The George Washington UniversityGeorge Washington University female studentOnline Educational Specialist in Educational Leadership and Administration
The George Washington University

Foster a Thriving Learning Culture

The George Washington University’s online Education Specialist (EdS) in Educational Leadership and Administration is a specialized degree that prepares you to lead and promote high-quality student achievement at a district, sub-district or school-wide level.

GW’s program is nationally accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).


The EdS is ideal for students with a master’s degree in education who seek further professional preparation for specific career objectives. Completion of the degree may prepare qualified students for administrator/principal licensure.


Upon completion of the program, you are prepared to be a P-12 leader who has a strong mastery of the following:

  • Curriculum design
  • Instructional excellence
  • Motivation and support of classroom professionals
  • Needs of diverse learning communities

On-Campus Program
Click here for information about the campus program offering.


Program Highlights

The George Washington University’s Education Specialist program emphasizes the following core competencies:

  • Leadership and management
  • Change
  • Communication
  • Administrative and legal issues
  • Human relations
  • Supervision of instruction
  • Curriculum analysis

Benefits of GW’s Education Specialist Degree

  • Career Advancement: The EdS program is viewed as a terminal degree and may position current pre-kindergarten -12th grade teachers for career advancement and potentially higher salaries.
  • Specialized Skills: Students with the EdS degree have a set of specialized skills in theory, practice and research, making them more attractive in the job market.
  • Applied Leadership Knowledge: Design and implement an evidence‐based action research project to address an area of instructional need in a school or central office setting.
  • Potential Licensure Opportunity: The program may prepare qualified students for administrator/principal licensure.


The 30-credit Education Specialist program can be completed in as little as 2 years.

Courses (30 Credit Hours)

  • EDUC 6100 Evidence-Based Action Research for School Improvement (3 credits)
  • EDUC 6232 Supervision and Evaluation of Instruction (3 credits)
  • EDUC 6234 Site-Based Leadership: K-12 (3 credits)
  • EDUC 6236 School Law and Policy (3 credits)
  • EDUC 6240 Fundamentals of Educational Leadership and the Change Process (3 credits)
  • EDUC 6244 School-Community Relations (3 credits)
  • EDUC 6246 Seminar: Applied Educational Administration (3 credits)
  • EDUC 6287-A Internship: Administration (3 credits)
  • EDUC 6422 Instructional Needs Analysis (3 credits)
  • EDUC 6287-B Internship: Administration (3 credits)

The program includes courses and field experiences designed to meet administrative certification requirements in the District of Columbia, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, and other states that honor interstate compact agreements.

Career Outlook 

The online EdS program is designed for licensed teachers and school administrators looking to advance into leadership positions. The program prepares you for advanced levels of professional responsibility in diverse educational communities and increases your technical, conceptual, political, and leadership skills.

Employment Settings for Graduates

  • Consulting organization
  • Government department or agency
  • Higher education institution
  • P-12 school—public, private or charter

The EdS credential can be an advantage in hiring and a pay incentive in some school districts.

Potential Job Titles

  • Assistant Principal
  • Athletic Director
  • Central Office Administrator
  • Dean
  • Department Chair
  • Director of Admissions
  • Education Advisor
  • Education Consultant
  • Higher Education Instructor
  • Program Director
  • Principal

Program Options 

Post-Master’s Certificate in Educational Leadership Administration

GW also offers a Post-Master’s Certificate in Educational Leadership. Should you wish to pursue the Graduate Certificate, you do have the option to transfer these GW earned credit hours into the online Education Specialist (EdS) in Educational Leadership and Administration program.


The certificate can be completed in as little as one year. Students seeking a certificate program may apply for financial aid.


The certificate prepares you to promote high-quality student achievement and become a leader in various public PK-12 school-based and central office positions. You’ll graduate prepared to be a leader who understands curriculum design, instructional excellence, motivation and support of the classroom professionals, and the broader community.


Graduate Education Programs

In addition to the EdS or post-master’s certificate, GW also offers an online Master’s in Educational Leadership Administration. Completion of the degree may prepare qualified candidates for administrator/principal licensure.

About GW 

As one of the nation’s first major universities to launch online programs, the George Washington University (GW) provides students from all backgrounds — and all locations around the world — with the highest quality online educational opportunities.

Why You Should Earn Your Degree at GW

GW prepares you to lead in research and policy, as well as practice in the fields of teaching, counseling, administration, human and organizational learning, and education policy. The school also offers opportunities for experienced professionals to enrich their education and advance their career.

  • The Graduate School of Education and Human Development is ranked among the Best Online Education Schools for 2018 by U.S. News & World Report.
  • Strong legacy of transforming students into change agents
  • Unparalleled educational approach that integrates intellectual discovery and interactive learning

Transformation Begins Here

Contact an Admissions Advisor for more information at (844) 386-7323 or complete the form to the right.


Fill out the fields below and the George Washington University Admissions Advisor will contact you.