Master of Education in Special Education

  • Program Length 
    2 Years
  • Credential 
    Master Degree
  • Location Offered 
    Online

The Program

Part-Time Option

This program incorporates a blended online an on campus model. Generally classes meet on campus in Nanaimo during July and online during the Fall and Spring semesters.

Full-Time Option

This cohort-based model is designed for students wishing to study full-time on the VIU campus. All formal coursework is completed over two semesters. The Field Inquiry and Major Project components are completed during the third semester. Students may complete this semester with online support. Students may complete their Field Inquiry and Major Project components over two semesters. This will expand the program into a full two-year option.

VIU's M.Ed. in Special Education embodies an innovative approach to the field of Special Education. Grounded in current research and evidence-based practices, our program challenges each educator to critically examine historical and contemporary Special Education policies and approaches to formulate a best practice specific to her/his own context. Faculty bring their expert knowledge and extensive experiences to guide, support and maximize student learning in each part of the program.

The 40-credit program is nested in four frames of reference:

  1. Context for Development and Learning: Students consider the context for development and learning including characteristics of the individual with special needs; issues such as social context, cultural perspectives, poverty, and mental and social health; and implications of research.
  2. Informative Assessment: Students focus on the purposes, processes, and implications of assessment information.
  3. Responsive Teaching: Students demonstrate the ability to develop, implement, and evaluate an Individual Education Plan (IEP) in consultation with classroom teacher(s), parents, students, and district and community resource personnel for students with a variety of special needs.
  4. Re-imagining Special Education: Students think beyond current practices and examine critical issues in the field of Special Education that impact children with special needs and their families in order to re-imagine the field of Special Education.

Graduates of the program will command content knowledge, develop skill-specific competencies and acquire relevant experiences prescribed by the BC Ministry of Education for Special Education specialist teachers, as well as, have the capacity to offer leadership in Special Education areas.

The M.Ed. program is offered as a cohort-based model for practicing teachers.

Program Outline

Program Outline

Program Outline (Part-Time Option)

Year 1

Credits

Intersession

MEDS 510 - (Foundations of Special Education) (VIU Nanaimo)

5

MEDS 530 - (Critical Issues in Special Education) (Online)

5

Fall Semester (Online)

MEDS 520 - (Development and Exceptionality in Human Learning)

5

Spring Semester (Online)

MEDS 540 - (Teacher as Researcher in Special Education)

5

Total Credits

20

Year 2

Credits

Intersession

MEDS 610 - (Individual Assessment & Intervention Planning) (VIU Nanaimo)

5

MEDS 620 - (Translating Special Education Research to Practice) (Online)

5

Fall Semester (Online)

MEDS 630 - (Field Inquiry)

5

Spring Semester (Online)

MEDS 640 - (Major Project)

5

Total Credits

20

Total Program Credits

40

Program Outline (Full-Time Option)

Year 1

Credits

Fall Semester

MEDS 510 - (Foundations of Special Education)

5

MEDS 520 - (Development and Exceptionality in Human Learning)

5

MEDS 530 - (Critical Issues in Special Education)

5

Spring Semester

MEDS 540 - (Teacher as Researcher in Special Education)

5

MEDS 610 - (Individual Assessment & Intervention Planning)

5

MEDS 620 - (Translating Special Education Research to Practice)

5

Total Credits

30

Year 2

Credits

Fall Semester

MEDS 630 - (Field Inquiry)*

5

MEDS 640 - (Major Project)*

5

Total Credits

10

Total Program Credits

40


* Students may complete these courses over two semesters.

Updated 
Monday, July 16, 2018
Admission Requirements

Admission Requirements

  • Completion of a Bachelor's degree with a cumulative grade point average of "B" in the final two years.
  • A record of at least two years of successful teaching is preferred.
  • Two current, confidential assessment reports.
  • A letter of intent explaining why the applicant wishes to pursue graduate work in this area.

Additionally for international applicants whose undergraduate study was not in English:

  • Clear identification of the candidate's proficiency in written and conversational English, demonstrated by either of the following means:
    • Completion of VIU's English Language Certificate Program, or,
    • A minimum TOEFL IBT 88 with no sections under 20, or IELTS 6.5 with no band under 6.0, or CAEL 70, or equivalent.

