‘Off-Campus’ Master of Education (M.Ed.) Specialty Program in
Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD)
and related Developmental Delays and Disabilities 

Offered at: 

Montgomery County: The Universities at Shady Grove, Rockville Maryland 

(During COVID-19, courses remain online until furthur notice)

The Special Education Program in the Department of Counseling, Higher Education, and Special Education, College of Education is excited to announce its ‘Off-Campus’ Master of Education (M.Ed.) Specialty Program in Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and related Developmental Delays and Disabilities. 

This 30-credit hour M.Ed. is designed for professionals interested in increasing their skills and expanding their knowledge to better serve the increasing number of students with ASD and those students with related Developmental Delays and Disabilities.  The program offers graduates:

  1. Knowledge and skills in the core & associated characteristics of individuals with ASD and realted developmental disabilities;   
  2. Opportunities to use evidence-based methods and practices to increase academic, behavior, and self-determination in students with ASD and students with related developmental delays and disabilities;
  3. Knowledge about Social-Communication Challenges and Use of Strategies for students with ASD or others requiring alternative & augmentative communication (AAC) systems for persons with complex communication needs;
  4. Skills to increase behavior and classroom management to support students with ASD and related developmental delays and disabilities;
  5. Integration of low- through high-technology supports across all areas of development; and 
  6. Experienced faculty committed to your success.

This M.Ed. Specialty Program (30 credit hours) is taken part-time with early evening courses taken over three (3) years to accommodate full-time working professionals and those with families. The course sequence contains Face-2-Face courses, a few in a blended format, and a few delivered all on-line. The program is designed for professionals with the following backgrounds:

  • Certified Special Educators who graduated from UMD system programs
  • Certified Special Educators who graduated from other programs
  • Certified early childhood, elementary, or secondary general educators from UMD system programs*
  • Certified early childhood, elementary, or secondary general educators from other programs*
  • Allied professions such as occupational therapy, physical therapy, psychology, speech-language pathology, or social work.

Applications should be submitted no later than January 12, 2022.  We expect this to be a competitive process and there will be limited number of graduates admitted.  Decisions will be made on a rolling basis.

*Please note: In the State of Maryland, teachers with initial certification in a general education area can take the Special Education PRAXIS II test 0354/5354 ( to obtain special education certification through the Maryland State Department of Education, Division of Certification and Accreditation.  For more information, visit the MSDE website. 

Schedule -10 courses taken across 3 consecutive years


YEAR 1                                                  YEAR 2                                                  YEAR 3

Summer- One course                 Summer-Two courses                     Summer-Two courses

Fall- One course                           Fall- One course                                 Fall- One course

Spring- One course                     Spring-One course

  1. 3.0 GPA from Bachelor’s degree 
  2. Official transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate institutions attended.  Note: for admission purposes an unofficial transcript can be uploaded.  If accepted into the program an official will be required by the Graduate School by the end of the first semester of enrollment 
  3. Statement of Goals/Purpose, Interests, and Experiences (IMPORTANT - Include the following statement at the top of your Statement of Goals/Interests, and Experiences):
     "I am applying for the M.Ed.- ASD Off-Campus Montgomery County-USG"
  4. Three (3)  Letters of Recommendation
  5. Resume/Curriculum Vitae (IMPORTANT - Include one of the following statements at the top of your Resume):
    -  "I am applying for the M.Ed.- ASD Off-Campus Montgomery County-USG"

