Principal standing in front of lockers.

Graduate Certificate in Education Administration: K–12 Principal

The Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota Graduate Certificate in Education Administration for K–12 Principal licensure is designed for post-master’s students seeking the Minnesota K–12 Principal license.

Courses are intended to provide an understanding of the 13 core administrative competencies. These include core courses required for all administrative licensure preparation and two courses that are specific to principal leadership: the field experience internship (a 320 hour field experience internship with a minimum of 40 hours at elementary, junior/middle, and high school levels) and the Principal as Building Leader course.

Students compile an electronic portfolio documenting the development of their competencies throughout the courses and internship.

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Thursday, Oct. 17, 2019 at 1:30 p.m.

Learn more about Minnesota school administration and the advanced degrees to help you get there. Join our webinar if you are considering becoming a K-12 principal, director of special education, or superintendent.

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Administrative Licensure Preparation Pathway

The program consists of 29 credits for initial K–12 Principal or Director of Special Education preparation (or 41 credits for both). You may then choose to stop out and obtain a graduate certificate, complete 6 credits towards superintendency preparation, or complete the Ed.S. degree.

License and Teaching Requirements

In order to be eligible for Minnesota administrative licensure preparation, individuals must have three years of classroom teaching experience and a valid state teaching license. Those who do not meet these requirements may choose to complete the Saint Mary’s Alternative Pathway program to administrative licensure, which can be completed simultaneously with program coursework.

Program Outcomes

The following outcomes are state-identified competencies for an educational administration degree from Saint Mary's.

Leadership—Lead educational institutions and departments through collaborative, visionary planning and decision making.

Organizational Management—Manage and evaluate organizational operations including human, monetary, and physical resources for institutional improvement.

Diversity Leadership—Promote, create, and monitor appreciation and cultivation of diversity.

Policy and Law—Interpret, develop, and implement local, state, and federal policy and law.

Political Influence and Governance—Nurture a cooperative alliance of key stakeholders to influence the politics and governance of educational institutions.

Communication—Utilize communication skills essential to inform and facilitate effective organizational communication.

Community Relations—Establish and maintain positive and effective community relations relative to educational institutions.

Curriculum Planning and Development for the Success of All Learners—Facilitate the planning and development of curriculum, assessment, and instruction.

Instructional Management for the Success of All Learners—Design, implement, and support instruction, assessment strategies, and behavior management.

Use Research Effectively—Integrate current research appropriate for all learners.

Human Resource Management—Interpret, apply, and manage policies and procedures which foster positive and productive performance from faculty and staff.

Values and Ethics of Leadership—Practice ethical leadership, ensuring the best interest of all learners.

Judgment and Problem Analysis—Implement and facilitate problem-solving strategies, integrating critical thinking, creativity, logic, and collaboration.

Safety and Security—Create safety and security plans to sustain an emotionally and physically safe educational environment for all.

Principal-specific Outcomes

As a student of the K–12 Principal Certificate program, you will have intentional focus on:

Instructional Leadership—Apply school and district-wide literacy and numeracy systems.

Monitor Student Learning—Develop and manage effective learning environments and experiences for all students.

Leadership—Lead the community within K–12 institutions, promoting inclusiveness and effective communication.

From Start to Finish

  • You can earn your administrative license in a little less than two years.
  • A cohort model allows for a small team of students to collaborate in convenient locations across the state. Cohorts are offered each semester throughout the state.

Contact us to talk through location options in your area.

Degree Requirements/Course Descriptions/Application Process

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This program is offered at our Twin Cities and Apple Valley locations and regional cohorts.

Connect With Us

Michelle Dougherty, M.A.

SGPP Admission - Assistant Director of Admission

LaSalle Hall-TC Campus, LSH114

Campus Box: # 28

(612) 728-5122


William Bjorum, Ed.D.

Educational Specialist in Educational Admin. - Program Director

Mother Teresa Hall-TC Campus, MTH19

Campus Box: # 28

(612) 728-5126

William Bjorum Ed.D.
Carl Wahlstrom, Ed.D.

Associate Director - Education Specialist in Educational Administration, Education - Adjunct Professor

Mother Teresa Hall-TC Campus, MTH21

Campus Box: # 28

(612) 238-4539

Carl Wahlstrom Ed.D.
Matthew Neil

Education Administration Programs - Program Coordinator

The Heights, HT201

Campus Box: # 68

(612) 728-5155

Matthew Neil
Jennifer Backer, M.Ed.

Ed.S. in Educational Administration - Adjunct Instructor

Thomas Coughlin, M.S.

Education Admin - Adjunct Assistant Professor

Deborah Hilde, M.A.

Education - Adjunct Program Instructor

Lyle Koski, Ph.D.

Educational Administrative Licensure Program - Adjunct Associate Professor

Susan Manikowski, M.Ed.

MA Education Program - Adjunct Assistant Professor

Karen Mortenson, M.S.

Ed.S. Education Administration Program - Adjunct Associate Professor

Janet Pladson, Ed.D.

Ed.S. In Educational Admin. - Adjunct Assistant Professor

Bruce Santerre, Ed.D.

Ed.S. In Educational Administration - Adjunct Assistant Professor

Susan Slater, Ed.D.

Educational Administration Licensure - Adjunct

Gregory Spath, Ed.S.

Educational Admin Licensure - Adjunct Program Instructor

Gregory Spath Ed.S.
Beverly Stofferahn, M.S.

Education - Advisor

Professor smiling with students

Tuition & Financial Aid

Learn about tuition and financial aid options to reach your educational goals.

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Information Sessions

Meet with Saint Mary’s faculty and staff and get your questions answered at an upcoming information session.

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Learn more about the convenient doctoral and master’s programs that Saint Mary’s offers to help advance you in your career.