Educational Leadership (EP)

EP 7020  Collaborative Leadership  (3)  

In this course, students will explore major concepts related to developing partnerships and communities of learners. Course topics include the change process, forms of school and community governance, school culture, the concept of collaboration, and agencies and organizations involved in community programs and initiatives. Special attention is focused on planning and implementing system-wide and building-level networks. Students will develop and evaluate a framework for collaboration and demonstrate systems thinking. Typically the first course completed in the CAGS program.

EP 7030  Transforming the Educational Agenda  (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(s): EP 7020 and EP 7040.

EP 7040  Planning in Education and Human Services  (3)  

The purpose of this course is to develop effective collaborative planners. This course presents the major stages in the process of developing a strategic plan, including forming a mission statement, crafting and implementing the plan, and evaluating plan performance. It provides a theoretical and practical overview of the skills, strategies, and resources required through each stage of the systemic planning process. (

Prerequisite(s): EP 7020).

EP 7050  Advanced Mixed Research Methodology  (3)  

This course addresses mixed research design methodologies with a particular emphasis on constructing a proposal for a mixed methods study. The course includes theory and practice related to initiating an inquiry; gathering, recording, and analyzing data; and evaluating a study.

Prerequisite(s): Eligibility for CAGS level coursework, and a graduate level course in research design.

EP 7060  Legal Issues in Policy Making  (3)  

This course presents a discussion of ways institutions and their communities must deal with the legal and political environment in which they exist. Topics include current legal issues and how the stakeholders in society can use the law as a tool for social change. Institutions must advocate for positive change through the development of thoughtful legal policies and practices.

EP 7080  Ethical Leadership and Decision Making  (3)  

This course will explore the intersections of the concepts of ethics, leadership, critical thinking and decision making from a wide range of disciplines, contexts and professions. Students will engage in an analysis of varied practices and principles related to leadership by exploring ethical issues and developing a foundation for their leadership practices. Students will develop a refined sense of morally significant issues from a leadership context and realization of their capacity to respond to moral issues according to personal morals and values.

EP 7090  Critical Perspectives for Arts Advocacy  (3)  

To be an advocate of the arts must mean in some degree to have given thought to the very nature of the arts and their function in human development and culture. This course attempts through reading, discussion, writing, and forms of "doing art" to broadly circumscribe the nature of the arts and their function within the human experience. The readings will help facilitate seminar discussions designed to explore a variety of views about how the arts, once identified and defined within human experience and culture, contribute to human flourishing by opening up a more encompassing range of choices and possibilities. To be an advocate for the arts in this sense is to realize the intimate connections that the arts evoke, as well as to encourage the expansion of social vision through public forms of conduct and communication.

EP 7100  School Labor Relations, Negotiations and Personnel Management  (3)  

Focus on policies and procedures affecting personnel management in the schools. Discussion of staffing, program and personnel evaluations, office procedures and record keeping, decision making, and negotiations. Emphasis on collective bargaining statutes, case law, grievance processing, mediation, employee relations boards, union security provisions, scope of bargaining, and the administration of the negotiated contract.

Prerequisite(s): admission to Superintendent Certification program.

EP 7110  Arts and Learning  (3)  

This course is designed to provide candidates with the arts leadership skills necessary for designing, implementing, assessing, and sustaining arts integration models in diverse school settings. The course will focus on the multiple roles of the arts as mediation tools offering languages for learning and methods for instructions. This course will provide candidates with theoretical and applied knowledge of comprehensive interdisciplinary multi-arts integration supporting learning in, with, and through the arts. Candidates will be introduced to the research based Integrated Instructional Model, which incorporates the components of community, problem-based learning and arts integration. Candidates will explore the use of the arts and artistic methods through hands-on activities modeling arts-infused learning and instruction. Candidates will apply individual and group understandings to considerations of site-specific school change and sustained systemic professional development.

EP 7121  Designing & Leading Healthy Organizations  (3)  

The course is designed as an intensive introduction to the theories, methods and tools for building wellness concepts into the strategic planning process of organizations. The class will define the future of wellness in the workplace evolving beyond mechanistic approaches to individual wellness and developing holistic principles leading to organizational health. At the completion of the course, students will have an understanding of ways to institute a new wellness paradigm into organizational design.

EP 7130  Shaping Policies and Practices in Arts Education  (3)  

This course is designed to provide candidates with the arts leadership skills necessary to effect and sustain changes in current educational settings toward a greater emphasis on improving the quality of arts education. Candidates will explore major concepts related to shaping policies and practices in arts education, while examining current educational systems with an eye toward systemic change. Connections will be made to the importance of sustaining and developing curriculum, sustaining arts advocacy projects and programs and transforming educational systems to embrace learning with, about, in, and through the arts.

EP 7200  School Buildings and Transportation  (3)  

The role of the school administrator in planning school construction projects, maintaining school facilities, and overseeing the transportation of students is the focus of the course. Also emphasizes the relationship of facilities and transportation to the program needs of the students while complying with state and federal regulations.

