Special Education



Develop the skills and competencies you need to educate exceptional children and adolescents through graduate studies in Special Education at Hofstra University. Prepare to teach in one of three development levels of special education: early childhood (birth - grade 2), elementary (grades 1-6), and secondary special education (grades 7-12) or seek out specialties in behavior analysis and more through our many certificate level programs. Gain hands-on experience through fieldwork and student teaching in a variety of school settings, including high-needs school districts. Deepen your education through professional and student organizations, such as the International Association of Special Education and Special Education Graduate Association. Our programs are accredited by the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC) and the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC).

Select from any of the programs below to learn more. If you have questions please contact our graduate admission team at 516-463-4723 or

Program Highlights

Program Details

Visit the Hofstra campus or connect with the graduate admission team. We will answer your questions and put you in touch with program faculty or degree candidates to learn more. Contact us at, or call 516-463-4723.

To be considered for the Special Education programs, you must have a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution. Advanced programs may require a master’s degree/additional experience. Click the links below to learn more.

Start your application online where you can upload the following documents:

  • Transcripts from all previously attended colleges and universities. You may initially submit unofficial copies of your transcripts for your application review, but official transcripts will be required once you are accepted into the program.
  • 2-3 letters of recommendation
  • Personal statement of interests and career intentions.

An interview with a faculty member is required.

If you are a current Hofstra student interested in pursuing undergraduate/graduate dual-degree enrollment, please contact your academic advisor. Direct any additional questions to

International students: Please review additional admission requirements.

Apply to Special Education programs at any time with our rolling admissions policy.

The Special Education programs are between 13 - 49 credits.

Visit the program pages to learn more (see accordions on this page).


Applied Behavior Analysis
Early Childhood Special Education (Birth - Grade 2)
Elementary Special Education (Grades 1-6)
Secondary Special Education (Grades 7-12)
Advanced Certificate Programs
Literacy and Special Education Dual Program
TESOL and Special Education Dual Program


Office of Field Placement
Office of Educational Support Services
Office of Professional Development Services

Faculty Profiles

Elfreda Blue

Dr. Elfreda Blue, Associate Professor and Program Director for International Special Education, holds a Ph.D. from the State University of New York at Buffalo. She taught at the State University of New York at Buffalo, where she served as Associate Dean for Urban Education and Program Development. Dr. Blue taught for 10 years in inclusive and special education urban classrooms throughout New York State.

Meet Dr. Blue

Stephen J. Hernandez

Dr. Stephen Hernandez, Assistant Professor and the Director of Early Childhood Special Education, holds an EdD from Hofstra. He has been a faculty member at Hofstra since 2004 and served as an adjunct professor at other area colleges, teaching courses in special education, disabilities, child development, psychology, and non-profit management. In addition to Dr. Hernandez's work in academia, he has worked for over thirty years serving individuals with special needs.

Meet Dr. Hernandez

Darra A. Pace

Dr. Darra Pace, Professor and Director of Elementary Special Education and M.S.Ed./M.A. in Special Education, earned an EdD at Hofstra in 2000. She also completed a Certificate of Advanced Study at Hofstra. She earned her master's degree from Adelphi University and her bachelor's degree at Boston University.

Meet Dr. Pace
Elfreda Blue
Stephen J. Hernandez
Darra A. Pace

Take the Next Step

How to Apply

Earn the professional recognition and personal achievement you seek with a graduate degree from Hofstra University. Whether you study online or on campus, full or part time, you will benefit from small class settings with nationally recognized faculty and a community of peers all contributing to a transformative learning experience. Questions? Call 516-463-4723 or email our graduate admission team at