Preparing to teach children and adolescents with special needs is an ambitious undertaking. At Saint Joseph’s University, we recognize that you may have questions about our Special Education programs, as well as the online learning experience. These answers have been compiled to provide you with insights to the most common questions from prospective students.
Do I need a background or experience in special education for this program?
No, the program is designed for general education teachers who wish to become special education teachers or who want to better serve special needs students in general classrooms.
What is the education theory behind this program?
The online master’s in special education is built on the foundation of the Response to Instruction and Intervention (RtII) program, a research-based strategy for student achievement that is implemented with success on a daily basis in school districts across the country.
Does this program provide certification?
Yes, graduates are eligible to receive Special Education certification in Pennsylvania, with reciprocity in many other states.
Where can I learn more about what’s going on in special education?
The Resources page offers articles about industry trends and innovation to keep you up to date.
Does this concentration provide certification?
No, it provides the course work needed to sit for the BCBA® certification exam. Certification is provided by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board® after meeting their requirements.
Is there a practicum?
There is no practicum as part of the program. However, students must complete field experience in order to sit for the certification exam.
Are there any entrance exams required for this concentration?
No entrance exams are required.
Are there any prerequisites for this concentration?
No, however, students are advised to know the requirements to become a Board Certified Behavior Analyst. https://bacb.com/become-credentialed
Autism Spectrum Disorder Track
What is the professional significance of an endorsement in Autism Spectrum Disorders?
An endorsement is focus area in teaching where a full certification does not exist. Not all special education programs offer a recognized endorsement in this area. In fact, Saint Joseph’s University is one of a select few that have received this distinct designation from the Pennsylvania Department of Education. This endorsement may not apply to other states.
How many courses does the track consist of?
The ASD track consists of four courses.
What age ranges will I be prepared to work with after taking this track?
The ASD track prepares you to work with children and adults of all ages.
Are the add-on certifications available as stand-alone programs?
Yes, all three add-on certifications are also available as stand-alone programs.
What is the career outlook with this endorsement?
You can put your skills to work in various capacities, including as a special education teacher, a special education specialist, or a rehabilitation counselor. For more career information about careers in this field, go to the special education careers page.
Wilson Reading System® Track
Is this track accredited?
The Wilson Reading System® is endorsed by the Council of Administrators of Special Education (CASE) and is used extensively in public and private school districts throughout the United States.
How many courses does it require?
The track requires four courses.
Is the track available as a stand-alone program?
Yes, we offer the program as graduate certificate.
What is the professional significance of the track/certificate?
Upon completion of the WRS certification program or the track, you will be eligible for WRS Level 1 certification and be included in Wilson’s tutor referral service. Being a WRS Level 1 Certified Teacher can open up additional career opportunities in teaching as a Reading Specialist, Reading Therapist or Private Literacy Coach.
For more information about resources available to you as a student in the online Master of Science in Education - Special Education, call (866) 758-7670 or request more information below.