Degree and Certificate Programs

Specialist in Education Degree

The Specialist in Education (Ed.S.) degree program is an advanced graduate program that enables students to develop competence in an area of educational specialization with emphasis on practice. There are four program areas in which an Ed.S. degree is granted:

  • Counseling and Counselor Education
  • Educational Leadership (School Administration)
  • School Psychology
  • Education (Elementary Education, Instructional Systems Technology, Language Education, Secondary Education, Special Education)

The first three programs are oriented toward state licensing. Satisfactory completion of these programs results in a recommendation for licensing. The fourth program (called Ed.S. in Education) allows for specialization in one of five tracks: elementary education, instructional systems technology, language education, secondary education, and special education.

Admission to all Ed.S. programs is at the Bloomington campus. See the section titled Admission to Graduate Programs for application procedures and admission criteria.

Ed.S. Program Areas

Counseling and Counselor Education

The specialist program in counseling and counselor education is oriented toward licensure as mental health counselors. Practicum and internship are required. This program is appropriate for personsworking in organizational roles that require competencies in addition to those developed through the master's degree. Education courses lettered "G" designate counseling courses.

To be considered for admission, students must have been accepted to the master's program in counseling at IU Bloomington or IUPUI or have completed a master's program in counseling from an accredited institution of higher education.

Educational Leadership (School Administration)

The specialist degree or the doctoral degree in educational leadership is required for the superintendent's license. The Ed.S. program prepares leaders for public and nonpublic schools, state departments of education, and intermediate school service units, and for national and state professional associations. Most graduates are employed as school superintendents, assistant superintendents of schools, school principals, administrators of special education, directors of personnel, and business managers of school systems. The faculty maintains many close links with international, national, and state professional associations, with the Indiana Department of Education, with federal agencies, and with business firms. Faculty-directed research and field studies in school districts afford opportunities for students to participate in the application of theory and knowledge to solving practical problems. Education courses beginning with the letter "A" are educational leadership courses.

School Psychology

School psychology students take course work in psychological assessment, consultation, professional ethics, the role of the school psychologist, special education, counseling, and psychology. Practicum and internship experiences are also required. This program leads to licensure as a school psychologist in Indiana (see the section titled Licensure Programs). Graduates of this program provide psychological services in public school settings. Education courses lettered "P" designate courses in school psychology.


Elementary Education

The Ed.S. in elementary education goes beyond the master's degree with a focus on theory, curriculum development, and the application of research to the elementary school classroom. The program is individually tailored and can focus on early childhood, mathematics, science, art, social studies, or general elementary education. This track prepares students for positions in curriculum development but is also excellent for classroom teachers who wish to continue their education beyond the master's degree level. Education courses lettered "E" designate elementary education courses although students in the Ed.S. program typically also take general curriculum courses ("J" courses) as well as subject-focused elementary education courses.

Instructional Systems Technology

The specialist program in instructional systems technology (IST) allows students to develop expertise in instructional technology beyond the master's level and to prepare for management and leadership positions in education, government, business, or industry. The post-master's courses should be chosen to strengthen competence in one or more of the following areas: front-end analysis, instructional design and development, media design and development, evaluation, change facilitation and management, distributed education, or project management. Education courses lettered "R" designate courses in instructional systems technology.

Language Education

The specialist program in language education prepares students to become language arts, literacy, English as a new language, foreign language, or reading specialists; clinicians; and writers or editors of instructional materials. Course offerings in language education include literacy development, English/language arts education, diagnostic procedures, remedial instruction, clinical practice, internship, and research in language education. Course work involves experiences with children, high school students, college youth, and adults. Education courses lettered "L" designate language education courses.

Secondary Education

The Ed.S. track in secondary education is designed for classroom teachers and other educators who are interested in theory, curriculum development, and the application of research to the secondary classroom. Although not required for supervisory or department chair positions, the Ed.S. degree is excellent preparation for such appointments. The program is individually tailored and can focus on mathematics, science, art, social studies, or general secondary education. Education courses lettered "S" designate secondary education courses although students in the Ed.S. program typically also take general curriculum courses ("J" courses) as well as subject-focused courses.

Special Education

The specialist degree in special education is designed for students who desire to increase their expertise beyond the master's degree level and become leaders in field-based settings. In the specialist program, students will gain particular expertise in areas such as consultation, professional development, program evaluation, school change, supported employment, and behavior management. Education courses lettered "K" designate special education offerings.

Degree Requirements

An Ed.S. program consists of 65 credit hours, at least 35 of which must be taken at the Bloomington or Indianapolis campus.

The remaining credit hours may be transferred from other campuses of Indiana University or from other accredited colleges. A residency period of 9 credit hours taken in one semester or summer, following admission, is required. Specialist degree students must complete all degree requirements within seven years of the date of matriculating after admission. Students who fail to meet this time limit are terminated from the program. Such students may apply for readmission to the program. They are subject to current admission and program requirements. See the section titled Policies Governing Graduate Programs for regulations governing all graduate programs in the School of Education, including course revalidation, residency, and GPA requirements.

A form for the appointment of the advisory committee and program of studies approval is available in the Office of Graduate Studies, Bloomington, and in the Office of Student Services, Indianapolis. This form is for listing all courses in a student's program. The program of studies must be approved in a meeting of the advisory committee. It must also be approved by the department chair and by the associate dean for graduate studies. The completed program of studies form must be submitted to the Office of Graduate Studies within one year of matriculation in the program, or enrollment in the program will be terminated.

Advisory Committee

Each student admitted to an Ed.S. program must form an advisory committee to assist in program formation and to monitor program progress. This committee must consist of two faculty members from the specialization area and one from the minor area. A regular faculty member from the specialization area serves as chair. At least two members of the committee must be regular faculty members. The third may be a part-time or adjunct faculty member. The committee must be approved by the department chair and by the associate dean for graduate studies. See the section titled The School of Education for a listing of departments and advisors.

Program of Studies

All Ed.S. programs must include appropriate course work in the following categories:

Major (24 cr.)

This is the area of specialization. Eighteen (18) of these credit hours must be taken at the Bloomington or Indianapolis campus. Each program area office has a document that specifies which courses are to be taken in this category.

Minor (9 cr.)

The minor area should complement the major, and should consist of courses that in combination form a cohesive entity. The minor courses must be outside of the major area of study and may be from within or outside the School of Education. The minor committee member must approve the selection of courses in this category.

Research/Inquiry (6 cr.)

A list of approved inquiry courses is available in the Office of Graduate Studies in Bloomington.

Electives (26 cr.)

Elective courses must be approved by the advisory committee. They must be relevant to the program. The electives category may be used to add to the major, research/inquiry, or minor components.

Capstone Project or Comprehensive Examination

A substantial project or a comprehensive examination constitutes the culmination of the Ed.S. program. A project normally requires a written manuscript describing the project. Projects vary from program to program.

Practical Experience

Ed.S. students must have demonstrated successful practical experience in order to be eligible for graduation. This experience may be in the form of work experience prior to or during the program of studies, or it may be accomplished through practicum and internship courses taken during the program.

Final Meeting

A final meeting of the advisory committee is required, at which the student's entire program, including the project manuscript or comprehensive examination results, are reviewed. If the committee is satisfied that all program requirements have been successfully completed, the student is recommended for graduation.

Academic Bulletins

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Additional program information can be found at the Office of Graduate Studies.