The off-campus Master of Arts in Special Education degree at Appalachian

Make a positive impact on children with learning disabilities. Gain skills and strategies specific to the education of special needs students with the Master of Arts in Special Education program at Appalachian State University.

This program will prepare you to work with students with intellectual disabilities (mental retardation), learning disabilities and/or students with emotional/behavioral disorders.

Fulfill the competencies required for the advanced competencies licensure from the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction and be eligible for employment in a variety of special education settings to include public and private schools. Choose a concentration from Intellectual Disabilities, Learning Disabilities or Emotional/Behavioral Disorders.

Find your purpose-oriented career with Distance Education at Appalachian.

Department of Reading Education and Special Education

Degree details

Program format

  • Courses are face-to-face with evening meeting times
  • Occasional online class or weekend meeting time is possible

Eligibility and application requirements


Applicants must:

  • hold a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution
  • hold a North Carolina "A" licensure or the equivalent from another state if seeking licensure

Application requirements:

  • Completed online application to graduate school
  • Resume
  • Official (sealed) transcript from each college or university attended (other than Appalachian)
  • Three references
  • Application fee
  • A letter of intent, specifying current teaching position, teaching goals and reasons for seeking admission to this program (one-to-two pages)
  • GRE or MAT test scores no older than five years


Semester Start Application Deadline



Join GradConnect


Out of State Licensure

Appalachian cannot confirm whether this professional licensure program will meet the requirements for professional licensure outside North Carolina; therefore, prior to enrollment, if you intend to practice in another state, you must determine if this program meets requirements for licensure in your state by contacting your appropriate licensing agencies.