Special Education MEd, Early Childhood Special Education Emphasis

The M. Ed. Program in Special Education explores important core knowledge in Special Education. The program's primary goal is to empower professionals as thoughtful educators who use best practices when assisting and empowering students with disabilities. Research and data-based decision-making are emphasized throughout the program. Graduate students will apply learned and evaluated research into practice in their courses, and learn to analyze multiple types of assessment data. The M.Ed. Program in Special Education consists of an initial required core of courses, a concentration area corresponding to the chosen emphasis area, and a capstone or exit course block.

When graduate students are accepted into the program, their transcripts may be reviewed, as necessary,  to identify compliance with state education certification guidelines. Students who wish to be certified in the education of children with cross-categorical disabilities will be required to fulfill general certification requirements, as well as graduate coursework. Upon completion of this advanced degree, professionals will have developed an in-depth knowledge-base related to

  • various learning contexts within and outside of the school setting
  • the multiple influences on educational practices in schools
  • the characteristics and instructional needs of learners with disabilities
  • assessment strategies for monitoring instruction
  • instructional best practices
  • using research to inform practice in the classroom
  • diversity awareness
  • contexts that affect student learning
  • the powerful interactions between setting events and specific learner outcomes
  • a life-perspective of students with exceptional learning needs, both young children who transition into kindergarten and those transitioning into adulthood.
1) Required Foundation Courses (9 hours)
Students are required to complete the following courses within the first 15 hours of study.
TCH ED 6010Examining History, Community and Social Justice in Education3
TCH ED 6020Teacher Action, Advocacy and Leadership3
ED PSY 6030Instruction, Learning and Assessment3
2) Required Research Courses (6 hours)
These two research courses should be taken in sequence (not together) at the end of your program since the first course prepares you with the knowledge and skills to successfully complete an Action Research project in the capstone exit course. You will design and execute a piece of original practitioner research and present your findings in a public forum.
TCH ED 6909Teacher Action Research I3
TCH ED 6910Teacher Action Research Capstone 13
3) 9-hour Concentration Choices
A. Special Education Concentration I: 9 hours
ED PSY 6545Consultation in Schools and Related Settings3
SPEC ED 6325Advanced Studies in Classroom & Behavior Management 23
or SPEC ED 6437 Applied Behavior Analysis: Functional Assessment and Interventions
SPEC ED 6415The Law and Special Education3
B. Special Education Concentration II Electives 9 hours
Students have the option of enrolling in a 3 credit hour course from either the Early Childhood Special Education or Autism Studies concentrations, or enrolling in an additional course in the Cross-Categorical concentration in order to meet the 9 credit hour course requirement for Concentration II.
i. Cross Categorical Disabilities Concentration II: 6 +3 hours from i, ii, or iii.
CHOOSE 2 + 1 from this or another designated Concentration II area
SPEC ED 6315Understnding/Implmnting Speech & Lang Interventions that Assist Chldrn w/ Sp Needs3
SPEC ED 6345Characteristics and Education of Students with High-Incidence Disabilities3
SPEC ED 6342Transition Education for Adult Life3
SPEC ED 6346Reading Instruction and Intervention in Special Education3
ED PSY 6542Social-Emotional and Behavior Interventions3
ii. Autism and Developmental Disabilities Concentration II (9 hours)
SPEC ED 6430Characteristics and Education of Individuals with Low-Incidence Disabilities3
SPEC ED 6610Foundations of Autism Spectrum Disorder: Research to Practice3
SPEC ED 6620Assessment and Interventions for Children and Youth with Autism Spectrum Disorder3
iii. Early Childhood Special Education Concentration II (9 hours)
SPEC ED 6372Screening and Diagnosis of Developmental Delays: Birth to 5 Years3
SPEC ED 6462Introduction to Early Childhood Special Education3
SPEC ED 6463Curriculum, Methods, and Materials for Early Childhood Special Ed3

Total hours: minimum 33 credit hours