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Real-World Experience, Flexible Education

Prepare to lead in the field of gifted education in a nationally recognized graduate program designed for working teachers. UNC’s Special Education: Gifted and Talented program offers valuable field experiences, summer campus and online delivery options, with an exceptional standard of education:

  • 98 percent of UNC’s Gifted and Talented program graduates pass the PLACE Endorsement exam on their first attempt.
  • UNC’s Gifted and Talented program is currently the only program of its kind in the western U.S. to receive the status of “Nationally Recognized Program” by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation.

UNC is designated as the primary institution for teacher education in the state of Colorado, and is the top-ranked university in the state for online graduate programs in education.

Degree Details

Credits Required:



On Campus
Online + Greeley Summer Experiences

Cost Estimator

Degree, Endorsement and Certificate Options

Pursue a masters with endorsement, endorsement only or certificate only, focusing on effective and educational programming strategies and options that meet the needs of students identified as gifted, talented and creative, benefitting all learners. Students within the classes represent teachers at all grade levels and within all content areas, as well as gifted education specialists.

M.A. in Special Education: Gifted Education Specialist Endorsement

This option requires 33 credits and includes endorsement.

Take the next step! Explore courses, contact information and admission requirements.

M.A. Program 

Extended Campus Program

Special Education: Gifted Education Endorsement-only Option 

The endorsement-only option requires 24 credits.

Special Education: Gifted Education Graduate Certificate

If you're interested in obtaining a certificate only, you can complete this program with 12 credits.

Related Programs

Gloria Valenciano-Salazar

"When I was ready to obtain a Master's degree to further my education, I knew the Gifted Education master's program at UNC was exactly what I needed. I felt like I was a good teacher, but I lacked the skills and knowledge to support and challenge high ability and gifted students. The Gifted Education master's program at UNC helped me to understand this population of students and prepared me to work with them at a much deeper level. The program allowed me to continue my full-time position as an elementary classroom teacher while taking classes a couple of nights a week. My confidence and knowledge as an educator have increased greatly and helped me transition to my current position as a GT Facilitator. I feel like I can now support and challenge high ability and gifted students, and speak more passionately with parents and educators about best practices for gifted learners. The program was incredibly life-changing for me and for my future in Gifted Education."

–Gloria Valenciano-Salazar

Your Future in Special Education

Gain the skills to help gifted and talented learners at all grade levels to attain their full potential. At UNC, you’ll find a supportive, collaborative learning environment led by accessible instructors with extensive professional and research experience. You’ll also have access to diverse, hands-on learning opportunities, including supervised teaching experiences that will directly prepare you for the classroom.

Consider UNC’s Gifted and Talented program if you want to:

  • Help gifted and talented students develop to their full potential
  • Develop professional skills to take your special education career to the next level
  • Earn your master’s degree, endorsement or certificate in a flexible program designed for working professionals

You’ll learn:

  • Skills and knowledge to effectively interact with diverse students, teachers, administrators and parents
  • Strategies and methodologies for implementing education programs for gifted and talented learners
  • Leadership and communication skills

Sample courses:

  • The Gifted Learner: Nature and Needs
  • Emotional and Social Development of the Gifted and Talented
  • Program Strategies and Services for the Gifted and Talented
  • Creativity in Gifted Education
  • Assessment and Identification in Gifted Education
  • Highest Levels of Learning for the Gifted and Talented

Stuart Omdal


Stuart Omdal, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Special Education

Stuart Omdal, Ph.D., is the Education Director for UNC’s Summer Enrichment Program, and the assistant director of the Center for the Education and Study of Gifted, Talented, Creative Learners.

He serves on the boards of the Colorado Association for Gifted and Talented, the Association for the Education of Gifted Underachieving Students and the National Association for Gifted Children. His interests include the underachievement of high-ability students, the development of appropriate curriculum for high-ability students and the role of creativity in gifted and talented education.

Learn More about Dr. Omdal

Where can your degree take you?

When you earn your master’s degree, endorsement or certificate in UNC’s Gifted and Talented program, you’ll have the experience and leadership skills to take the next step in your teaching career—and the qualifications of a top program to help you stand out in the job market. Our graduates teach gifted and talented learners at all grade levels, in diverse educational settings including public schools, private schools and private education companies.

Ready for what's next? Here's what you need to know.

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Still not completely sold? We understand. Here's more information on costs and funding and how to apply.

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