Special Education instructor smiling while assisting a student

Master of Education in Special Education Online

The UTRGV TEACH Grant-eligible M.Ed. online program provides today's most effective teaching methods to meet the needs of a rapidly-growing population of special education students.

Ranked #7 most affordable accelerated M.Ed. (Special Education) online program by bestcollegesonline.org (2020)

Admission Requirements & Courses

Program Details

Next Start Date
Summer II Module
Application Deadline
Estimated Program Length
Credit Hours
Course Length
Cost Per Credit

About the Program

Special education students need teachers and advocates with the unique expertise to guide them to a successful future. If your passion matches your ambition, you can earn your M.Ed. in Special Education online with UTRGV in as few as ten months. An initial teaching certificate is not required to enter this program. If you are a certified teacher, this TEACH Grant-eligible degree program will prepare you for additional special education certification credentials.

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This course focuses on the nature of individual differences with emphasis on how individual characteristics affect learning and how research and theory translate into special education practice. Psychological, socio-cultural, and physical characteristics of exceptional individuals are discussed. Analysis of research regarding contemporary trends/issues and programs for exceptional individuals is included.
This course will focus on assessment, curriculum planning, and instruction of individuals with severe intellectual, orthopedic, sensory, behavioral and functional impairments generally occurring in less than 1% of the population (i.e., low incidence). These individuals typically require significantly more and significantly different support than their same aged peers in public schools. Although the course will focus on instructional techniques in all settings, it will focus primarily on instruction in public school settings and in inclusive classrooms. A brief review of the definitions and eligibility categories most often associated with the term low incidence will be provided along with a discussion on how low incidence disabilities affect families and family systems. Students will describe and practice specialized assessment techniques and instruments used with low incidence populations. Students will then identify, select, and demonstrate appropriate teaching strategies and behavioral support for various situations and individuals with low incidence disabilities. Students will learn special procedures for health care issues, motor disabilities, communication, and socialization skills. Considerations for developing skills in the home, community, and workplace will be described and applied to case studies. Students will describe transition and adulthood issues.
This course focuses on evidence-based instructional theories and practices for students with high incidence disabilities. The course targets curricular and instructional design for students who need individualized instruction for successful learning. Effective reading, writing, and math strategies are discussed.
This course provides an overview of ethnic, linguistic, cultural, and socioeconomic diversity and its significance in the evaluation, planning, and instruction of exceptional children. An emphasis is placed on first and second language acquisition, nondiscriminatory assessment procedures, and culturally responsive instruction.
This course focuses on the history and development of special education laws and the requirements of those laws. An emphasis is placed on the legal requirements of providing a free appropriate public education to students with disabilities. The course provides case analysis of legal and ethical principles in special education practice and offers learning opportunities in presenting professional development workshops.
This course provides an overview of the history and principles of applied behavior analysis including ethical and responsible uses. Applications in the educational setting are emphasized within the context of positive behavior support as it relates to classroom and school wide interventions.
This course focuses on formal and informal assessment of exceptional children. Curriculum-based assessment, curriculum-based measurement, and standardized testing will be covered. An emphasis is placed on interpreting assessment results and making decisions that benefit students instructionally and programmatically.
This course will include theory, techniques and research concerns in home-school-agency-system based consultation services or indirect service delivery models for individuals or clients who are from a society which is linguistically, socioeconomically, and socio-culturally pluralistic. There will be an emphasis on knowledge and concepts related to consultation with special and general education teachers, parents and families, community agencies and systems who deliver services to individuals and clients.
This course will provide an overview analysis and interpretation of quantitative and qualitative research methodologies used in the extant literature on pedagogical techniques. Single subject design research methods and their application within special education will be emphasized. A variety of single-subject research designs will be examined, and the strengths and weaknesses of each design will be identified. Issues related to analysis of data, social validity and ethical use research methodologies will be discussed.
This course focuses on issues of social learning and behavior in special education with specific attention given to classroom dynamics and ways of addressing the needs of students with moderate/severe disabilities including ASD. Various models of learning and motivation are explored. The course engages students in active study of classrooms and enable them to work collaboratively with parents and other professionals in developing and implementation strategies that support pro-social behavior among children.

Calendar - Summer II Module

Course Start Date

Application Deadline

Payment Deadline

Registration Deadline

Course End Date

Tuition & Financial Aid

UT Rio Grande Valley's 100% online accelerated graduate programs offer affordable tuition, and financial aid is available for those who qualify.

Total Program Cost

Per Credit Hour

Per 3-Credit-Course

*We estimate that tuition and fees will total no more than the rates shown above; however, rates are subject to change.


For more information on our Graduate Scholarships, please visit our Scholarships page.

Financial Aid

UTRGV is an equal opportunity institution in the administration of its financial aid programs. In keeping with this policy, financial aid is extended to students without regard to race, creed, sex, national origin, veteran status, religion, age or disability. For additional information regarding funding please visit our Financial Aid for Accelerated Online Programs page.

Additional Fees

No Application Fee
Graduation Fee: $50


Please review all the admission requirements for the Master of Education in Special Education Online degree program. For specific questions or more details, contact an enrollment specialist at 1-833-887-4842.

Admissions Criteria

Online Application

Submit your application online.

Official Transcript

Submit transcripts from all colleges/universities


3.0 (on a 4.0 scale)


What our students say about UTRGV's Master of Education online program

UTRGV is dedicated to helping educators everywhere achieve new levels of success. That's why we offer high quality education programs taught by respected faculty. Earning your graduate education degree is an achievable goal without giving up your current job and income.

Hear from our students why University of Texas Rio Grande Valley was the right choice for them.

We Will Make a Better Future

To anyone that is contemplating going back to school, I would highly recommend it. You can never put a price tag on education. It's going to help you in the long run, and not just you yourself, but your whole family.

Venessa Ramos, M.Ed. in Special Education