 Program Evaluation in Education 3

    Examined are evaluation ethics and methods and models of inquiry used by educational organizations. Classroom, action, quantitative, and qualitative program evaluation methods are considered.

  • EDU 714 Program Evaluation: Instrumentation and Analytics 3

    Studied are the ethical application of introductory descriptive, inferential, and correlation procedures commonly used in program evaluation. Emphasis is on the use of statistical data in decision making to improve curriculum, instruction, and student achievement.

  • EDU 715 Program Evaluation: Design 3

    The application of continuous quality improvement policies, models, and research to educational products, processes, programs, and services is examined.

  • EDU 722 Building a Collaborative Culture 3

    This course is designed to acquaint school leaders with the theories, practices, skills, and knowledge(s) of building collaborative cultures and creating sustainable school partnerships and their importance in transforming schools. The focus of this course is to develop an understanding of the importance of building and maintaining relationships that support students, families, teachers and schools, as all stakeholders move forward to increase student achievement. In this course you will study all aspects of creating and analyzing meaningful partnerships for effective teaching practices in k-12 public and private schools.

  • EDU 723 Power of Teacher Leader Innovation 3

    Candidates will develop an understanding of how the brain learns so that they can more effectively coach teachers to help create quality instruction. Topics will include brain construction, information processing, memory, transfer, organization, and thinking skills. In collaboration with teachers and administrators through data analysis, curriculum and standards analysis, and professional development facilitation, candidates will work to improve instructional practice and student achievement. Special attention will be given to mastering the complexities of observing and modeling in classrooms and providing feedback.

Electives (0 Credits)

Total Credits 39