Special Education, MS

Program Description

The primary objective of the MS Special Education 36 SCH degree is to provide students with an eclectic program in special education that interfaces theory and pedagogy from both the special education and English learner education fields. Students receive specialized training that is unique and specific to the needs of students receiving special education services, including those from culturally and linguistically diverse communities. Students learn instructional methodology to address the needs of students with high-incidence and low-incidence disabilities. Areas of instruction include domains such as: cognitive, communicative, behavioral, social and functional. Students also receive training in consultation, collaboration, and family system support areas.

Student Learning Outcomes

Students will:

  • Demonstrate knowledge of the field of special education, including: knowledge of individuals with disabilities, evaluation of individual learning needs, strategies for fostering learning and development, and professional roles and responsibilities.
  • Plan and develop effective instructional interventions responsive to the unique needs of individual learners.
  • Plan and implement a behavior intervention plan to provide behavioral supports aligned with individual needs.

For Additional Information

Website:
http://gradschool.tamucc.edu/degrees/education/special_ed.html

Campus Address:
Early Childhood Development Center, Room 233
361.825.3331
Phyllis.robertson@tamucc.edu

Mailing Address:
Department of Curriculum, Instruction, and Learning Sciences, Unit 5834
College of Education and Human Development
Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi
6300 Ocean Drive
Corpus Christi, Texas 78412-5834

Admission Requirements

Students are eligible to pursue graduate-level course work in Special Education if they meet COEHD graduate admission requirements as specified in the COEHD’s Graduate Policies and Regulations section of this catalog.

Program Requirements

Foundation Courses
EDFN 5301Introduction to Research3
BIEM 5345Developmental Linguistics3
or BIEM 5346 PEDAGOGICAL IMPLICATIONS OF BILINGUAL/ESL
SPED 5385English Learners and Special Education3
Core Courses
SPED 5315Individuals with Exceptionalities in Schools 1,*3
SPED 5320Application of Learning Principles 2,^3
SPED 5380Behavioral Supports and Interventions for Students with Disabilities3
SPED 5386Strategic Reading and Language Instruction for Students with High-Incidence Disabilities ^3
SPED 5387Strategic Math and Content Area Instruction for Students with High-Incidence Disabilities3
SPED 5340Individuals with Multiple Disabilities *3
SPED 5397Special Education Field Experience3
Electives
Select 6-12 hours of elective education courses in consultation with the faculty advisor6-12
Total Hours36-42

Low-Incidence Disabilities Transcripted Certificate

The Low-Incidence Transcripted Certificate is an interdisciplinary program which prepares graduate students to address and support the needs of students with significant support needs through evidence based practices. This 3-course certificate is offered to educators in the field of special education and other related disciplines, such as: counseling, psychology, general education, and education administration.

To receive a low-incidence disabilities transcripted certificate, the student must complete 9 semester hours of coursework consisting of the following 3 courses.

SPED 5319Introduction to Low-Incidence Disabilities ^3
SPED 5320Application of Learning Principles ^3
SPED 5321Supporting Access for Students with Low-Incidence Disabilities ^3
Total Hours9

Educational Diagnostician Certificate

The Educational Diagnostician certificate program can be taken concurrently with the MS Special Education degree program or alone by a certified teacher who has a graduate degree. This coursework prepares students to assess and diagnose learning difficulties of students.

To be eligible for the Educational Diagnostician program, the student must be a certified teacher. To be certified as an Educational Diagnostician, the student must have a master’s degree, successfully complete up to 33 semester hours for Educational Diagnostician Certification, and pass the required TExES exam. 

Curriculum and Instruction
BIEM 5345Developmental Linguistics3
or BIEM 5346 PEDAGOGICAL IMPLICATIONS OF BILINGUAL/ESL
SPED 5315Individuals with Exceptionalities in Schools *3
SPED 5386Strategic Reading and Language Instruction for Students with High-Incidence Disabilities ^3
SPED 5387Strategic Math and Content Area Instruction for Students with High-Incidence Disabilities3
Related Area
CNEP 5371Psychometrics3
CNEP 5374Individual intelligence Testing3
SPED 5310Psychoeducational Testing3
Specialization Area
SPED 5320Application of Learning Principles ^3
SPED 5380Behavioral Supports and Interventions for Students with Disabilities3
SPED 5311Advanced Assessment3
SPED 5399Individualized Programs for Students with Exceptionalities: Practicum3
Total Hours33

Comprehensive Examination

In addition to successful completion of all courses required for graduation, all students are required to pass a comprehensive written examination taken during their final semester of enrollment.

