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Zach Smith



Education Specialist

NNU’s Ed.S. Educational Leadership: Superintendent degree program is designed for educational professionals who have a master’s degree and building prinicipal certification who are seeking formal educational leadership roles such as superintendent, assistant superintendent and other school district central office roles.

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  • 100% online
  • Program utilizes set courses to plan schedules ahead of time
  • Students may complete this 33-credit program in 22 months
  • Completion leads to Ed.S. with Pre-K-12 Superintendent endorsement on an Administrator Certificate

About Educational Leadership: Superintendent

NNU’s Education Specialist degree in Educational Leadership: Superintendent advances the academic preparation and teaching skills of experienced classroom teachers and instructional leaders. This online degree is designed for educational professionals who have a master’s degree and building principal certification who are seeking formal educational leadership roles such as superintendent, assistant superintendent and other school district central office roles.

Program emphasis is on the administrator as an instructional leader as well as a servant leader. Coursework emphasis is on ethical decision-making, creative problem-solving and professional growth.

degree details

Education Specialist

Offered Online

$565 per credit, $150 per semester technology fee

Program Design

Completion of this program qualifies the graduate for recommendation to the State of Idaho for Superintendent endorsement on an Idaho Administrator Certification. Individuals should check for specific requirements for certification in other states.

Designed to fit the schedule of a working professional, this online program utilizes set courses that allow students to plan their schedules ahead of time and allow them to continue working full-time in their position while completing the program.

Students participate in a year-long internship at the district office level. This internship will be supervised by a qualified central office administrator and must be approved by the school district and the NNU program director.

Students typically complete this 33-credit program in 22 months, including a year-long internship at the district office level.

Additional Information

Application Requirements

The following requirements must be received by Admissions a minimum of one week before classes start and are online, mailed or emailed as indicated. Recommendation forms and essay guidelines are available online within the application portal.

For mail:

Northwest Nazarene University
Attention Graduate Admissions
623 University Boulevard
Nampa, ID 83686

For email: gps@nnu.edu

  • Online: Application and $50 non-refundable application fee
  • Mail or email from a digital service such as Parchment or the National Student Clearinghouse: Official transcripts from a regionally accredited institution(s) where the applicant received a master’s degree
  • Email or mail: A copy of the applicant’s teaching certificate
  • Email or mail: A copy of the applicant’s building administrator license
  • Online: Two online recommendation forms completed by professional colleagues
  • Online: One Educational Leadership Evaluation Form from the applicant’s supervisor; the three recommendations must be completed by three different individuals
  • Online: Evidence of writing competency, preferably from a research paper or other document completed during master’s courses
Admission Requirements
Candidates must have the following:

  • A master’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university
  • A cumulative GPA of 3.0 in the master’s program
  • Certification/Licensure as a building administrator based on a recommendation from a state-approved higher education preparation program
  • Four (4) years of full-time certificated/licensed experience working with students while under contract in an accredited school setting before Ed.S. degree completion
  • Approval by the Graduate Education Admissions Committee
Program Start Dates
Classes begin every 8 weeks, and new students may join throughout the year.
Required Courses

EDUC8000 Orientation: Graduate Education (0)
EDUC7556 Conceptual Statistics and Applications for Educators (3)
EDUC7579 Special Education Law for Administrators (2)
EDUC7584 Data-Driven Decision Making (3)
EDUC8670 Labor Relations in Schools (3)
EDUC8671 Educational Change: A Historical Perspective (3)
EDUC8672 The Superintendency (3)
EDUC8673 Advanced School Finance (3)
EDUC8674 School Facilities (3)
EDUC8675 Public Relations and Marketing for Schools (3)
EDUC8676 Special Populations: Issues and Resources (3)
EDUC8678 Central Office Internship (1-3) (2 semesters; 4 total credits required)
EDUC8678B Central Office Internship Portfolio Binder (0-1)

Total Credits: A minimum of 33 semester credits are required.

Initial principal endorsement may be obtained through an Education Specialist degree. Please see Education Specialist, Educational Leadership-Building Administrator.


Since this is a program that leads to professional licensure, prospective students should review important information about NNU’s participation in the National Council of State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (NC-SARA) and Professional Licensure about this program. Individual states often have different expectations for professional licensure, so it is in a prospective student’s best interest to investigate whether NNU’s degree program will help them achieve licensure in their home state.

NC SARA Seal 2021


Northwest Nazarene University’s College of Education meets the requirements for accreditation from the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).



Northwest Nazarene University received the 2023-2024 Colleges of Distinction Award in Education.

Colleges of Distinction logo Education 2023-2024

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District Superintendent

Meet Our Faculty

The professors are awesome. They are all open to conversation to any kind of question I ever had. Every single professor was open to discuss. That’s incredible for me because where I am from people are not like that. I have a really good relationship with all of them here and they are always open to talk with me. They give me a ton of advice.
Nikola Pruvlj

AA Elementary or Secondary Education