Christian Educator Certificates

Christian Instructional Leader Certificate (CILC)

Christian School Administration Certificate (CSAC)

Certificate Overview

This certificate program is for Christian educators who want to explore their calling as leaders in education and build their skills to create meaningful learning communities. The courses offered for this certification align with our commitment to:

The Christian Educator Certificate aligns with other Christian school teaching certificates. These certificates help students practice leadership that is intrinsically Christian and aligns with their own faith. Educators with this certification have been taught the skills needed to align their practice to the vision of one’s school such that a Christian Educators Certificate is a trustworthy standard by which Christian schools can evaluate.

Educators can choose one of two concentrations, the Instructional Leadership Concentration or the School Administration Concentration. Within each concentration, educators can also choose one course from each of the four categories of study to complete their certification: 1) Foundational Studies, 2) Educational Communities of Grace, 3) Inquiry into Practice, and 4) Leadership in Education. This certification program can easily serve as a gateway into the ICS Master of Arts in Philosophy in Educational Leadership (MA-EL) program should you want to pursue your studies further.

Infographic showing the two certificate streams (Instructional Leadership & School Administration) leading into the four course categories (Foundations studies, Educational Communities of Grace, Inquiry into Practice, and Leadership in Education.

Courses & Categories of Study

Educators pursuing this certificate will choose a total of four (4) courses from the available options—that is, you will choose one of two possible courses from each of the four categories of study. Please note that within the Inquiry into Practice category, there are two sets of choices depending on which certificate concentration you decide to pursue. Below, you can read more about what each of these courses has to offer.

Foundational Studies

Courses in this area of study provide an integrally Christian perspective and engage the learner in a deeper understanding of the Bible and Christian life:

Biblical Foundations: Narrative, Wisdom, and the Art of Interpretation

This course will explore the Bible as the ongoing story of and for God and creation, paying special attention to the way in which God's story is intertwined with that of humanity and the world. In asking whether and in what way the Bible is also our story, educators will attempt to identify which hermeneutical methods might help them discern its significance for present-day life, including the academic enterprise.

Leadership in Context (Reformational Philosophy Applied)

This course will present an understanding of schooling in terms of the Reformational tradition in philosophy. It will present a Reformational reading of and orientation to the modern world in which schooling presently takes place. In the process schooling will be examined and placed within today’s complex social and cultural environment. That human environment will in turn be placed within a cosmos-wide perspective. From this perspective the cosmos itself finds itself within the covenant by which creatures partner in love with the God who creates, upholds, and redeems the creation in the intricate dance of meaningful existence. Schooling will thereby manifest a distinct identity as an elemental building block of our contemporary socio-cultural arrangements. Its identity will relate to other societal institutions and practices to which it is connected by countless ties.

Educational Communities of Grace

Courses in this area consider school culture and the relationship between the daily behaviours of educational leaders and teachers and the cultures of schools within communities that are both local and global:

Finding Joy in Learning

This course will provide educators with a vocational vision of Christian educational innovation and leadership within the context of: 1) nurturing a personal understanding of their calling; 2) gaining an introductory understanding of how people make sense of their lives, finding their way in the world, and contributing to the cultures in which they participate, and in particular, to become critically familiar with the notions of world-viewing, practice, and culture-making; and 3) to begin cultivating personal competency in critical and constructive reflection on their professional practice.

Cultivating Learning Communities of Grace

This course will explore school and classroom culture, with particular attention to: 1) developing critical reflective skills about cultivating learning communities of grace, 2) gaining an understanding of how to be a leader of school culture, and 3) considering how learning can be linked to larger movements seeking to effect change in both local and international communities.

Inquiry into Practice

In this category, educators can consider a course in one of two areas, the Instructional Leadership Concentration that focuses on leading within the context of the classroom and the School Administration Concentration that focuses on leading within the context of administration.

Instructional Leadership Concentration Courses (choose 1 of 2)

Designed for classroom teachers who desire to continue to develop their Christian worldview in the context of their teaching through the integration of faith and practice, are committed to meeting the needs of all learners, and who have a growth mindset and desire to practice student-led learning.

School Administration Concentration Courses (choose 1 of 2)

Designed for new and aspiring administrators who would like to continue to develop their Christian worldview in the context of leading schools, who are committed to leadership marked by vision, character, and adaptivity; and who are committed to cultivating learning communities of grace.

Leadership in Education

Courses in this area will focus on our call to be leaders within the context of our professional practice as educators.

Lead From Where You Are: Making a Difference in the Face of Tough Problems, Big Questions, and Organizational Politics

Leadership is not about personality, authority, position, influence, or power as such. Leadership is an art, a craft, a practice, to which everyone is called sometime or other, in widely different situations. Leadership can be practiced with varying degrees of authority, from any position, at varying scales of influence, and with varying access to different sources of power. The kind of leadership that students will learn and practice in this course has to do with diagnosing and addressing the toughest problems experienced by organizations, communities, institutions, and societies. This kind of leadership demands political skill: the skill to discern the overt and covert concerns and interests, agendas, and alliances within the organizations, institutions, and societies we serve, and to give each their due while not failing to pursue the common good. Educators will learn a leadership language, try out a set of tools and frameworks, and workshop our fresh insights and skills.

The Craft of Reflective Practice

We humans make sense of things by telling stories. In this course we will learn how to do critical reflective practice, primarily by telling stories about our everyday professional lives. We will zoom in on the story of an ordinary day at work, and then zoom out to the story of our career to date, zoom out further to the story of our work community, and zoom out even further to the overarching story of God’s world. In the process we will learn qualitative research skills, receive an introduction to phenomenology (the philosophical study of lived experience), develop our own approach to praxis (that is, the craft of morally-oriented, theoretically-informed, and theory-generating critically reflective practice), and, most significantly, come to terms with who we are in what we do.

Want to take the next step?

Email the Academic Registrar Elizabet Aras or MA-EL Director Dr. Edith van der Boom to apply or find out more.

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