Principal Certification Program Application Requirements

The IUP Principal Certification Program is a performance-based program. To be successful in this program, students must have the support of the district superintendent and principals at the elementary and secondary levels in order to accomplish the competency requirements as detailed in the Internship Handbook.

Minimum Professional Requirements to Apply

The IUP Principal Certification Program requires a master's degree or a master's equivalence and an instructional position within a school district.

Those seeking the principal certification must initially be certified as a teacher, guidance counselor, librarian, school psychologist, or some other instructional-related professional position in the school prior to engaging in principal certification work and have three complete years of experience upon applying for certification.

Be aware that, at the completion of this program and upon application for certification from the Pennsylvania Department of Education, you will be required to provide verification of completion of three years of relevant professional experience from your district superintendent.

How to Apply

Prospective students apply to both the IUP Graduate School (to seek university graduate school admission) and the IUP Principal Certification Program (to seek principal certification program admission).

The application is submitted electronically through a platform called iRecruit, the IUP Graduate School of Admissions application system. Please visit the site and complete and send the following materials electronically to the School of Graduate Studies and Research.

Questions about the application process should be sent to:

  1. Completed Application for Admission

  2. Official transcripts from every college or university you have attended (regardless of whether or not you earned a degree). These transcripts must be sealed by the registrar and remain sealed until their arrival at the School of Graduate Studies and Research. A completed master's degree or PDE Master's Equivalency (ME) is required. GPA of 3.0 or higher.

  3. Two letters of written recommendation from supervisors who have evaluated your work, preferably principals. One letter must be from a current, dated, and specifically written recommending you for this school leadership program.

  4. Numerical Rating Scale of Leadership Competencies - submitted to iRecruit from your current supervising principal.

  5. Professional goal statement - why you want to earn a principal certification.

  6. $50 nonrefundable, one-time-only application fee, paid by credit card only.

  7. Copy of PDE Level II Teaching Certificate (A minimum of three years of successful teaching in your certified area is required for consideration for program admission.)

  8. Please read the program handbook and submit the signed acknowledgment statement (one page only at the end of the handbook). The current Principal Certification Handbook is available on this website, under Graduate Student Handbooks.