What is the major code?
What is the average course load per semester?
Typically students take 2 courses (6 credits)
How do I set up a MSU Mail account?
Go to netid.msu.edu to set up your MSU NetID and e-mail account. Additional MSU technology resources are available at tech.msu.edu.
How do I enroll for classes?
Students may enroll for classes Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. and on weekends from 8:00 a.m. Saturday until 8:00 p.m. Sunday (subject to availability). You must have MSU NetID and password or your PID and PAN to enroll. Students cannot access the enrollment system until their assigned appointment time. All holds must be cleared before enrolling. For more information, read about Enrollment Information
How do I drop a course?
You can drop any course on the enrollment system through the middle of the term of instruction. Click on the section number in the Schedule of Courses to see important drop dates.
To drop a course after the middle of the term you must follow the regulations as enumerated in the General Procedures and Regulations section of Academic Programs.
If you wish to drop a course but have a hold, call the Registrar's Office at 517-355-3300 for assistance.
Where can I access the program plan form?
Please visit the Forms for Master's students page:
Forms for Master students
Where can I get my grades, class schedule, billing information, account detail, etc?
You can visit Stuinfo
Do I need to use my MSU email account?
Your MSU email address is the only email address that the university will use to send official communication to students. However you may auto forward all incoming email to another service or account. Click on "MSU Prefs" in the sdiebar meu to access this setting.
Do you require the GRE test and if so what scores do you need?
No, the GRE is not required for admission into the MA Special Education program.
Yes, the GRE Verbal, Quantitative, and Analytical scores are required for admission into the PhD Special Education program. Please schedule your test early enough to insure your tests results can be scored and sent to MSU by the December 1 deadline. Test scores should be sent in with your application materials; delays in score submission will delay decision-making about admission status and possibly decrease the probability of admission. Applicants who submit materials prior to the deadline are given priority in the review and admission process.
If I had a different major than special education (and related fields), could I still apply to the Special Education Program?
Yes, you may apply if your undergraduate or master's degree is in a field other than special education. Your personal goal statement should reflect your career or goal shift and include a brief explanation for your decision-making. Be aware that you may be required to take additional coursework in special education depending on your career aspirations and background.
How long is the Special Education program? Can you complete the program on a part-time basis?
The Masters program in Special Education is designed to be completed within approximately two years of matriculation, though full-time versus part-time status will affect the length of the program because many courses are offered only once a year.
Most students attend the doctoral program in Special Education on a full-time basis and complete the program in 4-5 years. Full-time enrollment is STRONGLY recommended given the research-intensive nature of the program and the Graduate School's residency requirement for PhD students (6 credits of coursework per semester for two consecutive semesters, which can include summer). Although strongly recommended, if full-time study is not possible, it is ESSENTIAL that students work closely with their academic advisor after the program orientation meeting in August to ensure appropriate sequencing of courses and sufficient opportunities for research and college teaching.
When is the application deadline?
Learning Disabilities: March 1st and October 1st
Autism Spectrum Disorder:March 1st
PhD: December 1
The application deadline is December 1 for priority consideration and financial assistance. Late applications will be considered on a space available basis, though financial aid typically will not be available for late applicants.
When are you assigned an advisor?
Once admitted to the program, students will be assigned an advisor.
Student advisor assignments for the first year of study are made by placing the student with a faculty member with similar goals and/or research interests. Once the student's Guidance Committee is constituted, another advisor may take the place of the first-year temporary advisor.
When are admissions decisions made?
Typically you will hear from us 4-6 weeks after the admission deadline.
Applications are due on December 1 and decisions typically will be made within 4-6 weeks.
What has the greatest weight in terms of all the application materials?
There is a common misconception that there is one factor over all others that we emphasize in the evaluation of each application. The review is comprehensive and faculty consider each component of the application for the applicant's fit with the program philosophy, knowledge about the program and faculty members' interests and expertise, and experiences that reflect preparedness to assume graduate-level work.
What are the average GPA and GRE scores of students in the program?
Students are required to maintain 3.0 or higher.
Good question, especially for academic units that heavily emphasize GPA and GRE scores as primary in the admission review process. However, in this academic unit, program faculty have found that GPA, GRE scores, AND other required components of the application materials (i.e., professional narrative, research, teaching, and leadership experiences, values) also have been found to significantly predict success. Applicants are cautioned about making a decision about applying based solely on GPA and GRE scores given the ranges found within each student cohort. Consequently, there have been cases where some applicants with extraordinarily high GPAs and/or GRE scores have not been admitted and those with more modest status have.
What is the retention rate after the first year?
Because the pool of applicants is highly competitive and admission decision-making occurs only after extensive faculty deliberations, the retention rate approximates 100%. The exceptions to this rule are typically related with one of the following: a shift in students' life circumstances, students' desire to re-focus career goals, or failure to maintain 'good-standing' status within the program. These are the exceptions, but such cases do occur from time to time.
What type of funding is available (other than loans)?
No funding is available for students in the masters degree program in Special Education.
The Special Education doctoral program currently has one leadership preparation grant for which students are automatically considered. In addition, students who meet the December 1 deadline for admissions are automatically considered for University and College fellowships and other awards, as well as Department graduate assistantships (such as a teaching assistantship). In the case of teaching assistantships, students must identify courses for which he or she might be suitable and apply for the teaching assistantship. The application may be found here.
The following are websites that provide potential options for students seeking funding opportunities in support of graduate education:
Please review each of these opportunities carefully; keeping in mind that although assigned advisors will support student's applications for funding upon request, each student must assume full responsibility for securing funding. Once a source of funding or employment position or assistantship has been identified, each admitted student must notify faculty of the site, provide a description of the position, and indicate the contact person and campus address. Where no letter is required, assigned academic advisors' contact information may be listed as references in the application process. Remember that it is imperative that this process occurs as soon as possible given that due to 9 month appointments, faculty are not as available for contact during the summer months as they are during the regular academic year.
Is a teaching certificate required for admission into the program?
Master degree only: NO
Masters degree plus an endorsement: YES
Endorsement only: YES (plus Masters degree)
No. A teaching certificate is not required for admission into the Special Education doctoral program, though a background in elementary and/or secondary education, especially education of students with disabilities, is preferred. Individuals without an education background and/or experiences working with students with special needs may be required to take additional coursework and/or participate in school-based activities.
Where can I get answers to other general questions I might have?
The Registrar's Office is open Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m and can be reached at (517) 355-3300. Information is also available on the Office of the Registrar site. You may also make after hours and weekend inquiries with the university operators at (517) 355-1855.
For general technology questions, contact the ATS Help Desk at (517) 432-6200, or visit tech.msu.edu/support.
Do I need to apply to graduate?
Yes, The first week of the semester you expect to graduate, submit the graduation application. If you expect to graduate in the summer submit this application in the first week of spring.
When will I receive my diploma?
Your diploma will be mailed to the address you provided on your graduation application approximately four weeks after the end of the semester that you graduate.
Where do I find information about commencement?
Go to the MSU Commencement website.