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Special Education Concentration

Master of Arts

In our Special Education concentration, you’ll grow in your ability to effectively meet the needs of special education students in your general education classroom.

Online

Fully Online

You'll complete 100% of your coursework online.

Start Dates: Summer 2017

Total Credits

33

Approximate Program Length

17 months (plus thesis)

Courses

  • Teacher as Leader (EDUC606)

    Focus is on the centrality of the teacher in the educational process. Examination of a variety of informal and formal ways in which teachers are leaders. Provision of a framework for thoughtful interaction with the changing image of teachers and the challenges of teacher leadership. The format for examining teaching in this light incorporates encounters with autobiography, critical reflection, and large and small group conversation.

    3 credits

  • Educational Research (EDUC614)

    Focus is on understanding and reporting educational and psychological research. Students will conduct online computer searches, appraise the quality of professional literature, cite research using APA style, and understand the options of writing a master's thesis or conducting an action research project.

    1 credits

  • Improving Instruction (EDUC616)

    Emphasis is on teaching strategies that will build on the experience of practicing teachers. Examination of a rich variety of approaches to instruction, along with supporting research. Provision of tools to analyze and incorporate the best of the newly emerging teaching methodologies. Particular attention is paid to the characteristics of an effective learning environment, as well as the understanding that how teaching is conducted has an enormous impact on students' ability to educate themselves. Models of teaching are really models of learning. The intent is to impart a renewed sense of the intellectual zest inherent in the craft of teaching and to make each model a potential part of a teacher's repertoire.

    3 credits

  • Introduction to Differentiation and Responsive Teaching (EDUC730)

    Overview of the theory and research of differentiated instruction as a model for acquiring content, in processing ideas and in developing products to effectively address varying student needs in the K-12 classroom. Focus is on instructional strategies and the practical application of differentiation in the teacher-student's classroom. Meeting the needs of students with disabilities will be emphasized.

    3 credits

  • Responsive Pedagogy for English Language Learners (EDUC731)

    An overview of second language acquisition theories as the foundation for understanding learning processes of a second language learner. Focus is on differentiation for language proficiency levels and levels of former schooling while keeping the rigor of the grade-level content. Strategies for intentional academic language teaching within each content area will drive the lesson planning approach in this course. Crucial factors that influence the acquisition of the second language such as linguistic and cultural identity negotiation will also be addressed.

    3 credits

  • Culturally Responsive Instruction (EDUC732)

    Through stories, students will examine multicultural research, theory and practice. Students will explore their role as teacher in a culturally changing learning environment as they develop instructional strategies based on research-based best practice to become culturally responsive practitioners.

    3 credits

  • Preparing the Thesis/Action Research Project (EDUC755)

    Assists students in preparing their master's thesis or conducting an action research project. Focus is on the design process and includes the following topics: information on the nature and scope of the master's thesis/action research project; selection and refinement of topic; APA style; and the oral examination process.

    1 credits

  • Writing the Thesis/Action Research Project (EDUC790)

    Exploration of a significant educational issue relevant to the student's professional involvement through an independent, individually supervised thesis or project.

    3 credits

  • Measurement and Assessment in Education (PSYC635)

    Uses, misuses, and limitations of educational assessment techniques and tools. Practices and principles for assessment processes: psychometric theory, test construction, and standards for teacher-made tests. Alternatives to traditional assessment, particularly authentic assessment. Ethical issues in assessment and factors influencing test performance. Current scholarly research in educational measurement and assessment.

    3 credits

  • Select 3 from:

    • Characteristics of Mild-Moderate Disabilities (SPED600)

      Overview and introduction to the mild-moderate range of five disability categories represented under Academic Behavioral Strategist (ABS) including: Learning Disabilities (LD), Emotional and Behavioral Disorders (EBD), Other Health Disabilities (OHD), Developmental Disabilities (DD), and Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). Definitions, eligibility criteria, characteristics, curriculum, and contemporary issues of each will be studied.

      3 credits

    • Reading Foundations (SPED620)

      Covers the major components of reading and the instructional strategies that support the development of literacy for K-6 students including those students with mild-moderate disabilities. The course also provides an overview to the structure of the English language and basic linguistic analysis.

      3 credits

    • Responsive Instruction, Intervention, and Assessment (SPED631)

      Preparation of special education teachers for their role in the screening, monitoring, and early intervention processes related to good instructional practice. Students will understand data collection and analysis practices that integrate multiple sources of information in a collaborative model. Emphasis will be on evidence-based instructional strategies for all students, as well as research-based interventions for students with a variety of needs. The focused content area will be reading.

      3 credits

    • Introduction to Behavioral Methods & Mental Health for Mild to Moderate Special Needs (SPED641)

      Introduction to behavioral methods and foundations of mental health for students with mild to moderate special education needs. Students analyze behavior methods/interventions for the classroom with emphasis on brain-based research. Understanding behaviors and mental health are explored within behavioral, social, emotional, educational, cognitive, physical, communication, and functional contexts as well as foundations of cognitive/emotional development and informal tools for screening.

      3 credits

Why Choose Bethel? 

Learn why you should choose Bethel (pdf) for a degree in K-12 Education. 

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