Skip to main content

4+1 Accelerated Master’s Degree Program

Make the most of your senior year and earn a master’s degree from the Department of Early and Special on an accelerated pace! The accelerated master’s degree program provides the opportunity for qualified undergraduate students to take up to 9 (nine) credits of graduate courses as seniors and have these courses simultaneously count for both their bachelor’s degree and their master’s degree here at Boise State University.  In just five years, you can earn both a bachelor’s degree and one of the following master’s degrees: (a) Master of Education (M.Ed.) in Early and Special education, or (b) Master in Teaching (M.I.T.) in Special Education (P-8, P-12, or K-12 options available).

To be eligible for admission, students must be Boise State undergraduates and must meet the following criteria by the end of the semester in which they apply:

  • Completion of at least 75 credits required for the undergraduate degree by the end of the application semester. The following courses are recommended prior to application but are not required: (a) ED-ESP 250 Exceptionality in the Schools or ED-ESP 350 Teaching Students with Exceptional Needs at the Secondary Level, and (b) ED-ESP 223 Child Growth and Development or ED-CIFS 203 Educational Psychology or PSYC 309 Child Development.
  • A minimum overall GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.
  • A minimum GPA of 3.30 on a 4.0 scale in undergraduate education courses (if taken).

A student’s career goals and the fit between those goals and an Early and Special Education MIT or MEd degree will be carefully considered, particularly with students who are majoring in disciplines outside of education and related fields. Thus, all students applying for the accelerated version of the MEd in Early and Special Education or the MIT in Special Education must schedule an appointment with the Early and Special Education graduate program coordinator or the department chair for a brief interview to discuss their career goals. In addition, students must meet with their undergraduate advisor to ensure that enrolling in an Early and Special Education accelerated master’s degree program will not delay completion of their undergraduate education and earning of their bachelor’s degree.


  • Meeting the above requirements does not guarantee acceptance into the accelerated masters’ degree program at Boise State University.
  • Undergraduate students at other colleges and universities are not eligible to participate in this program.

Eligible students must submit an application by March 1 for Summer (MIT or MEd) or Fall (MEd) admission:

    • An online application form and application fee.
    • A letter of application addressing the following: (a) a description of your career goals and professional interests and how the accelerated master’s degree program will help you attain them, and (b) an explanation of why you are choosing this particular program and why you will be a successful graduate student.
    • Two letters of recommendation – at least one from a professional who is in a position to speak knowledgeably about the applicant’s ability to work with children with disabilities and their families and at least one from a professional who is familiar with the student’s academic work and promise for successful graduate study.

Meeting the listed eligibility standards does not guarantee acceptance into the accelerated master’s program. Acceptance is based upon an evaluation and recommendation provided by the Department of Early and Special Education to the Dean of the Graduate College who will make the final admission decision.

Students admitted into an accelerated master’s program in the Department of Early and Special Education will register for the courses identified below for their selected program. Students pursuing the accelerated MIT program will begin coursework in the summer prior to their last two semesters of undergraduate study. Students pursuing the accelerated MEd program can begin coursework in the summer or fall of their final year of undergraduate study.

      • Special Education (P-8, P-12, or K-12) Master in Teaching (SPED MIT)
        • Summer: ED-ESP 510 Foundations of Practice
        • Fall: ED-ESP 558 Assessment in Special Education or ED-ESP 554 Positive Behavior Programs
        • Spring: ED-ESP 541 Secondary Transition
      • Early and Special Education Master of Education (ESP MEd)
        • Courses to be determined by student and Early and Special Education program coordinator or advisor.
        • Coursework may begin in the summer prior to the last two semesters of undergraduate study or in the final fall semester.

Registering for any 500-level course requires a Permit for Seniors to Take Graduate Courses form, available via the Registrar’s Office website.

Students will be admitted to the Accelerated Early and Special Education MEd or the Special Education MIT with “conditional” status, pending completion of the undergraduate degree. Once they complete their undergraduate degree requirements and the degree is posted by the Registrar’s Office, admitted students will be classified as Early and Special Education MEd or Special Education MIT graduate students. At this time, they are eligible to apply to the graduate program for a Graduate Assistantship.

Students accepted into the accelerated masters’ degree program are subject to all academic performance requirements published by the Graduate College, including semester GPA, program GPA, and individual course grade requirements. These requirements include maintaining a 3.0 GPA in the graduate level courses taken during the bachelor’s degree. For more information, consult the “Academic Performance” portion of the graduate catalog.

Individuals working in or studying early childhood education may be eligible for grants or scholarships through Idaho STARS. Learn more here:

Scholarship Available!

Contact Information

MIT Programs: Dr. Jeremy W. Ford,
MEd Program: Dr. Gena Nelson,

Back To Top