Prerequisite(s): Admission to the Superintendent certification program.

EP 7210  Leading Curriculum and Instruction to Transform Schools  (3)  

The competence, skills and knowledge required for providing leadership in curriculum, instruction and assessment are the foundations of this class which focuses on improved teaching and learning. Graduate students will hone their ability to plan and facilitate the implementation of a developmentally appropriate, standards-based comprehensive curriculum, instruction, and assessment program that includes the effective use of data to improve student learning while making use of technology and information systems to support the instructional program. Interwoven is a close examination of the best practices and current trends in developing the culture, climate and partnerships necessary for successful growth.

EP 7215  Leaders as Professional Developers  (3)  

The changing demands and expectations for organizations coupled with inadequate resources makes ensuring adequate professional development a challenge. To effect that concern efficiently it is critical that leaders embrace their role as professional developers. This course includes exploration of the relationship between leadership and professional growth in organizations and the design and delivery of professional learning opportunities for adult professionals.

EP 7300  The Superintendency and School District Leadership  (3)  

In-depth studies of essential knowledge bases and best practice skills required to effectively execute the responsibilities of the district level administration, including the roles of the public school superintendent and assistant superintendent. Attention will be given to balancing three sometimes conflicting roles: instructional, managerial, and political, in an era of standards-based accountability.

Prerequisite(s): Admission to the Superintendent certification program.

EP 7400  Conducting a Qualitative Study  (3)  

This course addresses the practice of conducting qualitative research studies. A variety of qualitative designs will be included with attention to identification of research problems, writing appropriate research questions, development of the theoretical/conceptual framework, epistemology, researcher bias, data collection, data analysis, articulation of findings, and qualitative research report writing. Each student will conduct a small-scale study.

EP 7404  Quantitative Methods for Professions  (3)  

The purpose of this course is to build foundational quantitative methodological skills as a way for professionals to understand and investigate the function and health of organizations and communities to make plans for continuous and sustainable improvement. A variety of quantitative method and data visualization approaches will be explored to analyze and present statistical data.

EP 7560  Special Topics in Educational Leadership  (1-4)  

An in-depth study of a particular topic, contemporary issue, or concern. The course will be taught by a specialist in the field or guest speakers who will meaningfully address the topic. Since topics vary, the course may be repeated with the permission of the instructor.

EP 7800  Practicum in Educational Leadership: The Superintendency  (3-6)  

The purpose of the practicum is to provide students with meaningful-field-based experiences that focus on the role of a school district leader. This is a collaborative, 300-hour supervised experience intended to support students in applying the knowledge, skills, and understandings they have gained throughout their K–12 superintendent certification program. Supervision of the practicum is the responsibility of two individuals: the university instructor, a Plymouth State University faculty member; and the site supervisor (or mentor), a school district superintendent.

Prerequisite(s): admission to Superintendent certification program and EP 7100, EP 7200, EP 7210 and EP 7300.

EP 7830  Practicum: K-12 Curriculum Administrator  (1-6)  

This course is designed as the culminating field experience for enrolled advanced graduate students seeking New Hampshire Department of Education (NHDOE) Certification as a K-12 Curriculum Administrator. The Practicum is a performance-based analysis of the role of the K-12 Curriculum Administrator in practice with emphasis on changes in society and schools as well as with reference to job responsibilities of the position - the art and science of school system leadership. Students enrolling in the practicum are expected to spend time interacting with a practicing curriculum administrator and completing a practicum project to fulfill requirements meeting state certification. Practicum readings and activities are designed to provide experiences relevant to building a required certification portfolio that demonstrates formal knowledge of executive leadership and management, dispositions (using that knowledge to reflect on experiences), and performances (school-based applications) as described in the Interstate School Leaders Licensure Consortium (ISLLC) Standards for School Leaders and New Hampshire Education Standards for Curriculum Administrator.

Prerequisite(s): Completion of required Curriculum Administrator coursework and permission of instructor.

EP 7840  Capstone in Arts, Leadership, and Learning  (3)  

The capstone experience is designed to provide an opportunity for CAGS level graduate candidates to demonstrate their knowledge of leadership and the arts by designing and implementing an art, leadership and learning project within an educational setting. Candidates are required to spend a minimum of 40 hours per credit hour devising and executing their planned project. At the conclusion of the capstone, candidates are expected to share their results in a public setting with faculty and others interested in arts and learning.

EP 7850  CAGS Capstone  (3-6)  

The Capstone is the culminating course in the CAGS in Educational Leadership, Curriculum & Instruction concentration (non-certification). The purpose of this course is for students to apply the knowledge, skills, and understanding they have gained in program coursework to their professional setting. Students will plan approximately 40 hours of work for each credit to be earned in their capstone. Students must submit a Graduate Capstone Project Proposal form with their registration, and the Capstone project must be approved by the advisor and the Associate Vice President for Graduate Studies. Once completed, students must present their capstone product(s) to their advisor, capstone supervisor, and/or other PSU faculty members, as determined in the capstone proposal.

Prerequisite(s): Consent of advisor, and all other program requirements satisfied.

