Masters of Applied Science in Assessment

K-12 Cross-Categorical Special Education Option

The 100% online K-12 Cross-Categorical Special Education option is designed to help a wide range of educators and professionals:

  • Current and future educators who want to effectively support learners who experience mild/moderate disability in diverse, inclusive, K-12 classrooms
  • Speech/language pathologists, occupational therapists, physical therapists, and other related service providers who want to better serve learners who experience mild/moderate disability
  • Parents/Family advocates who want to learn ways to more effectively support learners who experience mild/moderate disability
  • School administrators who are interested in improving special education services in their school or district
  • Current or future educational policy makers who want to enhance their understanding of the unique needs of learners who experience mild/moderate disabilities and the most up-to-date research in the field of special education

Successful completion of this master’s degree, in conjunction with all specified prerequisites, will prepare graduates to successfully complete the Missouri Content Assessment (MoCA) and qualify for the K-12 Mild/Moderate, Cross-Categorical special education licensure from the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.

You are not required to hold a current teaching license in order to be admitted to the Cross-Cat-Sped master’s program. However, completion of this graduate program will not provide you with the qualifications necessary to receive an initial teaching license. IF you hold a license in any area of education (early childhood, elementary OR secondary education) when you begin this graduate program, successful completion will qualify you for State of Missouri certification in K-12 cross-categorical special education.

How will the M.A.S. in Assessment, K-12 Cross-Categorical Special Education option prepare me for a career?

The need for educators who teach learners with mild/moderate disabilities becomes more critical every year. Severe shortages of qualified special education teachers continue to persist—locally, regionally, statewide and nationally. In addition to learning how to advocate for effective and responsive education for learners who experience mild/moderate disabilities, graduate students should gain the following from coursework in the K-12 Cross-Categorical Special Education program:
  • A deep understanding of fundamental issues associated with teaching learners who experience a broad range of mild/moderate disabilities
  • Specific skills associated with assessment and eligibility determination for learners who experience mild/moderate disabilities
  • Knowledge of differentiated instructional methods needed to successfully teach learners who experience mild/moderate disabilities
  • Effective implementation of behavioral interventions with learners who experience mild/moderate disabilities
  • Selection and effective implementation of assistive technologies
  • Design and implementation of effective augmentative communication strategies, in natural environments
  • Focused methods to prepare learners and their families for transition from secondary education to a successful career
  • A variety of strategies for effectively collaborating with families and members of inter-professional collaborative teams in education
  • Enhanced general knowledge of diverse, inclusive classroom settings
  • Training in analytical and critical thinking methods
  • Capstone experience (thesis or internship), which requires the application of content information gained from participation in the M.A.S. in Assessment program

What are the unique benefits of the K-12 C-C SPED program option at Missouri Western State University?

  • All courses are available online
  • Program is designed to foster a meaningful online community through the incorporation of synchronous video sessions in each course
  • Nearly all courses are taught by full-time Department of Education faculty
  • Foundation in current research in the field of K-12 cross-categorical special education
  • Professional core sequence, which focuses on designing, conducting, and analyzing research in education
  • Culminating capstone experience typically involves a collaboration with a partner agency in the graduate student’s home community
  • Program supports Missouri Western State University’s primary mission of applied learning