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Graduate Options & Programs At-A-Glance


If you have a bachelor’s degree and are interested in getting a Utah license to teach exceptional students or national certification in BCBA, you have two options. The first option is to enter a graduate program and complete an M.Ed. or M.S. degree program along with licensure. The second option is to enter a graduate program and complete only the state requirements for endorsement/second licensure or national (BCBA certification) requirements. You can choose from programs that focus on Mild/Moderate Disabilities, Severe Disabilities, Preschool Special Education/Early Intervention, Visual Impairments, Deaf and Hard of Hearing, Deafblind, or Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA).

PhD Program

A research-oriented program with an interdisciplinary focus that prepares students for leadership positions in special education. Applicants should have a master's degree in special education or a closely related field from an accredited college or university. They also should have had field experience prior to applying for admission to the program.

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Program Requirements

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Master's Degree Specializations

severely disabled student of color in a wheelchair learning from an instructor

Severe Disabilities

The Severe Disabilities program trains teachers to work with K-12 students and adults up to age 22 who have severe disabilities. It focuses on creating personalized instruction plans, managing behavior, and using data to guide interventions. The program combines coursework with hands-on experience in special education classrooms.

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Specialization Information
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Mild/Moderate Disabilities

This program trains graduates to teach students with high-incidence disabilities like learning disabilities, intellectual disabilities, emotional and behavioral disorders, and communication disorders in grades K-12. They will use effective teaching strategies that are backed by research. Graduates may also consider completing the ESL Endorsement if they plan to work with Mildly/Moderately disabled students.

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Specialization Information
a man playing with a disabled infant with blocks

Preschool & Early Intervention

Graduates learn to work with infants, toddlers, and preschool children who need extra help in their development. They get to partner with families and other experts to create personalized plans for each child. Family-centered early intervention specialists get to work with families in their homes.

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Specialization Information
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Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA)

Graduates will learn to work with children and adults with or without disabilities. They will learn many concepts and strategies for behavior analysis that they can use in a variety of settings.

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Specialization Information
woman talking with special education students on a gymnastics floor

Adapted Physical Education

Graduates prepare to provide specialized physical education to students with diverse abilities. The APE program offers hands-on learning opportunities in local schools through U-FIT.

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Specialization Information
visually impaired student doing an activity with guidance from a teacher

Visual Impairments

The Visual Impairments specialization covers a range of topics such as the Unified English Braille code, Assistive Technology for Students with Visual Impairments, and the Expanded Core Curriculum. Candidates learn how to support their students in developing social skills, succeeding academically, and more.

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Specialization Information
A child recieving their hearing aid

Deaf & Hard of Hearing

The Deaf and Hard of Hearing specialization coursework covers a wide range of topics, including spoken language through audition, visual communication approaches, and American Sign Language. The program emphasizes language and literacy development, social skills, cognitive development, and academic success.

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Specialization Information
woman leading a man holding a white cane through a library

Deafblind

This program prepares teachers to work with children and youth who have both hearing and vision impairments. The program teaches candidates how to meet the unique and intensive needs of this population. Teachers who complete this program can get an endorsement in Deafblindness in Utah, which means they're experts in this area and can help children with this disability in many ways.

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Specialization Information

Professional Practice 

Professional Practice degree is our General Masters in Special Education and does not lead to teacher licensure but provides foundational content in the area of Special Education. The knowledge gained through this program is valuable througout many areas of studies and is ideal for thiose who are likely to work with disabled students and their families. 

Master of Education (M.Ed.) without Teacher Licensure 

30-31 total credit hours 

Research Methods (3 credit hours)

Number Course Credits Term*

SP ED 6610 

Introduction to Research Methods

3

Spring, Summer

Required Advanced Course (2 credit hours)

Number Course Credits Term*

SP ED 6054

Professional Writing in Education 

2

Fall, Spring, Summer

Possible Graduate Electives (25-26 credit hours)

Must be 6000 level or higher and approved by Special Edcuation faculty advisor.
Students may select courses from within the College of Education 
  • Education, Cultural & Society
  • Educational Leadership & Policy
  • Educational Psychology
  • Special Education 
  • Urban Institute for Teacher Education

Students may also select courses outside of the College of Education (contact faculty advisor to be approved)

Master of Science (M.S.) without Teacher Licensure

30-31 total credit hours 

Research Methods (9 credit hours)

Number Course Credits Term*

SP ED 6610 

Introduction to Research Methods

3

Summer

SP ED 7020

Single-Subject Research Design

3

Spring

ED PS 6010

Introduction to Statistics and Research Design

3

Fall Summer

Required Advanced Course (2 credit hours)

Number Course Credits Term*

SP ED 6054

Professional Writing in Education 

2

Fall. Spring, Summer

Possible Graduate Electives (13-14credit hours)

Must be 6000 level or higher and approved by Special Edcuation faculty advisor.
Students may select courses from within the College of Education 
  • Education, Cultural & Society
  • Educational Leadership & Policy
  • Educational Psychology
  • Special Education 
  • Urban Institute for Teacher Education

Students may also select courses outside of the College of Education (contact faculty advisor to be approved)

 

Last Updated: 5/17/24