Autism Spectrum Disorder and Severe Intellectual Disabilities (ASD), M.A.

  • Application Deadline
  • N/A
  • Tuition Fee
    432 USD/credit
    Tuition fee
    348 USD/credit
    Tuition fee
  • English (take IELTS)
University rank #201 (ARWU) , FL,
The purpose of this online Masters program is to prepare teachers to be highly qualified and provide access to the general curriculum in least restrictive school environments to students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and Intellectual Disabilities (InD).


The purpose of this online Masters program is to prepare teachers to be highly qualified and provide access to the general curriculum in least restrictive school environments to students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and Intellectual Disabilities (InD).

Major Research Areas The program benefit to the university, local community and the state can be summarized in two ways. In a quantitative way, the program meets the need of preparing effective teachers to work with the growing number of students in general and special education who are identified as having ASD labels. This is demonstrated through the critical shortage of data at a national and state level and also in the surveys of local school districts to USF. In a qualitative way, the program meets the need to prepare effective teachers to work with this group of students that represents a paradigmatic shift in where and how these students learn. Students with ASD and InD labels need meaningful access to general education curriculum and their typically developing peers and this program meets this need.


The Master of Arts in ASD and InD meets the accreditation standards required by the College of Education, University of South Florida. The proposed curriculum in the program is aligned with the conceptual framework of the College of Education and will meet the specific standards of the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS).

Programme Structure

The Master's Portfolio System is a means through which each master's level student demonstrates his/her competency in the "best practices" of special education. Commensurate with the belief that the merging of research and practice is desirable and beneficial, the Department of Teaching and Learning has identified eight areas in which students are required to demonstrate their competency:

  • professional and person self-awareness

  • assessment of exceptional students

  • behavior management

  • classroom instruction

  • collaboration

  • knowledge of the professional literature

  • research in critical areas such as child development, learning and teaching

  • professional development

The department has also developed a list of suggested artifacts through which students can document their competency in each area.

Students should meet with their advisor to discuss and plan their individualized portfolio. A copy of the Master's Portfolio system complete with policies and procedures, as well as suggested artifacts, is available with the Program Coordinator.

Detailed Programme Facts

  • Programme intensity Full-time
  • Credits
    36 alternative credits
  • Languages
    • English
  • Delivery mode
    On Campus
Check if you match the admission requirements

English Language Requirements

You only need to take one of these language tests:

  • Minimum required score:


    The IELTS – or the International English Language Test System – tests your English-language abilities (writing, listening, speaking, and reading) on a scale of 1.00–9.00. The minimum IELTS score requirement refers to which Overall Band Score you received, which is your combined average score. Read more about IELTS.

    Take IELTS test
  • Minimum required score:


    The TOEFL – or Test OF English as a Foreign Language – offers a paper-based test (PBT). The final, overall PBT score ranges between 310 and 677, and is based on an average taken from the three test components (listening, structure, and reading). The writing part of this test is scored separately on a scale of 0-6. Read more about TOEFL (PBT).

  • Minimum required score:


    The TOEFL – or Test Of English as a Foreign Language – offers an internet-based test (iBT). The final, overall iBT score ranges between 0 and 120, and includes a scaled average from the four components (reading, listening, speaking, and writing). Read more about TOEFL (iBT).

Academic Requirements

You need the following GPA score:

Required score: 3

Applicants for graduate programs must have the equivalent of a bachelor’s degree with a minimum GPA equivalent to 3 on a US 4.0 grading scale. Admitted applicants typically have an undergraduate GPA of or better on a 4.0 scale. No exam grade should be lower than 4.5 (European grade scale) or D (American grade scale).

Your GPA (Grade Point Average) is calculated using the grades that you received in each course, and is determined by the points assigned to each grade (e.g. for the US grading scale from A-F).

For consideration for admission, students must submit:

  • An earned baccalaureate degree in special education or a related field that has a relationship with autism and/or intellectual disabilities from a regionally accredited college or university

  • Scholastic evidence to successfully perform in the academic program, as indicated by one of the following:

    • An earned graduate degree from a regionally accredited college or university, or

    • An undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher in all work attempted while registered as an upper division student working for a baccalaureate degree, or

    • A preferred GRE Verbal score of 520 or higher and quantitative score of 480 or higher, and an Analytical Writing score of 3.5 or higher, or

    • Completion of 9 hours of specified graduate course work in special education with a GPA of 3.0 or higher, and the endorsement of a Special Education faculty member

  • A letter of application that addresses why the candidate desires to pursue a master's degree in ASD and InD

  • At least two (2) letters of recommendation from persons who have seen the candidate teach and/or work with children and youth who have labels of ASD and/or InD

Tuition Fee

  • International Applies to you

    432 USD/credit
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 432 USD per credit and a duration of  .
  • National Applies to you

    348 USD/credit
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 348 USD per credit and a duration of  .

Living costs for Tampa

1,065 - 1,800 USD/month
Living Costs

The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.


USF offers several forms of public and private financial aid including scholarships, fellowships, grants, work-study programs and loans. Learn about the types of aid available to pursue your educational dreams.

StudyPortals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.