Become a change agent in education, leading schools as a superintendent

Are you a teacher or school leader who is ready to take on a district leadership role? With Loyola's EdD in administration and supervision with superintendent endorsement, you'll be well-equipped to successfully and ethically manage curricular, programmatic, and budgetary decisions in both urban and suburban school district settings. 

By the numbers


of all graduates have employment placement


pass Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) licensure exams

Our commitment to you

Upon graduation with an EdD in administration and supervision with superintendent endorsement from Loyola, you will possess the following knowledge, skills, and professional values necessary to lead school communities as a superintendent.


You'll grow in knowledge of the four core principles of our program: commitment to partnerships with districts and communities, scholarly inquiry to advance transformative district leadership practices, facilitation of greater access to quality schooling for all students, and cultivation of commitment to improve and further district, school, familial, and community capacities.


You'll learn how to facilitate data-driven decision making in your school community, and engage in tangible, real-world internship experience to put these ideas into practice. And you'll be ready to lead, design, and implement a district mission, vision, and process.

Professional Values

You'll be transformed into a leader who promotes the success, health, and welfare of each student and adult, embracing continuous improvement through data-use, technology, values, equity, diversity, digital citizenship, and community. And, you'll be a leader with a deep passion for addressing social justice and equity issues pervasive in school systems.


Program Features

Program Features

  • Two years of school supervisory or administrative experience and a Type 75 General Administrative or ISBE Principal Endorsement on PEL
  • Successful completion of the Superintendent Certification Exam required by ISBE
  • 72 hours of coursework; 24 credit hours from a master's degree may transfer
  • Successful completion of two District-Level Internship courses
  • Successful completion of Capstone Project under the supervision of fulltime ADSU faculty

Program Length

Students have a maximum of seven years to complete the degree. Most students complete the required coursework in less than three years, including summer enrollment. Completion time for the capstone project varies.

Doctoral students in administration and supervision are required to maintain continuous enrollment during their program of studies. This means that students complete the cohort in the course sequence and time frame as defined. A formal leave of absence may be granted upon request and the approval of the School of Education’s Associate Dean of Student Academic Services.

Sample Course Sequence

The Ed.D. Superintendent Preparation Program is comprised of three distinct phases: professional inquiry and equity studies; continuous improvement studies: system, community, self and reflective practice; and doctoral scholarly capstone in practice.

First Year

Fall Semester
ELPS 560: Seminar in School Leadership: Leadership Theory and Strategic School Improvement
ELPS 465: Workshop: Instructional Leadership – Equity and Justice to Foster Community Relationships and Engagement

Spring Semester
ELPS 571: Seminar: Current Instructional Issues in Supervision
ELPS 472: District-Level Administration of Special Education Services

Summer Session I
ELPS 468: Problems in Finance and Business Management

Summer Session II
ELPS 465: Workshop: The Superintendency - Creating District-Level Leadership

Second Year

Fall Semester
ELPS 475: Human Resource Administration for the District School Leader
RMTD 420: Ed Research I: Qualitative Methods

Spring Semester
ELPS 461: Issues in School Law
ELPS 421: Ed Research II: Quantitative Methods

Summer Session I
ELPS: 620 Capstone Research

Summer Session II
ELPS 465: Instructional Leadership: Cultural Context Informed Decision Making (Rome Center) or
CIEP 473: Instructional Leadership for Multicultural Schools

Third Year

Fall Semester
ELPS 562: Practicum in School District Administration
RMTD 406: Program Evaluation

Spring Semester
ELPS 562: Practicum in School Administration
CIEP 488: Action Research to Improve Teaching and Learning

Summer Session I
ELPS 620: Problem of Practice Capstone Project

Summer Session II
ELPS 600: Problem of Practice Capstone Project

Fourth Year

Fall Semester
ELPS 600: Problem of Practice Capstone Project

Spring Semester
ELPS 600: Problem of Practice Capstone Project

Summer Session I
ELPS 600: Problem of Practice Capstone Project

Summer Session II
ELPS 600: Problem of Practice Capstone Project

EdD with Superintendent Endorsement Program: 24 transfer credit hours + 33 hours Loyola credit hours for endorsement + 15 credit hours for research courses  = 72 hours total

Illinois Licensure Requirements

Candidates in all programs leading to Illinois licensure are required to pass an Illinois Test of Academic Proficiency (TAP), the appropriate endorsement exam, and a State Criminal Background Check.

Degree Conferral

Degree Conferral: While the commencement ceremony is every May, degrees can be conferred in May, August, and December. Students must apply for graduation/degree conferral. Students should apply for graduation in the semester they anticipate completing all degree requirements. Failure to meet application deadlines may result in a delay of the conferral of the degree to the following semester. Applications for Degree Conferral are due:

  • August 1 for December conferral
  • December 1 for May conferral

Please note the degree conferral application is valid for only one semester. If the degree is not conferred for the semester requested, a new application is required for a subsequent semester.


Where are courses offered?

Administration and Supervision courses are offered at Loyola University Chicago's Lake County (Cuneo) Campus. You will study abroad during your second summer of the Superintendent Preparation program at Loyola’s campus in Rome, Italy.

Does this program fulfill requirements for State of Illinois licensure?

Students with at least two years of administrative and leadership experience and who possess an Illinois PEL with Principal Endorsement can complete Loyola's SUPT prep program and meet the academic aspects of licensure requirements for the Superintendent endorsement in the State of Illinois. Successful completion of the required licensure examinations is required.

How do I apply for state licensure?

Please visit placement and licensure for details.

How long will it take to complete this program?

Most superintendent preparation students in the administration and supervision programs take two courses per semester and are able to complete the required coursework in less than three years (including summer enrollment). The length of time for the capstone project depends upon the topic and the diligence of the student. Candidates for the Doctor of Education degree (Ed.D.) have a maximum of seven years to complete the degree.

If students are unable to work on the degree for a period of more than one semester, they should request an official leave of absence from the program. Students who need more time to complete the degree must file for an official extension of time; the student's advisor will then recommend either a leave of absence or an extension.