Special Education

Special Education Requires a Special Educator

Special education is a unique field where teachers learn the skills that support the success of all students. In the special education specialization, you will explore a wide spectrum of issues related to exceptional students, including the development and characteristics of learners and learning differences. Instructional strategies will be taught to address the needs of individuals qualifying for services under the major areas of the exceptionality of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEIA). You will delve into how various disabilities may affect individuals and their families, as well as factors that place students at risk such as cultural and linguistic diversity and giftedness. As you progress through the special education specialization, you can develop the knowledge and skills to implement the six pillars of the IDEIA and explore the legal aspects of this field. You will gain knowledge in student placement, service delivery requirements, discipline, appropriate educational decisions, family rights and privacy issues, and develop the skills to interact with special education administrators from local districts or universities.

The NCU Difference

NCU's unique approach to graduate education is ideal for self-starters and independent thinkers who want a premier education with unprecedented flexibility. With NCU’s online learning model, there are weekly starts for every program or course. Our education approach was developed to meet the needs of your busy life and schedule. We use a unique one-to-one learning model that pairs one student with one doctoral professor for each course. With no teaching assistants, you learn directly from experts who provide personal feedback and professional insights. Throughout your academic journey, you will be mentored by professors who are experienced in your field of study. At NCU, you will never have to participate in group projects. You move forward at your pace, by setting your own studying schedule. In a class size of one, there’s no one to get in the way of your individual success. None of our programs have residency requirements, allowing flexible access to you no matter where you live. When you enroll in NCU to earn an advanced degree in education, you will become part of a community of professionals who are already making a difference around the world.

“While I was a full–time student, I also worked full-time as a special education teacher. The flexibility of having the opportunity to work on my dissertation in the evenings, as well as on the weekends was very complimentary to my lifestyle.” – Teresa White, Doctor of Education (2016)

At A Glance

Course information
  Credit Hours Courses Est. Time to Complete  
PhD-Ed 60 20 45 months View Course Catalog
EDD 54 18 40 months View Course Catalog
EdS 33 11 18 months View Course Catalog
MED 30 10 15 months View Course Catalog
Post-Master's Cert 18 6 9 months View Course Catalog
30 10 20 months

Beyond the specialized courses designed to help you expand your abilities in your chosen field of study and profession; NCU offers the following benefits to students and alumni:

Unmatched Flexibility
Many online programs offer the ability to take courses without leaving your home, but few offer weekly course starts, no scheduled lecture hours, no group assignments, and the ability to schedule courses around your personal and professional obligations. The option to turn in your assignments as early in the week as you want, provide you the ability to schedule school around your life, not the other way around.

100% Doctoral Faculty
Whether you are completing your bachelor's degree, pursuing your graduate degree, or on the path to earning your doctoral degree, you can rest assured that you will be mentored by doctors in your field of study.

One to One Engagement
Not only will you learn from a doctor in the field, but you won't have to fight for facetime as one of many within a classroom. At NCU, you'll have the opportunity to interact one to one with your professor to get personalized mentoring.

Doctor of Philosophy in Education Program Learning Outcomes

  • Develop knowledge of educational theories, research, and diverse instructional practices.
  • Communicate with diverse audiences about educational theories, research, and practices.
  • Develop evidence-based solutions addressing current educational, organizational, and societal issues.
  • Analyze professional skills, dispositions, and technology options for leading and educating diverse groups.
  • Conduct educational research that contributes to the body of knowledge specific to a discipline.

Doctor of Education Learning Outcomes

  • Develop leadership skills to support educational practices across diverse instructional and organizational settings.
  • Analyze educational theories and research supporting diverse instructional practices.
  • Analyze professional skills, dispositions, and technology options for leading and educating diverse groups.
  • Communicate with diverse audiences about educational theories, research, and practices. Evaluate evidence-based solutions for addressing educational, organizational, and societal issues.

Education Specialist Program Learning Outcomes

  • Develop skills to support educational practices across diverse instructional and organizational settings.
  • Communicate with diverse audiences about educational theories, research, and practices.
  • Analyze professional skills, dispositions, and technology options for learning and educating diverse groups.
  • Apply evidence-based solutions for addressing educational, organizational, and societal issues.
  • Analyze current research, theories, and instructional practices in educational and organizational environments.

Master of Education Program Learning Outcomes

  • Examine educational issues to make informed, ethical decisions and recommendations in diverse instructional and organizational settings.
  • Apply professional skills, dispositions, and technology options for leading and educational diverse groups.
  • Analyze current research, theories, and instructional practices in educational and organizational environments.
  • Communicate with diverse audiences about educational theories, research, and practices.
  • Investigate evidence-based solutions for addressing educational, organizational, and societal issues.

Bachelor of Education Program Learning Outcomes

  • Apply current instructional practices using technology to enhance learning in the diverse K-12 environment using technology.
  • Examine theoretical and research models that support ethical and professional educational practice.
  • Apply evidence-based solutions for supporting and improving instructional practices.
  • Communicate with diverse audiences about educational theories, research, and practices.

*Credit hours and courses reflect new students meeting credit requirements and utilizing no transfer credits. Est. Time of Completion reflects new students following the preferred schedule designed by the Dean for the program.

Important Information for Students, Including Gainful Employment
Performance Fact Sheets available for residents of California