M.S. in School District Leadership AD5

The core program leads a NYS Certification in School District Leader (MS 28989).

Program Options/Extensions:
In addition to taking the core program outlined below, students may want to consider supplementing their program to achieve other goals and pursue additional certification. Each option enhancement has specific prerequisites and/or course requirements in addition to the requirements for the AD5 base program.

Additional Options & Certifications
  • [AB4] (3 Additional Credits)
  • School Building Leader (ADVCRT 28986)
  • Additional Advanced Certificate in Urban Teaching and Leadership [UT1] (0+ Additional Credits)
  • Additional Advanced Certificate in Digitally-Rich Teaching in K-12 Schools [OT3] (3+ Additional Credits)
  • [LI1]

Primary program course requirements

The primary program includes a total of 36 credits of which 6 are field experiences. The detailed M.S. in School District Leadership AD5 Program of Study Form shows the additional requirements for the program option(s)/extension(s). When you meet with your advisor, you will complete a detailed program plan for M.S. in School District Leadership AD5

Entry Level Courses   

Up to 10 credits in graduate-level coursework in education or related fields may be transferred in prior to matriculating into the Master’s degree program if approved by the faculty advisor. These transfer credits can fulfill an elective requirement or be a direct substitution of a required course. Required courses that are part of accreditation assessments cannot be substituted.

Masters' Core   
ED406 Master's Research Methods

Specialization Courses   

Summer A session of ED462 offered every other year in Olean and Geneva locations only; spring session of EDU407 offered in Geneva location only.
ED462 Managing School Resources
ED465 School Governance and the Rights of Students and Teachers
EDU502 Leading the School District: The Superintendency in the 21st Century
EDU407 Curricular and Instructional Leadership
EDU421 Human Resource Management
EDU468 Data-Driven School Improvement


Choose electives for a total of 6 credits.


For a total of at least six (6) credits, internship may be completed over multiple semesters for a total of at least 600 hours which includes experiences at both the building and district levels.
EDF498 Supervised Internship in Educational Administration (variable credits)
EDF498 Supervised Internship in Educational Administration (variable credits)
EDF498 Supervised Internship in Educational Administration (variable credits)

Additional Requirements   
EDE460 Master's Culminating Requirement: Ed Administration K12


1. Substitution of one of the specialization courses may be possible with permission of advisor, provided the student is still able to complete all the key assessments required by accreditation.

2. Candidates interested in obtaining School District Leader certification also, need only to take one additional course -- EDU502: Leading the School District -- as one of their electives (provided they also have graduate coursework that adds to a minimum of 60 credits).

3. You can register for ED498: Administrative Internship in multiple semesters and for a variable number of credits adding up to a total of 6.

4. By choosing electives appropriately, students can reduce the number of additional credits required to complete an optional Advanced Certificate as an enhancement to this degree. If interested, be sure to discuss options with your advisor early in your program.

5. Students also interested in pursuing an Advanced Certificate in Urban Teaching & Leadership (UT1) -- See Enhancement Section -- should choose the following courses as their 6 credits of electives: EDU442 - Race, Class, Gender, and Disability in American Education, EDE446 - Introduction to Urban Education, ED440 - Urban Teaching & Leadership Seminar 1A, and ED441 - Urban Teaching & Leadership Seminar 1B. Please contact the UTL Director to explore whether some of the required Specialization Courses could be used in lieu of ED468 - Leadership in Urban Schools.

6. For students also pursuing an Advanced Certificate in Digitally-Rich Teaching in K-12 Schools, any teaching methods course taken as part of a prior teaching certification can be transferred in to count as the "specialization course in teaching and learning" in the Advanced Certificate.

Other Requirements:

In addition to the coursework indicated above, in order to graduate and to receive the certification(s)/licensure (if any) you are seeking this program has additional requirements. Please note that in some cases, while our program will provide you with all the academic experiences required for the certification you seek, there may be some additional requirements that you will have to complete independently and outside of our program in order to be granted that certification/licensure (ex: completing a certain number of years of mentored experiences). When that is the case, we have listed these requirements but also indicated that they are not a graduation requirement.

  • B.A. or B.S. Degree
  • Master's Essay or Thesis (Successful completion of EDE460)
  • 60 Credits of Graduate Work
  • NYS-approved Workshop on Recognizing the Signs of Child Abuse
  • NYS-approved Workshop on School Violence Prevention and Intervention
  • Dignity for All Students (DASA) Training in Harassment, Bullying, Cyberbullying, & Discrimination Prevention and Intervention
  • NYS Exam - Educating all Students (EAS)
  • NYS Exam - SDL part 1 passed
  • NYS Exam - SDL part 2 passed
  • Finger-print Supported Background Check (to be completed and submitted directly to NYS at the beginning of the program)
  • Teaching, Pupil Services, and/or Administrative Experience
  • Permanent or Professional Certification in Classroom Teaching or Pupil Personnel Service