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Inspire All Learners

Exceptional learners need your support and advocacy. You can make this happen through our Special Education program. At A&M-Commerce, we turn your passion for teaching into a reality. Our master's degree prepares you for a rewarding career as an educator or as an educational diagnostician. You'll learn the characteristics of mild to severe disabilities, application of assessments and development of diverse learners. Gain the opportunity to interact first-hand with assistive technologies that you'll use in the classroom. You can make a difference in the lives of exceptional learners. Are you ready to respond to the call?

Where It Is Offered Commerce, Corsicana (Navarro College), Mesquite, Online
Duration 2 to 3 years
Foreign Language No foreign language credits required
Delivery Blended (50-85% Online), Face-To-Face, Fully Online
Total Credit Hours 36-42 hours
Thesis Requirements Thesis and non-thesis options available

Special Education (MED/MS) :: Big Easy Links

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Department of Special Education


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Special Education (MED/MS) :: Faculty Spotlight copied

Faculty Spotlight

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Focus Your Passion

Our department offers three tracks designed to meet your research interests and career goals. All tracks are offered as Master of Science (MS) or Master of Education (MEd) degrees. Additionally, if you’d like to earn a graduate certificate without a master’s degree, we offer a stand-alone Educational Diagnostician Certification program.

Current Educators

Already have a Texas teaching certificate? Consider earning your master’s degree in special education! Our program teaches you to identify and equip students with exceptional needs. You’ll learn to support students with disabilities in K-12 grade levels. We offer a thesis and non-thesis track. (Total Hours: 36)

Future Educators

Are you ready for a career change? Interested in becoming an educator but don’t have a teaching certificate yet? We’re here to help! Earn your teaching certificate while studying special education through our post-baccalaureate certification program. Our non-thesis track educates you in student engagement, classroom management and teaching interventions. (Total Hours: 36)

Special Education with Educational Diagnostician Certification

Do you want to become an educational diagnostician while earning your master’s degree in special education? Our program expands your knowledge and teaches you to support your students with disabilities through assessment, planning and implementation of an academic plan to meet their educational needs. This track has a thesis and a non-thesis track. (Total Hours: 39-42)

Educational Diagnostician Certificate Only

Do you have three years of teaching experience, a master’s degree in special education and a desire to advance your career? Then, we have a certification-only program for you. As an educational diagnostician, you may consult with your colleagues and students’ parents as you develop and implement an academic learning plan for each student. (Total Hours: 21)

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Master of Education/Master of Science in Special Education :: PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS

what you will learn

A master’s degree in special education offers the opportunity to:

  • Understand techniques to promote achievement in language, reading and math
  • Gain knowledge of diagnostic characteristics and their effects on learning
  • Learn to provide instruction while accommodating students’ needs
  • Earn specific training in diagnosis and intervention strategies for exceptional learners
  • Conduct behavioral assessments, promote behavioral management and develop intervention when needed
Student doing special education activity.
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Master of Education/Master of Science in Special Education :: Careers


Gain the recognition you deserve by earning your master’s degree in special education. Graduate with confidence, knowing our program boasts a nearly 100% employment rate throughout Texas.

Career Possibilities and Current Median Salaries

Special Education Teacher
Educational Diagnostician

US DOL Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2019. TEA Staff FTE Counts and Salary Reports, 2020., 2021.

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Master of Education/Master of Science in Special Education :: FEATURED COURSES

Featured Courses

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Master of Education/Master of Science in Special Education :: Course Delivery and Resources

Social worker playing with a child.

Course Delivery and Resources

Designed for current educators and working professionals, our fully online master’s degree program in special education offers a flexible way to earn your degree. We also offer some face-to-face courses at the Mesquite Metroplex Center, Navarro College and our main campus location. The master’s degree in special education with an Educational Diagnostician certification requires two face-to-face classes, which are offered in a summer block.

Degree Plans

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Graduate Program Cost


Tuition and fees for graduate students taking nine credit hours are $3,669 for Texas residents and $7,341 for non-residents.

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ADMISSIONS REQUIREMENTS International/Domestic Tabs


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Master of Special education :: Program Admission Requirements


Applications are accepted throughout the year.

Your Path to Becoming a Lion

Step 1. Submit Application

Submit your application at

  • Select “Create a new graduate school admissions application.”
  • Select “Texas A&M University-Commerce (Commerce)” as your “Target University.”

  • Select “Special Education, MS or Special Education, MED” as your “Major.”
  • Pay the $50 application fee.

Wait to receive an application confirmation email before proceeding to the next step.

  • After you submit your application, the Graduate School will send a confirmation email within two business days to the personal email account you used for ApplyTexas.

Step 2. Submit Documents

Submit the following documents after you receive an application confirmation email.

Official Transcripts

Contact your previous institution(s) and request that they send your official transcripts to [email protected].

  • We recommend that you request transcripts for all of your academic work.

Postal Alternative

If your institution is unable to submit a digital copy, hard copies may be mailed to:

Texas A&M University-Commerce
Attn: Graduate School
PO Box 3011
Commerce, Texas 75429-3011

Three Letters of Recommendation

Request three signed letters of recommendation, on letterhead, from professionals who can attest to your goals and ability to succeed in the program.

  • At least one of the references should hold a doctoral degree.

