Students take notes during a special education class.


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. Our master’s and doctoral programs 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.

Graduate Programs

The Department of Special Education offers master’s (M.Ed., M.A.) and doctoral (Ph.D.) degrees with a concentration in Autism and Developmental Disabilities (A&DD). Our program curricula are Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB) approved and many of our graduates become Board Certified Behavior Analysts at the master’s (BCBA) or doctoral (BCBA-D) level.

Featuring a Behavior Analyst Certification Board (BACB) approved course sequence at the master’s level, our Early Childhood Special Education Programs prepare students to become leading experts in instruction and intervention for young children with autism and other developmental disabilities. The Ph.D. program features intensive research and mentoring experiences with a focus on early language development.

Early Childhood Special Education is closed and not accepting applications for the master’s programs for fall 2023.

Learn to improve the quality of education for students with disabilities. This Ph.D. program takes an interdisciplinary approach to special education by encouraging students to develop leadership, research and practice skills by participating in studies and teaching alongside faculty.

Focus on the unique needs of individuals with disabilities and their families from diverse socio-cultural and linguistic communities. Students will become prepared to work in higher education, leadership roles in schools, research roles in education, and as critical thought leaders in multicultural special education.

Undergraduate Program

Graduates with a background in special education are in high demand by elementary and secondary schools.

Learn about courses taught in Spanish



Alicia Zapata
Graduate Program Administrator

Photo of Terry Falcomatta

Terry Falcomata
Graduate Advisor

Kathryn Tackett

Katie Tackett
Undergraduate Advisor

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