Skip site navigation and jump to page content

Administrator Professional Certificate Program

SPU offers a ten-month Administrator Professional Certificate Program for Washington state administrators who are interested in pursuing a Professional Certificate. For your convenience, on-site and online cohorts are formed in areas throughout the state. 

Who Should Pursue This Program

If you are a principal, vice principal, or program administrator who has at least two years of administrative experience, a dated Residency Certificate, and is ready to earn the Professional Certificate, this program is for you. Its successful completion qualifies you for Washington's Administrator Professional Certificate.


As a candidate in the Administrator Professional Certificate Program, you will:

  • Take part in one of Washington state's leading programs in Administrator Professional Certification and complete a curriculum consistent with the SPU School of Education's mission, and meets NCATE standards.
  • Receive a personally relevant, job‐embedded experience that meets the Washington state certification requirements.
  • Learn from instructors with extensive experience and expertise in educational leadership and administrative positions.
  • Participate in collaborative opportunities with fellow cohort members.
  • Enjoy the flexibility of seminars meeting in regional locations near candidates' schools/districts or online.
  • Take advantage of the opportunity to earn your Administrator Professional Certificate while enrolled in the SPU Superintendent Certificate Program at no extra cost. (Contact Ted Hiemstra in SPU's Graduate Admissions at for more information)
  • Apply three of the six credits earned in the Administrator Professional Certification program to a doctoral education program. Contact your advisor for information and approval.

Program Components

The SPU Administrator Professional Certificate Program is focused on the following key components:

  • Demonstration of competency in Washington State's Standards-Based Benchmarks.
  • Reflective practice.
  • Collaboration.
  • Self‐directed professional growth.
  • Implementation of a project designed to positively impact student learning, based on identification of contextual needs and data analysis.
  • Presentation of project's impact on student learning, development of leadership knowledge and skills, and future administrative steps.

Program Outline

EDCN 5880: Entry Seminar – 3 credits 

The Entry Seminar in the Administrator Professional Certificate Program consists of the following:

  • Candidate orientation to the Professional Certification benchmarks and processes.
  • Self-assessment and analysis to determine current leadership competency, areas for growth, and initial development or a professional portfolio.
  • Development and implementation of an Action Research Project to improve student learning in an area of documented need.

EDCN 5881: Completion Seminar – 3 credits 

The Completion Seminar in the Administrator Professional Certificate Program consists of the following:

  • Completion of professional portfolio and all program requirements demonstrating competency according to Administrator Professional Benchmarks.
  • Demonstration of a Professional Growth Plan.
  • Finalization and presentation of Action Research Project to improve student learning.

Getting Started

If you hold a dated Residency Administrator Certificate or Residency Principal Certificate and are currently serving in the role of principal, vice principal, or administrator, we invite you to apply to SPU's Administrator Professional Certificate Program by submitting the following to the Center for Professional Education:

  • Completed Application (PDF) 
    **Early application deadline is May 31st.
  • Non-refundable application fee of $50.
    **Applications received after May 31st will require a non-refundable application fee of $100.
  • Copy of your valid, dated Residency Administrator Certificate or Residency Principal Certificate.
  • Completed Verification of Administrative Experience form (must have served two years as a principal or school administrator and be contracted for a third year).


The 2015–16 total tuition fee of $1,860 is for 6 graduate-level credits. Tuition can be paid in two installments of $930, with the first payment at registration for EDCN 5880, and the second at registration for EDCN 5881.