Many students who want to pursue a master’s in education wonder whether they should consider a SPECIAL EDUCATION MBA instead. There are a few benefits to choosing each type of degree, so it matters what type of work you want to choose in the future. Here are some of the key differences between a master’s in education and a master’s in special education.
Master’s in Education
The master’s in education is the typical road for most education students. A master’s in education builds a high level knowledge of educational techniques and policies. Many students come into these programs with a bachelor’s in education, but some students enter the field from other undergraduate disciplines such as psychology. A master’s degree in education prepares students to be highly skilled educators or designers of instructional materials. Often, a master’s degree qualifies its holder for higher pay in the same roles as their coworkers with a bachelor’s degree.
Master’s in Special Education
Master’s in special education programs cover many of the same topics as a master’s in education program. However, the master’s in special education delves more deeply into how to apply the educational theories to students with mental or physical disabilities.
Most students who choose this program have already known that they want to study special education for a while. Thus, students typically come into the field with a related undergraduate degree such as psychology. Programs look favorably on candidates who already have experience working with disabled students. Since this program is more specialized and not for everyone, students will generally be expected to come in with existing knowledge and experience to motivate their application to the program. Visit this link to learn more about master’s programs in special education.
Which Should I Choose?
Most students choose to do their master’s in education, with a much smaller number choosing a master’s in special education. Since the applicable field for a master’s in special education is much smaller, students in these programs must be sure that they want to work with special education in the future. Thus, this program produces a highly motivated and well trained group of educators.
There are ways for individuals with one type of degree to cross into the work of the other. Those who hold a master’s in education can work in special education classrooms provided that they seek out a license or credential in their state. This might require extra coursework and supervised hours in a special education classroom. Individuals who hold a master’s in special education can teach in K-12 programs, also providing that they receive a credential to do so. The requirements for credentials vary by state, so interested candidates should search their state’s Department of Education website or speak with a credential granting institution.
There is no set answer to the question of which master’s degree program to choose. Both degrees prepare students to become successful educators. The difference is the focus. Master’s in special education candidates are specifically trained to apply their knowledge to special education classrooms, and they gain more techniques and experience for working with this population. The master’s in education is a more general program that prepares teachers for working with a variety of population and age groups, and it touches somewhat on disabled students as well. Students must choose which of these trajectories sounds best to them and whether a SPECIAL EDUCATION MBA is an appealing option.
For more information, please see “Top 10 Online Master’s in Education Degrees“.