Online Special Education, Emphasis in Special Education, MA Ed | University of Nebraska

Special Education, Emphasis in Special Education, MA Ed

Master of Arts in Education

University of Nebraska at Kearney

  • Course Delivery
    Fully Online
  • Total Credits
  • In-State Tuition Per Credit
  • Out of State Tuition Per Credit

Earn your degree from the University of Nebraska at Kearney

Get the same diploma as on campus students

The online Special Education Master of Arts in Education (MA Ed), Special Education Generalist degree program is designed for teachers in grade school through high school who have a passion for working with learning impairments. 

Why chose this program? 

  • Become prepared to address learning and behavioral challenges special education students face in regular classroom settings.
  • Gain a knowledge base and competencies necessary to teach individuals with disabilities.
  • Obtain certification in special education in the state of Nebraska.
  • Learn from supportive faculty who will work with you to meet your state requirements.
  • Graduate coursework is offered online and is flexible to fit your schedule.

Students pursuing certification in other states must check with their State Department of Education for certification requirements.  

This program offers emphasis in the following areas:  

  • K-6 Special Education
  • 7-12 Special Education

Career Outlook: Special education teachers engage with children and youth that have a wide variety of disabilities. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that the need for special education teachers will grow by about 8% from 2016-2026. Although most special education teachers work in public schools, some find jobs in the private sector taking care of special needs children in childcare services and other institutions.

This program is accredited by National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education and Nebraska Department of Education
This program has been ranked by US News and World Report for excellence in online education

About Faculty

University of Nebraska online courses are taught by expert faculty who embody the qualities resulting from research experience and professional/field experience. Students learn from faculty with a variety of backgrounds, many of whom are published researchers in their fields. NU faculty who teach online do so in a way that enables maximum learning and because technology provides students with maximum access to education.

To be accepted to this program, you must have:

  1. A bachelor's degree

  2. 2.75 GPA or above on a 4.0 scale

  3. Completed coursework

    Students should have TESE 330/830 a consultation course and TESE 437/837P Medical Aspects of Individuals with Disabilities. These courses may be taken at UNK if not already completed.

  4. A license/certificate required

    Standard teaching certificate

  5. Official transcripts from all previous schools

  6. A professional biography

NOTE: If you reside in state(s) KY, please contact a program adviser before applying.

To apply to this program:

  • Complete and submit the online application for admissions
  • Pay the $45 non-refundable application fee
Apply Now

Application Deadlines

Fall Semester
July 10
Spring Semester
November 10
Summer Sessions
April 10

Emphasis Option Courses:

K-6 Emphasis courses: TESE 872 and 873

7-12 Emphasis courses: TESE 875P and 876P

This program does not result in initial teacher certification. The process of gaining special education certification involves meeting additional requirements. Call or request information to speak with an adviser for more information.

Core Courses

Course NumberCourse NameCredits
TE 800Educational Research3

Course Number: TE 800

This introductory online course in educational research focuses on evaluating and interpreting educational research and applying its findings to educational practice.

TE 803Philosophy of Education3

Course Number: TE 803

Survey of the philosophical foundations of western culture and their relation to the development of earlier and contemporary educational philosophies.

TE 804Curriculum Development in Multicultural Education3

Course Number: TE 804

Students learn to evaluate, create, and implement multicultural lesson plans, unit plans, textbooks, curriculum guides, classroom rules and regulations, and school policies.

TE 805POverview of Assistive Technology3

Course Number: TE 805P

This course examines the applications of assistive technology for individuals with disabilities as it relates to teaching and learning. Existing research with students with special needs will be reviewed and new applications of existing and developing technology will be explored.

TESE 816DPracticum in Special Education3-6

Course Number: TESE 816D

This course is designed to provide student teaching experience in the specific areas of Assistive Technology, Behaviorally Impaired, Early Childhood Special Education, Mild/Moderate Disabilities, Learning Disabilities, and Secondary/transition. Student teachers are directly supervised by their cooperating teachers and university faculty. The required minimum number of weeks of full-time teaching is as follows: 3 weeks for 3 credit hours and 7 weeks for 6 credit hours. The supervised teaching may continue for up to one semester.

TESE 861Legal Issues in Special Education3

Course Number: TESE 861

This course provides students with the competencies needed to develop individualized programming for children with exceptionalities. Verification criteria, parent's rights, IEP development and implementation, goal and objective development, placement procedures and IEP monitoring will be emphasized.

TESE 862Formal and Informal Assessment in Special Education3

Course Number: TESE 862

This course is designed to introduce students to the assessment process in special education by addressing procedural safeguards; data collection via informal and standardized procedures; issues in assessment; psychometric properties of standardized tests; and administration, scoring, and interpretation of selected instruments.

