Colleges with Special Education Majors

October 23, 2022
By AdmissionSight

Colleges with Special Education Majors

Having access to quality education and inspiring educators is a crucial building block for a successful and happy life. People who are good at teaching and making connections with their students inspire them to value education in itself. They encourage children to identify the academic areas in which they excel and to work on improving those in which they struggle.

Teachers of students with special needs have an especially challenging set of responsibilities. Special education teachers work closely with a typically smaller group of students. They modify their practices to accommodate the various requirements of children who have physical and learning disabilities, emotional and behavioral disorders, social challenges, and a variety of other conditions.

Students sitting on the steps of a school building.

The development and provision of educational opportunities for students with varying levels of ability is the primary focus of the special education major. Students who choose to major in this field will learn how to assist students with special needs in developing into the best and most powerful versions of themselves.

What is a Special Education degree?

Earning a bachelor’s degree in special education will prepare you for a career in which you will work in a classroom setting, typically instructing students with special needs and developing educational plans for them.

As a result of this, obtaining a bachelor’s degree in special education will equip you with skills in the areas of lesson planning, behavior management, and the writing of documents such as IEPs (individualized educational plans).

You will also attend classes that will instruct you on how to put Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) into action and how to collaborate with various other stakeholders, such as parents, principals, and other educators.

It takes about four years to earn a degree in special education on average, but you might be able to finish your classes in less time if you work at a faster pace than the average student does.

Students lounging in the stairs.

Training in the tools and technologies necessary to become a teacher of special education as well as training in assistive technology for students with physical disabilities will be provided to you during this time.

It is highly likely that you will be required to finish a student teaching program as well as pass a background check before you are allowed to graduate and enter the workforce.

Overview of the Special Education Major

Although the requirements for colleges with special education majors can vary from school to school, it is safe to say that students who choose this concentration will be exposed to the following core ideas:

  • Mild, Moderate, and Severe Disabilities
  • Assistive Technology
  • Behavior Management
  • Human Learning and Development
  • Cultural and Linguistic Diversity

Students who do well in school care deeply about educational equity and are eager to lend a helping hand to their peers who struggle in this area. They should be patient and attentive because it is possible that they will eventually be working directly with students who have special needs.

Teachers need to be flexible in order to meet the requirements of their students with special needs, who all learn in their own unique ways and at their own individual rates. Because you will be the adult around these children, it will be your responsibility to maintain your composure and be kind to them even when they are upset.

Three students talking while walking.

Those who are successful in the field of education are adaptable, and they have a high threshold for both stress and unexpected events. They are flexible and willing to deal with chaos as well as copious amounts of paperwork.

Students who major in special education have a great deal of job security because their skills are in such high demand. Many of the nation’s most prestigious educational institutions, such as the University of Wisconsin–Madison, boast employment rates of close to one hundred percent for recent graduates. In addition, the typical salary of a teacher in general education is significantly lower than the salary of a teacher in special education.

What are the career options for special education majors?

Even though teaching is a common career choice for students from colleges with special education majors, it is by no means the only option. A significant number of graduates go on to work in the fields of interpreting, translation, and even special education teaching.

Three students using a laptop in a table.

If you have an interest in directing or advocating for causes, here are the career options for special education majors that might be ideal for you:

  • Nonprofit Director
  • Program Director
  • Board of Education Chairman
  • Mental Health Facility Worker
  • Speech Pathologist
  • Lobbyist

Do not worry too much if you are aware that you have an interest in special education but are unsure of the particulars of what it is that you would like to do in this field. To our good fortune, special education is a relatively broad field, and the time spent in college is an excellent opportunity to figure out your capabilities, interests, and top priorities.

What to search for in colleges with special education majors?

When you search for the right school for you, it is important that you take note of the following considerations so that you can choose the best among the colleges with special education majors.

Opportunities for experience

Being successful at your job is an entirely different challenge than being successful in a classroom setting. Even though having access to quality educational resources will prove to be an invaluable asset, you should still look into opportunities in the real world to supplement the knowledge you’ve gained in the classroom.

