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The Richard W. Riley College of Education and Leadership

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Walden’s Richard W. Riley College of Education and Leadership is dedicated to enhancing educator effectiveness.

Named for the former Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education, The Richard W. Riley College of Education and Leadership is the choice of more than 65,000 students and alumni, including more than 150 state teachers of the year.

Walden University is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) for a period of seven years, from April 2019 through June 2026. This accreditation covers initial teacher preparation programs and advanced educator preparation programs. CAEP Accredited logo

CAEP accreditation is a mark of distinction in the field of educator preparation, ensuring that program graduates acquire the critical knowledge, skills, and dispositions to be effective educators. Walden earned this accreditation by meeting rigorous national standards and demonstrating excellence in the areas of content and pedagogy, clinical experiences, selectivity, program impact, and capacity for continuous improvement. 

Educators like you light the way forward for students—especially in uncertain times. With an advanced degree from Walden University, you can make an even greater difference in your classroom, your organization, and your community.

Our Education Programs

The college offers a variety of programs ranging from teacher preparation to doctoral degrees that connect educators with nationally recognized education experts, policymakers, and scholar-practitioners who are driving change and influencing the future of education.

Our Vision

The Richard W. Riley College of Education and Leadership fosters a dynamic and diverse network of educational leaders who seek to support learners globally by leveraging the power of teaching and technology and who are committed to the pursuit of positive social change through education.

Our Mission

The Richard W. Riley College of Education and Leadership provides access to high-caliber programs that prepare learners as scholar-practitioners and leaders who can inspire, influence, and impact their diverse communities by helping to meet the challenges and opportunities of education worldwide.

Our Programs Offer Educators:

  • Access to master teachers, researchers, and nationally recognized education experts.
  • Practical, research-based strategies for improving student outcomes.
  • Enriching professional development opportunities and field experiences.
  • Access to state-of-the-art technology that enables educators to choose when, where, and how they learn.

A Voice for Education

The Richard W. Riley College of Education and Leadership fosters a dynamic and diverse network of educational leaders who seek to support learners globally by leveraging the power of teaching and technology and who are committed to the pursuit of positive social change through education.

During his two terms as the nation’s top education administrator, Secretary Riley helped launch historic initiatives to raise academic standards, improve instruction for the poor and disadvantaged, increase parental involvement in education, expand loans to help more Americans attend college, and prepare young Americans for the world of work. As governor of South Carolina, he initiated the Education Improvement Act, heralded as the “most comprehensive educational reform measure in the United States.” In 2008, Secretary Riley was inducted into the South Carolina Higher Education Hall of Fame and was also named as one of the top 10 Cabinet members in the 20th century by Time magazine.

He is currently co-chair of the National Commission on Teaching and America’s Future (NCTAF), a nonpartisan, nonprofit advocacy group dedicated to improving teaching quality nationwide, and is vice chair of the Carnegie Corporation of New York Board of Trustees. He also serves on the Board of Directors of the KnowledgeWorks Foundation, a Cincinnati, Ohio-based organization that seeks through innovative, hands-on methods to improve public K–12 education and increase access to college.

A member of the South Carolina Bar and the American Bar Association, Secretary Riley earned a Juris Doctor from the University of South Carolina School of Law in 1959 and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science, cum laude, from Furman University in 1954. Secretary Riley is the recipient of numerous honorary degrees from American universities and schools abroad, including a Doctor of Humane Letters from Walden University. He is currently a senior partner at Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough LLP, where he counsels clients on business, governance, and financial matters.

Licensure

All other programs and certificate programs in the College of Education and Leadership not listed on this page are not designed or intended to lead to licensure or certification. Teachers are advised to contact their individual school districts as to whether their program of interest may qualify for salary advancement.

Licensure Overview

States issue credentials that allow teachers and other educators (principals, superintendents, school counselors, etc.) to serve in public K–12 schools. These credentials are referred to as licenses or certificates. They are issued in specific academic areas (elementary, special education, secondary math, etc.) and grade levels (K–6, 9–12, K–12, etc.). Being licensed in a specific area means that the teacher or other education professional meets the state standards and is prepared to teach students in that area.

Walden’s Licensure-Leading Education Programs

The state board or department of education creates rules and policies that provide the specific details governing the profession, including licensing requirements. Some states also have state-specific courses or training required, so it is important to understand all of the licensing requirements for the state in which you intend reside. The programs Walden currently offers which lead to licensure are:

Frequently Asked Licensure Questions

Our Licensure FAQs have answers to many common questions.

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