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Master of Arts in Teaching in Special Education MSD P-12 (Alternative Certification)

Master of Arts in Teaching in Special Education MSD P-12 (Alternative Certification) online degree at the University of Louisville Online

Applicants who wish to enroll in the Alternative Certification program can start in the Summer Term. MAT Alternative Certification applicants must obtain full-time employment before the fall semester, teaching students with MSD.

Applicants who wish to start in the Fall may enroll in the Traditional option first until they obtain employment.

Application Deadlines

Application Deadline Track/Option Term Start Date
March 15 Alternative Certification Summer May/June
July 1 Traditional Fall August
December 1 Traditional Spring January

Admission Requirements

Admission to the online MAT in Special Education MSD Alt. Certification program requires the following:

  • Completed Graduate Application
    • Application fee of $65 (non-refundable)
  • Minimum GRE or PRAXIS Test Scores as required by the Kentucky Education Professional Standards Board
    • Note: when submitting test scores through ETS, use the general University of Louisville code, 1838
  • Bachelor’s degree from a regionally-accredited institution
  • Official transcripts of all undergraduate and graduate work completed
    • C or better in ENGL 102 (or equivalent)
    • C or better in oral communication course
  • Minimum GPA of 2.75 on a 4-point scale
  • Current resume - use of the resume template is required
  • Personal essays uploaded with your application – each essay should be double-spaced (Times New Roman 12 point font) and no more than 3 pages
    • Essay #1
      • In what ways has your cultural heritage and background influenced the way you learn, and impacted your interactions with others who come from a different cultural background? Describe an example of an injustice or inequity that you witnessed, experienced, or became aware of, and your response at that time. Then, explain how you would respond if it occurred again. Finally, explain how you would support respect for diversity in your future classroom, and how you would demonstrate a commitment to social justice and equity.
    • Essay #2
      • In thinking about the characteristics of an effective teacher, name one characteristic as your greatest strength and explain why this characteristic is important to effective teaching. Name one or two characteristic(s) you need to develop to become an effective teacher, and your plan for improvement.
      • Please note that we already assume you “love kids” and “have patience.” Your answers should be based on careful reflection and may include such dispositional qualities as: initiative, flexibility, intellectual curiosity, creativity, preparation/organization, responsibility, reflection, collaboration, dedication, and/or dependability.
  • 3 letters of recommendation from individuals who can speak to your academic and/or professional capabilities
  • Interview with a satisfactory outcome
  • Signed code of ethics/technology statement uploaded to your online application – use the Professional Code of Ethics and CEHD Technology Agreement form [PDF]

Out-of-State Applicants

Out-of-state certified teachers should be advised that we cannot guarantee that our program will meet licensure, salary, advancement or other requirements in their state. As part of the admission process, we will require a written statement confirming their interest in the program for personal development and that they understand the program is designed to meet Kentucky certification requirements only. For more information, please contact our academic advisor at betty.hampton@louisville.edu.

Enrollment Requirements

Upon admission to the program, students will be assigned a faculty advisor and will work collaboratively with that advisor to complete any additional requirements needed before enrolling.

For questions about application and enrollment to the online MAT Special Ed – MSD program, please email online@louisville.edu or call 800.871.8635.


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