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Thomas C. Gibbon, Ed.D., Chair, Special Education coordinator (717) 477-1498
David F. Bateman, Ph.D.
Rhonda A. Brunner, Ed.D.
Jacquelyn Chovanes, M.Ed.
Phillip F. Diller, Ed.D., Ed Leadership program coordinator (717) 477-1591
Gerald L. Fowler, Ph.D.
Wendy L. Kubasko, Ed.D.
Anne Papalia, Ph.D.
Christopher L. Schwilk, Ph.D.
The Department of Educational Leadership and Special Education offers graduate programs leading to the Master of Education degree in Educational Leadership and the Master of Education in Special Education.
The Master’s degree programs in Educational Leadership include programs leading to certification of K-12 principals and Post-Master’s degree programs leading to the certification of K-12 principals.
The Department also offers Post-Master’s degree programs leading to the Supervisory I Certificate and a Post-Master’s degree program leading to the Superintendent’s Letter of Eligibility (SLE). SLE courses comprise the content core of the Doctorate of Education in Educational Leadership.
The Master’s in Special Education programs lead to Pennsylvania certification in Special Education at the PreK-8 and 7-12 levels. Additionally, the Department offers Master’s degree programs leading to advanced study in learning disabilities, behavioral disorders, and intellectual disabilities.
Students matriculating for a degree and/or certification in Educational Leadership or Special Education at Shippensburg University shall be given preference for class seats over students not enrolled in a graduate program in Educational Leadership or Special Education when the demand for a particular class exceeds the class enrollment.
Students may take courses as non-degree graduate students, but candidates should not take more than nine credit hours before being accepted for admission into one of the Department’s programs.
Students in Educational Leadership programs are not required to take courses in a specified sequence. Program plans are designed for each student by Department faculty as part of the admissions process. Each student should check with their advisor prior to scheduling.
Students in Special Education are not required to take courses in a particular order except for practicum and student teaching, which are to be taken after other coursework is completed.
In the Educational Leadership and Special Education programs, each student’s effectiveness and suitability for recommendation to PDE for school service will be given a broad-based evaluation by faculty and/or field experience supervisors. In addition to grades, final decisions regarding continuance in either program will be predicated on a combination of factors such as demonstrated clinical competence, personal interaction skills, judgment, and other relevant issues related to professionalism. The Department reserves the right to discontinue students who in the opinion of the majority of the program faculty do not possess the dispositions or competence for certification.
Admission Requirements for Educational Leadership Programs
In addition to the regular requirements for admission to graduate study, the applicant for admission to the graduate program in Educational Leadership must have an Instructional or Educational Specialist certificate. The applicant must obtain an application and two reference forms from the Department of Educational Leadership and Special Education. One recommendation must be completed by a chief school officer (district superintendent or intermediate unit executive director) in the school in which the candidate is currently employed or has been most recently employed. The second reference must be either from a principal or the applicant’s immediate supervisor. In addition, a signed copy of the Memorandum of Understanding for Practicum and Mentoring must be signed by the chief school officer and submitted with the application.
After the review of the applicant’s credentials and supporting materials, a decision on admission to graduate study will be made by the Educational Leadership faculty and/or the Department chair. Admission to graduate study does not guarantee subsequent admission to candidacy for the Master’s degree.
In order to complete a program of study leading to the Master of Education degree, the student must apply for and be admitted to candidacy for the degree. Candidacy decisions will be made during each student’s first practicum.
Post-Master’s Degree Curricula Leading to Certification of K-12 Principals
Students who have earned an M.Ed. in Educational Leadership, or a related area (i.e. Reading, Curriculum & Instruction, Early Childhood, etc.) and need only K-12 Principal Certification may apply to the Dean of Admissions for the Post-Master’s K-12 Principal Certification Program.
- The applicant shall present a copy of the applicant’s teaching certificate and evidence of three years of successful teaching experience in elementary, middle, or secondary schools.
- Applicants who did not complete the Master of Education degree at Shippensburg University shall also provide official transcripts sent to the Dean of Admissions by any institution at which the applicant has taken undergraduate or graduate work. Applicants must obtain two reference forms from the Department of Educational Leadership and Special Education. These forms are available at http://www.ship.edu/ELSE/Educational_Leadership/Forms/. One recommendation must be completed by a chief school officer (district superintendent or intermediate unit executive director) in the school or intermediate unit in which the candidate is currently employed or has been most recently employed. The second reference must be either from the applicant’s principal or immediate supervisor.
- Applicants must submit a completed Practicum application between their school district and the Educational Leadership program. This should be completed one year in advance of the first practicum.
- Recommendation for admission to the certification program will be determined by the faculty in the Department of Educational Leadership and Special Education.
Policies for the Certification Program
- The Pennsylvania Department of Education requires a minimum of three years of professional school experience in order to be eligible for the Administrative I certificate.
- A B average must be maintained for the credits required for certification, with not more than one C grade included.
- Courses or prescribed experiences may be repeated only with the approval of the student’s advisor, the chair of the Department of Educational Leadership and Special Education, and the Dean of the College of Education and Human Services.
- Prescribed experiences for the certification program must be completed within a three-year period. This requirement will apply unless an extension is granted for extenuating circumstances by the Department and the Dean.
- Individuals pursuing principal certification who have not gone through a candidacy review for the Master’s degree with the Department of Educational Leadership and Special Education at Shippensburg University may be required to complete an interview. If required, this review must be conducted after completion of six to nine hours of coursework.
- It is essential the student work closely with his or her advisor throughout the program. A student is required to complete 15 credit hours at Shippensburg University in order for the Department to recommend him/her for certification.
- The practicum experiences will be individually prescribed programs based upon Pennsylvania Department of Education mandated competencies and the experiences of the candidate. Arrangements for practicum should be made one year in advance.
- Pennsylvania Department of Education requires a passing score on the Pennsylvania Department of Education School Leader Licensure Assessment. Go to https://www.ets.org/praxis/pa/requirements for more information.
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