Special Education Master of Arts Degree California

Special Education MA

Advance Your Career in Special Needs Education

The Special Education MA degree program at UC Riverside, may be the ideal graduate program for you if you already have a teaching credential and want to enhance your education with training in the Special Education field. It is also an excellent springboard for a doctoral program or a career in special needs research. No teaching credential is earned through this graduate program.

Through your selection of elective courses, you can customize this graduate program to support your desired career plans. The Special Education MA program provides many course options for those who wish to focus on high incidence disabilities such as learning disabilities and low incidence disabilities such as autism and severe cognitive impairment. By the time you complete your master's program, you will be well prepared to take the important next step in your education career, be that entry into a doctoral program, assuming an important role in special education research, or serving special needs students in another professional capacity.

Highlights of the MA Special Education Program

  • Study with award-wining Special Education faculty that include educators holding the prestigious Distinguished Professor distinction.
  • Accelerate your graduate program by completing a two-year MA Special Education and a four-year PhD in Special Education in just five years, total.
  • Choose between writing a master's thesis or taking a comprehensive examination at the conclusion of your Master of Arts Special Education program.
  • Join a research team if you are a full-time master's student available for research during the day. If you are a working professional, you will complete independent research.
  • Gain skills in evaluating research literature, identifying evidence behind it, and applying best practices.
  • Complete a minimum of 36 quarter units of graduate or upper-division undergraduate work in your major subject or other areas approved by the Special Education program faculty.
  • Undertake research in learning disabilities, developmental disabilities, autism, or multicultural special education.

Career Prospects for MA Special Education Graduates

A master's degree in Special Education can lead to a future in education research or working in school or clinical settings with special needs children. Many graduates who hold an MA in Special Education pursue careers as directors or coordinators of special education services for children and adults with special needs. Many opportunities exist both inside and outside of the traditional school. The median salary for a director of special education in the United States is $73,658.

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