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Master of Education in Special Education; Emphasis in Intellectual Disabilities

The M.Ed. program in the Department of Educational & Clinical Studies is designed to meet the needs of persons who hold a baccalaureate degree and wish to earn a master's degree in special education or early childhood education, with or without licensure. Students are expected to develop a plan of study that is most relevant to their educational purposes. Students seeking a license to teach should be aware that certification or endorsement requirements might limit their choices. A number of specific focus areas are available and can lead to the following Nevada Department of Education endorsements: Autism, Early Childhood, Early Childhood Special Education, Generalist-Mild Disabilities, Gifted and Talented, Intellectual Disabilities, Teaching English as a Second Language; or other professional areas, such as Applied Behavioral Analysis.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this program, graduates will be able to:

  • Articulate the pros and cons of current issues and trends in special education and the field of intellectual developmental/developmental disabilities;
  • Teach students with intellectual disabilities, focusing on ability and similarities to children without disabilities;
  • Describe and define general developmental, academic, social, career, and functional characteristics of individuals with intellectual disabilities/developmental disabilities as they relate to levels of support needed;
  • Use specific assessment instruments such as adaptive skills assessments and developmental screening assessments;
  • Utilize research-supported instructional strategies and practices, including the functional embedded skills approach, community-based instruction, task analysis, multisensory, and concrete/manipulative techniques;
  • Assist students, with the support of parents and other professionals, in planning for transition to adulthood including employment and community and daily life, with maximum opportunities for full participation in community and decision-making

Career Possibilities

  • Licensed teachers
  • Private consultant
  • Education specialist
  • Non-profit organization director or employee
  • State education department director or employee