Master of Arts (M.A.)

Special Education Autism Spectrum Disorder Focus

In-Person 30 major credits * 2 years

Affordable Tuition


*if using financial aid

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Program Highlights & Benefits

Meet one night per week from 4:45 - 8:45p

2 year completion time, including holiday breaks

No GRE or admission tests

No weekend classes

Goals and Focus of the Program

The Master of Arts in Special Education with Autism Spectrum Disorder Focus program focuses on special education theory and evidence-based practices. Special emphasis is placed on the assessment and intervention of core and related deficits of students with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Candidates will gain knowledge and skills related to the diagnosis, program planning, instruction and interventions for students with an ASD. Candidates will develop key assessments and develop clinical decision making skills appropriate for use in the education of students with an ASD. Candidates will develop skills in becoming effective communicators and collaborators with parents, families, community providers and support systems in addition to gaining in-depth knowledge in this area of study.

Program Design

The Master of Arts in Special Education with Autism Spectrum Disorder Focus program follows a cohort model in which candidates meet one night a week from 4:45 – 8:45 p.m. The duration of the program is approximately two years.


Students in the Master of Arts in Special Education with Autism Spectrum Disorder Focus program must have a Bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution with a minimum GPA of 2.5; a valid Connecticut Teaching License; one year of full time, contracted teaching experience; and access to a classroom and students throughout the duration of the program to fulfill field study requirements.

Degree Requirements and Career Outcome

The degree requirements for this program are successful completion of the program’s respective courses (listed below) and a passing score on the comprehensive examination taken after all coursework is complete. Upon completion of this program, students will have earned a Master of Arts degree in Special Education. This is not a licensure or endorsement program, but students who complete the program will be eligible for a University of Saint Joseph Autism Spectrum Disorder Graduate Certificate.

Plan of Study

Course Title Hours
SPEC 560
Autism: Nature and Characteristics
SPEC 562
ACC & AT: Facilitating a Least Restrictive Environment
SPEC 561
Behavioral Interventions
Autism: Psychosocial Interventions
SPEC 564
Autism: Application of Instructional Strategies
SPEC 540
Reading Comprehension and Vocabulary Intervention
SPEC 554
Research-Based Math Intervention
SPEC 505
Assistive Technology
SPEC 530
Research in Special Education
SPEC 539
Universal Design for Learning: Proactive Inclusion for All Students
Total Credit Hours: 30
Please Note:

Anticipated Comprehensive Exam Date, if needed: March 2022

The courses for this program may be offered in a different order. This list should not be considered the finalized course sequence.