M.A. in Educational Administration with Preliminary Administrative Service Credential


Preliminary Administrative Services Credential

The Preliminary Administrative Services Credential is required for all administrative and supervisory positions from pK-12 and Adult Education in California public schools. The program is based on a set of competencies necessary for successful performance as a California school administrator. Regulations, policies, and procedures governing the program for the Preliminary Administrative Services credential, available from the division office, were developed in accordance with guidelines developed by the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing.

The Administrative Services Credential in California is a two-tier credential that allows educators to take on various key roles in educational settings.

The initial five-year preliminary credential is issued once basic requirements are met, and it evolves into a clear credential upon fulfilling all necessary criteria. Credential holders can provide essential services in grades preschool through 12, as well as in adult education programs. These services encompass overseeing instructional programs, personnel evaluation, disciplinary actions, and the management of various school services. The credential is a prerequisite for those assessing instructional quality and handling discipline services at the school site level.

Apply Now for Fall 2024 - Deadline is May 31, 2024.

Program Description

  • The program focuses on equipping candidates with the skills and knowledge required for instructional leadership in preK-12 schools.
  • Candidates have multiple opportunities to link theory and practice based on research throughout the program.
  • The program offers an intertwined curriculum for both degrees and service credentials.
  • Candidates receive Master of Arts degrees in Educational Administration and California Preliminary Administrative Services (Tier-1) Credentials upon successful completion.
  • The Tier-1 credential licenses candidates for administrative and supervisory services in preK-12 and adult education in California public schools.
  • The credential is valid for 5 years.
  • Accepted candidates are placed in a cohort that meets two evenings a week over 3 semesters.
  • Candidates experience comradeship and lifelong networking relationships with cohort peers and instructors.
  • The program guides and coaches all candidates to become technology experts through digital portfolios.

Admission Requirements

Admission Requirements
  • Possess a valid prerequisite credential – You must possess a valid clear California teaching or services credential and hold an English Learner Authorization.  (See below for eligible credentials).  
  •  Verification of Experience - A minimum of five years of successful full-time classroom teaching or services experience in public or private schools. Verification must be documented on the district or employing agency's letterhead
  • Satisfy the basic skills requirement, which you can find additional information about in Commission leaflet CL-667 entitled "Basic Skills Requirement."
  • Letters of Recommendation – Two letters of recommendations, including one from a practicing school administrators.  These letters should indicate that you possess administrative and leadership potential.
  • A 2.75 grade point average in the last 60 semester units attempted.

Program Completion Requirements

Upon successfully completing Cal State LA's M.A. in Educational Administration program, candidates fulfill the degree requirements and are awarded the degree. If they lack an administrative job offer, they can apply for a Certificate of Eligibility (CoE). This CoE confirms their readiness for the preliminary credential and allows them to seek administrative positions. The Certificate of Eligibility has no expiration date.

Candidates with a verified offer of employment in an administrative position can be recommended for the Preliminary Administrative Services Credential. For those who possess the CoE, upon securing a job offer, they can apply for the preliminary credential by submitting the Verification of Employment Form (CL-777).

Cal State LA's M.A. in Educational Administration program aligns with Administrative Services Credential Program Standards. The Program Director ensures that all candidates in the program successfully complete all coursework requirements and fieldwork experiences, along with passing each CalAPA cycle before being recommended for either an Administrative Services Preliminary Credential or a Certificate of Eligibility to the CTC


Eligible Prerequisite Credentials

  • A clear or life California teaching credential that requires a bachelor's degree and a program of professional preparation, including student teaching or the equivalent, and holds an English learner authorization.
  • A clear or life California designated subjects teaching credential in adult education, career technical education, vocational education, or special subjects, provided the applicant also possesses a bachelor's degree and holds an English learner authorization.
  • A clear or life California services credential in pupil personnel services, health services for school nurse, teacher librarian services, or speech-language pathology or clinical or rehabilitative services, which requires a bachelor's degree and a program of professional preparation, including fieldwork or the equivalent.

