Master of Education (Special Educational Needs)

Course summary for local students

Click here for the international course option
Year2015 course information
Award granted Master of Education (Special Educational Needs)
CampusThis course is only offered in Cloud (online) mode
Cloud (online)Yes

This course is 1.5 years full-time or part-time equivalent duration. 

Next available intake

March (Trimester 1), July (Trimester 2)

Indicative annual fee

$16,600* - Full-fee paying place 

(All 2015 Trimester 2 CSP places have been filled as of 1 May)

LevelHigher Degree Coursework (Masters and Doctorates)
Faculty contacts

Arts and Education Student Services and Enrolment Enquiries


Cloud (online) 
Tel 03 5227 1359  

Deakin course code E734


(i) New course commencing 2015.

(ii) This is not an initial teacher education qualification. Students wishing to enter the profession of teaching should instead consider E760 Master of Teaching or E730 Master of Applied Learning and Teaching

Course sub-headings

Course overview

The Master of Education (Special Educational Needs) is designed for qualified teachers interested in a pathway for further learning and employment in the area of special educational needs. This course is conducted via Cloud (online) mode and consists of twelve credit points taken over one and a half years of full-time study or up to three years of part-time study.

As a graduate of this course you will possess advanced knowledge of contemporary education issues and discourses; have high-level critical and evaluative  research skills; and translate your understandings of indidualised, inclusive educational programs into practice. The course takes in to account the implementation of social justice policy and addresses the fundamental philosophy of access and success for people with diverse educational needs. 

The Master of Education (Special Educational Needs) is an externally accredited program that meets the requirements of the Department of Education and Training Victoria and the Victorian Institute of Teaching guidelines for special education. The requirements within the two practicum units EEI700 and EEI716 include 15 days of supervised teaching experience, a supervised case study (15 days or equivalent) and 15 days of professional development activities e.g. seminars related to specialist/inclusive education. 

Please note that EEI700 and EEI716 may be completed in a specialised area such as vision impairment where supervision would be conducted by a member from the visiting teacher service.

Professional recognition

Endorsed by Victorian Institute of Teaching (VIT) for meeting the Specialist Area Guidelines for  Special Education, for already qualified teachers.

International students and permanent residents

Graduates of this course who are intending to apply for registration with the Victorian Institute of Teaching (VIT) will be required to demonstrate an IELTS of an average band score of 7.5 across all four skill areas where there is no score below 7 in any of the four skills areas and a score of no less than 8 in speaking and listening. You are advised to read the VIT's Qualification for Teachers Registration policy carefully which is available at: Further information

Fees and charges

Equivalent Full Time Student Load (EFTSL)
EFTSL is the standard annual full time load. Eight credit points is the standard full time load for one year of study.

Commonwealth supported place (CSP) (All Trimester 2 2015 CSP places have been filled as of 1 May)
A Commonwealth supported place is one for which the university receives some government funding. As such, students enrolled in these places are required to contribute only part of the cost of their course. To be eligible for a Commonwealth supported place you must be an Australian citizen, or a New Zealand citizen or holder of a permanent visa who will be residing in Australia for the duration of your unit/s of study.

Fee paying place - Domestic (DFP)
A fee paying place is one for which the university does not receive any government funding. As such, students enrolled in these places are required to contribute the full cost of their course.
Fee paying places are available to domestic students. Domestic students are those who are Australian citizens, New Zealand citizens or holders of a permanent visa.

* The 'indicative annual course fee' cited has been provided as a guide only. It has been calculated on the basis of a typical enrolment of a student undertaking the course in 2014, and reflects the cost involved in undertaking a full-time quota of units within the specified discipline.
The actual fees charged by Deakin University will depend upon the discipline from which each individual unit is chosen, and may vary from the indicative course fee cited, particularly if units are chosen from a number of disciplines. The cost of each unit offered in 2014 can be viewed from the Unit Search.
Please note that the fees per unit/credit point may increase annually due to rises in the cost of course delivery and service.
Deakin assumes no responsibility for persons relying on 'indicative course fees' to calculate the total future cost of their course.

Career opportunities

The Master of Education (Special Educational Needs) has been designed to enable qualified early childhood, primary or secondary teachers to meet the Department of Education and Training requirements for employment related to special educational needs across a range of educational settings, including special schools, special developmental schools and mainstream settings, in both Australia and overseas.

For more information go to 'My Course My Career'

Course rules

To be awarded a Master of Education (Special Educational Needs), students are required to successfully complete 12 credit points including:

  • 4 credit points of compulsory core units (EEI714, ECP703, EXE732, EEI715) and
  • 2 credit points of practicum units (EEI700 and EEI716) and
  • 6 credit points of study that combine research and elective units in one of following three options:

Option 1

  • 2 credit points of research units (EXR782 and EXR783) and
  • 4 credit points of elective units selected from ESP701, ESM701, ECP711, EEL702, ESP703

Option 2

  • 4 credit points of research units including a 2cp research paper (EXR781, EXR791, EXR796, EXR797) and
  • 2 credit points of elective units selected from ESP701, ESM701, ECP711, EEL702, ESP703

Option 3

  • 6 credit points of research units which include a minor thesis (EXR781, EXR791, EXR798, EXR799)

Course structure

Core units

EEI714Individualised Program Planning

ECP703Child Protection

EXE732Social Justice and Difference

EEI715Effective Classroom Management: Positive Learning Environments

Practicum units

EEI700Practicum Case Study

EEI716Practicum: Special Educational Needs

Elective Units

ESP701Education and Development of Exceptional Learners

ESM701Teaching Mathematics Successfully

ECP711Creativity and the Arts in Childhood

EEL702New and Traditional Literacies and Diverse Student Needs

ESP703Student Welfare and Discipline Issues

Note: it is recommended that students select ESP701 and ESP703 as particularly suitable for teachers of special needs students.

Research units:

EXR782Research Design, Development and Method in Education

EXR783Independent Research Project for Professional Practice

EXR781Education Research Methodology

EXR791Designing and Developing a Research Project

EXR796Research Paper Part A

EXR797Research Paper Part B

EXR798Minor Thesis Part A

EXR799Minor Thesis Part B


For course map click here

Entry requirements - specific

Any Bachelor degree in the field of Education that is a recognised initial teacher qualification for the purposes of registration as a primary or secondary teacher in Australia.

Deakin University offers admission to postgraduate courses through a number of Admission categories. In all categories of admission, selection is based primarily on academic merit as indicated by an applicant's previous academic record.

To be eligible for admission to this program, all applicants must also meet the minimum English language requirements, see here.

Credit for prior learning - general

The University aims to provide students with as much credit as possible for approved prior study or informal learning which exceeds the normal entrance requirements for the course and is within the constraints of the course regulations. Students are required to complete a minimum of one-third of the course at Deakin University, or four credit points, whichever is the greater. In the case of certificates, including graduate certificates, a minimum of two credit points within the course must be completed at Deakin.

You can also refer to the Credit for Prior Learning System which outlines the credit that may be granted towards a Deakin University degree.

How to apply

(All 2015 Trimester 2 CSP places have been filled as of 1 May)

Applications must be made directly to the University through the Applicant Portal.  Details of available courses and application closing dates can be found on the Apply webpage. 

Alternate exits

Graduate Certificate of Education (Special Educational Needs) (E544)

Professional experience requirements - Working With Children Check (WWCC)

Students who intend to undertake practicum in Victorian schools are required to complete a WWCC unless a copy of Victorian teacher registration is provided. Students requiring a WWCC should contact the Professional Experience coordinator email: