Are you thinking of pursuing a career in special education? It’s important to get into the right program and classes for your goals. It’s also important to note that you may need more than a bachelor’s degree to land a job. Here’s what you can expect from colleges with special education majors.
What Can You Do with a Degree in Special Education?
If you want to assist individuals with special needs, a degree in special education could be right up your alley. During these classes you will learn about developing schoolwork for students with special needs, teaching methods, advocating techniques, and about the range of disabilities you could encounter during your work.
The type of degree you need depends on where you will be working and the particular career you will be pursuing. In many states, if you want to be a special education teacher, for example, you will need at least a Bachelor’s degree, a teacher certification that could include tests, and a certain number of hours in a teaching internship. In these positions, you can focus on curriculum development and instruction coordination.
However, if you want to focus on something more specialized, like speech and language pathology, you will need a Master’s degree.
Colleges with Special Education Majors?
Quite a few colleges offer special education majors – to see a full list, be sure to check out our College Match tool. But these are a few examples that can get you started off on the right foot.
The University of Connecticut, in Stoors, CT, is a large school that offers a Bachelor’s/Master’s Program in Teacher Education. This track allows you to earn both of your degrees in five years. The program focuses on early intervention, literacy, post-secondary transition, school-wide positive behavior supports, and autism/neurodevelopmental disabilities.
The university also offers a general studies in special education as a Master’s program, graduate certificate programs, and a PH.D in special education.
Located in Clemson, SC, Clemson University also offers a Bachelor’s degree in special education. The program focuses on helping students with mild-to-moderate disabilities in grammar school through high school. Students will also have experience in the field and work directly with children who may have autism, emotional disorders, or developmental disabilities.
Students in this program can be expected to learn about assessment strategies, IEP planning, procedures for disabilities, early intervention strategies, teaching methods, behavior management, and similar fields. Your time in the field will begin in your sophomore year.
The University of North Carolina, Wilmington Campus, has a Special Education program through the Watson College of Education. Titled “Bachelor of Arts Degree in Special Education,” students can choose from two tracks: General Curriculum or Adapted Curriculum.
The General Curriculum (GC) helps teachers with instruction and behavior for students that have behavioral and learning disabilities. The Adapted Curriculum (AC) is dedicated to helping students understand how to better assist students with moderate to severe disabilities including Down syndrome, Fragile X syndrome, and medically fragile students. Students in the AC program will also learn sign language.
Before you dive into a special education major, be sure to do your research into the various programs available and understand which track will be best for your career goals and interests. There are quite a few different areas of study out there that fall under this category!