M.Ed. in Special Education

The M.Ed. in special education prepares scholars for faculty and leadership roles, and provide aspiring educators with the tools they need to make a difference in the lives of children, youth and adults with disabilities through research, teaching and service.

Successful completion of our degree programs can lead to endorsement in areas such as early childhood special education, special education: general education curriculum or special education: adapted curriculum.

The M.Ed. in special education with a concentration in general education can also be pursued as part of the Richmond Teacher Residency program, an innovative graduate teacher residency that pairs candidates with an experienced mentor in Richmond Public Schools.

The early childhood concentration works collaboratively with our Child Development Center as well as has a variety of grant funding opportunities listed through the link below.

In addition to the instruction from our nationally-recognized faculty, our master’s students in our severe disabilities concentration can take advantage of field experiences available through Virginia Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities training program as well.

Major Maps and Handbooks

Current VCU undergraduate students can use the individualized Major Map for the M.Ed. in special education to maximize their undergraduate program to prepare for their future School of Education masters program.



How to apply: Graduate application
Semester of entry: Fall, spring, or summer
Application deadline for early childhood and severe disabilities: March 15 (fall/summer); Nov. 1 (spring)
Application deadline for general education: Feb. 1 (fall/summer); Nov. 1 (spring)


  • Graduate school online application and general admissions requirements
  • Bachelor’s degree in an appropriate discipline
  • Transcripts of all previous college work
  • Three letters of recommendation addressing the student’s potential for graduate study in education
  • Statement of intent
  • Personal interview may be required
  • Completion of GRE or MAT
  • Completion of the SEDP 630 as a prerequisite course, which may be completed in your program, or a provisional or professional collegiate teaching license in special education

Program Concentrations

Early Childhood
General Education
Severe Disabilities

The School of Education (SOE) degree programs that lead to professional licensure are designed to prepare students to meet the requirements for professional licensure in the Commonwealth of Virginia as outlined by the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE). The SOE has determined that the curriculum includes applicable educational prerequisites for the following professional licensure(s) and/or certification(s) as outlined on this page of our website.

Ready To Get Started?

Jenna Lenhardt, Ph.D.

Contact Dr. Lenhardt with initial inquiries.

Quayle D. Agurs, RTR Recruitment Specialist

Contact Quayle D. Agurs for RTR program application.

Contact Dr. Xu for Early Childhood concentration inquiries.

Contact Dr. Thoma for General Education concentration inquiries.

Contact Dr. Mehtaji for Severe Disabilities concentration inquiries.