Special education teachers are among the most sought after professionals in the education field.

Our 33- to 36-credit-hour MSSE program prepares you to work with K-12 students who have adaptive needs, making you both highly marketable and highly valuable to school districts. You will be eligible to apply for licensure at the end of the program. Licensure paths include K-6, K-6 with 5-8, and K-12.

Earn your MSSE in Overland Park, Topeka, or Wichita, and complete the program in approximately two years.


You can fit graduate studies into your existing schedule by taking classes one night a week. Classes, which are taught on campus, online, and as a hybrid of both, are held year-round and start every seven weeks.


You can apply up to 6 credit hours of approved graduate credit to your degree program. And our graduate programs are approved for federal financial loan programs. Contact Financial Aid for further information.


All faculty are experienced special education teachers, either currently working or recently retired. They care about the future of education and are driven to build effective leaders in the field.


The MSSE curriculum is based on the following standards:

  • Kansas State Department of Education (for K-6, K-6 with 5-8, 6-12, K-6 with 6-12 high-incidence special education licensure)
  • Council for Exceptional Children
  • National Board for Professional Teaching Standards Core Propositions


Our School of Education graduates are routinely honored locally, regionally, and nationally.
  • Milken Educator Awards
  • Kansas Horizon Award for Outstanding First-Year Teachers
  • Kansas and Missouri National Distinguished Principals
  • Exemplary Middle School Principal of the Year
  • Kansas Teacher of the Year
  • National Teacher of the Year Runner-Up


of our MSSE graduates pass the licensure exam on their first attempt.

Our 2015-2016 Award Winners

JOHN ERNST, Ed.D. ’15, MAEd, ’07

Milken Educator Award
Blue Valley Northwest High School | Overland Park, Kansas
“Taking the pulse” of the school each day not only ensures Ernst knows the students at Rolling Ridge, but also earned him a ticket to a black-tie event in Washington, D.C., in October. “My second graduation ceremony at Baker was such an unbelievable experience. The bagpipes were playing. It’s hard to describe how special Baker is to me.”


Outstanding Elementary Music 
Educator of the Year
South Central Kansas District of Kansas Music Educators Association
Soderstrom Elementary School | Lindsborg, Kansas
Nelson prepares her students to perform dance and music for Lindsborg’s two-day biennial Svensk Hyllningsfest, directs students in the winter St. Lucia Festival and leads a church children’s choir in addition to giving private piano lessons.


Outstanding Young Member Award
National Association of Agricultural Educators

Royal Valley High School | Hoyt, Kansas
One of just six teachers in the country to receive the NAAE’s Outstanding Young Member Award, Mitchell is responsible for reviving Royal Valley’s FFA program and was integral in gaining $12,000 in grant funds in just two years.


Kansas National Distinguished 
Principal of the Year
National Association of Elementary 
School Principals
Rolling Ridge Elementary School | Olathe, Kansas
Smithyman, who teaches English, gives up weekends to hold student leadership conferences and to work with students to improve standardized test scores and complete college applications. As a result, their scores consistently beat district, state, and national averages.


Tuition $375/credit hour
One-time registration fee $20
One-time materials fee $40
Technology fee $30/course
Application fee $20
Graduation fee $100

Requirements & Curriculum

Apply Now by Submitting the Following

  • Completed application form
  • $20 application fee
  • Official transcript indicating a bachelor’s degree conferred from a regionally accredited institution of higher education, with a cumulative grade point average of 2.75 or higher on a 4.0 scale
  • Copy of a teaching certificate
  • Verification on a transcript* of completion of a course covering the exceptional child

33 or 36 credit hours of core courses

  • Students with Adaptive Learning Needs
  • Methods and Strategies: K-6 and/or 5-8 or 6-12
  • Strategies and Methods Field Practicum
  • Educating Students with Social and Behavioral Needs
  • Reading and Language Arts Methods
  • Assessments
  • Communication and Collaboration
  • Transitioning to Adulthood
  • Creating Optimal Learning Environments
  • Inquiry, Data Collection and Research
  • Advanced Practicum
  • Negotiation and Conflict Resolution

Program Requirements

  • Coursework: 27 to 30 hours (depending on licensure area)
  • Practicum: 6 hours


Two practicum courses are required as a part of the MSSE program. The first practicum course, SPED 704 Adaptive Instructional Strategies and Methods Field Practicum requires 45 hours of supervised teaching. SPED 716 Advanced Practicum requires 90 supervised hours.


Students who have completed the MSSE program of study may apply to the Kansas State Department of Education (KSDE) for a two-year initial license in K-6, K-6 with 5-8, 6-12, or K-12 adaptive special education. Applicants for the initial license are required to submit passing scores on the Praxis test. A passing score of 155 is required for ETS 5543 Special Education: Core Knowledge and Mild to Moderate Applications.

Register for this test online. Results of the assessment must be sent to Baker University.

  • Successfully complete the 33- to 36-credit-hour program, including two practicum courses, with a 3.25 graduate grade point average.
  • Maintain a minimum graduate grade point average of 3.25 with no more than one course completed with a C grade. (D and F grades are not acceptable.)
  • Complete of all coursework within six years of the date of initial enrollment.
  • Submit an intent to graduate form six months before anticipated degree completion.


School of Education