The Watson College of Education offers a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Special Education (K-12) for students interested in teaching students with exceptionalities. Special Education majors select from two instructionally-oriented tracks: Adapted Curriculum or General Curriculum. Many of the courses in the university studies and professional studies are similar; however, the specialty area courses for adapted and general curriculum are different. Students in the program also will have the opportunity to gain skills and knowledge in assistive technology, teaching academic skills to diverse learners, instructional design, classroom management, collaboration, and applied research.
The Special Education General Curriculum track prepares teachers to provide instruction and behavior supports to assist students with learning and behavioral disabilities(high-incidence disabilities) who are enrolled in the general education curriculum. Among the most common learning problems these students experience are learning disabilities, mild intellectual disabilities, and behavior problems. Training includes individual and small group instruction for students with disabilities who are achieving below grade level in basic skills, implementation of positive behavior supports for students with disabilities and collaboration with general education teachers. This program leads to a B.A. degree and licensure in General Special Education (K_12). In addition, Special Education majors who complete the four-year General Curriculum Program are also eligible for licensure in Elementary Education by passing the required licensure test for both Special Education and Elementary Education.
The Special Education Adapted Curriculum track prepares teachers to provide instruction to assist students with moderate to severe disabilities who are not enrolled in the general education curriculum. Students supported have moderate to severe physical and/or intellectual disabilities, including such diagnoses as: Down syndrome, moderate to severe autism, Fragile X syndrome, multiple disabilities, and medically fragile students. Training includes instructional practices to teach functional skills, as well as functional academics, in a small controlled setting (self-contained classroom). These classrooms provide highly individualized instruction for students whose needs cannot be met in the general education classroom and are typically comprised of students in the same categorical grouping. Assistive technologies and sign language are also taught in the program. This program leads to a B.A. degree and licensure in Adapted Special Education (K-12).