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    Harding University
  Jul 03, 2022
2019-2020 Academic Catalog 
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2019-2020 Academic Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Educational Leadership (EDS-EDLD) EdS

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District Level Administrator Endorsement  is available.

This degree provides candidates with the skills necessary to achieve a higher level of competency in educational administration. Additionally, successful completion of this degree moves the candidate toward completion of a doctoral degree.

A minimum of initial building-level administrator licensure is required. Courses and program requirements meet current Arkansas state guidelines leading to district-level administrative licensure (subject to having full building-level licensure and the successful completion of the School Superintendent Assessment [SSA]).

Educational Specialist Degrees

Admission Requirements for the Educational Leadership degree

Admission to Harding University is determined on an individual basis with the following criteria considered: (1) academic preparation, (2) character, (3) educational interests and (4) academic potential. Effort is made to admit all students who qualify and who can benefit from the unique educational program and opportunities available at Harding irrespective of their religious faith, national origin, sex, race or color. When applying, students should be aware of the distinct purpose of Harding University and be willing to commit themselves to upholding institutional values.

Applicants for the specialist degree program must:

  1. Hold a master’s degree in a related field from an accredited institution.
  2. Have a cumulative grade point average of 3.00 on all graduate work.
  3. Successfully complete the Miller Analogies Test (MAT) with a minimum score of 396 or the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) with a minimum score of 900 on the verbal and quantitative sections, and a 4.0 on the analytical section. A student may be admitted provisionally to the Educational Leadership program without submitting a test score, but must submit an acceptable score during the first semester enrolled.
  4. Abide by the university Code of Conduct. Counseling students must also abide by the Graduate Policies and Procedures.
  5. Applicant must show proof of current teaching licensure and initial building-level administrative licensure, and have at least three years of teaching experience, with some building-level administrative experience preferable.

Application Procedure

  1. An application form for admission may be obtained online at or by contacting the chair of the program, Box 12261, Searcy, AR 72149-2261; or e-mail
  2. Applications must be accompanied by a $40 application fee which is not refundable and will not apply against the general registration fee if the applicant enrolls.
  3. Applicants must provide satisfactory references from three individuals attesting to the applicant’s professional or academic performance, including one related to professional ability in the degree area to which the student is applying.
  4. Submit written support from immediate supervisor that includes a commitment allowing candidate to participate in field experiences.

Application Review and Selection of Candidates

Each applicant will be interviewed by the program area graduate faculty. This interview will determine the candidate’s professional objectives, professional commitment, and the compatibility of the program with his or her goals and interests. The applicant must complete an impromptu writing sample at the time of the interview.

The chair of Graduate Studies or the director of each specific program may request additional information from the applicant prior to final approval for admittance to the specialist program.


Applicants must hold a Masters’ degree in a related field from an accredited institution.

Other Program Requirements

Upon acceptance into the program, students must consult with director or the assigned advisor of their program concerning the required course of study, register for classes online through Campus Pipeline each semester, and complete financial registration with the Business Office online.

“Leveling courses,” if required, will not be included within the semester hour requirements for the specialist degree.

Educational Leadership requires successful completion of a mandatory internship.

Written comprehensive exams are required for all education specialist programs, and the Educational Leadership program requires a portfolio. In addition Educational Leadership requires a specialist project.

All requirements of the Educational Leadership program must be completed within six years from the time of acceptance into the program. Course work that is taken more than six years before graduation will not be acceptable.

All requirements of the Professional Counseling program must be completed within eight years from the time of acceptance into the program. Course work that is taken more than eight years before graduation will not be acceptable.

Transfer Students

Up to 6 hours of credit for coursework from other accredited institutions of higher education may be transferred if the institution is accredited by NCATE, TEAC, or a similar accrediting organization and the earned grade was a “B” or higher. For Educational Leadership, the institution must have a program of study that is reflective of both the Arkansas Standards of Licensure for District-Level Administrators and the Interstate School Leaders Consortium. All transfer hours are subject to the approval of the chair of graduate studies in education and must be completed before a student’s last semester.

International Students

Students who (1) speak English as a second language, and have (2) not previously completed an undergraduate degree from an accredited American college or university must meet a minimum score on a nationally recognized test of English language proficiency such as the TOEFL or IELTS. However, in lieu of these exam, professional programs in the health sciences may assess such students with an interview and/or a writing exam.

Minimum TOEFL scores acceptable for admission to the university are 550 (paper-based test), 213 (computer-based test), or 79 (Internet-based test). The minimum IELTS score is 6.0. Scores must not be older than two years prior to the date of application to the university. Please note that individual programs may have more stringent minimum requirements.

Academic Standing Requirements

These requirements are common to all programs in education and are listed in the Cannon-Clary College of Education  section. Professional Counseling students should refer to their student handbook for program requirements.

Degree Requirements and Curriculum

Requests for degree may be submitted prior to a student’s final semester but must be submitted no later than the first week of the final semester. The graduation fee must be paid to the Business Office the last semester before graduation.

Degree requirements and curricula are listed below:

Educational Leadership

To earn this degree, a student must successfully complete (1) the following 30 semester hours of coursework, (2) an internship, (3) a specialist project, (4) a professional portfolio, and (5) written comprehensive exams. These requirements must be completed within six years from the time of admission to the graduate program. Course work that is taken more than six years before graduation will not be acceptable. (Prerequisite: Current initial building-level license.)

II. Electives (3 hours)

Must be approved by the program director. Any of these courses that were taken as part of another degree cannot be counted toward the superintendent’s program of study.

III. Bible Requirement (2 hours)

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