Disability & Psychoeducational Studies
Carl J. Liaupsin
Department Head, Disability & Psychoeducational Studies

Who we are

Our department is dedicated to advancing human and economic development through the empowerment and effective inclusion of culturally diverse people with disabilities and special abilities of all ages. 

We are committed to research about and teaching of students with disabilities and special abilities. Our research, teaching, and service address current issues in special education, counseling, rehabilitation, school psychology, and deaf studies.

What we do

We accomplish our mission by:

  • Conducting research to further knowledge and understanding of abilities, disabilities, adaptations, interventions, and support systems
  • Preparing professionals to educate and facilitate the development of individuals with disabilities and special abilities
  • Providing leadership at the local, state, national, and international levels

Our programs

We offer nationally recognized undergraduate, master's, educational specialist, and doctoral-level degrees. Our degrees prepare teachers, counselors, specialists, administrators, school psychologists, school counselors, and researchers and educators in special education, rehabilitation, school psychology, gifted education, sign language and deaf studies, and educational interpreting.


U.S. News & World Report ranked our rehabilitation counseling program No. 4 in the nation among public universities! Each year, the publication ranks schools and programs in business, education, engineering, law, nursing, and medicine. The rankings in these six areas are based on expert opinions about program excellence and statistical indicators that measure the quality of a school's faculty, research and students.

Olivia Morris
Student Spotlight

What led you to the University of Arizona to study mild to moderate disabilities in the College of Education?

I have wanted to be a special ed teacher since third grade and was very interested in the University of Arizona’s Mild to Moderate program because of how much practicum experience students get. I came for a campus tour my junior year of high school and met with Dr. Toni Sparks. Hearing her talk about the program immediately made me visualize myself at the U of A and after that, I couldn't see myself going to college anywhere else.

Tell us about something you're involved with and how it's impacted your life.

I am president of Best Buddies inclusion club, a leader for college Young Life, help run a bible study and work part time as a tutor for the athletic department as well as was the philanthropy chair for Delta Gamma. All of the activities I've been involved with on campus and within the College of Education have greatly benefited my ability to time manage, my personable skills, and my ability to work with a team. Overall, they have all positively impacted my teaching ability and will help me impact the lives of others to a greater degree, which is my main goal in life.

What are your post-graduation plans as of now?

I plan on spending one more summer working at a camp for individuals with disabilities and diagnosed differences before I begin teaching. After that, my hope is to teach high school special ed in either a life skills classroom or a transition program. I have a fantastic teaching opportunity in Scottsdale, so there is a high chance I will end up there!