Why Choose Us?

Prospective Students

The Special Education program prepares candidates from a variety of academic backgrounds to work with students with exceptional needs.

Candidates may pursue graduate work in the following areas:

  • The Education Specialist Credential: Mild/Moderate Disabilities authorizes candidates to teach K-12 students with specific learning disabilities, mild to moderate mental retardation, attention deficit/attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and serious emotional disturbance
  • Education Specialist Credential: Mild/Moderate Disabilities (Preliminary). Mild/Moderate Preliminary Credential in combination with a Master of Arts degree in Special Education with Cross-Cultural Emphasis.
  • Master of Arts degree in Special Education
  • Certificate in Catholic Inclusive Education (Not admitting at this time)
  • Master of Arts in Catholic Inclusive Education (Not admitting at this time)

Application Deadlines

  • Fall Semester: June 15
  • Spring Semester: November 15
  • Summer Term: March 15

For additional Special Education admission information please contact the School of Education Director of Student Recruitment and Outreach at 310.568.6229.

Learning Outcomes

Candidate Outcome 1: Professional Disposition

The candidate evidences a positive attitude toward learning, demonstrates intellectual and academic curiosity, and is a reflective practitioner embracing life-long learning. In addition, the candidate exhibits knowledge of ethical standards, professional practices and legislation related to the provision of services to individuals with special needs and their families.

Candidate Outcome 2: Positive Behavior Support

The candidate demonstrates an understanding and acceptance of diversity in learners through the use of evidence-based practices to establish and maintain an educational environment that is respectful, and proactive through the use of positive behavior support plans and interventions based on functional analysis assessments.

Candidate Outcome 3: Assessment

The candidate demonstrates knowledge of a variety of non-biased evidence based principles of assessment for the purpose of making ongoing program improvements, informing instruction, and evaluating the needs and achievements of general and special education students.

Candidate Outcome 4: Instruction

The candidate applies principles of equity and an understanding of the diverse characteristics of learners by planning engaging and develop-mentally appropriate instruction that employs higher order thinking skills and a variety of strategies including the use of technology in order to meet the needs of general education and special education students.

Traditional Track

Candidates following this path will complete all coursework before beginning their field experiences as student teachers. LMU will facilitate the candidates' placement as student teachers. All prerequisite requirements apply to the candidate choosing the traditional route.

Intern Practitioner

A candidate following this path is employed full-time at a public school in a district that has a partnership with LMU. The candidate takes courses while teaching full-time. This employment status, along with the required seminars and additional supervision in the classroom provided through LMU, fulfills the field requirements of the credential. Candidates seek out their own employment as Interns unless the candidates are in a cohort program where placement is facilitated through the program (e.g.,Teach for America). Interns must be employed to teach at least 60% in the area of the credential, and the contract must state that the teacher is contracted to teach in the area in which the candidate is seeking a credential.

It is necessary that the student complete the program pre-service requirement and hold a University Intern credential in order to be enrolled in the Intern program. University Intern credentials are issued for new placements at the beginning of the fall semester only. Candidates must submit a Verification of Employment form, signed by the School District that holds a partnership agreement with Loyola Marymount University.


The Special Education program allows students from a variety of academic backgrounds to pursue a minor in Special Education or the Education Specialist Credential: Mild/Moderate Disabilities. These programs include preparation in the education of culturally and linguistically diverse students with exceptional needs. The Education Specialist Credential: Mild/Moderate Disabilities authorizes candidates to teach students with specific learning disabilities, mental retardation, emotional disturbance, or other health impairments.

If you would like to visit LMU, you are welcome to schedule a campus tour. All tours are handled by the Graduate Division, or take a virtual tour.