The special education faculty at Indiana University South Bend is committed to preparing high quality teachers to serve students and families in our community. In order to be an effective special educator, students must understand the foundations of special education, serve as advocates for students and families, implement sound assessment and instructional practices, use technology to enhance learning, and participate in reflective activities. To this end, we have recently designed a new special education program to license students at the undergraduate level in mild interventions and at the graduate level in mild and intense interventions. At the undergraduate level, students will major in elementary or secondary education and complete a series of courses that will also license them in mild interventions. At the graduate level, the required coursework can lead to a Master of Science degree in Special Education.
The course sequence for mild interventions is designed to prepare future special educators to work with students with special needs who participate in the general education curriculum and require mild levels of support or interventions to be successful. We anticipate that these future teachers will work with students from high incidence disability categories including learning disabilities, mild mental disabilities, and emotional disabilities. Students completing the sequence at the graduate level for the intense interventions license will be prepared to work with students from a variety of low incidence categories.
Both the undergraduate and graduate programs will be performance-based and students’ progress in acquiring knowledge, demonstrating skills, and exhibiting appropriate dispositions are assessed throughout their teacher education programs. Student are required to assemble an electronic portfolio which will be reviewed by faculty periodically.