Loyola University Chicago

School of Education

MEd in Special Education (for Licensed Teachers)

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The MEd in Special Education is designed specifically for candidates who are full-time teachers and desire to expand their working knowledge base for students with exceptionalities. This program trains teachers to meet the multiple and unique needs of students with learning, behavioral/emotional, mental, and/or physical disabilities at the elementary-, middle-, and high-school levels. Teachers trained through a non-categorical model are better prepared to work with students' complex and multiple needs. The curriculum is designed to provide a special emphasis on integrating research and practice.

The program curriculum covers the knowledge and skills of the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) Content Standards for Special Educators-Learning Behavior Specialist I (LSBI). Instructional formats include both in-person and blended online formats. Classes meet at a convenient time to allow travel from schools. The program is accredited by CAEP and ISBE.

Program benefits

  • Earn your degree while working full time, through convenient class-times and blended online formats.
  • Graduate with eligibility for Learning Behavior Specialist I endorsement.
  • Study at a respected program accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) and by the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE).
  • Gain experience working with diverse student populations through field-based courses.

Program outcomes

  • Support students with a variety of academic, social, and behavioral needs. 
  • Provide great teaching for all students. 
  • Support students who are risk at risk of failure. 
  • Readily fine employment in a field that is in high demand.


This program is following a cohort model. A cohort is often a group of ten students who attend together all of the required courses leading to a degree. In this model, students benefit from networking and building professional relationships with one another during the course of their program. Once a cohort is formed, the students remain together for the duration of their degree program.

All courses in the program are taught by highly qualified professors. Students enrolled in the program receive the multiple benefits of participating in a cohort program at Loyola, including but not limited to attending classes together, cultivating a deeper understanding of topics through discussions with their unique educational and professional experiences, and developing a trusted network of professionals in the classroom who can serve as resources and support once in the field. It is our hope that these students will form lasting professional bonds that will be utilized throughout their careers.

Explore the program

The Teaching and Learning Program Distinguished Alumnus/a Award is given for outstanding contributions to the profession and the school. It is presented annually at the Loyola School of Education’s Fall Alumni Reception.

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