EP 7910  Independent Study  (1-4)  

Enrichment of the background of students in a particular field of study through the pursuit of a special topic pertinent to their interests and abilities through research. Consent of the faculty supervisor and department chair is required.

EP 8000  Emerging Perspectives on Learning and Development  (3)  

In this initial doctoral program course a critical examination of personal and professional perspectives will be conducted through four specific learning modules: perspectives on self-awareness, identity and belonging; human development, the brain, emotional intelligence (EI), and learning; transformational leadership and methods of empowerment; community engagement and tools for social exchange (social ecological model).

EP 8010  Program Evaluation: Theory and Practice  (3)  

This course engages students in understanding and using the theory and practice of program assessment and evaluation, including the effective communication of results. Students work directly with an agency or program to design an evaluation proposal. Various methodologies and approaches are investigated. Students discuss how to use data to inform decisions and to plan and assess programs. (

Prerequisite(s): a research design course and a qualitative research course; member of the PSU EdD cohort).

EP 8011  Critical Inquiry in Research  (3)  

This course is designed to give students a broad view of approaches and ethical concerns to conducting research, with an exploration of a variety of topics and methodologies related to problems of practice. The emphasis is on breadth rather than depth, as well as critical engagement with ideas rather than mastery of a particular research methodology.

Prerequisite(s): EP 8000

EP 8012  Research Design in Leadership, Learning and Community  (3)  

This course presents a detailed examination of research methods and designs to advance knowledge about factors contributing to problems of practice related to educational leadership. Students will be encouraged to actively reflect on previous research training. Specific design techniques, such as sampling and measurement, will be explored with the purpose of building the necessary skills to conduct research.

Prerequisite(s): EP 8000

EP 8013  Applications in Dissertation Research  (3)  

This course will assist students with the organizing, planning, and designing of a research study focused on a problem of practice. Students will develop a complete research proposal that identifies the data collection and analysis strategies, instrumentation, informed consent, and risks associated with the research. The research proposal will be prepared for submission to the IRB.

Prerequisite(s): EP 8000

EP 8014  Data Analysis in Dissertation Research  (3)  

The focus of this course is on data analytics including the analysis, interpretation and communication of findings in oral and written forms. Students will apply the steps of research involved to ultimately address a problem of practice. Students will learn the essentials of data-based decision making and, subsequently, write a final analysis in which they demonstrate a rigorous engagement with data analysis and the literature relevant to their topic.

Prerequisite(s): EP 8000, EP 8011, EP 8012 and EP 8013

EP 8026  Writing a Literature Review  (3)  

In this course students will begin to utilize scholarly literature to develop an introduction, conceptual framework, and literature review for their dissertation research. Using their work with the literature as a foundation, students will be expected to understand the basic elements of scholarly writing and begin to outline and form the foundations of their first and second chapters of their dissertations.

EP 8030  Diversity, Ethics, and Social Justice  (3)  

Central topics and critical issues that address global leadership competencies in the context of diversity, ethics, and social justice are explored and analyzed. Topics include ethical decision-making in educational leadership, program facilitation, conflict mediation, and promotion of social justice advocacy for leaders in educational, social, and political environments. Students critically examine global leadership competencies in relation to the individual, community, and culture; both reactive and proactive roles in leadership are considered.

EP 8050  Vision: Synergy & Synthesis  (3)  

Transformational leaders facilitate the regeneration of organizations as visionary workplaces where synergy and synthesis are the ingredients for evolutionary change. Students will explore emerging paradigms of leadership and organizational behavior to enhance their understanding of vision, synergy, and synthesis. In order to ensure synergy between course work and dissertation the research prospectus will be refined using the concepts learned.

Prerequisite(s): EP 8000, EP 8010, EP 8020, EP 8025, EP 8030, EP 8045, EP 8820.

EP 8090  Dissertation Block III  (3)  

These courses serve as culminating experiences in the Doctor of Education program, building on research conducted throughout the coursework and resulting in extensive research and writing on a topic appropriate to a candidate's program, under direction of a Dissertation Chair and Committee. Candidates' projects demonstrate comprehensive understandings of the knowledge and practices of their selected field of study. These doctoral seminars are organized into a sequence to support the writing of the dissertation and this final block includes the completion of the entire Dissertation, including the public defense. (

Prerequisite(s): Doctoral candidacy and completion of all coursework for doctoral degree). Pass/No Pass.

EP 8800  Dissertation Research  (3)  

This course is designed to facilitate successful completion of the doctoral disseration. This course is repeatable. Students collaborate with their dissertation chair to determine tasks and resources needed to move toward dissertation completion.

EP 8820  Entrepreneurial Externship  (3-6)  

The externship provides an opportunity to explore and research topics of interest related to the dissertation at domestic and international locations outside the university. Externship experiences allow students to gain new perspectives, sample new career paths and develop an entrepreneurial education mindset. The students will gain practical experience related to the dissertation and network with leaders in education and related fields. Students work with their instructor to establish the focus and site of the externship.