School of Education

Special Education Program Information

Program Description

Candidates for the Bachelor of Science in Special Education should first review "General Requirements for Undergraduate Degrees at IUS."

The bachelor’s degree in special education leads to an Indiana license to teach students with disabilities, grades P-12. This special education license is in the area of Mild Intervention. Guided experiences with a wide range of children and youth and master special educators are the foundation of the program.  Students have multiple and varied experiences in schools. 

There are four major summative decision points for the Special Education Program. The first decision point is admission to the program. The second decision point is at the beginning of Block 2. The third is permission to student teach. The fourth decision point is at the end of student teaching and degree completion. At each summative decision point, candidates are formally evaluated on specific criteria and a decision is made regarding each student’s status in the program. A candidate’s continuation status may be reevaluated at points other than summative decision points.

Student Learning Goals

Candidates majoring in special education are expected to commit to demonstrating three broad program outcomes: (a) understanding their students’ needs and contexts, (b) collaboratively planning and implementing effective learning experiences, and (c) continuously assessing the effects of their professional choices. What Special Educators should know and be able to do is expressed in the standards for the Council for Exceptional Children:

  1.  Foundations
  2.  Development and Characteristics of Learners
  3.  Individual Learning Difference
  4.  Instructional Strategies
  5.  Learning Environments and Social Interactions
  6.  Language
  7.  Instructional Planning
  8.  Assessment
  9.  Professional and Ethical Practice
  10. Collaboration

Details of those standards, as well as the developmental and content standards for Exceptional Needs: Mild Intervention can be found in the program's handbook.

Program Structure

Course work leading to the B.S. in Special Education has two components:

  1. General Education - These requirements meet the campus-wide general education requirements.
  2. Professional and Pedagogical Studies - Students complete courses and experiences leading to successful demonstration of what special educators need to know and be able to do.

Degree/Certificate Requirements

For a bachelor’s degree in special education, students must satisfy all general rules for undergraduate education programs, rules for admission to the program, requirements for remaining in good standing, criteria for admission to student teaching, and eligibility for a degree described in the undergraduate general information section of the “School of Education” portion of this bulletin.  Degree completion is contingent upon students passing four summative decision points. Information about decision points can be found on the program Web site.  Completion of the degree, faculty recommendation, and passage of state-mandated tests are needed to apply for an Indiana all-grade (P-12) license in Mild Intervention or a Kentucky Learning and Behavior Disorders license for Kentucky.  NOTE:  To be apprised of changes in licensure rules for both states, seek regular advisement from the program coordinator and School of Education.

Degree Program Admission Requirements

Students seeking admission must meet the following requirements for admission:

  1. An overall GPA 2.5 or better.
  2. A GPA 2.5 or better in each Content area (Language arts, math, social studies, science).
  3. All General Education courses (except COAS-S 104) and all Additional Program Requirement Courses must have grades of C or better.
  4. All Education courses must have grades of B- or better.
  5. Completed MATH-T 101 and EDUC-F 200.
  6. Completed Language Arts conten courses (SPCH-S 121, ENG-W 131, 2nd Writing, Literature or Humanities).
  7. Including current enrollment, candidates have a least 51 credit hours towards their General Education courses, Pre-Special Education courses and Additional Program Requirement Courses.
  8. Have a 24 on the ACT (without writing) or 1100 SAT (without writing) or Praxis I scores of Math 175, Reading 176, and writing 175 or a combined score of 527 (taken prior to August 31, 2013) or CASA scores of Math 220, Reading 220, and Writing 220.
A total maximum of 50 Special Education and Elementary Education candidates will be admitted to the cohort each semester.  If more than 50 applicants meet the minimum criteria for admission, student acceptance will be determined based on a point system which is described on the program's website.

All admitted students are in a conditional status until all grades are posted and a 2.5 minimum GPA is verified for the semester prior to starting Block 1.  If a student is initially admitted to the cohort as a Special Education major and subsequently changes to Elementary Education, she/he will be held to all requirements for the Elementary Education program.

Performance-Level Requirements

In order to complete the degree, special education majors must:

  1. pass the First-Year Seminar and complete the degree with at least a 2.5 GPA;
  2. earn a grade of B- or higher in all specialty area content courses;
  3. have a grade of C or higher in each Education course;
  4. have a Satisfactory in all courses graded S/F;
  5. have no less than a 2.5 GPA in the required mathematics courses (each with a grade of C or higher), the communication cluster (i.e., S 121, W 131, and second writing course) and each general education group (i.e., Arts and Letters, Social Science, and Natural Science); and
  6. pass all four summative decision points.

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