Middle Level Leadership Certificate

PSU’s Middle Level Leadership certificate provides a unique learning opportunity for middle level educators to enhance their leadership skills and increase their knowledge of the developmental needs of young adolescents.

This certificate consists of five graduate courses focusing on curriculum and instruction, adolescent development, leadership, and community partnerships. This is a cohort program that will start and end at the annual NELMS conference, with additional classes completed online, allowing you to earn the certificate in just one year. Courses can be rolled into a MEd in Educational Leadership or School Principal certification program.

Getting started is easy, just complete the online application for admission and provide a transcript showing the successful completion of a bachelor’s degree or higher and a current résumé. No admissions tests are required. A minimum 3.0 GPA is required to complete the graduate certificate.

Curriculum Requirements

  • Required Courses – 15 credits
  • 3
    This course provides an overview of middle level philosophies, attributes and characteristics. Students will investigate the historical development of the middle school concept in relationship to elementary and secondary school programs. Middle level programs and how they impact the organization of middle schools will be examined.
  • 3
    An overview of current theories concerning the brain, development, and learning. Analysis of developmental concepts from birth through adolescence and adulthood. Discussion of language acquisition, thinking and learning styles, multiple intelligence, and creativity. Topics include teaching, learning, and assessment issues related to cultural diversity, technology, and learning differences.
  • 3
    Leading the participatory process for developing curricula in middle level programs will be addressed. The relationship of philosophy, a school's identity, and mission to curricula, and developmentally responsive practices is emphasized. Included are strategies for developing, assessing, and revising curricula as well as a review of recent research and trends in middle level teaching and learning. Prerequisite: AD 5010 or AD 5400.
  • 3
    Becoming a teacher leader includes understanding and responding to all stakeholders involved in education. Stakeholders include not only those directly involved in education such as student and parents, but also the extended community.
  • 3
    This course focuses on the development of a self-renewing capability inherent in professionals and organizations. Students will discuss the notion of transformation in the context of knowledge base, self-reflection, and the socio-professional processes in educational change. Students will explore the integration of ecological perspectives within a changing society and the demand for greater tolerance of human behavior in the context of learning. Students will demonstrate an understanding of the need to keep student learning and development as the central core of educational change. Prerequisite: AD5010 or AD 5400.
  • Total for Middle Level Leadership Certificate – 15 credits


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