For a version of this program that does not lead to teacher licensure, please click here
This Master of Education in Special Education: Cross-Categorical program is designed for career changers or individuals with a bachelor‛s degree in a field outside of education who are interested in the education of children with special needs in the K-12 setting and also wish to seek initial teaching licensure. Graduates of the master‛s in special education degree program are prepared to work with special needs populations and implement individualized educational plans to accommodate various learning needs.
In this master‛s in special education degree program, you will study topics such as: classroom management for students with special needs, structured English immersion, diagnosis and assessment in special education, characteristics of learning disabilities and strategies to teach individuals with learning disabilities, characteristics of emotional/behavioral disabilities and strategies to teach individuals with learning disabilities, characteristics of intellectual disabilities and strategies to teach individuals with learning disabilities, and educational implications for students with physical and health impairments. The special education degree program concludes with a full-time, 16-week student teaching component that must be completed with a certified special educator.
Teacher candidates must have access to a K-12 special education classroom to complete the program assignments. The classroom setting must have at least three of the five disability categories represented: emotional disability, learning disability, intellectual disability, physical impairment, and/or health impairment.
|Course #||Course Title||Course Description||Credits|
|UNV-501||Introduction to Graduate Studies in the College of Education||This course is designed to prepare students for the graduate learning experience at Grand Canyon University. Students have opportunities to develop and strengthen the skills necessary to succeed as graduate students in the College of Education. Emphasis is placed on utilizing the tools for graduate success. No practicum/field experience required. No Fingerprint Clearance necessary.||2|
|SPE-529N||Special Education Foundation and Framework||This course orients teacher candidates to the field of special education. The National Board for Professional Teaching Standards and Council for Exceptional Children Standards, which guide special education research practices, are also discussed. It includes an introduction to creating a professional portfolio. Prerequisite: No Fingerprint Clearance necessary.||3|
|SPE-522||Classroom Management for Students with Special Needs||This course discusses the characteristics and effective implementation of various behavior modification strategies. Positive Behavior Support (PBS) and Functional Behavioral Assessment (FBA) are discussed.||4|
|ESL-523N||SEI English Language Teaching: Foundations & Methodologies||This course presents the historical, legal, theoretical, and sociological foundations of programs of instruction for English language learners. It includes an examination of the role of culture in learning and instructional program models, with a focus on Structured English Immersion. Students will be instructed in immersion strategies and the use of assessment data. The content of this course correlates with the NBPTS English as a New Language Standards, Standard I: Knowledge of Students, Standard III: Knowledge of Culture and Diversity, Standard VIII: Learning Environment, Standard IX: Assessment, Standard XI: Linkages with Families. Practicum/field experience hours: 10. Prerequisite: Fingerprint Clearance.||3|
|ESL-533N||Advanced Methodologies of Structured English Immersion||In this course, students continue to examine the fundamentals of the legal, historical, and educational foundations of Structured English Immersion and other instructional programs for English Language Learners. Theoretical principles of language acquisition and the role of culture in learning are examined. Methods of assessment are identified and analyzed. Students identify strategies to promote English language development and improve student achievement. They plan, deliver, and evaluate instruction for English language learners. Practicum/field experience hours: 15. Prerequisite: Fingerprint Clearance and ESL-523N.||3|
|SPE-536||Diagnosis & Assessment in Special Education||This capstone course in special education is designed to incorporate issues in collaboration and communication and to synthesize the special education process from assessment to delivery of instruction (i.e., evaluation, eligibility, placement, and instructional practice). Specific skill development includes assessing students with disabilities, completing special education forms, and conducting meetings and conferences with parents and school professionals. A school-based practicum provides participants with experiences in standardized testing and case studies, problem-solving meetings, cooperative team planning, and inclusion processes. Practicum /field experience hours: 20. Prerequisites: Fingerprint Clearance and SPE-522.||4|
