Childhood Special Education: Severe/Multiple Disabilities for NYS Certified Teachers


Program Overview

This graduate program will prepare you to work with learners with significant, severe/multiple disabilities in both self-contained special education classrooms and inclusive general education environments through the principles of Universal Design for Learning. You will learn to use strategies to teach communication skills to learners with cerebral palsy (CP), traumatic brain injury (TBI), deafblindness, autism spectrum disorders (ASD), and intellectual disabilities using augmentative and alternative communication devices (AAC), tangible symbols, and other assistive technology (AT). Graduates from this program go on to work as specialized teachers of learners with severe disabilities, including deafblindness, in NYC’s District 75, as inclusion support providers (SETTS or SEIT), and as collaborative team teachers with general education teachers in both public and private schools, private early intervention agencies, hospitals, and clinics.




Students with Disabilities, Grades 1-6 with an extension annotation in Severe and Multiple Disabilities

Eligibility and Admission Requirements

This program is designed for applicants who hold NYS certification in Childhood Education or PreK-6

  • A bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution with a GPA of at least 3.0 or a master’s degree from an accredited institution with a GPA of at least 3.5
  • NYS initial or professional certification in Childhood Education Grades 1-6 or PreK-grade 6. Those holding permanent certification must either show proof that they have satisfied the New York State requirements regarding wellness, child abuse, drug abuse, fire safety, and violence prevention or take HED 71500, a one-credit course covering these topics.
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • A statement of purpose
  • An official Graduate Record Examination (GRE) score report (Waived for Spring 2024 and Fall 2024 applicants)

To Apply

Applications are accepted each Fall and Spring semester.

To start your application, visit the Hunter College Online Application.

When applying to this program, under Program of Study, select School of Education – Special Education, and Severe and Multiple Disabilities with prior NYS Teacher Cert.

Application Deadlines

Fall Start

  • March 15 (Priority Deadline)
  • May 15 (Extended Deadline)

Spring Start

  • October 15 (Priority Deadline)
  • November 1 (Extended Deadline)

Visit How to Apply for information about deadline extensions.

Related Programs

If you have a Master’s Degree and New York State Teacher Certification in Special Education, you may be eligible for the Specialized Additional Teaching Certificate program in Severe and Multiple Disabilities.

Contact an Admissions Advisor

Program Leader

Virginia Gryta

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