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Sixth-Year Diploma in Educational Leadership

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If you are a passionate educator—one who envisions a professional role beyond the classroom—our Sixth-Year Diploma in Educational Leadership provides you with the expertise to improve your school’s conditions, culture and teaching practices as a school administrator or educational leader.

Program Overview

As an administrator, you’ll provide schools with instructional leadership, program vision and fiscal management. Our unique program prepares you for this multifaceted role by focusing each semester on one of three key themes: leading and managing a school, developing instructional programs and leading efforts for school improvement with a strong focus on culture and climate. Courses are taught by professors with expertise in these themes. 

Our fully accredited program is nationally recognized by the Educational Leadership Constituent Council. It satisfies requirements for the Connecticut Administrator Test and also paves the way to other advanced degrees and licensures. Our accelerated approach is designed to work around the demands of your teaching schedule with a hybrid program that combines on-campus classes with select online assignments.

You may apply theme-specific theories and skills that you cover in the classroom to extensive field projects. Your administrative internship in educational leadership, coordinated with faculty and a district mentor, gives you the additional opportunity to gain valuable experience in a school setting.

Gail Ann Gilmore, Associate Professor of Education at Quinnipiac University on October 14, 2015. (Photography by Johnathon Henninger/ for Quinnipiac University)
"Effective school leaders empower and support others to reach their highest levels of competency and professionalism in the best interest of student learning and success. By providing a trusting and respectful climate and culture, they enable others to reach their potential and share their gifts, talents and creativity. Our ultimate goal is to support a student-centered value and belief system so that all children can and will learn."
Gail Gilmore, EdD
Director, Educational Leadership

Curriculum and Requirements

Sixth-Year Diploma in Educational Leadership Curriculum

Required Courses
EDL 601Leading and Managing the Contemporary School6
EDL 603Leading and Managing the Instructional Program6
EDL 605Leading and Managing School Improvement6
EDL 607Internship in Educational Leadership3
EDL 609Educational Program Evaluation3
EDL 611Educational Law3
EDL 613Public School Finance3
Total Credits30

Additional course details
Explore descriptions, schedule and additional information using the Academic Course Catalog.

Admissions Requirements

Those interested in the 6th Year Diploma in Educational Leadership must hold a Master’s Degree in a related field of study, and have earned a minimum overall GPA of 3.0. Candidates must have at least four years of full time teaching experience in a PK-12 setting, and have completed at least 36 hours (3 credits) of a special education course. Admission to the program requires two letters of recommendation from supervisors submitted on your behalf, a 2-3 page written essay*, and an updated resume. If you meet all preliminary admissions requirements, you will be scheduled for onsite interview prior to our final decision.

Complete the online application on the link at the bottom of this page, and send all official transcripts in a sealed envelope to The Office of Graduate Admissions, or electronically to You may begin the program in either the spring, summer or fall semesters. Applications are considered on a rolling basis. Admission to this program is competitive, and we encourage you to apply as early as possible. 

Important Dates:

July 30: Application deadline for fall semester

April 30: Application deadline for summer semester

December 15: Application deadline for spring semester


Required Documentation

  • Application: Complete the information required on the application form.
  • Fee: You will be asked to include a non-refundable application fee of $45 by credit or debit card when submitting your application. Do not send cash or check.
  • Official Transcripts: It is your responsibility to request official transcripts from ALL undergraduate, graduate and professional schools attended (including part-time and summer study). If you received transfer credit from another institution, it is still necessary to have an official transcript sent from the original university. These transcripts must be provided to Quinnipiac University in a sealed envelope or sent electronically to
  • Letters of Recommendation: You must have two professional references from supervisors submitted on your behalf. You will be required to enter your recommenders' contact information on the application.  
  • Essay: Please submit a 2-3 page double-spaced essay on the following issue:
    • Since the 1980's, the public school student population has become much more diverse in terms of cultural backgrounds and languages spoken.  Interestingly, however, the typical Connecticut teacher is still Caucasian, middle class and speaks only English. In New Haven, for example, about 90 percent of the students now belong to a minority group but almost three-fourths of the teachers are white. Many experts note that unless teachers engage in serious self-reflection about their teaching methods and belief systems, they will find it difficult to meet the needs of the increasingly diverse groups of students sitting in their classroom. This likely will lead to a widening of the achievement gaps that already exist between groups of students based on ethnical and socioeconomic status.
    • Your Task: Share thoughts and perspectives on the issue described, relating your opinions and beliefs to your personal and professional experiences. In your essay, indicate what you believe teachers need to know and do to respond to an increasingly diverse student population and what you would do as a school leader to help teachers meet the needs of these students.
  • Resume: You will be asked to include an up-to-date resume.  
  • Interview: Once all of your admission materials have been received, eligible applicants will be invited in for a formal interview.