Sep 22, 2021  
2021-2022 Graduate Catalog [Current Academic Year] 
    
2021-2022 Graduate Catalog [Current Academic Year]

Special Education [MAT]


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The Master of Arts in Teaching in Special Education through the Special Education & Communication Sciences and Disorders Department is for current or future teachers who desire a master’s degree with special education endorsement (choice of Autism Spectrum Disorders, Cognitive Impairment, Emotional Impairment, Learning Disabilities, or Physical/Other Health Impairment). The program encompasses the range and depth required to accommodate contemporary education programs and service delivery systems.

Program Admission


Graduate School Application

After reviewing the admission requirements below, please select the appropriate application. The University is transitioning application platforms; pay close attention when selecting the application below.

The program you are applying to may not accept applicants every semester.

For additional information regarding the application process, please see Graduate Admissions or International Admissions.

Admission Requirements

Minimum Graduate School Requirements

A four-year baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution or an equivalent degree from a non-U.S. institution. In addition, a minimum cumulative undergraduate grade point average of 2.7 on a 4.0 scale, or 3.0 in the last half of the undergraduate program, is required for full admission. Applicants who do not meet minimum admission requirements may be considered for conditional admission. See International Admissions for international applicant requirements.

Applicants must also meet the following program requirements:

  • Submit the names and contact information for two references who know the candidate’s professional ability, capability, disposition, etc.
  • Additional Criteria
    • Group 1 - Seeking a teaching certificate and first special education endorsement: No additional documents are required
    • Group 2 - Hold a current teaching certificate, seeking first special education endorsement: A copy of the applicant’s current teaching certificate is required with the application.
    • Group 3 - Hold a current teaching certificate, seeking a second or third special education endorsement: A copy of the applicant’s current teaching certificate and initial special education endorsement is required with the application.

The applicant must pay close attention to ensure they apply to the correct group/program. Selecting the wrong program will delay the processing of the application.

  • Group 1 - Select “No Current Certification”
  • Groups 2 & 3 - Select “with Certification”

Please see the Program Requirements section below for additional details regarding each group. 

Conditional Admission

Applicants who do not hold a 2.7 undergraduate GPA may be considered by the Graduate School and program faculty for conditional admission. In this case, the student must complete the first nine credit hours of graduate courses at EMU and establish good academic standing with a minimum 3.0 GPA. Students who do not achieve a 3.0 or higher in the first nine graduate credit hours at EMU will have their admission rescinded automatically with no opportunity to appeal.

Admission Process

Students may apply to the program year-round by completing a Graduate School application. The Special Education & Communication Sciences and Disorders Department is notified after a student’s application to the Graduate School is received. Students may begin classes as soon as they are accepted, provided the desired course(s) is/are not already underway (e.g., mid-semester).

Department Information


Special Education & Communication Sciences and Disorders | David Winters, Ph.D., Department Head | 128 Porter, 734.487.3300, dwinter1@emich.edu

Derrick Fries, Ph.D., Graduate Coordinator | 106 Porter, 734.487.3300, dfries@emich.edu

Contact the Graduate Coordinator for information concerning admissions and programs of study.

Advisor Information


Please contact the department for advisor information.

Program Requirements


This program is for those who fall into one of the following three groups:

Group 1 (Seeking a teaching certificate and first special education endorsement) - Those with a bachelor’s degree but no teaching certificate. Students are seeking teacher certification with an initial special education endorsement and a Master of Arts in Teaching degree. Students in Group 1 must complete courses leading to initial teacher certification in either elementary or secondary teacher certification, as follows:

  • If pursuing elementary certification, students are responsible for up to 41 credits of professional education coursework and up to 36 credits of liberal arts coursework. See advisor for specific course requirements.
  • If pursuing secondary certification, students are responsible for up to 22 credits of professional education coursework and up to 21-29 credits of coursework in a teachable content area. See advisor for specific course requirements.

Upon completion of all graduate-level courses with a B or better grade, passing Michigan Tests for Teacher Certification (MTTC) in both general and special education areas, and successfully performing two student teaching experiences, students in Group 1 will earn a standard Michigan teaching certificate in elementary education or secondary education; initial special education endorsement in the choice of Autism Spectrum Disorders, Cognitive Impairment, Emotional Impairment, Learning Disabilities, or Physical/Other Health Impairment; and a Master of Arts in Teaching degree.

Group 2 (Hold a current teaching certificate, seeking first special education endorsement) - Those who already have a teaching certificate in an area of general education (elementary or secondary). Students want to add a special education endorsement and attain a Master of Arts in Teaching degree.

Group 3 (Hold a current teaching certificate, seeking a second special education endorsement) - Those who have both a teaching certificate and initial special education endorsement. Students want to add another special education endorsement in addition to earning a Masters of Arts in Teaching degree.

Students in Group 2 and Group 3 must also pass all classes with a “B” or higher, pass the MTTC in their special education endorsement area, and complete one student teaching or practicum experience.

Deficiencies - If not previously taken, students must complete PSY 101 - General Psychology Lecture  (3 hrs) and/or SPGN 510 - Introduction to Inclusive Education and Disability Studies  (3 hrs).

Degree Requirements: 30-39 hours


All students take the same core courses, but additional coursework and exit courses are dependent on each student’s path (Group 1, 2, or 3).  In addition, students select one special education concentration (ASD, CI, EI, LD, or POHI). A minimum grade of “B” is required in all courses.

Required Courses: 20-27 hours


Endorsement Concentration: 8-12 hours


Select one concentration from the following

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