As part of the requirement for completion of the Master’s Degree with Principal Licensure  students will enroll in each of the four clinical courses (early childhood, elementary, secondary, and special education). Enrollment in the clinical courses should take place after a student has completed at least four core academic courses. Exceptions need to be cleared in consultation with the student’s advisor and the clinical instructor. NOTE: Students may take no more than two clinical courses in any given semester.

Clinical courses are field-based experiences that take place in a local school or educational agency setting. They are designed to bridge the gap, and provide balance, between theory and practice, and between academic courses and the practical application of material contained in the academic courses. The clinical experiences are supervised on-site by a practicing school administrator in an intern-like relationship with the student, as well as by university faculty who have overall responsibility for the clinical courses.

Clinical work is developed on an individual basis in consultation with the student, the on-site school administrator, and the educational leadership faculty. Unlike academic courses, clinical courses do not meet weekly. Instead, three or four clinical online seminars are conducted throughout the course of the semester during which clinical students come together to discuss their clinical work, to share ideas, to problem-solve, and clarify any questions or concerns that may arise during their clinical experience.

Over the course of four separate clinical enrollments students are expected to engage in a total of 400 clock hours of clinical related activities, including contact time, working on projects and programs as approved by the supervising on-site school administrator and the faculty supervisor. Students will also be preparing reflective journals, maintaining a log of clinical experiences, participating in large group seminar meetings, and in individual meetings with the faculty supervisor.

When enrolled in a clinical course, students will submit a documentation form to the faculty supervisor that includes the name and contact information for the on-site supervising school administrator. Once the student has had an opportunity to visit with the on-site administrator and come to some agreement regarding the nature of the clinical work proposed during the semester, the student will submit a brief proposal outlining the various projects and activities in which they plan to engage during the semester. Modifications may be made during the semester upon consultation with the on-site school administrator and the faculty supervisor.

Students are also required to maintain an on-going log of all their clinical activities and projects that includes a brief description of each activity, the number of clock hours devoted to that activity, the NELP standard with which it most closely aligns, and the date on which it was performed. In addition, students are required to include weekly reflections on their clinical work. This reflective journal should include what was learned as a result of that week’s experiences, as well as the relevancy of the experiences to future administrative practice.

Most of the clinical work will be done in conjunction and consultation with the on-site school administrator. The faculty supervisor will meet with each student on-site during the semester. In cases where travel is prohibitive (inclement weather conditions, distance—international or out-of-state students) video conferences will be held between the student and the faculty supervisor.