Special Education (Grades 1-6) MSEd

Special educators have one of the most complex, challenging and rewarding roles in today’s changing schools. In this program, you'll receive ongoing support while working closely with full-time special education faculty who bring extensive experience working with students with a wide range of learning characteristics.

Quick Facts

Rolling Admission Apply Anytime

You Can Start Summer or Fall

Delivery Option(s) Main Campus, Courses offered at our Syracuse Campus

Cost Per Credit Hour $471

Credit Hours 30

Estimated Completion Time 12 Months


This program focuses on developing your abilities to maximize learning for students with mild, moderate and severe disabilities through specialized planning and instruction matched to individual learner characteristics. You will develop valuable collaboration and co-teaching competencies to support students with disabilities in general education classrooms grades 1-6.

You will extend your specialized professional development through courses and field experiences for serving students who have autism and other complex developmental disabilities, and for assessment, data-based decision making, positive behavior interventions and assistive technology for a wide range of learners. 


The childhood special education grades 1-6 program is 33 credit hours and features 21 credit hours of teacher preparation core and 12 credit hours of professional core.

Master of Science in Education (initial) Master of Science in Education (professional)

Rich and Authentic Learning

Our candidates are immersed in learning how to ensure all students are meaningfully included, have true access to education and receive quality instruction. For our most complex kids, we need our most highly skilled teachers. We produce those candidates. 


As a graduate of this program, you will deepen your professional knowledge and expertise in the field, and further develop leadership skills needed to help schools deliver quality inclusive education for all children. Graduates of this program are well sought-after because of the depth of their preparation in key areas for all learners. Successful completion of this program provides current teachers the necessary degree requirements to obtain their New York State professional teaching certification.

Career Opportunities

  • Special education teacher for grades 1-6

This program has some of the most dedicated and caring faculty that are experts in this field. A variety of authentic placements allowed me to practice what we were learning in the classroom and helped me to gain crucial experience.

Being a part of this program was the greatest decision I made in my career. I learned so much from my field experiences and the professors that helped me become an even better teacher. The work was hard but it was worth it!

Program Resources

NCATE Accredited

The School of Education is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), and has demonstrated that it meets standards set by organizations representing the academic community.

Diversity Graduate Fellowship Program

Prospective students may be eligible for an award which includes an annual stipend, in addition to fully-paid tuition for full-time study.

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Assistive Technology 

Assistive technology helps level the playing field for students with disabilities. Candidates in the MSED Special Education program have access to cutting edge instructional and assistive technology.

More than 120 Graduate Assistantships Offered

Assistantships provide an opportunity to gain experience through professional work on campus.

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in total awards given every year to our graduate students

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The Power of SUNY Tuition

Achieving your long-term career goals shouldn't come at the expense of your immediate financial security. Oswego offers low tuition compared to many private colleges. Never sacrificing quality for affordability, our graduate students are receiving a nationally accredited program that will translate into effective knowledge and opportunities.

Admission Requirements

Official transcript

Submit an official transcript showing confirmation of a bachelor's or master’s degree/advanced certificate. This includes any transcripts showing graduate-level coursework or post-baccalaureate degrees/certificates. Official transcripts must be sent directly from granting institution (electronic or mail). If you are a SUNY Oswego alum, your transcript will be automatically requested after entering your student ID and identifying SUNY Oswego as your school on the application.

GPA of at least 3.0

A minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or better is required for applicants. (Applicants with a GPA below 3.0 are welcome to apply, but should explain in the purpose statement what skills and experiences you will bring to the program or any special circumstances that affected your GPA.) If you have questions regarding your GPA, please speak to the department advisor for further information.

GRE scores

Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores are required for admission into the program. Acceptable scores are dependent on the course of study. Speak to your department advisor about what scores are acceptable to the program.

Program advisement meeting

Prospective students will meet with faculty and other department chairs to outline and select effective courses to best assist you in your chosen field. 

Education essay

In 500–1000 words, describe your personal achievements relating to your academic interests, and detail your educational and professional objectives with reasoning for applying to SUNY Oswego. Additionally, please write of your own understanding of education, what you would contribute to the School of Education, and how  your past experiences and goals align with the Conceptual Framework and Dispositions? (To compose your answer, first examine the School of Education Conceptual Framework.)

Initial Teaching Certification

New York State requires this entry-level certificate for classroom teachers with specific areas of interest. Submit a copy of your NYS initial teaching certificate in area of interest during the application process.

  • 1-6 Initial: certificate must be in childhood education 1-6.
  • 1-6 Professional: certificate must be in childhood special education.

Include a professional resume or curriculum vitae that includes your academic history, professional background and any accomplishments of note. This document should provide details that support your admittance to the program.

Two letters of recommendation

Indicate two names with valid email addresses. We will send an email request directly to the references on your behalf. These references should be able to speak to your character, work ethic and abilities and should come from a college professor as well as from your student teaching experience or a professional supervisor.

Application fee

Prospective students are charged a non-refundable $65 fee for processing the application.

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Next Steps to Apply

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