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Advanced Studies in Education and Counseling

Programs - Master of Science in Counseling

Master of Science in Special Education (code ED_PMS06)

Students in this master's degree program work toward attaining leadership positions in public and private schools and agencies in the community that provide services for individuals with disabilities. The program is aimed at developing advanced skills and knowledge of current research in special education, and demonstration of the ability to engage in reflective inquiry. The program culminates with a thesis or comprehensive exam. The program does not result in a credential to teach students with disabilities. Students who want to teach individuals with disabilities should refer to the Education Specialist Credential Program section. Visit the program website for program details (


The following are required for admission to the program:

  • 1. Baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university, to include 24 upper-division units in 3 areas of study:
    • A. Human development: EDP 301 or EDP 302 (or equivalent).
    • B. Statistics and measurement: EDP 400 (or equivalent).
    • C. Individual differences: EDSP 350 (or equivalent).
  • 2. Minimum 2.85 overall grade point average in the last 60 semester (90 quarter) units of coursework.
  • 3. Special education teaching credential, or equivalent experience.
  • 4. For international students whose primary language is not English, minimum score of 550 on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL).


Candidates must apply separately to both the university and the program by posted deadlines. Applications should be submitted at the same time.
The application for Graduate Admission to the University is available online through CSUMentor ( One complete set of official transcripts must be submitted with the university application. This set of transcripts will be used to determine grade point average eligibility. Failure to submit transcripts in a timely manner will result in a delayed review of the application.

A separate application to the Special Education program must be submitted to the College of Education Graduate Studies Office (ED1-7). An application and directions can be downloaded at The program application does not require a set of transcripts. Prospective candidates should attend an on-campus program orientation.

Conditional Admission

Successful applicants are admitted to the program with Conditional Admission status.

Advancement to Candidacy - Clear Admission

Students should advance to candidacy as early as possible. For advancement to candidacy (Clear Admission status), students must:

  • 1. Fulfill the campus Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement (GWAR).
  • 2. Maintain a 3.0 grade point average in all course work.
  • 3. Resolve all incomplete grades.
  • 4. Submit to the Graduate Studies Office an Advancement to Candidacy form signed by the program advisor.


Students must complete a minimum of 30 units of upper-division and graduate courses with a minimum of 21 units at the 500/600-level taken at this university. Degree requirements include the following courses:

  • 1. Foundation Courses:
    • EDP 520 Quantitative Research Methods in Educ (3)
    • EDSP 546C Practicum in Special Education (3)
    • EDSP 550 Emerging Perspectives in Special Educ (3)
  • 2. Required Specialization Courses:
    • EDSP 535 Collaborative Partnerships and Effective Communication in School Settings (3)
    • EDSP 542 Technology in Special Education (3)
    • EDSP 566 Transition Into, Through, and Beyond School for Individuals with Disabilities (3)
  • 3. One of the following advanced methods courses:
    • EDSP 563 Advanced Methods of Teaching Individuals with Significant Disabilities (3)
    • EDSP 565 Advanced Methods of Teaching Individuals with Mild/Moderate Disabilities (3)
  • 4. One of the following pathways with advisor consultation:
    • A. Comprehensive exam: EDSP 695S, Seminar (3 units) and written comprehensive exam;
    • B. Thesis: EDP 698, Thesis (must take 6 units).
  • 5. Take 3-6 units of electives with advisor consultation.

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Advanced Studies in Education and Counseling

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