Exceptional Student Education, M.A.

Degree:Master of Arts (M.A.)
Major:Exceptional Student Education
Specializations:Applied Behavior Analysis
Special and Alternative Education
Department:Teacher Education and Educational Leadership
Building 85, Room 196
College:Education and Professional Studies
CIP Code:13.1001
Semester Hours Required For Degree: 30-33

The M.A. in Exceptional Student Education is a comprehensive program. There is a critical shortage of certified teachers, administrators, related professionals, and specialists in many areas of exceptional student education.

Admission Requirements

In addition to the University graduate admission requirements described in the Admissions section of the catalog, the applicant must meet the following minimum departmental admission requirements for provisional admission:

  • Have earned a GPA of at least 3.0 on bachelor's degree*;
  • Submit a current (within five years) official Graduate Record Exam (GRE) verbal score OR Miller’s Analogies Test (MAT) score**; and
  • Submit a letter of intent that includes the following information: your background, short- and long-term goals, contributions you would like to make to your field of study, and strengths you bring to the program.

Tracks, options, and concentrations are an informal designation used by graduate programs to indicate areas of emphasis and research, but have no formal significance. They do not appear on the student transcript and diploma.

*   Applicants who do not meet the GPA requirement but submit a desired current GRE verbal or MAT score at or above the 50th percentile and meet all remaining admission requirements may be conditionally admitted to the program.

** The graduate admission test will be waived for the following:

  • Applicants who have an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher from an accredited institution.

All approvals for admission to the  Department of Teacher Education and Educational Leadership are subject to reevaluation as students progress through the program. Students denied admission or removed from the program may appeal the decision to the Dean of the College of Education and Professional Studies.

Exceptional Student Education Comprehensive

The comprehensive master’s degree program in Exceptional Student Education is designed to develop master teachers who will be prepared for instructional and leadership roles in special education, but it is not an initial certification program. 

Students will be assigned a faculty mentor who will provide career advice and advisement concerning professional issues. Students in this master’s degree program have the option of selecting one of two specializations:

  • Special & Alternative Education Specialization
  • Applied Behavior Analysis Specialization

Students in the Special & Alternative Education Specialization must also complete a cognate program of study of at least 15 semester hours. The pre-approved cognate area options are the following:

  • Special Education or
  • Exceptional and Alternative Educational Studies.

All required courses must be completed with a grade of 'C' or higher.

Applied Behavior Analysis Specialization (30 hours)

Intensive Applied Behavior Analysis Cognate (30 hours)

Required Courses 

EDF 6222Concepts of Applied Behavior Analysis3
EDF 6223Applied Behavior Analysis and System Support3
EDF 6224Supervision and Management Fluency3
EDF 6225Foundations of Applied Behavior Analysis3
EDF 6226Behavioral Assessments3
EDF 6437Measurement and Single Case Design3
EDF 6557Ethics in Applied Behavior Analysis3
EEX 6051Exceptionalities3
Choose 3 of the following:6
Autism and the Law
Intensive Intervention in Autism and Related Disabilities
Curriculum Design for Behavior Analysts
Experimental Analysis of Behavior
Advanced Single Case Design
Total Hours30

Special & Alternative Education Specialization (33 hours)

Required Core Courses 

EDF 6691Issues in Education: A Bio-Psycho-Social Perspective3
EEX 6051Exceptionalities3
EDG 6415Issues in Classroom Management3
EDG 6288Educational Assessment3
Total Hours12

Educational Investigative Sequence 

EDG 6918Introduction to Research3
EDG 6916Applied Research (should be taken last semester)3
Total Hours6

Special Education Cognate Courses 

EEX 6035Best Practices in Teaching Challenging Students3
EEX 6612Behavior Management3
EDG 6662Principles of Curriculum and Instruction3
Advisor Approved Electives6
Total Hours15

Alternative Education Cognate Courses 

EEX 5283Employment, Social, and Personal Skill Building for Exceptional Students3
EEX 6035Best Practices in Teaching Challenging Students3
EDG 6662Principles of Curriculum and Instruction3
Advisor Approved Electives6
Total Hours15

BCBA and BCaBA Course Sequences

See the Graduate Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) page for more information.