Special Education for Teacher Leaders, Learning and Behavior Disorders, Master of Arts in Education (0457)

SpecialEd3

http://www.wku.edu/ste/


Program Coordinator

Elizabeth G. Kirby, gail.kirby@wku.edu, (270) 745-3746

This program is designed to develop Teacher Leaders who can positively impact student learning in their classrooms and schools while serving students with Learning and Behavior Disorders. The MAE in Special Education: Learning and Behavior Disorders for Teacher Leaders is for those seeking advanced preparation or additional teacher certification. Advanced preparation programs include Professional Learning Communities in which students interact with other graduate student from various content areas and grade levels to discuss and work on real world challenges and promising practices they encounter in schools.

Students are expected to become competent in theory, research, and application of best teaching practices related to exceptional students with Learning and Behavior Disorders and exhibit appropriate teacher disposition behaviors as indicated by the College of Education and Behavioral Sciences Teacher Disposition Rating Form. All courses in the program carry critical performance indicators (CPIs) that must be completed before the final course grade will be recorded. Each course’s CPI becomes a part of the portfolio that is reviewed at the end of each semester for progress through the program. Note: To be eligible to be recommended for certification as a teacher for Exceptional Children (Grades P-12), Learning and Behavior Disorders, students must document that they have received passing score(s) on the required Praxis II examination(s).

Program Admission

The Exceptional Education program area offers courses and experiences for the advanced preparation of teachers holding Learning and Behavioral Disorders certification or another certifiable area.

  1. Applicants who are alumni of WKU teacher preparation programs must have or be eligible for a teaching certificate1 in LBD or another certifiable area, and must submit a copy of the certificate or statement of eligibility with their applications.
  2. Applicants who completed their initial certification program at another Kentucky institution with at least a 2.75 GPA2 for all previous coursework (undergraduate and graduate) must have or be eligible for a teaching certificate1 in LBD or another certifiable area, and must submit a copy of the certificate or statement of eligibility with their applications.
  3. Applicants who completed their initial certification program at an accredited out-of-state institution with at least a 2.75 GPA2 for all previous coursework (undergraduate and graduate) must have or be eligible for a teaching certificate1 in any certifiable area, and must submit a copy of the certificate or statement of eligibility with their applications.
1

Kentucky applicants whose certificates have expired may be admitted, but they may enroll for only six hours before they must apply to the EPSB for reissued certificates. After completion of six hours, a student admitted with an expired certificate must submit a copy of the re-issued certificate before being allowed to register for any additional courses. Applicants from out-of-state with expired certificates must complete the requirements for their respective states to renew their certificates and submit a copy of the reissued certificate.

2

Applicants with undergraduate degrees from all other accredited universities with a GPA lower than 2.75 (undergraduate and graduate) must achieve a GAP score of 550 or higher. The 550 score must include a GRE Verbal Reasoning score of 139 or higher, a GRE Quantitative score of 139 or higher, and a GRE Analytical Writing score of 3.5 or higher.  In addition, applicants must have a valid teaching certificate in any area. A copy of the teaching certificate must be submitted with the application.  GAP Score = GRE-V+GRE-Q plus undergraduate GPA multiplied by 100.

Application Deadline Notes

Along with all Graduate School admission deadlines  (see current graduate catalog), for priority consideration for admission to the Special Education for Teacher Leaders: Learning and Behavior Disorders program students should submit application materials to the Graduate School by the following dates:

  • Summer Admission: March 1
  • Fall Admission:  May 1
  • Spring Admission: November 1

Students submitting materials after the above deadline dates cannot be guaranteed that applications will be reviewed in time for admission for the upcoming term nor that course space will be available.

Please refer to the admission section of this catalog for Graduate School admission requirements.

Program Requirements (31-43 hours)

Required Courses
Professional Education Component
TCHL 500Foundations of Teacher Leadership3
TCHL 530Curriculum Development3
TCHL 545Classroom Instruction Strategies 13
TCHL 555School and Classroom Assessment 13
TCHL 559Action Research Design for Teacher Leaders1
TCHL 560Action Research Capstone for Teacher Leaders3
Mid-Point Assessment Requirements
To ensure that all students are proficient on Advanced Level Kentucky Teacher Standards, all Critical Performances associated with the TCHL courses must be completed, even if a candidate's program of studies does not include the courses. Except for TCHL 560, which should be taken toward the end of their program, candidates are encouraged to take only 6 hours in their Specialization Component before they have taken all TCHL courses and/or uploaded all Critical Performances and have achieved an average score of 3.0 on all performances and an average score of 3 on dispositions. Additional course work may be required based on the assessment results.
Required Courses
Core Specialization Component9-12
The Exceptional Child: Perspectives and Issues 2
Advanced Assessment Techniques
Special Education Law and Finance
Advanced Preparation Capstone for Special Education 3
Select one of three pathways based on prior certification12-15
1. Advanced Pathway (for students holding prior LBD certification) 12 hours
Required Course
Literacy Learning and Cultural Differences
Select 9 hours
Advanced Prescriptive Teaching 4
Behavior Problems of Childhood and Adolescence
Nature and Needs of Gifted, Creative, and Talented Students 4
Organizing Programs for Early Childhood Special Education
Leadership, Math and Technology Education
Survey of Educational Technology Practices
2. Certification Pathway (for students holding prior MSD certification) 12-15 hours
Select 12 hours
Advanced Prescriptive Teaching 4
Seminar: Curriculum for Learning and Behavior Disorders 4
Transition Services and Programs for Individuals with Disabilities 4
Literacy Learning and Cultural Differences 4
Nature and Needs of Gifted, Creative, and Talented Students 4
Foundations of Differentiated Instruction 4
Survey of Educational Technology Practices
Optional Elective: Teacher candidates may take SPED 534 upon advisor approval if appropriate for future educational and career goals. Taking SPED 534 will add an additional 3 hours to the program.
3. Certification Pathway (for students holding certification in any other area than Exceptional Education LBD or MSD) 15 hours
Required Courses
Transition Services and Programs for Individuals with Disabilities 4
Seminar: Contemporary Challenges in Special Education
Advanced Prescriptive Teaching 4
Families, Professionals and Exceptionalities 4
Seminar: Curriculum for Learning and Behavior Disorders 4
Total Hours31-43
1

TCHL 545 and TCHL 555 are required for all students or the student must pass proficiency evaluations for these courses. TCHL 500, TCHL 530, TCHL 559, and TCHL 560 are required for all students, and there are no proficiency evaluations that may be substituted for these courses.

2

Teacher candidates who enter the program without having completed an introductory exceptional education course must complete SPED 516 which will add an additional 3 hours to the required total program hours.

3

Students must submit a passing score on the Praxis II prior to enrollment in SPED 595 and should take SPED 595 as their final course in their program. Students currently teaching may use their current teaching position to meet this requirement if they are teaching in the subject area and grade level for which they are seeking certification. Students not currently teaching in a setting serving students with Learning and Behavior Disorders must complete an internship experience that consists of field experience hours in an approved setting serving students with disabilities consistent with the subject area and grade level for which they are seeking certification.

4

Field based requirement.

Program Completion Requirements

  • Students must successfully complete TCHL 560 (course grade of C or higher) and present research results in an approved venue.
  • Students must achieve a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA overall and in program course work.