Specialist Degree in Teacher Leadership


Educational Specialist in Teacher Leadership

Program Description

The Educational Specialist (EDS) in Teacher Leadership is a professional degree program for qualified candidates who do not have a specialist or doctoral degree.  The program is a thirty-three (33) hour program, virtually all of which can be delivered in an “online” format.  The degree is truly a “best of Bagwell College” experience, with courses taught by professors across all five (5) academic departments.

Unlocking Many Pathways

The Educational Specialist Degree in Teacher Leadership is designed to improve the practice of classroom educators while preparing them for many possible professional futures.  The degree is conceptualized as the “ultimate grade chair” degree, but one opening many doors beyond that role.  Candidates who wish to pursue more formalized leadership positions (such as assistant principal or principal) will leave the program eligible to hold non-renewable leadership certification (NPL) and eligible to enter an EDD program in Educational Leadership without completing an additional six (6) hour leadership preservice.  Additionally, should candidates elect to remain in an instructional role, they may choose to pursue doctoral degrees in curriculum & instruction, instructional technology, or many other fields.

Program of Study

Core Courses (24 Hours)

EDL/ITEC 7305 Data Analysis & School Improvement

EDL 7500 Education Law and Ethics

EDL 7100 Leadership Theory and Practice.

ITEC 7465 Professional Learning in Schools

ITEC 7400 21st Century Teaching and Learning

INED 7785 Curriculum & Instruction for Teacher Leaders

EDAD 8200 Supervision, Coaching, and Mentoring

EDUC 7990 Residency & Capstone

EDRS 8000 Applied Qualitative and Quantitative Research

Electives (6 hours)

EDL 85OO Research, Issues, and Trends in Teacher Leadership

EDUC 8100 Advanced Study of Learning

ITEC 9420 Evaluating Professional Learning


  • Agreement that candidate’s school district agrees to “support” candidate in this program (please check with your human resources department for more information).
  • Complete a program application.
  • Hold Georgia Teaching Certificate or approved equivalent.
  • Hold 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.
  • Competitive score on Graduate Record Examination



For More Information, please email

Mike Dishman, Professor and Department Chair,

at mdishma2@kennesaw.edu.


If I complete this program, what professional certification will I be eligible to hold?

The Georgia Professional Standards Commission has approved the Teacher Leadership program as preparation for Georgia’s new “S” (or “service”) field certificate.  Program completers will be eligible to receive the certification upon successfully passing the GACE in Teacher Leadership.  Candidates will also be eligible to hold the NPL (or non-renewable leadership certificate) upon program completion.

Will I receive a salary lane increase based on this degree, even if I remain in the classroom?

Under current GaPSC and GaDOE rules, you certainly should; however, to be sure, please check with your district and the GaPSC before beginning any degree program.

What is the “leadership preservice?”

The “leadership preservice” is a six (6) semester hour program that Georgia requires educators who do not have a graduate degree in educational leadership to complete before they can enter a performance-based educational specialist programs.  Upon completion of the online “leadership preservice,” these educators are eligible to apply for an EDS program in educational leadership.