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Director of Special Education




Endorsement 239

Director of Special Education


Entry point for this endorsement is during the Fall semester.


Students who hold or will be holding a Specialist degree or Masters plus thirty-two (32) semester hours of planned graduate study in Administration or Special Education and hold or meet the requirements for one of the following areas may receive the Director of Special Education endorsement: 1) PK-12 Principal and PK-12 Supervisor of Special Education; 2) Supervisor of Special Education-Instructional; or 3) Supervisor of Special Education-Support. 


Applicants may successfully complete the requirements for the Director Endorsement through one of the following program options from the University of Northern Iowa.

Option 1:  A Doctor of Education - Special Education/Educational Leadership intensive study areas.  [Note: This would be the option for those entering the combined ISA program.]


Option 2:  Endorsement Program - Special Education instructional/supervision/administrator emphasis plus 23 graduate semester hours of special education administration coursework.  [Note: This would be an option for those holding 1, 2, or 3 above and seeking the Special Education Director endorsement] [see BOEE requirements for each area including three (3) years experience as PK-12 principal or PK-12 supervisor of special education.]  Also note: Instructional Supervisor requires two (2) years of consultant/supervisor/coordinator/head teacher experiences and one special education teaching endorsement to include K-8 and 5-12 and Support Supervisor requires four (4) years of support service in school setting with special education students (school audiologist, psychologist, social workers, speech-language pathologist).


Option 3:  A Master's Degree with a Special Education instructional for K-8 and 5-12 endorsement plus thirty-five (35) semester hours of planned study in special education administration.  These hours may have been a part of, or in addition to, the degree requirements. Note: This would be an option for those with a special education teaching certificate and seeking a Field Specialization MAE which includes a Special Education Director endorsement.



EDLEAD 6282  Change and Transformation, 2 Hours

EDLEAD 6232  School Governance, Law, and Intersystems Relations, 3 Hours

EDLEAD 6247  Organization Management: School and Community

EDLEAD 7340  Funding the Educational Program for Improved Student Achievement, 3 Hours

EDLEAD 6260  Special Education Law and Policy, 3 Hours

SPED 7278  Administration of Special Education

SPED 6290  Practicum in Special Education Administration

SPED 6289  Seminar in Special Education [or SPED 7340 Disability), 3 Hours



MEASRES 6205  Educational Research, 3 Hours

EDPSYCH 6214  Foundations of Instructional Psychology, 3 Hours


SOCFOUND 6234  Philosophy of Education, 3 Hours

SPED 6295  Single Subject Research, 3 Hours

SPED 6293  Qualitative Research, 3 Hours


Total Hours:  35 Hours


Director of Special Education

Endorsement 239

[No. 27.3(6)]


Director of Special Education: Content requirements [32 hours of planned graduate study beyond the masters degree]

UNI Coursework & Practica:

Educational Leadership Coursework/Practica [19 hours]

EDLEAD 6282 Leading School Growth & Improvement [2 hours]

EDLEAD 6232 School Governance, Law, and Intersystems Relations [3 hours]

EDLEAD 6247 School Management for Student Learning and Achievement [3 hours]

EDLEAD 6206 Orientation to ISSL & Educational Leadership [2 hours]

EDLEAD 6284 Evaluator Approval for Improving Student Learning [3 hours]

EDLEAD 7340 Funding the Educational Program for Improved Student Learning [3 hours]

EDLEAD 7310 Human Resource Administration [3 hours]

Special Education Coursework/Practica [12 hours]

SPED 6260 Special Education Law & Policy [3 hours]

SPED 6278 Administration of Special Education [3 hours]

SPED 6290 Practicum: Administration [3 hours]

SPED 6289 Seminar [3 hours]

Electives: 1-3 hours


Applicant must:

  • Hold a master's degree plus at least 32 semester hours of planned graduate study in administration or special education beyond the master's degree
  • Hold or meet the requirements for one of the following:
    • PK-12 principal and PK-12 supervisor of special education (see rule 282--18.9(272));
    • Supervisor of special education -- instructional (see rule 282 -- 15.5(272));
    • Professional service administrator (see subrule 27.3(5))
  • Have 3 years of administrative experience as a PK-12 Principal or PK-12 supervisor of special education, as Supervisor--Instructional with 3 years of teaching experience in special education, as Professional Service Administrator with 3 years of experiences as school audiologist, school psychologist, school social worker or speech-language pathologist.


Suggested electives include:

EDLEAD 6245 Leadership for Effective Schools & Organizations (3) [PSA]

MEASRES 6279 Educational Program Evaluation (3) [PSA]

EDLEAD 7319 Power, Politics, & Ethics [3 hours]

EDLEAD 7318 Evaluation of Administrators [2 hours]

EDLEAD 6289 Seminar: School Leadership [2 hours]

EDLEAD 6249 Curriculum & Assessment [3 hours]

EDLEAD 7311 Educational Leadership and System Change [3 hours]

EDLEAD 7385 Readings in Educational Leadership [arranged]

EDLEAD 7315 Leading, Learning, Teaching & Assessment [3 hours]

SPED 7385 Readings in Special Education Administration [3 hours]

SPED 7386 Studies in Special Education Administration [3 hours]

SPED 7397 Internship Special Education Administration [3 hours]

SPED 6240 Collaborative Consultation 1: The Relationship [3 hours] [PSA]

SPED 6245 Collaborative Consultation II: The Process [3 hours] [PSA]

SPED 6290 Practicum: Consultation [3 hours] [90 contact hours] [PSA]