College of Education and Human Development

Department of Educational Psychology

Special education emotional and behavioral disorders MEd and licensure

Discover University of Minnesota's MEd and licensure programs in special education for emotional and behavioral disorders (EBD). Earn advanced skills and training.

2.5 Average years to completion
100% online classes (with in-person field experiences)
July 15 Deadline to apply
Sept. 3 Next cohort date

Start your journey

    Become licensed to teach students with emotional and behavior disabilities

    This program prepares you for an initial or additional teaching license in emotional and behavior disorders (EBD). Being an EBD teacher is one of the most challenging areas of special education to work in, but it also can be one of the most rewarding. During the program, candidates will build and develop the skills to support the growth and development of students ranging from kindergarten to 12th grade. Coursework in the University of Minnesota's EBD licensure program will prepare teacher candidates to:

    • Build meaningful relationships with students and families.
    • Understand and support the mental health needs of students.
    • Develop quality and comprehensive individualized education programs (IEPs) for students that support academic, health, and behavior needs.
    • Conduct a variety of behavior assessments as well as data collection methods and procedures to create effective behavior intervention plans for students.
    • Have knowledge of effective research based behavior interventions that help support students to be successful in school settings.

    Admissions requirements

    • Undergraduate GPA of at least 2.8 
    • Graduate school application 
    • Application fee 
    • Transcripts 

    Non-native English Speakers: TOEFL, IELTS, etc. test scores 


    Visit the College of Education and Human Development's Tuition and Financial Aid page for information on tuition.


    Scholarships and awards through school districts for employees

    Ask your employer if they have funding to support your education.

    Special Education Pipeline Grant is a partnership between educator preparation programs and K-12 schools to recruit and prepare employees to become fully licensed Tier 3 or Tier 4 special education teachers.

    Grow Your Own Program is similar to the Pipeline program, but is not limited to special education and often includes a focus on diversifying the teacher workforce.

    Come Teach in Minnesota allows school districts to offer hiring and retention bonuses to eligible individuals when they move to Minnesota and enroll in a teacher preparation program.

    Grants for eligible, enrolled students

    TEACH Grants

    TEACH Grants are part of a federal program to provide financial support to students who will teach in a high need area at a low-income school for at least four years. Application information is available from Onestop on their grants and waivers page.

    Scholarships, fellowships and awards through the University

    Financial aid

    Visit OneStop Student Services for more information on available financial aid.


    Graduates of the EBD licensure program will have no shortage of job options as this is one of the most in demand areas in all of education. Graduates will typically be able to easily find a job in a school or district of their choosing. Some different EBD specific teaching positions would be:

    • Teaching in a Federal Setting III program with a caseload of around 12-14 students who are primarily served under the EBD disability category designation.
    • Teaching in a Federal Setting IV program with a caseload of around 7-9 students who are primarily served under the EBD disability category designation.
    • Working in a transition program with students age 18-22 and helping students develop living and vocational skills.
    • Across almost all EBD specific jobs teachers will get to work with students and families from a wide variety of cultural, linguistic, and socio-economic backgrounds.


    This is a hybrid program, meaning all courses are offered online (with traditional in-person options available if preferred) and all field experiences are in person at a program/school in your community.

    The EBD licensure program with a MEd in special education requires completion of 47 credits. For additional licensure candidates (who already hold a teaching license in another area), fewer credits are required. For completion of a MEd only without licensure, 30 credits are required, with opportunities to select courses suited to your interests.

    Sample Course Schedule
    *Note: This plan is an example only. You’ll work with your advisor to develop a course schedule specific to your needs

      • CI 5645 – Methods for Teaching English Learners (3 credits)
      • MTHE 5355 – Mathematics for Diverse Learners (3 credits)
      • EPSY 5605 – Collaborative Practices for the Special Educator (3 credits)
      • EPSY 5613 – Foundations of Special Education (3 credits)
      • EPSY 5614 – Assessment and Due Process in Special Education (3 credits)
      • EPSY 5616 – Classroom Management and Behavior Analytic Problem Solving (3 credits)
      • EPSY 5618 – Specialized Interventions for Students with Mild/Moderate Disabilities in Reading and Written Language (3 credits)
      • EPSY 5631 – Module 1: Introduction to Augmentative and Alternative Communication (1 credit)
      • EPSY 5656 - Seminar: Advanced Issues in EBD (3 credits)
      • EPSY 5657 – Interventions for Behavior Problems in School Settings (3 credits)
      • EPSY 5704 – Field Experience in a Special Education Classroom #1 (1 credit)
      • EPSY 5705 – Field Experience in a Special Education Classroom #2 (1 credit)
      • EPSY 5706 - Field Experience in a Special Education Classroom #3 (1 credit)
      • EPSY 5708 – Student Teaching: Emotional Behavioral Disorders (6 credits)

      Required for initial licensure and MEd

      EPSY 5699: Experimental Teaching Seminar (2 cr)


      Required for additional licensure and MEd or MEd only

      EPSY 5991 – MEd Paper/Project Independent Study (2 credits)

      Common content courses 

      • OLPD 5005 – School and Society ( 2 credits)
      • OLPD 5009 – Human Relations (1 cr)
      • CI 5307 – Technology (2 credits)
      • EPSY 5001 – Learning Cognition and Assessment (3 credits)

      As a student in the EBD program, you have the option to add an online autism spectrum disorder (ASD) certificate to your licensure and/or degree. The specialized training you’ll receive related to assessment and treatment practices for children with ASD will lead to a certificate in ASD. With your EBD license and ASD certificate in hand, you’ll be equipped to facilitate early identification and intervention for children and young adults with ASD. These skills will make you a valuable addition to any EBD program.

      By taking just two additional courses, you could be eligible for dual academic behavior strategist (ABS) licensure and EBD licensure! Let your program advisor know if you’re interested in this opportunity!


      Amy Kunkel

      Assistant teaching professor, special education licensure coordinator, ABS program lead

      Laura Paczkowski

      Academic advisor

      Kathy Seifert

      Teaching associate professor


      Laura Paczkowski

      Academic advisor