Pre K-4 with Special Education Certification Course Descriptions

EDUC 501 - Issues in Special Education

This course is designed to provide a full overview of the historical analysis of Special Education: classifications/definitions and patterns of behavior, description of assessment and intervention strategies, legislation and litigation, outside forces that influence Special Education, and an introduction to the people in Special Education and their relationship to the system. Students will concentrate on their particular area of education as it relates to Special Education. Students will complete 10 logged hours of field experience.

EDUC 511 - Learning and Cognition (or CLEP Introduction Educational Psychology)

An in-depth examination of the research on issues of learning and cognition and how it applies to the classroom. A major research paper is required.

EDUC 512 - TESOL Methods and Field Experience

This course provides an overview of the full range of the methodology for teaching English as a Second Language (ESL), especially appropriate for the K-12 classroom teacher who has non-English speaking students in the classroom. It provides students a thorough understanding of the nature of teaching and learning ESL or EFL. It examines the basics of teaching ESL or EFL history, theories, models, techniques, and applications. It aims to enable students to incorporate the appropriate ESL or EFL strategies in their teaching and adapt their materials and instructional methods to meet English language learners’ needs and accommodate their learning styles. Course topics include techniques and strategies for improving second language learners’ listening, speaking, reading, writing, and communication skills, the role of the teacher, the needs of the learner, language testing and assessment, materials design, use of new technology in language teaching, and the development of lesson plans, including the selection and uses of texts and other materials. The course is designed as a laboratory experience, using multiple constructivist techniques and strategies of instruction. Students taking this course are required to complete a 10-hour field experience. This field experience will include both observation and engagement with English Language learners. Students are also expected to engage in extensive reading, research, class discussion, written reflection, and self-evaluation through dialogue, group projects, and field work.

EDUC 536 - Child Development (or CLEP Human Growth and Development)

This course provides an advanced examination of the developmental theories and milestones associated with children birth through 10 years. Physical, cognitive, social, and emotional development is viewed in the contexts of the family, community, and formal education settings. Particular emphasis is placed on the interaction of social and cultural environments on learning and development.

EDUC 537 - Early Childhood Education with Field Experience

This course examines the historical developments and current philosophies of early childhood education. The ways in which teachers apply various philosophies to curricular and structural components of early childhood programs are also investigated. Ten hours of field experience are also required for successful completion of this course.

EDUC 571 - Teaching Math, Science and Health

This class looks at contemporary methods of teaching mathematics, science and health for all students. The primary focus will be the use of cooperative learning and a hands-on approach to teaching. Approximately 5 hours of classroom observation is required.

EDUC 572 - Teaching Social Studies and Language Arts

This class looks at contemporary methods of teaching language arts and social studies for all students. The primary focus will be the use of cooperative learning and a hands-on approach to teaching. Approximately 5 hours of classroom observation is required.

EDUC 600 - Literacy Foundations (Pre K-4)

This developmental literacy course will focus on beginning reading and the interrelated language arts to meet the requirements for the reading specialist certification. Emphasis will be given to the cognitive/constructivist perspective of reading that addresses reading and writing as processes of constructing meaning. Students will examine the developmental stages of reading, writing, and spelling, as well as the four systems of language. Students will learn integrative instructional strategies to teach phonemic awareness, linguistic patterns, phonics, comprehension, vocabulary, fluency, as well as using technology to enhance instruction. The scope of the course covers a historical perspective, theories of reading, literature-based instruction and instructional alignment with state standards and the PA Literacy Framework. Appropriate current research literature will also be investigated. Students will tutor a child for a minimum of 10 hours during the semester and present a reading strategy or method to a teacher and/or parent in the field.

EDUC 682 - Evaluation and Assessment of Students in the Inclusive Settings

This course examines the assessment and evaluation processes used for determining progress for students with and without Individual Educational Programs. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act mandates that all students have access to the general education classroom and curriculum. The course will provide teachers with the necessary knowledge and skills to assess and evaluate all students. The course will examine historical, philosophical and legal considerations and models of the assessment process and various types of assessments will be examined.