Investigate the internship programs and opportunities offered by the schools that you are considering attending. Field experience is typically required of applicants to special education degree programs.

Professors with years of experience

You will, of course, require professors who are able to communicate knowledge that goes beyond the theoretical level. Investigate your potential future mentors’ educational histories to determine whether or not they have experience in the fields of study that most pique your interest.

This will be of particular benefit to you if it is likely that you will be instructed by these actual tenured professionals, as opposed to TAs, and if the class sizes are small enough that it is likely that closer relationships between professors and students will be possible.

You can learn some useful information from seasoned professionals if you enroll in the appropriate classes and probe them with the appropriate queries.


Students with special needs have always come from a wide variety of walks of life, and the field of education is constantly evolving to accommodate their diverse experiences. Is this also happening at your university?

Be sure that attaining cultural and linguistic fluency is either a primary focus of your undergraduate education or at the very least one of its components. This is of the utmost significance if you are considering working for a nonprofit organization or providing assistance to underprivileged communities.

What are the colleges with special education majors?

Here’s the list of the colleges with special education majors that you can choose from.

  1. Merrimack College
  2. Fitchburg State University
  3. Seton Hall University
  4. Northern Arizona University | NAU
  5. University of North Carolina at Wilmington | UNC Wilmington
  6. Georgia Southern University
  7. Flagler College
  8. Youngstown State University
  9. Clemson University
  10. University of Connecticut | UConn
  11. Presbyterian College
  12. Arizona State University | ASU
  13. Florida State University | FSU
  14. Tennessee Technological University | Tennessee Tech
  15. Texas A&M University–Commerce
  16. University of Dayton
  17. University of Hartford
  18. University of Kentucky
  19. College of Charleston
  20. Coastal Carolina University | Coastal
  21. University of Memphis
  22. Pennsylvania State University | PSU
  23. Indiana University Bloomington | Indiana
  24. University of Evansville
  25. Campbell University
  26. Indiana State University | ISU
  27. University of Hawaii at Manoa | UH Manoa
  28. Brigham Young University | BYU
  29. Northern Illinois University | NIU
  30. Ashland University
  31. Grand Canyon University | GCU
  32. Robert Morris University | RMU (Pennsylvania)
  33. Cazenovia College
  34. National Louis University | NLU
  35. Georgia College | GCSU
  36. Marietta College
  37. Loyola University Chicago
  38. Ohio University
  39. Ohio Wesleyan University
  40. Union University
  41. Indiana University of Pennsylvania | IUP
  42. St. John’s University
  43. Brooklyn College
  44. Manhattan College
  45. Fordham University
  46. The State University of New York at Buffalo | SUNY Buffalo
  47. Dordt College
  48. Augusta University
  49. University of Georgia
  50. University of North Carolina at Charlotte | UNC Charlotte
  51. University of Nevada, Las Vegas | UNLV
  52. University of Mississippi | Ole Miss
  53. Mississippi State University | MSU
  54. Baruch College | CUNY Baruch
  55. Benedictine University
  56. Elmhurst College
  57. Southern Illinois University Carbondale | SIU
  58. Lesley University
  59. Boston University | BU
  60. Curry College
  61. Grand Valley State University | GVSU
  62. Lipscomb University
  63. Middle Tennessee State University | MTSU
  64. Fisk University
  65. Vanderbilt University
  66. Trevecca Nazarene University
  67. Otterbein University
  68. Ohio State University | OSU
  69. Capital University
  70. University of Minnesota, Twin Cities | Minnesota
  71. St. Joseph’s University | SJU
  72. Cedar Crest College
  73. West Chester University | WCUPA
  74. The College of New Jersey | TCNJ
  75. University of Wisconsin-Madison | Wisconsin
  76. University of the Cumberlands
  77. Augustana University
  78. Jackson State University | JSU
  79. Tougaloo College
  80. University of Southern Mississippi | Southern Miss
  81. St. John Fisher College
  82. New Mexico State University | NMSU
  83. Goshen College
  84. University of Missouri | Mizzou
  85. Bloomsburg University | BloomU
  86. Biola University
  87. Florida Atlantic University | FAU
  88. University of Arizona
  89. Xavier University
  90. University of Cincinnati
  91. Miami University
  92. St. Edward’s University
  93. Central Washington University | CWU
  94. Whitworth University
  95. Eastern Washington University | EWU
  96. Gonzaga University
  97. University of New Mexico | UNM
  98. Spalding University
  99. Bellarmine University
  100. University of Arkansas at Little Rock | UA Little Rock
  101. University of Arkansas
  102. Utah State University
  103. Liberty University
  104. East Tennessee State University | ETSU
  105. Bowling Green State University | BGSU
  106. University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee | UWM
  107. Westfield State University
  108. Towson University
  109. University of Maryland Eastern Shore | UMES
  110. University of Oklahoma
  111. University of Nebraska Omaha | UNO
  112. Providence College
  113. Rhode Island College | RIC
  114. Western Washington University | WWU
  115. Saint Martin’s University | St. Martin’s
  116. University of Florida
  117. High Point University
  118. Bennett College
  119. University of North Carolina at Greensboro | UNC Greensboro
  120. Elon University
  121. University of Akron
  122. Kent State University
  123. Utica College
  124. Wayne State University | WSU
  125. DePaul University
  126. Roosevelt University
  127. Illinois State University | ISU
  128. Florida International University | FIU
  129. West Virginia University | WVU
  130. University of Maryland, College Park | Maryland
  131. Carthage College
  132. Alabama A&M | AAMU
  133. Baylor University
  134. East Carolina University | ECU
  135. University of South Alabama | South
  136. Valdosta State University | VSU
  137. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign | UIUC
  138. Cleveland State University | CSU
  139. University of Texas at El Paso | UTEP
  140. University of Tennessee
  141. University of South Carolina Upstate | USC Upstate
  142. University of West Florida | UWF
  143. University of South Carolina Aiken | USC Aiken
  144. University of Utah
  145. University of Toledo
  146. University of West Georgia | UWG
  147. University of South Dakota | USD
  148. Westminster College (Utah)
  149. Widener University
  150. University of Northern Colorado | UNC
  151. University of South Florida | USF
  152. City College of New York | CCNY
  153. Pace University
  154. University of Texas at San Antonio | UTSA
  155. Boise State University | BSU
  156. University of Maine at Farmington | UMF
  157. Seattle Pacific University | SPU
  158. University of Alabama

