Can I enroll in special education only or elementary education only?
Yes. Students choose to be enrolled in elementary only, special education only, or both in the dual licensure program. The curriculum is designed to prepare students as both elementary classroom teachers and special education teachers.
The philosophy of the education department is to train elementary and special education teachers to be better prepared to collaborate with other teachers and meet the needs of all students. (Upon completion of the dual licensure program students will able to get licensed for both. This makes you more marketable.)
Will I do two practicum experiences in one semester if I am in the dual licensure program?
No, you will have to choose one and you can add the other by doing 150 clock hours of fieldwork. We provide you a placement that allows you to work with a special education and elementary education teacher for the entire semester; in a site where these two teachers already work together. You spend the majority of your time the first seven to 10 weeks in the role of the elementary classroom teacher; however, during this time you do participate in IEP meetings, one-on-one sessions with students with special needs, and other duties typically part of the role of a special education teacher. Then, during the last five to seven weeks of the semester, you focus exclusively on shadowing the special education teacher and assuming as many responsibilities as possible.
Is it possible to do two distinct practicum experiences—one in an urban setting and one in a suburban setting?
Yes, as long as you do your practicum during the spring semester and start in January as soon as school is back in session (e.g., Jan 2 or 3) and go for 16 weeks or 80 school days. The first 50 school days (approximately 10 weeks) would make up your elementary practicum and the last 30 school days (approximately six weeks) would make up your special education practicum. Sample dates might be Jan. 3-March 23 and March 26-May 15.
Why is the term special education used when the title of the teaching license is Teacher of Students with Moderate Disabilities?
The term special education is more universally utilized and understood.