Master's program in Special Education (Intern Certification)

quoteThe ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.quote1
-- Martin Luther King, Jr.

Individuals in this program specialize in working with students identified with disabilities and is designed for those who already have initial certification in Childhood Education (1-6). This program leads to professional certification in Childhood Education (1-6) and initial/professional certification in Teaching Students with Disabilities (1-6). Students in this program complete internships in classrooms for students with disabilities. Graduates of this program could work as an elementary school teacher (grades 1-6) or a special education teacher (grades 1-6).

Strong emphasis is placed on integrating university course work content and applied experiences in the classroom in order to support individuals’ acquisition of the specific skills and competencies they will need to work successfully with students with disabilities.

The year-long program begins with a summer of introductory courses. Specialized courses in Special Education occur in the Fall and Spring semesters, along with required clinical internships.

Program Requirements 
Full Time Study (35 credits)
Evening course work and field experiences during the school day
Study begins in June and continues until the end of June the following year.

Appropriate Applicants are Individuals…
with initial certification in childhood education (1-6) 
with an undergraduate average of 3.0 or better
with a strong interest in working with students with disabilities at the childhood.

Certification Earned:
Initial and Professional Certifications: Teaching Students with Disabilities at the Childhood Level (1-6)
Professional: Childhood (1-6)

Application Deadline: See graduate admissions

How to Apply

  • Complete the application at
  • Submit transcript and 3 letters of recommendation, including at least one from someone who has observed you teach
  • Submit a copy of your teaching certification(s) and NYS teacher examination scores. Those who are still completing their teacher preparation program at the time of application may submit their NYS Teacher Certification examination scores, and must submit proof of teaching certification by September 1st.  

Additional Program/NYSED Requirements:
Needs of Students with Autism Training
DASA Training

As an approved teacher preparation program with the New York State Education Department, there may be additional certification requirements applicable.  These requirements may include, but are not limited to additional workshops.  certification procedures and requirements are outlined on the School of Education's Teacher Certification website (

Teaching is a profession.  Master's students have professional responsibilities to their students, their peers, their classmates and instructors, and to society at large.  Students in the master's program will be working with children and other professionals in educational contexts, including schools, community centers, and other sites of learning.  Their professional responsibilities include following through on commitments made to children and schools, being appropriately prepared and on time for all interactions/lessons, maintaining confidentiality and respect, and interacting with all stakeholders/participants in a professional manner.  Professional interactions include everything from dressing appropriately for the situation to maintaining appropriate language both in talking with and talking about others.  Failure to meet professional responsibilities can result in a student's academic dismissal from the program.

MS in Special Education (Intern Certification)
Required Courses

Special Education


ESPE 650

Instructional Environments and Practices for Students with Disabilities

ESPE 651

Developing Reading Comprehension and Content Knowledge for Students with Disabilities

ESPE 652

Math and Inquiry Instruction for Students with Disabilities 

ESPE 653

Managing School and Classroom-wide Student Behavior 

ESPE 654

Teaching Students with Severe and Multiple Disabilities

ESPE 655

Assessment of Students with Disabilities

ESPE 656

Teaching Written Expression to Students with Disabilities

ESPE 669

Educating Students with Emotional Disorders and Challenging Behavior: Advanced Tiers of Support

ESPE 680A 

Clinical Internship: Teaching Students with Disabilities

ESPE 681

Clinical Internship Seminar: Teaching Students with Disabilities





ELTL 500

Classroom Literacy Instruction

(35 credits)