|SPE-557||Characteristics of Learning Disabilities & Strategies to Teach Individuals with LD||The focus of this course is to provide teacher candidates in special education with advanced knowledge of learning disabilities (LD), including the history with attention to law and litigation, definition, causes, and characteristics of LD in children and adults. The cognitive processes of students with and without learning disabilities are compared, unsubstantiated explanations and false claims relating to LD are investigated, and assessment techniques and effective teaching strategies are addressed. Effective teaching strategies for planning, implementing, and evaluating instruction based on appropriate assessment for elementary and secondary students with LD in special and regular education classes are investigated. Particular attention is given to the structure and details of the lesson plans necessary to meet the individual needs of students with LD. Teacher candidates teach lessons in a class for students with LD. Practicum/field experience hours: 20. Prerequisites: Fingerprint Clearance and SPE-522.||4|
|SPE-558||Characteristics of Emotional/Behavioral Disabilities & Strategies to Teach Individuals with EBD||The focus of this course is to provide special education teacher candidates with advanced knowledge of emotional/behavioral disabilities (EBD), including the history with attention to law and litigation, definition, etiology, types, and characteristics of students with EBD. Teacher candidates investigate theories and models of EBD and related treatments. Assessment techniques and the factors involved in a diagnosis of EBD are also addressed. Effective and specific individual and group behavior management models, programs, strategies, and interventions for elementary and secondary students with EBD in special and regular education classes are investigated, planned, implemented, and evaluated based on appropriate assessment. Particular attention is given to the structure and details of the behavior management plan necessary to meet the individual needs of students with EBD. Practicum /field experience hours: 20. Prerequisites: Fingerprint Clearance and SPE-522.||4|
|SPE-553||Characteristics of Intellectual Disability & Strategies to Teach Individuals with ID||The focus of this course is to provide teacher candidates in special education with advanced knowledge of intellectual disability (ID), including the history with attention to law and litigation, definition, causes, and characteristics of ID in children and adults. The impact of ID on the lives of individuals and necessary support systems for quality of life are investigated, and assessment techniques and effective teaching strategies are addressed. Understanding and mastery of methods appropriate for meeting the educational needs of elementary and secondary students with ID are emphasized. Effective teaching strategies for planning, implementing, and evaluating instruction based on appropriate assessment for elementary and secondary students with ID in special and regular education classes are investigated. Particular attention is given to the structure and details of the lesson plans necessary to meet the individual needs of students with ID. Practicum /field experience hours: 20. Prerequisites: Fingerprint Clearance and SPE-522.||4|
|SPE-573||Educational Implications for Students with Physical and Health Impairments||This course provides teacher candidates with knowledge of physical and other health impairments and the impact of these disabilities on the lives of individuals. Teacher candidates investigate means to enhance the quality of life of individuals through participation in home, school, and community activities. Special attention is given to accessibility to appropriate curricula, modifications and adaptations, and effective instructional strategies to meet individual needs. Practicum /field experience hours: 20. Prerequisites: Fingerprint Clearance and SPE-522.||4|
|SPE-548NA||Student Teaching: Cross-Categorical Session A||Session A is the first of two 8-week sessions of the student teaching experience that includes practical classroom experiences, research and analysis, and teaching to support compilation and creation of a Teacher Work Sample (TWS). Prerequisites: Fingerprint Clearance; successful completion of all courses in POS and content area; senior status; a 3.0 GPA; successful completion of state mandated basic skills and content area exams or Praxis I® (Basic Skills) and Praxis II® (Content Area); and approval and placement by Office of Field Experience. Arizona residents will be required to take the Arizona Educator Proficiency Assessment (AEPA). All paperwork for student teaching must be submitted by the due date the semester prior to student teaching.||6|
|SPE-548NB||Student Teaching: Cross-Categorical Session B||This session is a continuation of Session A. Prerequisite for B: SPE-548NA.||6|
|Required Course Total Credit:||47|
This program is offered in the following formats or locations:
An online education allows you the flexibility to fulfill your educational goals without distracting you from your career. Full-time faculty members support our online students while our dynamic tools allow for engaging and challenging discussions with classmates. Classes start every month.
To meet the demands of today's working adults, this degree is offered through our convenient evening program. Classes meet one evening per week and allow you to interact directly with instructors and peers face-to-face. Locations vary - speak with an enrollment counselor to learn more.
* Please refer to the Academic Catalog for more information. Program subject to change.
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