Application Information and Instructions


  1. To apply online go to:
  2. First, you must click on the tab to “Create Account.”  The website will guide you through that process, after which you can begin your online application. The deadline to apply is January 12, 2022.
  3. Complete the Demographics and Contact Information Sections
  4. Application Fee $75.00 (non-refundable)
    1. Educational Intent Section:
           Application Type: Degree
           Level of Study: Masters
           Intended Program of Study: Special Education (M.Ed.)
           Term of Entrance: fall, 2021
           College/School: College of Education (Prepopulated)
           Area of Interest 1:  Special Education Autism (off-Campus)(MCASD)   
  5. Upload your statement of Goals/Purpose, Interests, & Experience 
  6. Previous Education: Enter Institutions you have attended (with 9 credits or more) with degree conferred posted. If previous institution(s) are international, see instructions below.
    Note:  Copy of official transcript(s): Bachelor’s and Master’s and any institution with 9 credits or more must uploaded into your application.  If accepted into the program, official transcript(s) will be required by the graduate school by the end of the first semester of enrollment.)  Official transcripts should be sent to:
          University of Maryland College Park
          Enrollment Services Operation
          Room 0130 Mitchell Building
          College Park, MD 20742
  7. Complete the Personal Information section
  8. Upload requirements - Submit a copy of your Resume.
  9. Recommendations:  Enter three (3) recommender name and email address (note: email address is required).

*Please make sure you upload all of the required documentation.

Information for International Applicants:
All applicants who have earned their Baccalaureate (4 year degree) from an international institution must ALSO meet ISSS admission requirements. It is recommended that applicants plan for additional time needed for IES processing. Visit the Graduate School International Admissions page and the International Student & Scholar Services page.

Required Materials for International Applicants:
• An official copy of original degree-conferred transcripts in original language with a literal English translation and a copy of the final diploma.
• All English translations completed by an ISSS approved service (for transcript and diploma/certificate) are required.
• TOEFL or IELTS or Pearson’s (PTE) is required for applicant with international credentials, whose native language is not English,  and who does not hold a degree from an institution in the US. United Kingdom, Anglophone Africa, Anglophone Canada, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, and the Commonwealth Caribbean.
• Applicants on a Visa must submit a copy of Visa documentation

The International Student & Scholar Services (ISSS) at the University of Maryland assists international students in the process of applying to the university, and once admitted.  ISSS may contact applicants by email, so please ensure email addresses listed on application is accurate.  

If you have any questions regarding the online application process, please contact Judy Foster at  For all program related questions, please contact Dr. Agnesanne Danehey, Program Director,

Please contact the Office of Student Services,, or (301) 405-2364

Visit the College of Education Scholarship opportunities webpage. 

Visit the Graduate School Fellowship and Graduate Assistantship web page for additional funding opportunities 

For information about other student financial aid, review the Office of the Student Financial Aid website


EDSP 604              Education of Students with Autism

EDSP 678              Social-Communication Challenges and Strategies for Individual with ASDs

EDSP 670              Single Subject Research in Special Education [Single Case Design Research]

EDSP 602              Instruction of Students w/Severe Disabilities I

EDSP 614              Instruction of Students w/Severe Disabilities II

EDSP 600              Issues, Trends, and EVP in Educating Individuals with Disabilities-ASD

Dr. Agnesanne J. Danehey- Co-Program Director,

Carol Scott- Graduate Coordinator CHSE,

Judy Foster-Program Coordinator in Student Services-Application Questions ONLY,

 Application Deadline: January 12, 2022

*For International Applicants please contact Judy Foster, Program Coordinator in Student Services,  for specific deadlines related to international deadlines. 


Visit the Department of Counseling, High Education and Special Education program handbooks and forms page.

The Graduate Student Life Handbook provides information on academics, campus resources, finances, health, job opportunities, and information on how to get involved as a graduate student. 


Graduate students in the College of Education are responsible for meeting University and the Graduate School policy, and for meeting Program requirements.   The Graduate Catalog  is the official listing of Policies governing graduate education at the University of Maryland.  The schedule adjustment policy is available from the Office of the Registrar and provides information on adding and dropping courses, penalties, and refund schedules.


Graduate students are required to submit various forms at specific points in the program and as part of the degree clearance process.  Please refer to Steps Toward Graduation to determine the steps and forms that are required.    The forms for use by graduate students are available here.