Special Education

Program Overview

The Special Education Program prepares educators and specialists to empower persons with exceptionalities to become independent and fully integrated members of a diverse society. All programs focus on teaching and clinical experiences, issues of justice and diversity, development and infusion of technology, and educator proficiencies and knowledge. To accommodate the needs of working professionals, some of our graduate programs are offered through distance education.


Program work within Special Education is developed and guided by a strong conceptual framework, the standards from the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), guidelines from the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC), the Academy for Certification of Vision Rehabilitation & Education Professionals (ACVREP), Association for the Education and Rehabilitation of Blind and Visually Impaired (AER), criteria from the State of Texas, and the sound professional judgment of an experienced and caring faculty.

Trademark Outcomes and Distinctive Skills

M.Ed.: ABA, Autism, Educational Diagnostician, Generic, Transition

Engage in collaboration with stakeholders to improve outcomes for students/clients in all relevant settings.

The candidate can:

  • ICC10S5 Plan and conduct collaborative conferences with individuals with exceptional learning needs and their families
  • ICC8S4 Develop or modify individualized intervention or assessment strategies using the collaborative consultation process
  • ACC4S2 Design and implement research activities to examine the effectiveness of instructional practices

M.Ed.: Deaf/Hard of Hearing, Deafblind, Orientation and Mobility, Visual Impairment

Engage in intervention development and implementation planning using collaborative consultation with other team members to improve outcomes for students/clients in all relevant settings.

The candidate can:

  • ICC10S7 Use group problem-solving skills to develop, implement, and evaluate collaborative activities
  • B&VI10S1 Structure and supervise the activities of para-educators and others who work with individuals with visual impairments
  • B&VI10S2 Plan and implement literacy and communication and consultative support within the general curriculum and expanded core curriculum
  • TE6S2 Refer team members and families to assistive and instructional technology resources


  • Demonstrate competency in preparing and implementing a high quality intervention research project resulting in the professional dissemination of findings and a finished grant proposal.

Areas of Specialization

Master’s Programs

  • Autism
  • Board-Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA®)
  • Deaf and hard of hearing
  • Deafblind
  • Educational Diagnostician
  • Generic special education
  • Orientation and mobility
  • Special Education TransitionTransition
  • Visual impairment

Masters Handbook

Certification Only (State or National)

  • Board-Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA®) (National Certification)
  • Deaf and hard of hearing (State of Texas)
  • Educational Diagnostician (State of Texas)
  • Generic special education (State of Texas)
  • Orientation and mobility (National Certification)
  • Visual impairment (State of Texas)

TTU Graduate School Certificates

Graduate Certificates Offered through the College of Education

Learn more about our Graduate Certificate offerings.

Students may elect to complete a certification or endorsement-only program at the graduate level in generic special education, visual impairment, orientation and mobility, and deaf and hard of hearing. The Educational Diagnostician and the Board Certified Behavior Analyst programs require a Master’s Degree as part of the specialization requirements. If you already hold a Master’s Degree, you may pursue certification as an educational diagnostician.

Ph.D. in Special Education

Applied Behavioral Analysis Graduate Certificate

Program Overview

Our coursework sequence has been approved by the Behavior Analysis Certification Board (BACB) as meeting their coursework requirements for the 4th Edition Task List through December 2016.

  • 18 credit hours
  • Coursework completed online
  • Prerequisite: Bachelor's degree
  • Completion time is approximately one year.
  • Students may complete two courses in sequence simultaneously. No more than two courses in the sequence may be taken simultaneously.

The Behavior Analyst Certification Board, Inc.® has approved the following course sequence as meeting the coursework requirements for eligibility to take the Board Certified Behavior Analyst Examination®. Applicants will have to meet additional requirements to qualify. Please visit www.bacb.com for additional requirements.

Required Courses (18 hours)

EDSP 5303

ABA I: Applied Behavior Analysis

EDSP 5345

ABA II: Single Subject Design

EDSP 5346

ABA III: Functional Behavior Assessment

EDSP 5347

ABA IV: Behavior Change Procedures

EDSP 5348

EDSP 5349

ABA V: Advanced Issues in ABA

ABA VI: Ethics and Professional Conduct

For a Master of Education in Special Education, emphasis in Applied Behavior Analysis, 18 additional credit hours of coursework and a comprehensive evaluation or thesis will be required.

Completion of the national Board Certified Behavior Analysis Credential (BCBA®) involves completion of additional requirements (i.e., acceptable master’s degree, 1500 hours of supervised experience, successful completion of a board examination). Visit www.bacb.com for more information. TTU does not provide supervised experience for the BCBA requirements.

The BCBA course sequence approval number for Texas Tech University is 4111.

Application Process

Students are strongly encouraged to begin their program research and application well in advance of the semester they plan to start.

The undergraduate teacher education program at Texas Tech is known as TechTeach. Additional application information is available online.

The graduate application process is a two-step process consisting of the ApplyTexas application and the Texas Tech College of Education application. The graduate program handbooks detail the application processes for those programs:

Faculty and Staff

Banda, Devender
Associate Professor, Autism
EDUC 228

Brendle, Janna
Assistant Professor, Educational Diagnostician
EDUC 223

Brown, Donna (Dee)
Assistant Professor, Graduate Programs
EDUC 268

Carter, Stacy
Associate Professor, Applied Behavior Analysis
EDUC 222

Davidson, Roseanna
Associate Professor, Deaf/Hard of Hearing & Deafblind
EDUC 221

Donaldson, Jeanne
Assistant Professor, Applied Behavior Analysis

Dotson, Wes
Assistant Professor, Applied Behavior Analysis
EDUC 163

Griffin-Shirley, Nora
Professor, Orientation and Mobility
EDUC 220

Hart, Stephanie
Assistant Professor of Practice, Applied Behavior Analysis

Lock, Robin
Professor, Associate Dean - Graduate Education & Research

Pogrund, Rona
Associate Professor, Visual Impairment
Austin TSBVI

Richman, David

Strickland-Cohen, Kathleen
Assistant Professor, Applied Behavior Analysis
BC 213

Worth, Sharon
Visiting Assistant Professor, Educational Diagnostician