EDUC 684 - Inclusive Education with Field Experience

This course examines the concept of Inclusion and what it means to both the special educator and the general educator. Students will learn to use effective inclusion strategies in the general education classroom and examine the various ways special and regular educators can work effectively together. Students will have 10 hours of field experience in inclusive education settings.

EDUC 610 - Student Teaching

Observation and teaching in an approved classroom with guidance and evaluation. At least 12 weeks of fulltime student participation is required. Students must apply for student teaching at least two semesters in advance.

EDUC 620 - Practicum

A seminar to synthesize the academic disciplines and relate them to the development and learning of the pupil in school and focus on the needs of the student teacher. This course offers opportunities to gain skill, insight and perspective in the relationship of theory to practice in the teaching-learning process. To be scheduled concurrently with student teaching.

EDUC 505 - Teaching Techniques for Low Incidence Students

A hands-on experience in techniques for teaching the multi-handicapped and severely retarded. Specialized techniques will include behavior management, task analysis, using adaptive equipment and prosthetic devices, prompting and cuing, augmentative communication systems, positioning and handling, and inclusion techniques. Students will complete 10 hours of field experience. (Prerequisite: EDU501 or permission of instructor)

EDUC 683 - Evaluation and Assessment of Exceptional Students

This course is directed to those students who wish to be certified in special education. The course will extend the student’s understanding and knowledge of the assessment and evaluation processes and examines how we use these processes to create an appropriate individualized educational plan (IEP). Students will also work with creating effective Educational Reports (ER), Behavior Plans, Transition Programs and other reports and documents necessary to keep schools in compliance with state and federal guidelines.

EDUC 685 - Emotional and Behavioral Disorders with Field Experience

This course is designed to provide teachers who wish to be certified in special education with the tools necessary to work with students with emotional behavioral disorders. Participants will examine the various causes and theories for these disorders. There will be an additional focus on recognizing these disorders and managing them in the inclusive classroom using various positive behavior interventions and other appropriate methods. This course requires 10 hours of volunteer time with students with emotional and behavioral disabilities.

EDUC 686 - Autistic Spectrum Disorders with Field Experience

This course is directed towards those students who wish to be certified in Special Education. It will be an overview of the characteristics and learning traits, classification systems, assessment strategies, approaches and interventions related to students with autism. Emphasis will be placed on the different disorders on the spectrum including Asperger’s Syndrome. Students will be given the tools needed to work with families and agencies to develop a comprehensive program that meets the individual needs of their students. Students will have a 20 hour field experience in a facility that services students on the Autism Spectrum.

EDUC 687 - Early Intervention with PDD and Other Exceptionalities with Field Experience

This course is an advanced course directed towards those students seeking certification in special education. It will examine early intervention for those children thought to have PDD (Pervasive Developmental Disorder) and other exceptionalities. We will look at the importance of early intervention and the different methods and strategies for working with these students. Emphasis will be placed on writing Individual Family Service Plans (IFSP), working with families and agencies and designing appropriate intervention programs. Students will have 10 hours of field experience in early intervention settings.

EDUC 601 - Literacy Foundations for the Intermediate Grades

This developmental course will focus on the reading and writing processes within the context of literature-based reading instruction across the curriculum for grades 4 to 8. Methods, strategies, and materials for teaching the interrelated language arts will be stressed. Emphsis will be given to comprehension, spelling, vocabulary, grammar, hand-writing, creative expression, varying reading rate according to purpose and difficulty, and technology to enhance instruction as well as curriculum-based assessment. A variety of current research literature will also be investigated. Students will develop a literacy unit demonstrating alignment with state standards and will evaluate materials and literacy programs. Students will attend a professional meeting and/or become members of a professional education organization.

EDUC 602 - Reading and Learning Differences

This course will focus on the physiological, psychological, sociological, neurological, and educational factors contributing to literacy acquisition and cautions about labeling children and youth. Students will explore various theories, research findings, and diagnostic procedures along with portfolio assessment. A resource file will be developed for future use. The student will be guided in writing an Individual Educational Plan  (IEP), diagnostic with remediation procedures, for student(s) with severe learning disabilities related to literacy. Students will demonstrate understanding of the components and procedures adopted by PSSA. The student is expected to conduct reading assessments and write a case study on a youngster including an IEP. (Prerequisite: EDUC 600 or 601 or 603)

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