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Teacher Leader in K-12 Studies Specialization Education Specialist

School of Education

Engage & grow as a K-12 teacher

Focus on leadership fundamentals in the K-12 environment with an education specialist (EdS) degree. Capella’s online EdS, Teacher Leader in K-12 Studies degree can help you develop leadership skills to create a culture of effective teaching and learning in your classroom, school, and district.

You’ll build practical knowledge, skills, and attitudes for guiding curriculum and instruction initiatives, mentoring and coaching other teachers, and leading at the school or district level.

At a Glance

  • Online
  • 9 Core courses

Classes Start December 2nd

Ready to get started? We’re ready for you. Chat with an enrollment counselor or apply now to take the first step on the journey toward your future.

$50 application fee (waived w/promo Fall19)

What you’ll learn

Promote a collaborative culture

Apply adult learning theory to create professional learning communities among fellow teachers, administrators, and other school leaders.

Use teaching & learning theory

Develop best practices for modeling and promoting action research based on current best practices and learning theory.

Build learning improvement tools

Create formative and summative assessments, then use them to develop instruction and improve student learning.

Advocate for student learning

Grow your potential to advocate for the teaching profession and for policies that help students learn.

Promote current technology

Stay on top of recent technology, digital tools, and innovations as they apply in the classroom, school, and district.

Model professionalism

Encourage positive teacher traits, including fairness, ethical conduct, lifelong learning, personal development, and more.

Program features

Our program offers additional benefits you might be interested in.

Professionally aligned

This program is designed around leading professional standards, including such organizations as the Association of Teacher Educators.

Learning you can take further

Capella’s innovative online learning model will support your goals by helping you continue from the EdS to a doctoral program.

Cost & learning format

Online education isn’t one-size-fits-all. We know you’re busy—you need a learning experience tailored to your life, not the other way around. Capella has learning and tuition formats to suit you, however you learn. 

A more structured learning format with an active peer community and faculty guidance. We’ll set the schedule, you meet the deadlines. 

  • Based on the quarter system; 1-3 courses per 10-week quarter
  • 1 semester credit = 1.5 quarter credits
  • Weekly assignments and courseroom discussions
  • Pay for what you take, price varies by courseload or term
$745 per credit, 52 total quarter credits, 0 max transfer credits

Get the details

Speak with an enrollment counselor to get a personalized cost estimate for what you can expect to pay.

Ways to save

At Capella, we believe your education is an investment in your future. It’s also an investment within your grasp. Your goals are achievable—there are more ways to save than you might think. 

Transfer credits

We can accept many transfer credits from regionally accredited schools.

10% military discount

If you're an active-duty military service member, spouse, or veteran, discounts may be available.

Federal work study

Part-time jobs sponsored by the U.S. government are available to help you reduce loan debt.

Student Success Story

“There was a wide spectrum of students from all over the world, many of whom were currently working in education, so we received an amazing opportunity to learn how other education systems handle the work.”

Mary Larson

Accredited & recognized

Capella University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Accreditation and recognitions provide the assurance we meet standards for quality of faculty, curriculum, learner services, and fiscal stability. See all of our accreditations and recognitions

Sample courses

Our EdS, Teacher Leader in K-12 Studies coursework focuses on such topics as curriculum and instruction, promoting cultures of change, and using data-driven decision-making and action research to improve educational outcomes.

Show course with description
EDD8358 *
Teacher Mentoring and Coaching

In this course, learners gain knowledge of teacher performance assessment and evaluation systems as well as coaching and mentoring models and techniques and apply the skills necessary to mentor and coach new and veteran teachers. Learners identify independent professional activities related to these topics through the creation of four different project descriptions: an action research monograph, a program evaluation, a curriculum product, and a change management plan. Learners then select a specialization-aligned topic and create a proposal for one independent professional activity to expand and apply their knowledge. In addition, learners organize their Professional Showcase Portfolio and demonstrate their understanding through a critical analysis of program outcomes. For EdD and EdS Teacher Leader in K–12 Studies learners only. Prerequisite(s): EDD8356. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

6 quarter credits
EDD8354 *
Cultural Competence in Schools and Communities

Learners in this course analyze personal cultural awareness and gain cultural competence to successfully educate students from diverse backgrounds. Learners examine sensitivities and develop skills that underlie culturally responsive teaching. Topics include the value and dynamics of diversity, cultural self-awareness, and ways to institutionalize cultural knowledge. For EdD and EdS Teacher Leader in K–12 Studies learners only. Prerequisite(s): EDD8352. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

6 quarter credits
EDD8352 *
Innovation in Teaching and Learning

In this course, learners evaluate the intersection of technology knowledge, content knowledge, and pedagogical knowledge (TPACK) and apply it to technology used in the 21st-century classroom to provide creative experiences that enhance learning. In addition, learners gain and demonstrate an understanding of the use of problem-based learning, personalized learning, adaptive learning, and a variety of digital and multimedia tools. For EdD and EdS Teacher Leader in K–12 Studies learners only. Prerequisite(s): EDD8350. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

6 quarter credits
EDD8350 *
Emerging Technology Trends in Education

In this course, learners investigate theories, research, and current and emerging trends in technology that impact K–12 education. Learners examine these impacts from the planning stage through instruction, assessment, data collection, and analysis. Topics include Digital Bloom’s taxonomy, blended learning, the significance of digital citizenship, and the use of learning management systems for teaching and managing student data. For EdD and EdS Teacher Leader in K–12 Studies learners only. Prerequisite(s): EDD8408. Cannot be fulfilled by transfer.

6 quarter credits

Faculty & support

You’re never going it alone at Capella. Our dedicated faculty and support teams are waiting to guide, help, and advise you through every step of your educational journey.

Enrollment counselors

These experts will set you up for success. They’ll help you find the right degree and program, and answer all your questions about Capella.


Advisors know the details of your program. Got questions about courses? Instructors? Resources? Advisors have answers.


Our courses are taught by distinguished faculty members who hold top credentials and have hands-on expertise in their fields. They know what you need to know today.

Writing support

Sharpen your writing skills with our free tutoring services and other resources.

Relevant blog posts

5 Reasons to Incorporate Technology into Your Classroom

Find out how technology engages active learners, facilitates collaboration, and helps teachers succeed.

Move forward in your career

Here are just some of the career options you could explore with our online EdS in Teacher Leader in K-12 Studies degree.

Related job titles to explore*

  • Teacher leader
  • Curriculum specialist
  • Director of assessment
  • Director of instruction
  • Education consultant

Employment settings to explore

  • K-12 public or private school
  • K-12 virtual or charter school
  • School district
  • Government- local, state, federal
  • Research and policy organization

*These are examples intended to serve as a general guide. Some positions may prefer or even require previous experience, licensure, certifications, and/or other designations along with a degree. Because many factors determine what position an individual may attain, Capella cannot guarantee that a graduate will secure any specific job title, a promotion, salary increase, or other career outcome. We encourage you to research requirements for your job target and career goals.

Other programs to explore

Is this program close to what you need, but maybe not a perfect fit? The programs below might be interesting. Check them out to find one that suits your academic and professional goals.

Ready for the next step?

Learning online doesn't mean going it alone. Help is here. From faculty, coaches, advisors, and more. Plus a supportive community of students who are as passionate about their careers as you are about yours.