Those individuals should

Statement of Goals

Submit a statement of educational and professional goals of 500 words or less on the following prompt:

  • Discuss your educational and professional goals and how you believe this graduate degree will help you achieve them.

Resume or CV

Submit a resume or curriculum vitae (CV) which includes your academic and professional history and achievements.

Test Scores

You do not need to submit GRE scores if you have:

  • a completed bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited university with a 3.25 GPA overall or higher
  • a completed master’s degree from a regionally accredited university with a 3.25 GPA overall or higher

If you do not meet the GPA exemption criteria, request that your GRE® scores be sent to Texas A&M University-Commerce (6188) when you register for the test. If you have already taken the GRE®, you can order additional score reports.

Look for application updates in myLeo > Apps > Check Application Status

  • Once an admission decision has been made, you will receive an email to your student email account at myLeo > Apps > Leomail.

Step 3. Apply to the Certification Office

Once your application to the Graduate School is complete, you can submit your Educational Diagnostician Certification Program Application right away using TK20. If you have any questions, please email [email protected].

Pay the certification and assessment fees

Gather Required Documents

You will need to have the following documents ready for upload in order to submit the application:

  • Certification fee receipt
  • TEA Assessment fee receipt
  • Teaching service record
    • A minimum of zero years of experience is required for admission to the master’s degree-seeking path for educational diagnostician. If you do not have a completed year of service yet, please submit a letter of explanation in TK20 in place of your service record. The application will not submit if this required attachment is missing.
  • Standard Texas Teaching Certificate
    • Note: Candidates on emergency permits, intern or probationary certificates will not be admitted.
  • Official transcripts from the Graduate Office will be reviewed by the certification office.
    • Official transcripts from all institutions must be submitted to the Graduate School in order to satisfy TEA certification admission requirements.
    • A minimum GPA of 3.0 on a conferred master’s degree or a minimum GPA of 2.75 on a conferred bachelor’s degree is required for certification admission. Please note that certification admission requirements may differ from those of the Graduate School and are separate requirements.
If applicable:
  • TEA Transfers
    • If you have previously been admitted to another educator preparation program for educational diagnostician certification.
    • Request that a completed TEA transfer form be sent from your previous program to [email protected].
  • Transcripts from outside the United States
    • Contact [email protected] for any questions about TEA requirements for transcripts from outside the United States.
    • If your official transcripts are from institutions outside the United States and the country of origin is not exempt by TEA, send the following documentation to [email protected]:
      • A course-by-course evaluation from a TEA-approved Foreign Credential Evaluation Service
      • Minimum scores on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL iBT). Please note that TOEFL scores are only valid for a period of two years. Required minimum scores are 24 for Speaking, 22 for Listening, 22 for Reading and 21 for Writing.
        • As of 3/4/2022, a valid standard Texas educator certificate will be accepted in lieu of TOEFL iBT scores.

Create a TK20 Account

  • Go to
  • Scroll down and click “Admissions”
  • Select “Click here to create your account.”
  • Complete the “Create Applicant Account” form.
  • Note: You will be creating a password for this account.
  • Store the password you create in a secure location so you can refer to it later.
  • After completing the “Create Applicant Account” form, TK20 will provide your username.
  • Store your TK20 username and password in a secure location so you can refer to them later.
    • You will use the username to log in to review your admission application once submitted.

Fill out the Educational Diagnostician Admission Application

  • Log into your TK20 account
    • Click on the “back to login” link.
    • Enter your username and password.
    • Click the green “Log Into Your Account” button.
  • Click on the “Create New Application” button.
  • Select “Educational Diagnostician” application
  • Click the “Next” button.
  • Complete the application.

Upload Documents

  • Upload documents by clicking on the “+ Select File(s)” button for the item you are uploading.
  • Once you have completed all fields in the application, click the “Submit” button.
  • Look for an email from TK20 confirming your submission.

Check Your Application Status

To check your application status:

  1. Log in to your TK20 Student Admissions account
  2. On the “Home” tab, locate your application under “Recent Messages”
  3. Click on the application.
  4. If you are admitted, the message will indicate your application was “Admitted”
  5. If you lack admission requirements, the message will indicate “Denied.”
    • Click on “Review Document” to view your deficiencies and reason(s) for denial.


Once both the Graduate School and Certification Program Applications are complete, the Educational Diagnostician Program Director will reach out to schedule an interview. Interview days are typically scheduled on a monthly basis.

Sign the Letter of Invitation

Once accepted, please sign and return the “letter of invitation.”

Step 4. Apply for Financial Assistance

  • Apply for scholarships and graduate assistantships once you are admitted.
  • Apply for financial aid by submitting a FAFSA and sending it to school code 003565.
  • Contact your financial aid advisor with any questions.

Step 5. Register for Classes

Once registration opens and you are eligible to enroll, your graduate enrollment specialist is here to help you complete registration.

Contact your Graduate Enrollment Specialist if you have any questions regarding your degree plan and registration.

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Master of Special education :: Program Admission Requirements International

If you are an H1B or H4 applicant, please contact the Graduate School for details at [email protected].

Note: This program is not available to international students.

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Master of Education/Master of Science in Special Education :: Staff

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Master of Education/Master of Science in Special Education :: RELATED DEGREE PROGRAMS

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