To work in special education can mean several things. For example, it can mean teaching students who are learning disabled or developmentally challenged, to help them acquire education and life skills. Or it can mean teaching students who are gifted and talented. It can also mean working as a special education leader to advocate and change systems, or as a superintendent to lead an institution. Or it can mean working as an academic or a researcher in special education. Special education doctoral programs provide an excellent means to obtain the requisite knowledge and skills, and to qualify for any aspect of this rewarding area.
Many students who take this specialization are already licensed teachers and are seeking to move into special education teaching or administration. These programs are also popular with special education teachers who wish to specialize in a particular aspect of special education. Special education programs can be taken at bachelors and masters levels, as well as at doctoral level. The fact that these programs are available online makes them accessible without leaving employment.
This page is about special education doctoral programs and how they can prepare you for various career choices. It provides more detail about the field, the prospects after graduation and where you can take the programs.
What do special education doctoral programs contain?
Doctoral level programs present an opportunity for in-depth study of a topic of interest or useful for your chosen path in special education.
A special education program for someone interested in teaching would typically include course work on some of the following: educational psychology; child development; adapting the curriculum; management of disruptive behavior; use of technology in the classroom; dealing disabilities; discipline; behavioral management; counseling.
Students who choose to specialize in educational administration or perhaps pursue a PhD in special education leadership (such as that offered by Capella University) would take course work in instructional strategies, administration, law, and finance.
What jobs do special education programs prepare you for?
The minimum qualification for a special education teaching job is a bachelor’s degree in special education, but a masters is preferred. In order to teach in a college of a university, you need to have a masters degree or more preferably a PhD.
As well as teaching in the government education sector, graduates of a doctorate special education also find employment in: training; teaching in the private sector; community services; and, in administration. Online education programs also provide a base for further training in counseling and careers work. Graduates also find work in development jobs and other non-profit organizations.
List of schools and programs
Earn your graduate degree online with Northcentral University. We offer online programs focused on doctoral and master’s degrees in the schools of business and technology management, education, psychology and marriage and family sciences.
- Special Education - PhD in Education
- Special Education - Doctor of Education
- Special Education - EdS
- And more...
Walden degree and certificate programs are designed for working professionals. Submit the form on the right to learn how you can make a change and advance your career.
- Doctor of Education - Special Education
- Ph.D. in Education - Mixed-Model - Special Education
- Ed.S, in Assessment Evaluation and Accountability - General Program
- And more...
An accredited online university, Capella University offers bachelor’s, master’s/MBA, doctoral, and certificate programs designed to take you to the forefront of your profession. Our competency-based curriculum delivers foundational knowledge and real-world skills, so what you’re learning is immediately applicable to your career. We serve more than 36,000 students from the U.S. and around the world and offer more than 140 graduate and undergraduate specializations and 20 certificate programs.
- PhD - Special Education Leadership
- EdS - Personalized and Competency Based Instruction
- EdS - Teacher Leader in Digital Transformation
- And more...
As the largest private university in North America, University of Phoenix has locations nationwide, and is available online in most countries around the world. Whether you're seeking a college degree at an associate's, bachelor's, master's, or doctoral level, we can help you reach your academic goal and sooner than you might think.
- Doctor of Education/Curriculum and Instruction
- Doctor of Education in Ed. Leadership/Educational Technology
Welcome to Argosy University
Argosy University offers doctoral, master's, and bachelor's degree programs to students through its eight colleges: College of Behavioral Sciences, Graduate School of Business and Management, College of Education, College of Health Sciences, College of Arts and Sciences, College of Creative Arts and Design, College of Clinical Psychology and Western State College of Law at Argosy University as well as certificate programs in many areas.
- Curriculum & Instruction (EdD) (Online)
CTU can help you connect to what matters most: a powerful professional network, faculty who are real-world professionals and innovative technology. And now several CTU degree programs are ranked by U.S. News Best Online Programs for 2015. Are you in?
- Doctor of Management Higher Education Teaching and Learning