Graduate programs in Special Education prepare educators to meet national standards of
excellence in communication skills, professional knowledge, and teaching
competence. Programs of study are offered for both entry-level and experienced
professionals and include certification and non-certification options.
Teacher of Students with Mild/Moderate Disabilities (M.Ed.)
This 45-credit hour program leads to state certification as Teacher of Students with
Disabilities (K-8 or 7-12). It is designed for students who have a background
in elementary or secondary education or have experience working with students
with disabilities, and who can document competency and prior coursework in
child/adolescent development and adapting instruction for students with
disabilities (SED 402 or the equivalent).
Applicants who have not met these prerequisites may be admitted for
part-time study if they are currently employed in work with students with
disabilities. Prerequisite coursework
(child/adolescent development and SED 402 or the equivalent) must be taken
prior to enrolling in courses for the M.Ed.
Educational Specialists for Students with Severe Disabilities (M.Ed.)
This 45-credit hour program leads to state certification as an Educational
Specialist for Students with Severe Disabilities. It is designed for students
who have a background in elementary or secondary education, but may be
appropriate for students with undergraduate majors in related fields such as
child development, psychology, communication disorders, occupational and
physical therapy, and nursing.
Combined Concentration (M.Ed. or C.A.S.)
This option is designed for students who have prior professional experience working
with students with disabilities and who already hold certification in special
education or are not interested in certification. With a faculty advisor,
students select courses around their unique needs and interests. Courses are
drawn from Special Education and other areas in the College of Education and
Human Development. M.Ed. programs are structured around a common core and
typically require 36 credit hours of study, depending on student background.
C.A.S. programs require a minimum of 30 credits beyond the M.Ed.
Specialties within the combined concentration include: Behavior Disorders, Learning
Disabilities and Early Literacy.
Special Education Administration/Consultant
Candidates with the appropriate educational and professional background have the option of
structuring the combined concentration to meet Maine certification requirements
in the categories of Special Education Administration or Special Education Consultant (C.A.S. only).
Special Education Administration (M.Ed. or C.A.S.)
The Special Education Administration option combines study in Special Education
with study in Educational Leadership. It can be structured to lead to
certification in the State of Maine as a Special Education Administrator for
candidates who are already certified in Special Education or a related services
field and who can document at least three years of successful teaching
experience as a special educator or related services provider. M.Ed. programs
typically require 42 credit hours of graduate study, depending on student
background. C.A.S. programs are individually designed with a faculty advisor
and require a minimum of 30 post-Master’s graduate credits.
The Special Education Consultant option is for candidates who have a prior Master’s
degree in Special Education or a related services field, are already certified
in Special Education, and have at least three years of successful teaching
experience as a special educator. Programs of study are individually designed
with a faculty advisor and require a minimum of 30 post-Master’s graduate
Fieldwork and internships are an important component of all graduate programs in Special Education. Faculty and students are an integral part of the social and educational service community in Maine, and close relationships are maintained with public schools and community agencies. Faculty and students also have the opportunity to participate in projects sponsored by the Institute for the Study of At-Risk Students, the Center for Early Literacy, and the Center for Community Inclusion, Maine’s University Affiliated Program.
For admission to a graduate program in Special Education, students must meet basic standards of the Graduate School and special eligibility requirements (identified above) of the program. Applicants may be invited for a personal interview with the Special Education faculty. Students should request financial aid information from the University’s Student Financial Aid Office. Stipends are sometimes available through grants from the U.S. Office of Education. Eligible applicants will be notified by Special Education faculty if stipends are available.