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M.S. in Special Education

Kansas State University prepares special education teachers at the graduate level in a cross categorical program with two areas of specialization: high incidence special education and low incidence special education. These programs have been approved for special education endorsement by the Kansas State Department of Education.

→ M.S. in Special Education Program booklet

See also:
Program Application/Admission Procedures
Program Portfolio Information
Program Checklist

Kansas Endorsements in Special Education

Each area of specialization (High Incidence Disabilities and Low Incidence Disabilities) has a separate course sequence designed by the College of Education. These areas have been approved by the Kansas State Department of Education (KSDE) and the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE). The special education endorsement can be granted to a person who holds a valid Kansas teaching license.

A special education endorsement can be met without completion of the master’s degree. However, most students choose to complete the master’s degree while working toward full endorsement. Completing the master's degree is recommended by the special education faculty. Students who intend to complete a master’s degree should apply for admission to the master’s program before completing nine hours of graduate coursework.

Two Types of Endorsements:

Students pursuing a master's degree in special education are required to complete requirements for full endorsement in High Incidence Disabilities. However, when feasible, it is advisable to plan master's programs that also lead to Low Incidence Disabilities special education endorsement. A minimum of 30 hours of academic credit comprising an appropriate program of study must be approved early in the student's master's degree program by the student's supervisory committee and the Graduate School. The minimum requirements presented here pages are helpful guidelines but students must consult their assigned advisors to plan an appropriate program of study.

  1. Full Endorsement.
    • Full endorsement is granted to the applicant by the State Department of Education upon completion of the required sequence of courses and submission of a qualifying score on the Praxis exam for the endorsement field.
  2. Provisional Endorsement.
    • Provisional endorsement is possible in the High Incidence Disabilities area
    • Provisional endorsement is for a two-year period and may be renewed for an additional two- year period. At the time of renewal, the candidate must have completed 50% of the courses remaining for full endorsement. The entire sequence of courses for the full endorsement must be completed within four years.
    • For provisional endorsement, a candidate must complete the following courses and practicum:
      • EDSP 710 Education of Exceptional Individuals 
      • EDSP 742 Intervention: Emotional and Behavior Disorders
      • EDSP 743 Intervention: Academic Disabilities
      • EDSP 785 Practicum I

Requirements for the Program Areas in Special Education

High Incidence Disabilities Special Education Endorsement
(Elementary or Secondary)


Eligible for a teaching license in elementary or secondary education, and one of the following courses:
EDSP 323 ^Exceptional Student in the Secondary School 
EDSP 324 *Exceptional Child in the Regular Classroom 

Required Courses

EDCEP 715Principles of Assessment
EDSP 710 * ^Education in Exceptional Individuals
EDSP 723 *Characteristics of Cognitive Disorders
EDSP 728 *Characteristics of Emotional & Behavioral Disorders
EDSP 742 * ^Interventions: Emotional & Behavioral Disorders
EDSP 743 * ^Interventions: Academic Disabilities
EDSP 745 ^The Consulting Process in Special Education
EDSP 777Behavior Management
EDSP 778Technology for Special Education
EDSP 785 * ^Practicum I
EDSP 800Practicum II
EDSP 830Assessment in Special Education
(Prerequisite: EDCEP 715)
EDSP 848Transitions in Special Education

Additional Courses for Secondary Endorsement

EDSP 844Special Education in Secondary Schools
(Required for ALL secondary level endorsements and elementary level adding secondary certification.)
(Offered in spring semesters of odd numbered years)

Code for Symbols:
* QuickStart Program requirement (for elementary education majors)
^ Step Ahead Program requirements (for secondary education majors)

Low Incidence Special Education Endorsement
(Elementary or Secondary)

Complete all courses Required for High Incidence Endorsement and:

EDSP 841Interventions: Low Incidence Disabilities
EDSP 849Interventions: Autism Spectrum Disorders
EDSP 885Practicum: Low Incidence Disabilities

Graduate Certificate in Autism Spectrum Disorders

The official title of this certificate used by the Graduate School is Teaching Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders.
Complete all Requirements for Low Incidence Endorsement and:

EDSP 889Advanced Practicum: Autism Spectrum Disorders

If students want this graduate certificate recorded on their K-State transcript upon completion of the program requirements, they must first submit electronically a Graduate School application for the graduate certificate for Teaching Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders. This application for the certificate is in addition to the Graduate School application for admission into the master's degree program.

To obtain the graduate certificate, student must complete the specific required certificate courses and also must have a master's degree in special education.

Master's Degree in Special Education

Students interested in a master's degree may apply graduate-level courses taken for special education endorsements to the Master's in Special Education. Students seeking the master's degree must complete at least 30 hours of graduate-level coursework and successfully defend their teaching portfolio. Committee members will recommend additional course work based on individual student need. This course work will include but not be limited to: EDSP 886 Seminar: Special Education or EDCEP 816 Research Methods in Education.