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Educational Leadership & Policy Analysis
School of Education
253 Education Building
1000 Bascom Mall
MadisonWI  53706-1326

Tel: 608/262-3106
Fax: 608/265-3135

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The pleasure of becoming an educated person is the enormous interest it adds to life. To be able to be caught up into the world of thought— that is to be educated. —Edith Hamilton

Initial Principal Certification Graduate Program

33 credits

The principalship provides the foundational course work for all administrative licenses, and focuses on instructional leadership and data-based decision-making.

Requirements beginning fall 2012


Focus on Learning

  • ELPA 702 Introduction Educational Leadership
  • ELPA 735 Leadership for Equity and Diversity

Monitoring Teaching and Learning

  • ELPA 726 Data-Based Decision Making
  • ELPA 703 Evaluating and Supporting Quality Classroom Teaching (OR C&I 830 Theory and Design of the Curriculum, or C&I 662 Elementary School Curriculum, or other approved curricular course

Building Nested Learning Communities

  • ELPA 844 Technology and School Leadership
  • ELPA 847 Instructional Leadership and Teacher Capacity
  • ELPA 770 School-Community Engagement

Acquiring and Allocating Resources 

  • ELPA 830 School Finance and Resource Allocation
  • ELPA 840 Public School Law

Maintaining a Safe and Effective Learning Environment 

  • ELPA 845 School-Level Leadership
  • ELPA 700 Field Experience in Educational Leadership

Additional Licensure Requirements

  • Portfolio (not required if currently hold an administrator license)
  • Program Assessments

Additional Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction Requirements for Administrative Licenses

  • Master’s degree or an approved equivalent in Education Administration (PI 34.32)
  • Eligible to hold teacher, counselor, school psychologist, or social worker licenses in the State of Wisconsin
  • Three years successful experience at the elementary/secondary level, or three years successful experience as a school counselor, psychologist, or social worker which included 540 hours of classroom teaching experience.
  • Completion of the human relations requirement of PI 4.11
  • Undergraduate or graduate course in human growth and development including child psychology, early adolescent psychology, or adolescent psychology.  (Ed Psych 301, 303, 320, 502, 520, 521, or 701)

(From Department of Public Instruction FAQ)

Q: Can a teacher who holds an Initial Educator License and who completes an approved principal program apply for and be issued an Initial Educator License as a principal?

A: No. The educator would first have to complete all requirements to advance his/her non-renewable Initial Educator License for teaching to the professional educator license stage. If an Initial Educator License was issued in an administrative category to an educator who still was licensed at the initial educator stage as a teacher, there is no assurance that the educator would complete requirements for advancement to the professional educator stage as a teacher. The educator would therefore no longer be eligible for the administrator license since eligibility for a teaching license is a prerequisite.

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