Master's in Special Education (M.A.)

3 Concentrations

The GRE is no longer required to apply to this program.

Learn how to apply to the Master's in Special Education (M.A.) with the following concentrations:

  • Early Childhood Special Education Concentration
  • Mild/Moderate Support Needs Special Education Concentration
  • Extensive Support Needs Special Education Concentration

The M.A. with Behavior Analysis and Autism Concentration has a slightly different application process.

Important Dates for Fall 2024

Item Deadline
1. Cal State Apply application
(opens October 1 each year)
February 1, 2024
2. Official transcripts due February 15, 2024

For this program, you are NOT required to complete the additional Interfolio program application. Instead, applicants must complete the Cal State Apply application and follow the directions below:

Steps 1-4: Admission to SDSU

Steps 1-4 must be completed through the SDSU Graduate Admissions Office.
Get help and tips on how to complete the Cal State Apply application.*

*Note: You can apply to this Master's program and a Clear credential. Please choose the appropriate program name in the Cal State Apply application.

SDSU Graduate Admissions: Steps to Apply


Program Materials Needed for Cal State Apply

The credential items below will be asked about by questions and/or uploads in the Program Materials box/quadrant of the Cal State Apply application. Please start preparing to apply by getting these materials ready.

Hold a Valid California Clear or Preliminary Ed Specialist Credential for One of the Concentration Areas

Admissions staff will verify this on the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CCTC) website. Applicants must hold a preliminary credential to be eligible for this Master's program. If the applicant desires, they can complete the clear credential coursework while completing the Master's degree.

Letters of Recommendation

Letters of recommendation are only required if you did not attend SDSU for your preliminary credential. If you earned your preliminary SPED credential at a school other than SDSU, then please contact 2 individuals who you have interacted with professionally and who would be able to write a letter of recommendation for you. Please have these letters emailed to the admission staff at [email protected]

Employment Required for Clear Special Education Credential

If you are applying to the Clear SPED credential program in addition to this Master's degree, starting Fall 2018 employment verification will be required to enroll in the Special Education Clear Credential program. You must be employed as a "teacher of record."  Substitute teaching and aid positions will not meet this requirement.


Please wait to request these official transcripts until after you have submitted the Cal State Apply application, then request that your official transcripts be sent to SDSU, following instructions at Submitting Your Transcripts. If you send them in before you submit the application, they will take longer to process.

If you attended SDSU for your undergraduate degree, you can skip this step—we have this information already on file.

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Application Process Questions

Program Questions

Visit the Program Homepage

Extensive Support Needs