School Superintendent, Education Specialist

Offered by Department of Educational Administration 

Program Information and Admission Requirements

Departmental Objectives

Graduates will be effective school administrators, who are responsive, reflective, and collaborative decision-makers and who have the requisite knowledge, skills, and technological expertise to organize learning environments that embrace the principles of democracy, diversity, and equity.

Program Objectives

Educational Administration Program objectives are aligned with the Nebraska Department of Education (NDE), Administrator Certification Rule 24, and the standards for Educational Leadership Program Recognition adopted by the National Policy Board for Educational Administration (NPBEA) in August, 2018.

Nebraska Certification Requirements

Approved Programs: Graduate programs in Educational Administration for school personnel are approved for Nebraska Administrative and Supervisory Certification.

Special Education Requirement: Nebraska certification requires the completion of a Special Education course covering the identification of handicapping conditions and the various alternatives to providing educational opportunities for handicapped students. This requirement is a prerequisite for administrative certification and must have been met prior to a graduate degree in EDAD or taken as an elective within the graduate program of study. Program applicants who received their initial teaching certificate prior to September 1, 1992 will be required to take TESE 821P in place of one of their program electives.

Human Relations Requirement: The Nebraska requirements on human relations are met through the completion of the required coursework within a Master's Degree Program in Educational Administration.

The Specialist Degree in Educational Administration is fully accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education and meets the requirements for the Nebraska Professional Administrative and Supervisory Certificate to qualify for administrative positions in all public and parochial schools in Nebraska. The Specialist Degree Program at the University of Nebraska at Kearney emphasizes preparation of administrators with specific emphasis upon the superintendency.

The prospective student must comply with the requirements for admission to the Office of Graduate Studies and Academic Outreach and satisfy the requirements for admission to the Specialist Degree program as prescribed by the Educational Administration Department.


In addition to the general requirements of the Office of Graduate Studies and Academic Outreach, the criteria for admission to this degree program consist of the following:

  1. A Master's Degree in an education related field from an accredited institution, an administrative certificate and at least two years of teaching.
  2. Submit a professional biography including why you seek the superintendency (On-line format)
  3. A satisfactory undergraduate and graduate scholastic record;
  4. Submit written recommendations from two school administrators who can comment on your potential to do graduate study and for educational leadership. (On-line format);
  5. Faculty review of all applications to the programs.
  6. Members of the Educational Administration Department will evaluate each applicant following the completion of 12 semester credit hours of coursework. At this point the department will make a decision relating to Approval of the Candidacy Application.

In order to be eligible for an endorsement as superintendent in the State of Nebraska, one must have earned a Master's degree as principal, or have completed an endorsement program as principal in an accredited Nebraska college or university.

  • Out-of-state students who apply for the Educational Specialist degree and complete the degree program will need to check with their respective state certification officers.
  • Out-of-state students who apply for the Educational Specialist degree and complete the degree program will not be recommended for endorsement as superintendent unless deemed otherwise by the Nebraska Department of Education.

Degree Program

The program of studies that leads to the Specialist Degree with a major in Educational Administration is dependent upon the applicant's experience and prior coursework. The degree is awarded upon completion of a minimum of 69 semester credit hours of credit beyond the baccalaureate degree. An internship, an integral component of the program, is completed with experienced school administrators serving as mentors.

Time Limitation

The coursework for the Specialist degree must be completed within a period of 10 years.

Comprehensive Examination

An oral comprehensive examination and an online practice Praxis II for the degree are administered prior to or during the session in which the student is expected to receive the degree. Departmental procedures require that all EDAD coursework, except arranged courses, be completed or in progress before comprehensive examinations may be taken.

This program is offered online only.

All students are required to complete an exit survey during the semester of graduation or program completion.

Required Courses
EDAD 940Administrative Theory3
EDAD 944Seminar in Educational Administration3
EDAD 955The School Administrator and the Law3
EDAD 956School/Community Relations3
EDAD 957Public School Finance3
EDAD 958Educational Facility Plan3
EDAD 991Field Study 13
EDAD 992Executive Administrator3
EDAD 998Internship3-6
Select appropriate courses with the consent of the advisor.3-6
The following may apply:
Current Issues in Education
EDAD Assessment Leadership
Administration of Special Education
School Improvement
Independent Readings
Total Credit Hours33

May enroll for an additional 3 credit hours for extended research.