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BSEd in Special Education

From the Department of Communication Sciences and Special Education

Overview

The BSEd in Special Education prepares beginning teachers to apply for certification in the following Georgia certification areas:

  • Adapted curriculum: To prepare teachers to work with students with severe disabilities P-12
  • General curriculum: To prepare teachers to work with students with mild disabilities P-12
  • Birth through kindergarten: To prepare teachers to work with children with and without disabilities birth through kindergarten

Candidates apply in their sophomore year to begin the program starting in their junior year. This two-year, 60-credit-hour program begins new cohorts each fall for each of the three emphasis areas.

The BSEd program is rich in clinical experiences. Each semester’s coursework is complemented with field-based experiences relevant to the chosen emphasis area. Students are required to complete three semesters of practicum and one semester of student teaching over the course of the program.

The emphasis in general curriculum emphasis is offered at the UGA Griffin campus and in an online format, the only fully online BSEd program in Georgia.

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General curriculum

Overview

This program builds students’ critical knowledge and skills in general curriculum special education. Students receive comprehensive practicum experience in elementary, middle school, and high school grade levels, culminating in a student teaching placement in the level of their choice.

Adapted curriculum and autism

Overview

This program builds students’ critical knowledge and skills in adapted curriculum special education. Students in this program receive comprehensive practicum experience in elementary, middle school, and high school grade levels culminating in a student teaching placement in the level of their choice.

Birth through kindergarten/preschool

Overview

The birth through kindergarten program prepares beginning professionals specialized to work with children birth through age 5 both with and without disabilities. The birth through kindergarten program promotes developmentally appropriate inclusive and collaborative teaching practices. Our graduates specialize in providing engaging instruction and support to young children and their families. Enriching field placements in classes with infants/toddlers, preschoolers, pre-k, and kindergarten are provided. The special education program recommends to the Georgia Professional Standards Commission that a graduate be awarded a clear renewable teaching certificate in birth through kindergarten and preschool special education.


Academics / Curriculum

Curriculum differs depending on the emphasis.

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General curriculum

An emphasis in general curriculum is for those interested in teaching students with mild disabilities who are primarily following the general curriculum. Training in this emphasis area will prepare teachers to work in collaboration, inclusion, or resource models. The special education students who are most frequently served in these settings will include those with behavior disorders, learning disabilities, mild intellectual disabilities, other health impaired, and some students with autism spectrum disorder or Asperger’s syndrome. Coursework includes characteristics of these high-incidence disabilities, assessment, instructional and collaborative practices, and applied behavior analysis.

Adapted curriculum and autism

An emphasis in adapted curriculum is for those interested in teaching students with moderate to severe autism and developmental disabilities. Training in this emphasis area will prepare teachers to work with students in an adapted curriculum, meaning they do not follow the typical general curriculum in most classrooms. The curriculum may include teaching functional academics, lifelong personal and social skills, vocational skills, recreational and leisure skills, and community involvement. The curriculum emphasizes training in behavior management, instructional strategies, technology-based supports and transition skills. The students who are most frequently served in under-adapted curriculum are those with moderate, severe, or profound intellectual disability as well as moderate to severe autism.

Birth through kindergarten/preschool

Georgia awards the certificate to an applicant based upon this recommendation and passing of the appropriate Georgia Assessments for the Certification of Educators (GACE) tests:

  • Birth Through Kindergarten Test I (005)
  • Birth Through Kindergarten Test II (006)

The Student Experience

A strong emphasis is placed on providing our students with different opportunities to participate in applied research at all levels. Many participate in research projects, and others volunteer at local organizations such as Extra Special People, and join student organizations such as Special Olympics at UGA or AutismUGA.

The program has a student chapter of the Council for Exceptional Children, which promotes the advancement and education of people with exceptionalities. The local chapter is made up of undergraduate and graduate students, and is supported by faculty advisors. This is a great way to connect with others who hold your same interests and to stay informed about legislative issues for students with special needs.


Career Outlook

Trending Placement of Graduates

Year Grad School Full-Time Part-Time Unemployed Other
20131 17% 67% 13% 3% 0%
20121 27% 46% 9% 18% 0%

Where Alumni Are

The state of Georgia
83% Georgia
The state of South Carolina
2% South Carolina
The state of Florida
2% Florida

Recent Job Titles1

  • Athletic director
  • Behavioral tutor
  • Teacher

Career Fields2

  • Curriculum specialist
  • Education administrators
  • Teacher assistants
  • Teachers - postsecondary
  • Teachers - preschool, kindergarten, elementary, middle, and secondary
  • Teachers - special education

Admissions Information

Deadline to apply: February 15


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