Flexible Admission

In exceptional circumstances, a student may be admitted with lower formal qualifications when there is significant professional experience relevant to the proposed area of scholarship. The objective of flexible admission is to recognize prior learning accomplishments and to ensure a high probability of successful program completion. Applicants must show evidence of having sufficient knowledge, skills and attitudes to complete a demanding academic course of study. Applicants seeking Flexible Admission will be required to:

  • Provide a personal statement of intent;
  • Provide a detailed résumé, including evidence of applicable learning;
  • Provide two or more letters of reference;
  • Provide official transcripts of all post-secondary coursework

In limited cases, applicants may also be required to:

  • Provide a portfolio containing evidence of applicable prior learning;
  • Appear for an interview;
  • Take one or more qualifying courses; and/or
  • Provide additional documentation as may be required to adjudicate the application.

Notes on Admission

  • Enrolment in this program is limited. Students who meet or exceed the minimum admission requirements may not necessarily be admitted to the program. Applicants will be required to submit a résumé outlining teaching experience.
  • Applicants may apply to the Dean for possible transfer credits from other accredited Master's degree programs.
  • Students who have completed the Inclusive Education Graduate Diploma (including GDSE 590 as one of the electives) will be eligible to ladder on to the Master in Education in Special Education.

Start Date and Application Deadline

The part-time program normally starts in July and the full-time program normally starts in September. Applications are accepted between the first business day in October and March 31. All supporting documents are due by April 30. For further information regarding applications and program contacts check the Program Availability List.

Inclusive Education Graduate Diploma graduates who are laddering into the Master’s of Education in Special Education start the part-time program in January.  Applications are accepted between January 15 and November 15. For further information regarding applications and program contacts check the Program Availability List.

Career Opportunities

Career Opportunities

Domestic graduates of this program will be well-poised to assume Special Education positions at the school and district level. School districts in British Columbia report great difficulty in recruiting qualified Special Education teachers.

Program Fees
Domestic Fees | International Fees

Domestic Fees

Tuition Fee Schedule

When applying to the program, applicants will be charged a non-refundable application fee.

When applying to graduate, students will be charged a non-refundable graduation and alumni fee.

Some courses have additional fees to pay for extraordinary class–related expenses.

Cost per semester (part-time option)

Amount

Tuition

2,682.18

Student Activity fee (5 credits x $8.87 per credit)

44.35

VIU Students' Union fee (4 months x $19.43 per month)

77.72

Total

2,804.25

Cost per semester (full-time option)

Amount

Tuition

5,364.36

Student Activity fee (5 credits x $8.87 per credit)

44.35

VIU Students' Union fee (4 months x $19.43 per month)

77.72

Total

5,486.43

Notes

* The Master of Education in Special Education program is six semesters long when taken part-time.

The Health and Dental Plan fee is in effect only for full–time students at the Nanaimo Campus.  

Textbooks and/or course packages are required for each course. Contact the Education Department at 250-740–6223 for further information regarding books and supplies. 

All fees are subject to change without prior notice.

International Fees

Tuition Fee Schedule

When applying to the program, applicants will be charged a non-refundable application fee.

When applying to graduate, students will be charged a non-refundable graduation and alumni fee.

Some courses have additional fees to pay for extraordinary class–related expenses.

Cost per program

Amount

Tuition

23,000.00

Ancillary Fee

1,123.20

VIU Students' Union fee (12 months x $19.43 per month)

233.16

Health and Dental Plan fee ($275 per year)

275.00

Total

24,631.36

Notes

The above table is based on 15 credits or less per semester. Additional fees of $635.00 per credit will be applied if taking more than 15 credits per semester.

* The Master of Education in Special Education program is six semesters long when taken part-time.

The Health and Dental Plan fee is in effect only for full–time students at the Nanaimo Campus.  

Textbooks and/or course packages are required for each course. Contact the Education Department at 250-740–6223 for further information regarding books and supplies. 

All fees are subject to change without prior notice.

Updated
Sunday, April 1, 2018

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