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The master's degree programs in special education prepare teachers to design and implement curricula for individuals with disabilities in a variety of settings. At the masters level, the purpose of our program is to prepare teachers to provide exemplary, evidence-based services for individuals with disabilities. This program includes a thesis.

Program Highlights

  1. Flexible enrollment—attend-part time or full-time
  2. Get a degree in two years
  3. Focus on applied research and evidence-based instruction
  4. Funding opportunities available

Deadline to Apply

January 1 (summer and fall), November 1 (spring)

View admissions criteria

Faculty and Curriculum

You may choose to specialize in one of three areas:

  • General Curriculum

An emphasis in general curriculum is for those interested in working with students with mild disabilities who are primarily following the general curriculum. The special education students who are most frequently served in these settings include those with behavior disorders, learning disabilities, mild intellectual disabilities, other health impaired, and some students with autism or Asperger's.

  • Adapted Curriculum/Autism

This emphasis is for students interested in working with those who have moderate to severe autism and developmental disabilities. Training in this emphasis prepares you to work in an adapted curriculum, which means it does not follow the typical general curriculum used in most classrooms.

  • Birth Through Kindergarten

The birth through kindergarten/preschool emphasis prepares professionals to work with children birth through age 5 both with and without disabilities. Training in this program prepares you for inclusive early learning, preschool, pre-k and kindergarten programs, along with early intervention (0-3) and preschool intervention (3-5) programs.

Or, customize you program of study to reflect your research interests. This program requires a minimum of 36 hours of coursework that includes study in:

  • Autism spectrum disorders
  • Learning disabilities
  • Early intervention (birth through kindergarten)
  • Mild/moderate intellectual and developmental disabilities
  • Behavior disorders
  • Applied Behavior Analysis

Tuition and Financial Aid

Almost all in-state students begin their studies at UGA paying limited tuition or fees. Please note that these amounts are subject to change and are meant to give prospective students an idea of the costs associated with a degree at the University of Georgia College of Education.

Students may qualify for a variety of assistantships, scholarships, and other financial awards to help offset the cost of tuition, housing, and other expenses.

Tuition rates Browse financial aid

Meet Your Advisor

Most graduate students at UGA are not assigned to a faculty advisor until after admittance. A close working relationship with your advisor is paramount to progressing through your program of study.

Find your advisor

Student Life

Students have many opportunities to participate in research at all levels. Many participate in research projects, and others volunteer at local organizations such as Extra Special People, or join student organizations such as Special Olympics at UGA or AutismUGA.

The program has a student chapter of the Council for Exceptional Children, which promotes the advancement and education of people with exceptionalities. The local chapter includes undergraduate and graduate students and is a great way to connect with others who hold your same interests and stay informed about legislative issues for students with special needs.

Book a campus visit

See for yourself how much UGA College of Education has to offer! Schedule a tour of campus to learn more about the UGA student experience.

Schedule a visit


Part 1: Apply to the University of Georgia


  1. Submit an online application to the Graduate School
  2. Test scores (depending on your program)
  3. Unofficial transcripts (native language and English for international applicants)
  4. Three letters of recommendation

Part 2: Apply to this program


The program faculty may request additional materials from applicants. As you complete your application for the UGA Graduate School, you will be able to attach the following documents:

  1. Curriculum vita (CV) or resume
  2. Statement of purpose (short essay)
  3. Official transcripts
View full admissions requirements

Program Resources

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