What are your chances of getting accepted into one of the colleges with special education majors?

To be a competitive college applicant, you must have academic credentials that are on par with those of admitted students from previous years, regardless of the field of study you intend to pursue. The Academic Index is a complex tool that is based on your grades, test scores, and class rankings. It is used by the majority of selective schools to assess students’ academic aptitude and eliminate applicants who do not meet their requirements.

Group of students talking while walking in the campus.

The qualitative aspects of your application, such as your essays and extracurricular activities, are the place for you to show who you are and demonstrate how well you fit with the schools and majors that you are interested in attending.

When you are a senior in high school, you should think about doing volunteer work at summer camps and centers for special education. Volunteering for a program run by either the Boy Scouts or the Girl Scouts, as well as working as a babysitter, are both great ways to gain valuable experience.

Becoming a tutor for students at your school is a great way to test the waters of the teaching profession. Whether or not the students you teach have special needs, you will still need key skills in teaching as well as communication in order to be successful in your career.

If you want to get an even more in-depth look into what your future career may be, you should consider reaching out to people who are already working in the education field and asking if you can spend a few days shadowing them.

Over the past decade, AdmissionSight has become an industry leader in helping students gain admission to selective institutions around the world. Our admissions rate to elite institutions such as Stanford, MIT, UChicago, and Caltech is among the highest in the business, at 75% on average. Schedule your free preliminary consultation at your earliest convenience.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sign up now to receive insights on
how to navigate the college admissions process.