Degree Requirements, Special Education
Graduate handbook information is updated and maintained by each program. Graduate handbooks are available within each program's office and online at https://utexas.box.com/v/UTAustinGraduateHandbooks. Please contact the program with concerns or questions.
Master of Arts
The Master of Arts degree is offered in three master's concentrations. The Master of Arts degree requires at least 36 semester hours of coursework, including six hours for research, and writing a thesis. The general requirements for the master’s degree are set at a minimum standard. Information about additional requirements is available from the graduate advisor or coordinator.
Master of Education
The Master of Education degree is offered in three master's concentrations. The Master of Education degree requires at least 36 semester hours of coursework. The Master of Education degree with a report requires at least 36 semester hours of coursework. The general requirements for the master’s degree are set at a minimum standard. Information about additional requirements is available from the graduate advisor or coordinator.
Doctor of Philosophy
Because the Doctor of Philosophy is a research degree, the program is structured to provide students with both academic and practical experience in conducting research in educational settings, clinics, and other research settings. Degree plans focus on students’ areas of specialization; research; interdisciplinary studies; and professional skills related to research, teaching, and service. The dissertation is expected to be a theoretically-based piece of original research that contributes to knowledge in special education or rehabilitation counseling. In addition to coursework, all students are expected to become actively involved in a variety of professional activities, such as supervision of student teachers, conference presentations, publications, and college teaching.
Doctor of Education
Although the requirements for this degree are similar to those for the Doctor of Philosophy, the Doctor of Education emphasizes applied research, and the program is designed to prepare students for leadership roles in a variety of educational settings. Requirements include a focus on program evaluation, organizational decision-making, policy and law, and personnel preparation. The Doctor of Education dissertation may be a theoretically-based piece of original research; it may also represent a scholarly investigation in special education or rehabilitation counseling that contributes to policy development, professional practice, or both. Graduates are prepared to assume leadership roles at the district, state, or national agency levels.