Course Schedule Sample

  • EDAD 5001 (3 units)    Introduction to Educational Administration
  • EDAD 5101 (1 unit)    Laboratory for Educational Administration Digital Portfolios
  • EDAD 5061/5161 (4 units)  Educational Leadership & Fieldwork
  • EDAD 5062/5162 (4 units)  Research/Data Assessment & Fieldwork

  • EDAD 5063/5163 (4 units)  Pluralism, Collaboration, and Social Justice & Fieldwork
  • EDAD 5065/5165 (4 units)  Instructional Leadership & Fieldwork
  • EDAD 5066/5166 (4 units)  School Management & Fieldwork

  • EDAD 5064/5164 (4 units)  School Law & Fieldwork
  • EDAD 5067/5167 (4 units)  School Finance & Fieldwork
  • EDAD 5281 (2 units)      Clinical Internship
  • EDAD 5290  (2 units)    Reflection and Digital Portfolio Assessment

Preliminary Advisement


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Dr. Charles Flores
Program Coordinator
Educational Leadership
[email protected]


Forms and Application


  • What is the cost per semester?
    As of Fall 2016, it’s $2,391.75 per semester 
  • If I am a couple of months short for the 2 years of experience requirement, will this mean I will not be eligible to apply?
    Yes and No. If you're that close, we MAY admit you, IF OTHER factors are assessed to be outstanding from the application review and a seat is available.
  • Can I still apply if I have the PPS credential and MS in Counseling instead rather than a teaching credential?
    Yes. PPS is one of the equivalent credentials and the counseling experience with the PPS is equivalent to the classroom teaching experience. So if you have at least 2 years of experience with the PPS credential, you'll be eligible.

  • When is the registration period?
    The University informs you of the assigned registration period. You will need to pay the fees 3-4 days prior to the beginning of the registration period in order to access to the GET system.
  • When do I get the registration info?
    Our Division staff emails you the registration information 5-6 weeks prior to the beginning of the registration. If you do not receive the registration information, please call the division office at 323-343-4330.

  • I would like to do my fieldwork with the supervisor who does not have a copy of his credential and can only provide his credential number. Would that be a problem? Should I find someone else?
    Ask them to download the credential info from the www.ctc.ca.gov.
  • I have a new site supervisor who is expecting her administrative credential to come in the mail any day. In the meantime, when she prints out her "credential," she gets verification that she has a Certification of Eligibility for the administrative services credential. Is this sufficient for a site supervisor?
    The Certificate of Eligibility is fine for the first couple of weeks, but you’ll need to submit a copy of her administrative services credential before the end of the quarter to get a grade for the fieldwork course; otherwise, you will get No Credit for the course. 
  • My supervisor and I have not officially met although I have attempted to contact them several times. I have e-mailed them the handbook and informed them of the program but I haven't received any response from them yet. Do you think I should try a different school instead? 
    It's your decision to make. You'll need to decide if this is a usual behavior pattern of this principal or not. Remember, it's not the principal but you whose grade depends on meeting the deadline.

  • I am currently enrolled in the program. Unfortunately, I am unable to keep up with the required class work and fieldwork at this time. I am going through some very difficult family problems and I need to dedicate more time to my family. I do not want to withdraw completely from the program. I really want to stay in the program but I cannot handle the workload at this time in my life. 
    If you cannot complete the courses you’re currently enrolled, you will need to fill out a withdrawal form from the Division Office. Ask Betty or Karen in the office for assistance. 
    On the other hand, if you can complete the classes this quarter and wish to stop taking classes for a while, you’ll need to submit a Leave of Absence form, available from the Division Office, KH C2098.  

  • Is it possible to still get my administrative credential paperwork processed through the university even though I graduated this past June? If not, where do I go to get it processed?
    I'm assuming that you did NOT apply for the credential before you completed the program. You  can apply for evaluation of credential through the Office for Student Services within the seven years from the completion of your program. 

Contact Information

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Division of Applied and Advanced Studies in Education

California State University, Los Angeles 
King Hall C2098,
Phone: 323.343.4330
Fax: 323.343.5336
Email: Betty Lee or Karen VonLawn

Office Hours and Staff


Monday | 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Tuesday | 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Wednesday | 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Thursday | 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Friday | 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM


Dr. Anthony Hernandez, Division Chair
Betty Lee, Administrative Support Coordinator
Karen Von Lawn, Administrative Support Coordinator