Special Education

alt="Assistant Professor Michael Sandbank works with a young girl who is wearing a cap containing sensors."

Special Education/Educación Especial
#7 Ranked Program by U.S. News & World Report

Innovative Research with a Global Impact

The Department of Special Education is routinely ranked among the top 10 peer departments in the nation. This year, U.S. News & World Report ranked us sixth among publics and seventh overall. We offer students the opportunity to gain specialist training and research experience with diverse populations across the lifespan.

Our faculty are actively involved in innovative research that has a global impact. We study topics such as supporting bilingual students with disabilities, math and reading interventions, design and evaluation of assistive technology, educating students with autism spectrum disorders, and the transition and post-school employment for people with disabilities.

A Special Education graduate student gives a presentation

Graduate Programs

Master’s and doctoral programs designed to inspire students as advocates for special education. Our students engage in coursework led by experts in the field, and innovative research aimed at improving the lives of individuals with disabilities.
A student organizes materials used with special education students

Undergraduate Studies

Undergraduate students can major in special education that leads to a recommendation for teacher certification in special education (EC-12) and general education (EC-6). Students learn the foundations of teaching and supporting children with mild to severe disabilities.
Associate Professor Sarah Powell works in a lab while a student watches on a monitor.

Featured Research

Our research has an important global impact. The underlying drive of our research aims to improve the quality of life and access to equitable education for individuals with disabilities and their families, particularly in K-12 education.


Young students sitting on floor around teacher

Special Education Courses Taught in Spanish

Inclusion in the classroom is a cornerstone of education and should be no different for special education students. Our Spanish-taught courses will prepare you to connect with Spanish-speaking students with disabilities, their families and communities.

A young student teacher smiles as sits with a boy while a faculty member shows them a reading passage.

More than $12 million in IES Grants to Support Research Benefiting Students and Educators

Grants will benefit students from kindergarten through middle school in math and reading, and will also help prepare teacher trainers.

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Helping Your Kid With…

Educational experts at the Meadows Center for Preventing Educational Risk (MCPER) have created videos to help parents and guardians use effective practices to teach students at home due to COVID-19. Videos will be posted regularly, so be sure check the MCPER page often to get the latest information.