Special Education

[1] Objectives

The main purpose of the MSE program in Special Education is to prepare collaborative special education teachers skilled in providing quality instruction to students representing a broad scope of abilities. The master’s degree program in special education is designed to meet the performance standards of the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), Council for Exceptional Children (CEC), and the National Board for Professional Teaching (NBPTS). The performance-based program contains two tracks designed in accordance with the Arkansas Instructional Specialist Licensure requirements: Collaborative Instructional Specialist Ages 0-8 and Collaborative Instructional Specialist Grades 4-12.

The program is a 36-graduate credit hour program organized around eighteen hours of core coursework and eighteen hours of coursework specific to each track. Candidates are required to meet the performances linked to the core courses prior to beginning one of the tracks. Candidates holding a teaching license in special education may request a transcript analysis by a graduate faculty advisor to determine possible substitutions or electives in the core courses portion of the program of study. Courses in the program ensure the progressive building of a common core of candidate knowledge, skills, and dispositions as described in the Arkansas Instructional Specialist Principles and CEC standards. The program offers a context for NBPTS Exceptional Needs standards. Candidates interested in National Board Certification must meet with a designated faculty advisor prior to completing nine hours of graduate course work.

[2] Guidelines for MSE in Special Education

Admission into both the Ages 0-8 track and the Grades 4-12 track of the program will be selective and competitive. Contact the Department of Early Childhood and Special Education for specific application deadlines and course rotations.

  1. In addition to the general application and GPA requirements of the UCA Graduate School, applicants must submit a valid standard Arkansas educator license. For Individuals who have an out-of-state educator license, contact the department at (501)450-3172.
  2. With approval, a maximum of six hours may be transferred from another institution of higher education. These six hours must be approved by the department chair.
  3. The Program of Study must be filed prior to completing 18 hours.
  4. Students must complete Praxis II testing and submit documentation of score prior to completing 18 hours.
  5. Participation in the Comprehensive Examination can only take place during the final semester of study.
  6. Programs in the COE that lead to licensure relating to P-12 schools require a passing score on the appropriate Praxis exam(s) and satisfactory completion of all key assessments identified by the program area. Candidates cannot complete their program unless both of these criteria have been met.

[2.1] Continuous Enrollment Requirement

College of Education graduate students are expected to maintain continuous enrollment throughout their program of study until achieving program completion. Specifically, College of Education graduate students are expected to be enrolled in at least two of the three semesters in a given calendar year (Spring, Summer I or II, and Fall). If a student must take a time-out, the student is expected to notify his/her home department. If a student fails to register for more than one semester out of three in a given calendar year, he/she may be ineligible for readmission unless granted by the home department.

[3] Program of Study

[3.1] Core Courses, Required for Both Tracks

ECSE 6300 Philosophical, Historical, and Legal Aspects of Special Education
ECSE 6302 Medical and Educational Aspects of Disabilities
ECSE 6304 Behavior and Classroom Management
ECSE 6306 Family, School, and Community Partnerships
ECSE 6308 Educational Assessment in Special Education
ASTL 6380 Research Methods

[3.2] Required Courses for Instructional Specialist Ages 0-8 Track

ECSE 6322 Current Issues and Trends
ECSE 6327 Educational Programming for Children Ages 0-5 with Disabilities
ECSE 6330 Transdisciplinary and Collaborative Practices
ECSE 6337 Educational Programming for Children Ages 5-8 with Disabilities
ECSE 6370 Laboratory Practices for Individuals with Disabilities
ECSE 6371 Laboratory Practices for Individuals with Disabilities

[3.3] Required Courses for Instructional Specialist Grades 4-12 Track

ECSE 6350 Collaborative Teaching and Inclusive Settings
ECSE 6365 Educational Programming for Students with Emotional Behavioral Disabilities
ECSE 6366 Educational Programming for Students with Mild Disabilities
ECSE 6367 Educational Programming for Students with Significant Disabilities
ECSE 6370 Laboratory Practices for Individuals with Disabilities
ECSE 6371 Laboratory Practices for Individuals with Disabilities

For information on Special Education Licensure coursework visit the Department of Early Childhood and Special Education webpage: http://uca.edu/ecse or phone (501) 450-5441.

[4] Graduate Certificates

[4.1] Program in Special Education Instructional Specialist P-4

Gainful Employment Information – Graduate Certificate in Special Education: Instructional Specialist P–4: 2013-14 | 2012-13

The 18-hour graduate level program is designed to prepare licensed teachers as collaborative professionals committed to working closely with other professionals and families to create the most effective learning environments for young children birth to eight years old representing a broad scope of abilities. The program will provide candidates with a recognized certificate in early childhood special education training, as well as give teachers formal acknowledgement of their graduate work without the completion of a masters degree in special education.

[4.2] Program in Special Education Instructional Specialist Grades 4-12

Gainful Employment Information – Graduate Certificate in Special Education: Instructional Specialist 4–12: 2013-14 | 2012-13

The 18-hour graduate level program is designed to prepare licensed teachers as collaborative professionals committed to working closely with other professionals and families to create the most effective learning environments for children in grades 4-12 representing a broad scope of abilities. The program will provide candidates with a recognized certificate in early childhood special education training, as well as give teachers formal acknowledgement of their graduate work without the completion of a masters degree in special education.

[4.3] Program for Instructional Facilitator

Gainful Employment Information – Graduate Certificate in Instructional Facilitator: 2013-14 | 2012-13

The 15-hour graduate level program is designed to prepare licensed teachers as an instructional coach who facilitates student growth and enhances classroom instruction by providing instructional support in the elements of research based instruction and methods in aligning instruction with curriculum standards, assessment tools, and individual needs of students.

[4.4] Program in Gifted and Talented Education

Gainful Employment Information – Gifted and Talented Education: 2013-14 | 2012-13

The 15-hour graduate level program is designed to prepare licensed teachers as collaborative professionals committed to working closely with other professionals and families to create the most effective learning environments for gifted and talented students. The program will provide candidates with a recognized certificate in Gifted Education, as well as give teachers formal acknowledgement of their graduate work without the completion of a master’s degree.

[5] Graduate Course Links

[5.1] Courses in Early Childhood and Special Education (ECSE)

Follow this link for ECSE course descriptions: course link.

[5.2] Courses in Advanced Studies in Teaching and Learning (ASTL)

Follow this link for ASTL course descriptions: course link.