You don’t work in education because it’s easy; you do it because it matters. You want to be an educator who makes a difference in your students’ lives. That’s what we want, too.
At PLNU, we are here for the same reasons you are: we truly believe in the power of education, and we care deeply about individuals—including you. 
When you earn one or more of our added authorizations or certificates, you will challenge yourself to be more effective in your work. These programs can stand alone or can be incorporated in a master’s degree program. 

Everyone you encounter here will share your goal of better serving your students, from your admissions counselor to your professors. Rest assured, PLNU’s School of Education will take a personal interest in you and care about your concerns, experience, beliefs, and goals. 

Specialized to Your Interests

Learn to successfully serve specific populations and incorporate the latest, research-based and classroom-tested best practices in a highly focused program. Take certificates and added authorizations alone, in combination, or as part of a master’s degree to create your ideal combination.

Convenient for Your Life

Our online and hybrid formats make these authorizations and certificates work with your career and family obligations. Since PLNU is known for making education personal, you can be sure you will receive the attention and support you need.

Relevant to Your Needs

District partnerships ensure PLNU’s curriculum addresses current needs and topics facing educators. As a Christian university, PLNU equips you to integrate your beliefs, values, and goals with your teaching practice.

If you are a current teacher, the 15-unit Instructional Leadership certificate will prepare you to serve as an instructional mentor, coach, department chair, clinical practice supervisor, and professional developer. Through a mix of student-centered learning and adult learning theory, you will be prepared to employ effective instructional leadership and serve the entire school community. This certificate can be earned on its own or as part of a Master of Arts in Education with a specialization in Leadership in Learning.

Expected Completion Time

2 - 3 semesters

Program FormatHybrid (online and face-to-face instruction)
Mission Valley
Needed Units to Graduate


Program Start Date

Spring 2017:
Quad I - January 9, 2017
Quad II - March 13, 2017

Summer 2017:
Quad I - May 15, 2017
Quad II - July 10, 2017

Fall 2017:
Quad I - August 28, 2017
Quad II - October 23, 2017

Not all programs offer entry for new students each quad, check with enrollment counselor for programs and start dates.


$610 (per unit) in San Diego & $595 (per unit) in Bakersfield for the 2016 - 2017 academic year

Ready for the next step?

Quality & Experience

Teacher Leadership

The Center for Student Success and Career Development provides financial, academic, and career support for students, giving them the tools they need to be successful at PLNU and beyond.

Learn More

Important Dates

Program Start Date(s):

Spring 2017:
Quad I - January 9, 2017
Quad II - March 13, 2017

Summer 2017:
Quad I - May 15, 2017
Quad II - July 10, 2017

Fall 2017:
Quad I - August 28, 2017
Quad II - October 23, 2017

Application Date(s):

Spring 2017:
Quad I - November 29, 2016
Quad II - February 7, 2017

Summer 2017:
Quad I - April 3, 2017
Quad II - May 29, 2017

Fall 2017:
Quad I - July 17, 2017
Quad II - September 11, 2017

Not all programs offer entry for new students each quad, check with enrollment counselor for programs and start dates.

Conni Campbell, Ed.D.

Conni Campbell

Associate Dean for MA Education Programs | Instructional Leadership Certificate

Prepare yourself to serve the entire school community beyond your own classroom as a mentor, professional developer, parent educator, and school leader who understands the complexity of the site leader's role.

The Selection Process

To be admitted into PLNU's education program, you must have a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution, as evidenced by an official transcript.

We understand that your application is not only a reflection of you as a student; it’s a reflection of you as a person. At PLNU, we holistically evaluate your academic history, work and life experience, background, and circumstances to determine admission into a graduate program. 

While your undergraduate GPA is an important piece of your application, if you do not meet the minimum GPA requirement of a 3.0 or higher, you may still be eligible for admission. Your application package and the exceptions policy for the program are key for the final determination of admission. Please contact your enrollment counselor, who will advise you regarding your qualifications and provide specific information about the admission under exceptions process.

If you have any questions about your qualifications or the program in general, we encourage you to contact your enrollment counselor.

Application Checklist

*Note: The application is completed entirely online with the exception of transcripts, which can be submitted electronically or directly to PLNU, and test scores, which should be submitted electronically.

  • Submit online application for admissions (includes $50 non-refundable application fee—fee waived if applicant is one of the following: PLNU alum, current or former military and their dependents, or PLNU employee).
  • Submit official transcripts with proof of earned baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution. *If you have higher degree work, transcripts may be submitted but only the baccalaureate transcripts are required.
    • Official transcripts must be sent to:
      Point Loma Nazarene University
      Office of Graduate Admissions
      3900 Lomaland Dr. 
      San Diego, CA 92106
    • Official electronic transcripts must be emailed to: gradprocessing@pointloma.edu
  • Submit personal essay. The essay should be 2-3 pages in length, double spaced. 
    • Describe your professional career goals for the next five years. 
    • Describe the variety of experiences that helped you determine these goals. 
    • Explain what motivates you to work in California’s diverse schools. 
    • Explain why you are applying to PLNU, a private Christian university.
  • Provide two professional recommendations—you will be asked to register your recommenders by providing their names, titles, and email addresses.
  • For credential seekers only: Submit basic skills exam (CBEST or equivalent) scores. This can be demonstrated by taking the CBEST exam. 
    • OR Multiple Subject CSET plus writing skills examination.
    • OR passage of the CSU Early Assessment Program or the CSU Placement Examination.
    • OR Proof of a Valid CA Teaching Credential.