TESE 863Research Based Instructional Strategies for Students with Disabilites3

Course Number: TESE 863

The course is designed to address the instructional needs of students with disabilities. Students will learn to synthesize research on instructional techniques for classroom application. Academic instructional interventions will be emphasized. Students will apply their knowledge of lesson development and classroom management strategies through an action research project. Contains a field component.

TESE 867Functional Behavior Assessment and Behavior Intervention Planning3

Course Number: TESE 867

This course is designed for graduate level students to examine function-based behavior intervention strategies individuals with disabilities who engage in challenging behavior. Students will be taught basic elements of functional analysis that includes: defining, observing, and recording behaviors as well as the creation of graphic displays for analysis. Ethical standards for behavior management, crisis intervention, and positive behavioral support will be highlighted. This course contains a functional assessment/intervention field component.

TESE 879PTeaching Social Skills to Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Course Number: TESE 879P

This course is designed to provide students with the knowledge and skills to teach Social and Personal Skills for students with disabilities. Students will be exposed to various Social and Personal Skills programs and strategies that are presently available that have been designed for students with special needs. The development of role play, problem solving, social story, and social script techniques will be emphasized. In addition, students will be able to develop individualized instruction for students based on needs assessment data. Students will also apply their knowledge of age appropriateness in the development of social and personal skills lessons.

Elective Courses

Course NumberCourse NameCredits
TESE 872Strategies for Teaching Students with Intellectual Disabilites3

Course Number: TESE 872

The course is designed to prepare future educators to provide services for individuals with intellectual disabilities. Emphasis will be placed on interventions for life skills, communication, vocational, and functional academics. Additional interventions will include community-based instruction, study skills, and assessment of alternate curriculum. Accommodations and modifications to allow the child to be included in the general education curriculum will also be explored.

TESE 873Teaching Students with Multiple Disabilities3

Course Number: TESE 873

The course is designed to prepare future educators to provide services for individuals with multiple disabilities. Emphasis will be placed on interventions for life skills, communication, and academics. In addition, future educators will gain knowledge on issues of mobility and positioning which will enhance a child's ability to reach their full potential. Accommodations and modifications to allow the child to be included in the general education curriculum will also be explored.

TESE 875PPreparing Adolescents for the Post-Secondary World3

Course Number: TESE 875P

This course is designed to address the instructional needs of secondary students with disabilities to prepare them for life after high school graduation. Alternative secondary placements will be discussed as well as post-secondary options such as Technical Schools and College. Students also learn how to develop self-advocacy skills and post-secondary accommodation plans.

TESE 876PTransitional Issues for Individuals with Disabilities3

Course Number: TESE 876P

Assessment planning and instruction to facilitate educational and employment post-school outcomes will be emphasized. Federal and state laws governing minimum transition practices will be covered. Assessment, transition planning, services, interagency collaboration, resources, and instruction will be discussed to facilitate a successful transition.

Cost for Nebraska Residents

  • Per Credit Hour

  • Tuition: $309.00
  • Fees: $52.25
  • Total: $361.25
  • 3 Credit Hours

  • Tuition: $927.00
  • Fees: $156.75
  • Total: $1083.75

Cost for Out of State Residents

  • Per Credit Hour

  • Tuition: $435.00
  • Fees: $52.25
  • Total: $487.25
  • 3 Credit Hours

  • Tuition: $1305.00
  • Fees: $156.75
  • Total: $1461.75

Questions about tuition? We can help.

What's it like to take a program online?

  • Quality learning experience

    The University of Nebraska has offered distance education courses for more than 100 years so you can expect a quality, rigorous experience. Online courses are often highly interactive with faculty and students communicating through e-mail, discussion forums and chat groups. You’ll have direct access to world-class faculty – researchers who are experts in their fields or practitioners with real-world experience. Also, you’ll be part of a community of learners and can benefit from the perspectives of students from across the globe.

  • Flexibility

    Online learning gives you the flexibility and freedom to attend your classes wherever is convenient to you. You can save time and money by being able to continue to work and by avoiding relocation or travel costs. You will be required to complete assignments in a certain timeframe, but in most instances, you can log in and complete coursework during the time of day that works best for you. You aren’t tied to a specific class time.

  • Service you expect from a leading University

    Online learners at the University of Nebraska have access to the same student services available to on-campus students. An academic adviser will guide you along your journey, library services are available to help you excel in your program and career services are available when you are ready to take your next step. These are just a few of the services in place to help you succeed.

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