Courses

SPED 5310  Psychoeducational Testing  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

FOCUSES ON CURRENT RESEARCH AND BEST PRACTICE IN ASSESSMENT OF EXCEPTIONAL LEARNERS, INTERPRETATION OF FORMAL AND IN FORMAL ASSESSMENT DATA GATHERED THROUGH A VARIETY OF METHODS, ASSESSMENT OF STUDENTS FROM DIVERSE BACKGROUNDS AND THE APPLICATION OF DATA GATHERED VIA A MULTI-TIERED SYSTEM OF SUPPORT (MTSS).  INSTRUCTOR'S PERMISSION REQUIRED.

Prerequisite: CNEP 5371 and 5374.

SPED 5311  Advanced Assessment  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

PRESENTS A VARIETY OF RESEARCH-BASED ASSESMENT TECHNIQUES AND TOOLS DESIGNED TO ASSESS EXCEPTIONAL LEARNERS.  ACADEMIC AND COGNITIVE ASSESSMENTS ARE COMBINED FOR INTERPRETATION AND DEVELOPMENT OF FULL AND INDIVIDUAL EVALUATIONS.

SPED 5315  Individuals with Exceptionalities in Schools  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE PROVIDES BASIC INFORMATION AND SKILLS FOR WORKING WITH STUDENTS WITH EXCEPTIONALITIES IN A VARIETY OF SETTINGS. IT ALSO INCLUDES CURRENT TRENDS, ISSUES, AND RESEARCH PERTAINING TO PERSONS WITH EXCEPTIONALITIES.

SPED 5319  Introduction to Low-Incidence Disabilities  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE INTRODUCES STUDENTS TO THE FIELD OF LOW-INCIDENCE DISABILITIES.  STUDENTS WILL EXPLORE FOUNDATIONAL CONCEPTS INCLUDING:  DEFINITION AND ETIOLOGY, FAMILY AND PROFESSIONAL PARTNERSHIPS, SPECIAL EDUCATION LAW, AND STANDARDS BASED IEPS. 

SPED 5320  Application of Learning Principles  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE PREPARES TEACHERS, ADMINISTRATORS, COUNSELORS AND DIAGNOSTICIANS TO USE A VARIETY OF APPLIED LEARNING PRINCIPLES TO INCREASE STUDENT LEARNING AND MINIMIZE DISRUPTIVE BEHAVIOR.

SPED 5321  Supporting Access for Students with Low-Incidence Disabilities  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE FOCUSES ON AREAS OF UNIVERSAL DESIGN, ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGY, AND RESOURCES THAT SUPPORT THE LEARNING AND INDEPENDENCE OF DIVERSE LEARNERS BOTH IN SCHOOL AND COMMUNITY SETTINGS. CLASS SESSIONS WILL BE HELD BOTH ON CAMPUS AND IN COMMUNITY SETTINGS. 

SPED 5324  Survey of Assistive Technology  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE IS AN INTRODUCTION TO ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGY FOR INDIVIDUALS WITH DISABILITIES.

SPED 5325  Technology for inclusion  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE WILL FOCUS ON THE USE OF ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGY TO SUPPORT AND FACILITATE INCLUSION OF STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES IN THE CLASSROOM.

Prerequisite: ETEC 5301.

SPED 5326  Assistive Technology Assessment  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE WILL PROVIDE SYSTEMATIC PROCEDURES FOR THE ASSESSMENT OF INDIVIDUAL STUDENT'S ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGY NEEDS. LEGAL ISSUES OF ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGY AND ITS IMPACT ON PUBLIC EDUCATION WILL BE ADDRESSED.

Prerequisite: ETEC 5301.

SPED 5327  Motor Activity Programs for individuals with Disabilities  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE EXAMINES THE SIGNIFICANT ROLE OF MOTOR ACTIVITY IN THE LIVES OF PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES. MAJOR PROGRAMMATIC APPROACHES TO ADAPTED PHYSICAL ACTIVITY ARE PRESENTED.

