Degree Requirements

The EDL master’s degree requires completion of 36 semester hours. There are four core area requirements for the educational leadership degree. These are:

EDL 505 Introduction To Research 4
or EDL 541 Educational Research Methods
Educational Leadership
EDL 509 Organizational Dynamics 4
EDL 511 School Improvement 4
Other recommended certification requirements 20
Master’s Closure
EDL 531 Capstone I 1 2
EDL 532 Capstone II 2
Total Hours 36

Endorsement Requirements

Individuals interested in obtaining administrative positions in Illinois public schools must be properly endorsed. General requirements for the principal endorsement established by the State Licensure Board include a master’s degree, or admission into a master’s degree program at the same time as admission to courses for endorsement, two years of documented successful full-time teaching or four years of documented school service personnel experience upon admission, 32 semester hours of required graduate courses, which include four hours of internship experiences. Four more hours are required if the student wants the master’s degree.

To be admitted to the principal endorsement program applicants will also be required to:   1.  turn in a portfolio which contains a letter of recommendation from the applicant’s employer (school district), a letter of intent from the district that assures that at the appropriate point in the program the student will receive a placement as an intern in the district and will be permitted to complete his/her internship experiences, documents illustrating current leadership activities and skills, illustrations of using data to solve problems, and strategies used to improve student achievement, a current resume, a copy of the applicant’s teaching license or the page from the Illinois Educator’s Licensing Information System (ELIS) that shows current licensure, and the page from ELIS that shows proof of passing the Basic Skills Test (BST) or Test of Academic Proficiency (TAP) and   2. complete an interview with EDL faculty. Courses required for the principal endorsement can be completed in the EDL master’s degree concentration. Detailed information about course requirements is available from the program office. All students desiring principal endorsement from the ISBE must apply for admission to the endorsement program. Internship experiences are required for principal endorsement.3

Internship Requirements

Prior to enrollment in the first of the internship courses, candidates must successfully complete a specific set of required courses and submit the Special Approval Request Form for EDL 526 and/or EDL 531. (EDL 531 and EDL 532 are required for students seeking the MA in EDL degree and are taken simultaneously with their internship courses.) During the internship orientation, candidates will submit the Principal Internship Agreement for EDL 526. Before licensure, candidates must show proof of passing both ISBE principal exams. Please refer to the Illinois Licensure Testing System (ILTS) website for the testing schedule (

Students seeking the principal endorsement must complete the following course work (28 hours) to be eligible to register for the Principal Internship courses (EDL 526 and EDL 527):

EDL 502 School Finance 4
EDL 503 School Law 4
EDL 505 Introduction To Research 4
EDL 509 Organizational Dynamics 4
EDL 511 School Improvement 4
EDL 519 The Principalship 4
EDL 525 Supervision Of Instruction 4
Total Hours 28

Master’s Closure

All educational leadership degree candidates are required to complete master’s closure activities in order to graduate. EDL 531 and EDL 532 will be conducted during the internship experience at the school site. Students will work with an assigned Capstone Professor and Internship University Supervisor on this process.