There are currently more than six million children in the United States that qualify for Special Education services. These students require specialized, evidence-based instruction. There is a national and state shortage for special education teachers. The Special Education program will prepare pre-service teachers to use these specialized, evidence-based instructional skills to teach students with mild, moderate, and severe disabilities in preschool thru 12th grade. This program prepares teachers to meet the needs of many classrooms where these students are taught together. Students who graduate from this program will receive certification in both Learning and Behavior Disorders and Moderate and Severe Disabilities.
The B.S. in Special Education prepares students to become special education teachers.
Career opportunities in Special Education
"The College of Education and the University of Kentucky have thoroughly prepared me not only to be a Special Education teacher, but also to always fight for my student's rights and use education to change lives." - Meredith (2017, Special Education)
source: myUK: GPS
Click to toggle each Academic Year. Click each course for more information.
An introduction to the various contemporary areas of special education. Topics include special education diagnostic categories, programming, service delivery models, career education, child advocacy, and litigation affection public education for students with disabilities.
Composition and Communication II
A review of pertinent legislation concerning human and constitutional rights related to persons with disabilities. Teachers' specific responsibilities and liabilities are described and related to current requirements for development of appropriate educational programs. Emphasis is given to how, through active parent participation, teachers can facilitate each student's developmental progress.
Sets, numbers and operations, problem solving and number theory. Recommended only for majors in elementary and middle school education.
This course will focus on the philosophical issues related to teaching students with deaf-blindness and other multiple disabilities. Professionals will discuss pertinent information related to planning for this population of students, particularly in the areas of communication, physical management, health, sensory input, and vitality. Students will utilize information obtained to plan for a student with deaf-blindness or other multiple disabilities. Strategies presented for planning will include transdisciplinary assessment, person-centered planning, and activity-based instruction.
An overview of ways technology can be used to facilitate the education of students with disabilities. Topics include personal computer operation, personal productivity tools, instructional software evaluation and integration into the curriculum, multimedia applications, telecommunications, and emerging technologies.
This course will focus on inclusion of students with moderate to severe disabilities in all aspects of school and community life, with special consideration given to the individual student planning variables that must be addressed in meeting the needs of each school-age student and for preparing students to function as fully and independently in their communities as possible. The course is designed to meet the needs of those pursuing certification in Moderate and Severe Disabilities and pursuing degrees in Elementary and Secondary Education, Vocational Rehabilitation, School Psychology, Social Work, Physical Therapy, Communication Disorders, and related disciplines.
Special education issues with individuals exhibiting moderate to severe intellectual and developmental disabilities. A critical examination of contemporary research with regard to the educational, behavioral, developmental issues of individuals exhibiting moderate to severe intellectual and developmental disabilities. Issues and research describing the full educational inclusion and community integration of persons with moderate to severe intellectual and developmental disabilities will be addressed. Lecture, three hours; field experience, three hours. This course is a Graduation Composition and Communication Requirement (GCCR) course in certain programs, and hence is not likely to be eligible for automatic transfer credit to UK.
The emotional and behavioral problems of exceptional children and youth are considered in the context of normal child development. A survey of the major categories of emotional and behavioral disabilities includes identification, description, and etiology, with material drawn from clinical, theoretical, and research sources. Approaches to remediation cover both community resources and the roles of various professional personnel.
Basic principles of applied behavior analysis and modification which employ social learning theory and operant conditioning models are taught. Emphasis is placed on designing individualized learning environments, selecting and implementing behavior management strategies, writing behavior objectives, and performing task analyses.
A general introduction to the theory, need, and use of assistive devices in the classroom. Review of physical disabilities and basic operation, maintenance, and trouble shooting techniques will be presented. Service personnel typically associated with training in the use of assistive devices will be discussed. Students will be required to simulate a disability and use an assistive device.
Procedures for administering formal and informal tests to determine specific educationally relevant strengths and deficits of children with learning and behavior disorders. The characteristics of children with learning and behavior disorders are surveyed, as they relate to special education programming. Lecture, three hours; field experience, two hours.
The course participant will serve as a teacher aide in a classroom or other service delivery setting under the supervision of a person certified to teach students with moderate to severe disabilities. Course requirements include application of direct observation, formal and informal assessment of pupil performance, clinical writing and instructional and behavioral intervention in both individualized and small group settings. Practicum settings used by course participants will model best practices with regard to instruction, behavior management, and the full inclusion of persons with moderate to severe disabilities with their non-disabled peers. Lecture, two hours; field experience, six to eight hours per week.
Fundamental concepts of numbers, their relation- ships, geometry and other mathematics topics for children of grades K-4. Emphasis on use of concrete materials and the development of language, appropriate learning experiences, computational skills, and problem-solving abilities.
Development of competencies for the teaching of reading and other language arts to groups. Course will also provide an overview of the nature of reading and language arts development from grade K-8. Twenty hours of laboratory work in the schools is required.
Design, implementation, and evaluation of individualized programs based on the educationally relevant characteristics of children with mild disabilities. Includes educational assessment and programming in reading, math, and language. This course is a Graduation Composition and Communication Requirement (GCCR) course in certain programs, and hence is not likely to be eligible for automatic transfer credit to UK.
A study of methods and materials for teaching social studies at the elementary level. The course will include a critical analysis of a variety of objectives, instructional materials and strategies, and evaluation techniques for elementary social studies. Consideration will be given to addressing the individual needs of a diverse student population. Special emphasis is placed on instruction in grades K-4. Twenty hours of field experience are required in conjunction with EDC 322.
Educational and adaptive behavior assessment and curriculum prescription for individuals exhibiting moderate intellectual and development disabilities. The course participant will acquire skills in the use of current formal and informal educational and adaptive behavior assessment procedures for use in prescribing curriculum, instructional, behavioral intervention with individuals exhibiting moderate intellectual and developmental disabilities. Specific attention will be focused on procedures for using assessment data and curriculum prescription that enhances the full inclusion of school age individuals with disabilities with their non-disabled peers. Lecture, three hours; field experience, four to six hours per week.
A critical analysis of a variety of objectives, instructional materials and evaluation techniques for teaching elementary school science, with a special emphasis on grades K-4. Consideration will be given to addressing the individual needs of a diverse student population. Twenty hours of field experience are required in conjunction with EDC 322.
Student teaching in the low-incidence disabilities classroom. Supervised student teaching in a classroom for students identified has having moderate to severe disabilities. To be offered on a letter grade basis only.
The Bachelor of Science in Special Education is an on-campus only degree program that prepares candidates to teach students in Kindergarten to 12th grade with low incidence disabilities. The B.S. will provide opportunities for undergraduate students to work within elementary, middle, and high schools serving students with MSD.
The program will focus on preparing candidates to teach children and youth from 5 years of age through 21 years of age. This may include students with moderate to severe intellectual disability, severe autism, or significant physical and sensory disabilities that impair functioning across domains.
The B.S. in Education program in Special Education requires completion of: (1) the UK Core requirements; (2) specified course work in Related Studies and Professional Education; and (3) specified course work in the special education."
Dr. Amy Spriggs
Faculty Program Coordinator
College of Education
Department of Early Childhood, Special Education & Rehabilitation Counseling
Taylor Education Building
Get more information about going to the University of Kentucky