SPED 5340  Individuals with Multiple Disabilities  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE IS AN ADVANCED STUDY OF THE ADAPTATIONS, APPROACHES, AND SUPPORTS NECESSARY TO MEET THE EDUCATIONAL NEEDS OF STUDENTS WHO HAVE COMMUNICATION, INTELLECTUAL, MOTOR, SENSORY, AND/OR MEDICAL IMPAIRMENTS.

SPED 5380  Behavioral Supports and Interventions for Students with Disabilities  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE WILL FOCUS ON CHARACTERISTICS AND CLASSIFICATIONS OF CHILDREN AND ADOLESCENTS WITH BEHAVIOR DISORDERS. INTERVENTION ORIENTATIONS AND ASSOCIATED EDUCATION/TREATMENT APPROACHES FOR CHILDREN AND ADOLESCENTS WILL BE EXPLORED.

SPED 5385  English Learners and Special Education  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE IS DESIGNED TO PREPARE SPECIAL EDUCATORS TO ADDRESS THE SOCIOCULTURAL AND ETHNOLINGUISTIC NEEDS OF ENGLISH LEARNERS. PARTICULAR EMPHASIS IS PLACED ON: UNDERSTANDING THE INFLUENCE OF LANGUAGE AND CULTURE IN THE DESIGN OF INSTRUCTION TO PREVENT ACADEMIC DIFFICULTY; THE IDENTIFICATION OF STUDENTS WHO NEED ADDITIONAL INSTRUCTIONAL SUPPORTS; APPROPRIATE REFERRAL, SCREENING, AND ASSESSMENT OF STUDENTS SUSPECTED OF HAVING DISABILITIES; AND THE DESIGN OF INDIVIDUALIZED EDUCATION PLANS FOR STUDENTS WHO QUALIFY FOR SPECIAL EDUCATION SERVICES.

SPED 5386  Strategic Reading and Language Instruction for Students with High-Incidence Disabilities  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE FOCUSES ON READING AND LANGUAGE STRATEGIES FOR TEACHING STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES, INCLUDING THOSE WHO ARE ENGLISH LEARNERS. IT IS DESIGNED TO GIVE STUDENTS AN OVERVIEW OF STRATEGIC READING AND WRITING INSTRUCTION. 

SPED 5387  Strategic Math and Content Area Instruction for Students with High-Incidence Disabilities  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE FOCUSES ON CONTENT-AREA STRATEGIES FOR TEACHING EXCEPTIONAL CHILDREN, INCLUDING THOSE WHO ARE ENGLISH LEARNERS.  IT IS DESIGNED TO GIVE STUDENTS AN OVERVIEW OF STRATEGIC MATHEMATICS AND CONTENT AREA INSTRUCTION.

SPED 5388  CURRENT ISSUES IN SPECIAL EDUC  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

ATION Addresses issues currently facing the special education area. The course will focus on the following topics: (1) law and litigation, (2) inclusion, (3) assessment and individualized educational plan (IEP) procedures, (4) classification and labeling, (5) collaboration and consultation, (6) transition, (7) vocational education, (8) parent involvement, and (9) other relevant cultural pluralistic issues.

SPED 5390  Professional Seminar  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

TOPICS IN SPECIAL EDUCATION VARY WITH PROFESSIONAL IDENTIFICATION OF PARTICIPANTS.

SPED 5397  Special Education Field Experience  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

A FIELD-BASED EXPERIENCE IN WHICH THE STUDENT WILL DEMONSTRATE COMPETENCIES TO DESIGN AND/OR IMPLEMENT IEP'S FOR STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES, INCLUDING THOSE WHO ARE ENGLISH LEARNERS.  GRADE ASSIGNED WILL BE "CREDIT" (CR) OR "NO CREDIT" (NC).

Prerequisite: SPED 5315 and (SPED 5380, 5320 and 5387).

SPED 5399  Individualized Programs for Students with Exceptionalities: Practicum  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

FIELD-BASED PRACTICUM BASED ON TEXAS EDUCATIONAL DIAGNOSTICIAN STANDARDS.  THIS COURSE FOCUSES ON OPPORTUNITY TO GAIN EXTENSIVE FIELD EXPERIENCE IN THE ADMINISTRATION AND INTERPRETATION OF ASSESSMENT INSTRUMENTS AND THE DEVELOPMENT OF INDIVIDUALIZED EDUCATION PROGRAMS.  INSTRUCTOR'S  PERMISSION REQUIRED.

