The online student experience at KU

Balancing work and school can be demanding, but the online student experience at the University of Kansas helps students better manage this challenge. One of the greatest benefits of enrolling in an online graduate program is the flexibility it provides—you can complete your coursework on your own time, no matter where you are. The University of Kansas School of Education and Human Sciences offers this convenience without sacrificing the quality of your education. In our online graduate education programs, students will experience studying under the same award-winning faculty members and complete the same rigorous curriculum as in one of our on-ground programs, but you'll also enjoy a highly personalized classroom experience within a flexible program designed for working professionals.

To accomplish this, the University of Kansas School of Education and Human Sciences offers students like you a robust set of interactive tools that help keep you connected. Our online learning management system (LMS) and its interactive features are exceptionally effective and informed by the expertise that has led KU to be ranked one of the nation's top schools of education.1 You may not be face-to-face with your classmates or your instructors, but you'll still have plenty of opportunities to share your experiences, engage in discussions and dig deep into what you learn.

"The video discussions are one of the best things about the program. You're going to want to participate in those because you talk with your peers around the world and you get feedback right at that moment. I've learned so much from engaging with my peers and building connections."
– Sydney C. '20, M.S.E. Special Education: High Incidence Disabilities, Graduate Certificate: Autism Spectrum Disorders

In addition to the course software shared by all our online students, we have commissioned custom technology to better enhance the overall online student experience. These tools virtually simulate a real school district and a diverse array of real students with different learning needs and allow you to digitally track your program progress through a novel interactive interface, all so that our online students can truly put what they've learned into practice. No matter which online graduate program you choose, KU's virtual learning resources will help you get the most out of your studies.

Video Transcript

Erica Hankins:
The special education program at KU is the number one special education program in the nation, and that's where I wanted to be. I knew the best educators and the best instructors are right here, and I can get all of that online.

Jennifer Cady:
Learning from those who are actually writing and publishing the books and conducting the research is extremely powerful. It doesn't get any closer to the research that actually drives all the practice that we do out in the field.

Brittany Luzberg:
So my undergrad is in speech pathology, and through that, I've been working in special ed for four years, and I wanted to be able to help children more on academics and not just on articulation and language. Having a general understanding of more of what special education does for children, not only in the school setting but what it can accomplish for students outside of school, is very important. And having just a general skill set of being able to help those that do have intellectual disabilities or other disabilities, in general, really does make a better understanding of their community and how to help them in the outside world.

Jennifer Cady:
The practicum that we did with our field experience, absolutely my favorite. Dr. Elford was very helpful, always there for me, and just very encouraging. It was very easy to make those connections with the colleagues, with discussions every week and then just assignments where we had to do group work. Again, you just naturally connect to people, so I thought that was just a neat piece as well. The online was the best way to go for me because it was convenient. I was able to invest my time during my full-time job but then also work as late as I could into the hours, learning additional things that would help my students.

Erica Hankins:
Another great part of the online program is I can do it at my own pace in my own home, understand what I need to do throughout the entire week, and work on it at my pace throughout the entire week, around my work schedule, around my coaching schedule and get everything done on time.

Emily Yancey:
So when I'm done, I have my master's in education and special education. Will help me to move over on the pay scale but also helps me to then become a master teacher for future teachers who are coming in to do student teaching. I can be a mentor to teachers and future teachers as well, so it gives me more opportunities to be a leader within my building in my district.

Brittany Luzberg:
Opened up a lot more opportunities to work in a facility program and not just a public school setting, which has been amazing.

Jennifer Cady:
I think, with a KU degree, you're a lot more marketable. Those that are hiring, seeing KU on there, knowing that it's such a top program, especially in the field of special education. I just think it puts us in the forefront for being hired over other candidates.

Erica Hankins:
Rock Chalk, Jayhawk, KU.

The Online Experience: Student Perspectives

Firsthand student testimonials provide important feedback about KU’s online educational experience. Learn how three key elements of our online programming (faculty expertise, applicable skills, and greater career potential) work in tandem to create a fulfilling educational experience for KU School of Education students and alumni—from one of our graduates.

Canvas Student: Our Online Classroom's Mobile App

All students in our online graduate programs use Canvas Student, which is available for all mobile devices. Canvas Student provides access to course videos and readings, and it allows students to experience interactive course materials any time of day, no matter where they are. But it's also far more than a database of coursework. Through Canvas Student, online students can:

  • Participate in class discussions
  • Collaborate with classmates around the country
  • Communicate with instructors
  • Complete and turn in assignments

iOS users can download the Canvas Student mobile app on the Apple App Store.
Android users can download the Canvas Student mobile app on the Google Play Store.

“Flash Mentoring” Online

As a member of our student and alumni community, you’ll be able to join our network and learn from others’ advice, experience and connections—and share your own, too.

Our online networking forum is open to education alumni and students. By setting up quick 30-minute calls, you can manage and make connections that can help provide insight into your future career. Decide whether you want to make a KU connection in your city, schedule an informational interview in a new field or learn more about what organizations are looking for.

KU’s networking website also features discussion threads where you can post a question of your own or search for an existing thread. Filter discussions by location, industry, major and more. Ask something specific that interests you or more general questions about interviewing and navigating career fairs.

Licensure Resources

Review necessary information for pursuing licensure in your state.

Financial Aid Options

Learn more about your options for financing your graduate education.

Admissions Requirements

Review the necessary admissions requirements for our online graduate education programs.


Application Deadline
August 12
Fall 2024 Term
Next Start
August 26
Fall 2024 Term