Exceptions Policy: If you have below a 3.0 GPA in your baccalaureate degree, you will need to speak with your enrollment counselor for more information on the exceptions materials needed for this program.

Financial Aid

The Center for Student Success and Career Development is committed to assist you throughout your educational journey. Your Student Services Counselor will walk you through your payment options, which may include federal student loans, grants, employer tuition reimbursement, military benefits, and the Tuition Installment Plan. We encourage you to reach out to your Student Services Counselor to learn about the financial opportunities available to you.

Types of Aid

Types of aid available for master’s degree students: 

Potential sources of aid may include:

  • Federal student loans
  • Grants
  • Employer tuition reimbursement process
  • Military and veterans benefits
  • Tuition installment plan

Visit Graduate Student Financial Services for more information.

Still have questions? Our enrollment counselors are here to help.

List of Courses

GED 604 - Instructional Leadership for Success (3)

Culture of Teaching and Learning: This course provides an opportunity for the candidate to learn how to advocate, nurture, and sustain a school or professional workplace culture with an instructional program that is conducive to student learning and staff professional growth. Coursework and fieldwork focus on the implementation of state-adopted academic content standards, frameworks and instructional materials, as well as assessment and accountability systems. CTC Standard 6(b)/CPSEL Standard 2.

GED 611 - Ethical, Moral and Servant Leadership (3)

This course provides an opportunity for the candidate to examine, practice, and model a personal code of ethics, including protecting the rights and confidentiality of students, staff, and families. The program provides an opportunity for the candidate to practice professional leadership capacity, including shared decision-making, problem-solving, and conflict resolution and foster those skills in others. the program provides an opportunity for the candidate to examine site and district responsibilities with regard to students with special needs. The program develops each candidate’s ability to effectively act as a spokesperson for the school to the extended school community. The candidate has multiple opportunities to model personal and professional ethics, integrity, justice and fairness and receive feedback from the program and peers; reflect on personal leadership beliefs and practices and recognize their impact and influence on the performance of others; and develop mechanisms for sustaining personal motivation, commitment, energy, and health by learning to balance professional and personal responsibilities. CTC Standard 6(e)/CPSEL Standard 5.

GED 628 - Using Technology to Enhance Teaching and Learning (2)

This course provides candidates the additional preparation they need to be fluent, critical users of technology, able to provide a relevant education to those who seek life-long learning in an information-based, interactive society. Candidates make appropriate and efficient use of software applications and related media to access and evaluate information, analyze and solve problems, and communicate ideas in order to maximize the instructional process. The use of technology supports teaching and learning regardless of individual learning style, socioeconomic background, culture, ethnicity, or geographic location. Candidates integrate technology-related tools into the educational experience of students, including those with special needs.

GED 677 - Teaching Strategies for Special Populations (3)

This course builds on the candidate’s knowledge, skills, experiences, and strategies acquired during preliminary preparation for teaching students with disabilities, English language learners, students who are gifted and talented, and students who are at risk in the general education classroom. Each candidate will practice delivery of comprehensive, specialized instruction for English learners, review and learn application principles for the statutory provisions of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and become aware of any new, relevant statutory requirements.

GED 683 - BTSA Induction/Reflective Coaching (1-6)

Beginning teachers and Support Providers enrolled in the PLNU master’s degree program may receive up to six units of graduate credit for completing the Formative Assessment for California Teachers at the proficient level. PLNU master’s degree candidates who are not participating in a district induction program participate in a reflective coaching seminar and complete PLNU formative assessment events aligned with the California Standards for the Teaching Profession. May be repeated for a total of six units. Graded Credit/No Credit. If the requirements for this course are met by work completed through a school district, a PLNU professor will monitor the coursework and require a minimum of three reflections with feedback in addition to a comprehensive review of the end-of-course portfolio to ensure that all GED 683 course requirements are met according to the PLNU course standards.

GED 691 - Educational Workshops/ Special Studies in Education (1)

Instructional Technology Project. An intensive study of a special topic in education involving university faculty and/or lecturers. Available for continuing education units. May be repeated for a total of 12 units. Graded Credit/No Credit or Letter.

If you are pursuing this certificate as part of a Master of Arts in Education - Teaching and Learning, you will also take the twenty-one semester units required for the degree


Why PLNU? No matter which PLNU program you decide is right for you, you'll discover the hallmark PLNU experience is designed to give every student the clear framework and professional tools to stand out in his or her field.

Established in 1902, PLNU is located in beautiful San Diego. Our small class sizes, focused faculty attention, and convenient online offerings are just a few of the powerful ways PLNU delivers real value to every student, no matter which physical or virtual campus he or she chooses.

Teacher Leadership Certificate


San Diego 
Katherine MacMahon
Enrollment Counselor
(619) 563-2885

Stephanie Meier
(661) 377-4721
(866) 861-4723