Master of Arts Degree in Special Education Option in Extensive Support Needs


After completing all the course requirements, students are prepared to teach students whose specific needs may require access to functional academics, life skills instruction, and an alternate curriculum in addition to access to the Common Core State Standards. Additional areas of focus include teaching communication skills, self-determination skills, social and behavioral skills, self-care, daily living activities, and job-seeking opportunities.

The Master’s degree program expands on the Credential program to prepare candidates to become leaders bringing innovative educational programs to meet the diverse needs of students with extensive support need and their families. Candidates will work toward leadership positions in public and private schools that provide services to individuals with disabilities.

Do you believe you can lead the future education of students with extensive support needs? Are you eager to learn how to bring meaningful change to the field of education? Apply now!

Admission Requirements

  • A 2.75 grade point average in the last 90 quarter units attempted
  • Admission to CSULA
    • Online application using Cal State Apply
    • If you are already admitted and currently a matriculated student, you don’t need this step.
  • Admission to COE
  • Two (2) letters of recommendation

Purpose of the Program

The purpose of the Master’s Degree in Extensive Support Needs program is to equip teacher-researchers to become competent in

  • Conducting research to contribute to policy-making and evidence-based practices in the current field
  • Providing leadership to promote effective educational outcomes
  • Evaluating educational issues with sound recommendations

Graduates of the Education Specialist Credential in Extensive Support Needs will develop a commitment to optimizing the education outcomes for students with Extensive Support Needs. Candidates of this program will be aware of the important evidence-based teaching strategies for students with disabilities, the various roles and functions of professionals in special education, and the impact of cultural diversity on education. To ensure quality education for students with Extensive Support Needs, they must be able

  • To assess individual educational needs
  • To provide culturally appropriate instruction
  • To build collaboration with the related service providers
  • To promote active parent participation in every faction of education, and (5) to evaluate the effectiveness of current educational practices.

Completed courses transferred into the M.A program up to 9 units.
Full course descriptions are available at   

Program Faculty



     Bryan E. Thornton, Ph.D.

     Office: King Hall C1034
     Phone: (323) 343-4400
     Email: [email protected]



     Christina H, Kimm, Ph.D., BCBA - Program Coordinator

     Office: King Hall C1033
     Phone: (323) 343-4416 / Fax: (323) 343-5605
     E-mail: [email protected]