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B.A. in Special Education

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  • Course description

    Successful teachers require certain personality traits: they must be patient, positive and ready to deal with any challenge the day sends their way. And, of course, they must enjoy working with kids! If that sounds like you, consider becoming a Special Education teacher.

    Lewis University's College of Education is guided by a central mission: "Developing Learning Communities." Preparing Special Education teachers with the resources they need to excel in the classroom is part of that mission. We believe in a diverse learning community that respects each perspective. 

    As a Special Education major, you will take general teaching method courses and others focused on instructional strategies for special education. Required courses include:
    • Technology for Teaching and Learning
    • History and Philosophy of Education
    • Development and Characteristics of Learners
    • Approaches and Applications for the Multicultural Classroom
    • Plus, several courses on instructional strategies in subjects such as science, math, reading and social studies.

    You'll also complete 125 hours of field work, gaining hands-on experience in a variety of classroom settings.

    Lewis' College of Education is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education.


    SPECIAL EDUCATION/BACHELOR OF ARTS

    Total Credit Hours: 128
    Major Credit Hours: 51


    I. Professional Education for (K-12) Certification in Special Education - Learning Behavior Specialist I
    54-207 Learning Theories and Individual Development (3)
    54-242 Foundations of Teaching and Learning (25 field experience hrs.) (3)
    54-300 Special Education Field Experience II (50 field experience hours) (1)
    54-303 Development and Characteristics of Learners (3)
    54-304 Technology for Learning (2)
    54-329 Approaches and Applications for the Multicultural Classroom (1)
    54-340 Instructional Strategies and Learning Communities for Teaching Science and Wellness, P-12 (3)
    54-352 Instructional Strategies and Learning Communities for Teaching Mathematics, P-12 (3)
    54-353 Instructional Strategies and Learning Communities for Teaching Reading and the Integrated Language Arts, P-3 (3)
    54-354 Instructional Strategies and Learning Communities for Teaching Social Studies, P-12 (3)
    54-359 Assessment for Learning (3)
    53-360 History and Philosophy of Education (3)
    54-363 Consultation and Collaboration for Educators (3)
    54-366 Special Education Law (1)
    54-391 Instructional Planning and Performance Based Assessment (3)
    54-400 Special Education Field Experience III (50 field experience hrs.) (1)
    54-471 Instructional Strategies and Learning Communities for Teaching Reading and the Integrated Language Arts, 4-12 (3)
    54-483 Special Education Student Teaching (two 8-week placements in Special Education settings) (9)

    II. Recommended Electives for Special Education
    54-202 Sign Language I (3)
    54-203 Sign Language II (3)
    53-310 Teaching English Language Learners in P-12 Schools (3)
    Also recommended: Workshops teaching multicultural populations, autism, differentiated instruction and sign language.
    A complete listing of general education requirements is located in the General Education Information Section.
    Please note the requirement of an additional math course for elementary and special education majors.

    III. Advanced Writing: Special Education Student Teaching (54-483) fulfills the advanced writing requirement for majors.
    "Candidate" refers to individuals admitted to Lewis University's College of Education. "Student" refers to children and adolescents in P-12 schools.
    IV. Candidates complete 125 hours of field experience as part of the coursework in the Special Education Program. All candidates must successfully pass the Illinois Basic Skills Test before they will be allowed to take education courses. Field experience courses include: Foundations of Teaching and Learning (54-242) (25 hours), Special Education Field Experience II (54-300) (50 hours) and Special Education Field Experience III(54-400) (50 hours).  A 2.75 GPA is required for all education courses. Assignment to the field experience sites is arranged by the College of Education. Experiences are designed to include public school sites, with a variety of experiences in integrated and segregated special education programs in both elementary and secondary settings. Candidates are responsible for providing their own transportation to field experience sites. Field experience hours completed at other institutions will be evaluated by the Department Chair to determine whether or not the hours can be transferred.
    * See Combined Special Education and Elementary Education major for possible additional certification in elementary education.

    V. Student Teaching
    Application for admission to student teaching must be filed by September 15 of the year prior to the planned student teacher experience.  Procedures and requirements for admission to student teaching are published in the Guide for Initial Teacher Certification Program Candidates. This publication is available on Blackboard. All candidates are responsible for the information contained in this Guide. Evidence of successful completion of the appropriate State of Illinois content area test must be received in the College of Education at least 30 days prior to the beginning of the student teaching semester in order to student teach.  Student teaching in the special education major requires candidates to complete two 8-week placements; one in an  elementary setting (K-6) and one in a secondary (7-12) setting.  Candidates are responsible for providing their own transportation while student teaching. Only one additional course may be taken concurrently with student teaching.  Official documentation of a negative TB test must be filed prior to student teaching. The Assessment of Professional Teaching Test must be successfully completed before entitlement for certification will be sent to the state.

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