2021-2022 Graduate Catalog

Specialist in Education Superintendent

CIP: 130411

Degree Policies and Requirements

The Specialist in Education program offers additional study beyond the master’s degree for persons preparing for positions in educational leadership. Three areas of specialization are offered: superintendency, secondary school principalship and elementary school principalship.


Upon initial registration the student will seek advisement and course approval as stated on the Degree Audit Form from the coordinator of advisement for the Specialist in Education program.

Degree Requirements

Degree requirements for the Specialist in Education program include the following:

  1. Satisfactory completion of a minimum of 32 approved graduate semester hours beyond the master’s degree (at least 11 of which must be at the 700 level) with a minimum grade point average of 3.25 overall and at Northwest.
  2. Two years of teaching/supervisory or administrative experience in elementary and/or secondary schools.

Transfer Credit

A student may transfer up to nine semester hours in no more than four courses from regionally-accredited institutions offering the specialist degree if the courses are appropriate, are approved by the candidate’s advisor, and are graded at a “B” or higher.

Time Limitations

All requirements submitted in fulfillment of the degree must be completed within a period of eight years.

Initial Enrollment

The initial enrollment is the first enrollment term in which a student seeking the Specialist in Education degree is registered.

During the initial enrollment, students seeking admission to the Specialist in Education program must:

  1. Meet all general requirements for admission to the Graduate School set forth by this catalog with the exception of undergraduate transcripts. These are not required.
  2. Supply evidence of a completed master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher education with a minimum grade point average of 3.25. Conditional enrollment is allowed if the student has a cumulative graduate GPA between 3.00 and 3.24. The student must achieve a 3.25 GPA in his or her first eight semester hours of graduate study or be subject to suspension for one year. Re-admission is possible after one year by petition to be approved by the Specialist in Education faculty, the Dean of the School of Education, and the Associate Provost of Graduate Studies.
  3. Submit a GRE score with a combined minimum score for the verbal and quantitative sections of 285 and at least a 4.0 on the writing sample section of the GRE. A student who has completed two or more years of satisfactory teaching may substitute the Departmental Admissions Exam (DAE) in place of the GRE.
  4. Submit an application for admission to the Specialist in Education program.
  5. Have three letters of recommendation on file. One letter must refer to the student’s academic qualifications, one letter must refer to employment experience, and one may be a general character reference.
  6. Supply evidence of holding a valid teaching certificate.

Screening Committee

In cases of denial, a student may appeal to the Dean of the School of Education who will order a hearing before a faculty committee; denial of the appeal may be re-appealed to faculty of the Specialist in Education program.

Admission to the Specialist in Education Program

Admission to the program is granted when a student:

  1. Has completed all requirements as listed under “Initial Enrollment.”
  2. Has been approved by the program advisor and graduate dean for entry into the program.

Admission to Candidacy

Admission to candidacy is granted when a student:

  1. Has been admitted to the Specialist in Education program.
  2. Has completed at least 20 semester hours of graduate work in education courses focused upon leadership including:
    1. Elementary or Secondary School Administration, 2 semester hours
    2. School Supervision, 2 semester hours
    3. Elementary or Secondary School Curriculum, 2 semester hours

    If taken at the master’s level, none of these hours will count toward the 32 semester hour Ed.S. degree requirements. Other courses taken as a part of another graduate degree will not be counted toward the 32 semester hour requirement.

    1. Has GRE scores on file in the Graduate Office meeting the minimum admissions score, or if applicable, the DAE.
    2. Has earned a minimum of eight semester hours of graduate credit beyond the master’s degree at Northwest approved by the coordinator of advisement for the Specialist in Education degree with a grade point average of 3.25.
    3. Has an approved program of study filed on which admission to candidacy is indicated.

    Certification Requirements

    In addition to fulfilling the Specialist in Education degree requirements listed, students seeking Missouri certification must:

    1. Successfully complete the course EDCI 62641, Educating the Exceptional Child (if the requirement has not previously been met).
    2. Submit a signed, notarized morality statement if not previously certified in the State of Missouri.

    The student has the responsibility of applying for any new certification.

    Required courses:


    EDUC 61642Multicultural Education for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion


    EDUC 61623Relational School Leadership


    EDUC 61740 The Superintendency


    EDUC 61723Writing and Interpreting Educational Literature and Statistics


    EDUC 61738 Internship in School Administration and Supervision


    EDUC 61665School Law


    EDUC 61770School Buildings and Equipment


    EDUC 61775School Finance


    EDUC 61713School Personnel Administration


    EDUC 61733Advanced Curriculum Design


    Total Credit Hours: 30