Prerequisite: (CNEP 5371, 5374, SPED 5310, 5315 and 5387).

SPED 5696  Directed individual Study  
1-6 Semester Credit Hours  

MAY BE REPEATED WHEN TOPICS VARY.

SPED 6315  Individuals with Exceptionalities in the Schools  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

BASIC INFORMATION AND SKILLS FOR WORKING WITH INDIVIDUALS WITH EXCEPTIONALITIES IN A VARIETY OF SETTINGS. INCLUDES CURRENT TRENDS, ISSUES AND RESEARCH PERTAINING TO INDIVIDUALS WITH DISABILITIES. STUDENTS WHO HAVE TAKEN SPED 5315 MAY NOT ENROLL IN SPED 6315.

SPED 6319  Introduction to Low-Incidence Disabilities  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE INTRODUCES STUDENTS TO THE FIELD OF LOW-INCIDENCE DISABILITIES. STUDENTS WILL EXPLORE FOUNDATIONAL CONCEPTS INCLUDING: DEFINITIONS AND ETIOLOGY, FAMILY AND PROFESSIONAL PARTNERSHIPS, SPECIAL EDUCATION LAW, AND STANDARDS BASED INDIVIDUALIZED EDUCATION PROGRAM (IEPS).

SPED 6320  Applications of Learning Principles  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE PREPARES STUDENT(S) TO USE A VARIETY OF EVIDENCE-BASED APPROACHES TO INCREASE STUDENT LEARNING AND MINIMIZE DISRUPTIVE BEHAVIOR.

SPED 6321  Supporting Access for Students with Low-Incidence Disabilities  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE FOCUSES ON AREAS OF UNIVERSAL DESIGN, ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGY, AND RESOURCES THAT SUPPORT THE LEARNING AND INDEPENDENCE OF DIVERSE LEARNERS BOTH IN SCHOOL AND COMMUNITY SETTINGS. CLASS SESSIONS WILL BE HELD BOTH ON CAMPUS AND IN COMMUNITY SETTINGS.

SPED 6380  Behavior Intervention and Support for Students with Disabilities  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE WILL FOCUS ON CHARACTERISTICS AND CLASSIFICATIONS OF CHILDREN AND ADOLESCENTS WITH BEHAVIOR DISORDERS.  INTERVENTION ORIENTATIONS AND ASSOCIATED EDUCATION/TREATMENT APPROACHES FOR CHILDREN AND ADOLESCENTS WILL BE EXPLAINED.

SPED 6385  English Learners and Special Education  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THE PHILOSOPHICAL AND LEGAL FOUNDATIONS OF BILINGUAL SPECIAL EDUCATION AND BILINGUAL EDUCATION IN THE UNITED STATES WILL BE EXAMINED.  BILINGUAL SPECIAL EDUCATION AND BILINGUAL EDUCATION WILL BE DEFINED AND THE RATIONALE FOR THESE PROGRAMS WILL ALSO BE EXPLAINED.  MOREOVER, LANGUAGE MINORITY EDUCATION PROGRAM MODELS WILL BE DESCRIBED AND ASPECTS ASSOCIATED WITH BILINGUALISM WILL BE DISCUSSED.  SPECIAL EMPHASIS WILL BE PLACED ON A PERUSAL OF SCHOOL-COMMUNITY DYNAMICS RELEVANT TO LANGUAGE MINORITY SPECIAL EDUCATION.

SPED 6386  Strategic Reading and Language Instruction for Students with High-Incidence Disabilities  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE FOCUSES ON READING AND LANGUAGE STRATEGIES FOR TEACHING EXCEPTIONAL CHILDREN, INCLUDING THOSE WHO ARE ENGLISH LEARNERS.  IT IS DESIGNED TO GIVE STUDENTS AN OVERVIEW OF STRATEGIC READING AND WRITING INSTRUCTION.

SPED 6387  Strategic Math and Content Area Instruction for Students with High-incidence Disabilities  
3 Semester Credit Hours (3 Lecture Hours)  

THIS COURSE FOCUSES ON CONTENT-AREA STRATEGIES FOR TEACHING EXCEPTIONAL CHILDREN, INCLUDING THOSE WHO ARE ENGLISH LEARNERS.  IT IS DESIGNED TO GIVE STUDENTS AN OVERVIEW OF STRATEGIC MATHEMATICS AND CONTENT AREA INSTRUCTION.