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Student volunteering at Tournament of Champions.

Special Education, M.S.

A Master’s in Special Education from McDaniel prepares you to join the ranks of professionals who are committed to ensuring that all children and adolescents, including those with disabilities, receive a free and appropriate education in the least restrictive environment.

Degree Types
Master's , B.A./M.S. Pathway
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Program Cost
$548 per credit
Total credits

About the Program

Empathy In Action

Yes, many of the students you’ll teach in your career will have disabilities, but at McDaniel, we believe the best way to truly help them is by focusing more on their strengths and abilities—and by matching them with thoughtful expertise and individualized instruction.

Why McDaniel for Special Education

We’ve designed the Master’s in Special Education to meet the needs of today’s educators.

  • Relevance. Our program is tailored to a range of student needs, from those seeking a master's degree to those seeking certification.
  • Accreditation. The program meets Maryland State Department of Education requirements for certification and is also recognized by the Pennsylvania Department of Education.
  • Practical Pedagogy. Our curriculum encompasses both state-of-the-art research and best classroom practices.

McDaniel College is a member in good standing of the Association for Advancing Quality in Educator Preparation (AAQEP), a national accrediting organization recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. McDaniel is working toward Initial Accreditation Status for its educator preparation programs with an anticipated accreditation review in Spring 2024.

Accelerated Bachelor’s to Master’s Pathway B.A Education/M.S. Special Education

McDaniel also offers a pathway resulting in a Bachelor’s degree (B.S.) and a Master’s degree (M.S.) in the following areas:

What You Need to Know About the M.S. in Special Ed.

Admissions Requirements

Candidates are required to submit:

  • Online application for graduate study 
  • Official transcripts conferring bachelors degree (minimum 3.0* GPA) from an accredited institution.  (*Students with GPA of 2.75 to 2.99 may be admitted provisionally but must maintain a 3.0 GPA in the first 9-12 credit hours of study.  Those with less than a 2.75 GPA can be considered for admission on individual basis but may be required to submit additional documents for review.
  • Students seeking special education endorsement must provide copies of current teaching license or Praxis II scores in the content area.

To begin the program, candidates must meet with program coordinator to develop an initial 9-credit preliminary plan or study.

Degree Requirements

  • 36 semester hours minimum, although students seeking certification with their master's degrees usually must complete additional credits to satisfy state certification requirements
  • Creation of a program plan with the program advisor upon acceptance into the program
  • Minimum 3.0 GPA
  • Satisfactory completion of a portfolio (master's only and master's + certification) or thesis (master's only track students)

Program Requirements & Courses

Advancing Your Career

The Special Education program prepares you for careers such as:

  • Teaching in the field of Special Education
  • Leadership and teaching with social services organizations
  • Employment with child services organizations