Educational Specialist in Educational Leadership (EdS)/Tier II Cert Only


Accelerated Performance-Based Educational Leadership Specialist Program (Tier-II Certification) and
Accelerated Certification Only (Tier-II Certification)

Ed.S. in Educational Leadership and Tier-II certification will be accepting applications through the spring and summer for our fall cohort.

Program Overview

The Educational Specialist (EDS) in Educational Leadership is a professional degree program for qualified candidates who do not have a specialist or doctoral degree and who are pursuing clear, renewable leadership certification in Georgia (Tier II). The “Certification Only” program is for candidates who already possess an EDS or EDD, but do not have leadership certification.

An “ Accelerated Performance Based” Residency Program

Unlike “traditional” programs, the majority of coursework in the accelerated performance-based leadership program occurs in the candidate’s school. In addition, each semester in the accelerated model consists of (2) 8-week periods and all educational leadership courses are eight weeks long. As such, to complete the program in the recommended time-frame, students are expected to take two classes during each 8-week period (i.e., 4 classes per academic semester). Using this model, students can complete the Ed.S. program of study in as few as 3 semesters and the Certification-Only program of study in as few as 2 semesters.

Of the twenty-seven (27) hours in the EDS program, eighteen (18) are “residency,” in which course meetings and course work are performed at the candidate’s school site. Each candidate has an individualized leadership plan, which is negotiated each 8-week period between university faculty, the candidate, and a school-identified mentor. These plans identify authentic, meaningful projects that the candidate will complete within the school and on which he or she will demonstrate mastery of course material. All eighteen (18) hours of the “certification only” program are performed in residency. All courses are designated as online.

Core Courses: (9 hrs.)

  • EDL 8005 Foundations of Leadership
  • EDRS 8000 Applied Quantitative & Qualitative Research
  • EDL 8200 Applied Leadership Evaluation

Residency Courses (18 hrs.)

  • EDL 8805 Culturally Responsive Leadership
  • EDL 8810 Vision and Governance
  • EDL 8820 Managing the Physical & Fiscal Environment
  • EDL 8835 Curriculum, Assessment and Instruction
  • EDL 8840 Professional Learning
  • EDL 8850 Managing Human Resources

27 Credit Hours

Admission Requirements

  • Partnership Agreement between KSU and Candidate’s School District or Charter/Independent School (Click Here for a list of current partnerships)
  • Agreement that District or Independent School to “support” Candidate in this program (this differs by institution – please check with your human resources department or administration)
  • Complete a program application
  • a master’s degree – or higher – in a professional education or related field
  • Have a minimum of four (4) years of teaching or administrative experience
  • No GRE required
  • Hold a leadership “position” or “role” as defined by your District or Independent/Charter school (Teachers can be admitted with district approval)
  • Hold current Georgia leadership certification (L or PL only), OR have a Tier I Educational
    Leadership certificate.
  • Individuals from out of state who are not seeking Georgia Tier-II certification are not required to have a Georgia Tier-I certification; however, it is strongly advised that you contact your respective state licensing agency to determine if our curriculum meets your state requirements.
  • Click Here for required admissions forms.

Deadline for Applications

Fall, July 1

Contact Us

If you have any questions, please contact your program coordinator, or the Department of Educational Leadership at (770) 423-6888 or email