University of Vermont

College of
Education and Social Services

Special Education Programs

Untitled Document

Undergraduate Special Education Minor

Our Purpose

The College of Education and Social Services (CESS) offers a university-wide minor in Special Education that supports future educators and other interested students in developing their skills in working with students with disabilities in grades Kindergarten through 12. Our goal is to provide future educators with knowledge and skills in working with students, families, teachers, administrators, related service providers, human service providers, and employers to support students with the full range of disabilities. We seek to promote the success of all K – 12 students through implementing evidence-based practices in inclusive settings, promoting high achievement for all students, and creating a collaborative, strengths-based climate in which students with disabilities, their families, and school staff feel cared for, respected, and supported. The Special Education Program is dedicated to the belief that all students have worth and dignity and that schools and communities can create environments in which all students achieve high standards and personal excellence.

Program of Study

The Special Education minor offers an 18-credit non-endorsement option and a 21-credit dual endorsement option.

Non-endorsement option

The 18-hour non-endorsement minor is a university-wide minor that is most often accessed by students who wish to learn more about supporting and teaching K – 12 students with disabilities in inclusive classroom and community settings. The minor attracts students who want to enhance their overall skills in teaching and/or who are considering a career in special education, related services, or other professions involving children and youth with disabilities. The non-endorsement minor includes core and elective courses focused on foundations of special education, assessment practices, communication sciences, disability studies, and evidence-based methods for promoting academic achievement and positive behavior for students with disabilities. Students who complete the minor may also use the coursework as a stepping stone to applying for a one-year accelerated Master’s program in special education.

Dual Endorsement Option

The 21 credit-hour dual endorsement option allows future K – 12 teachers to complete teacher licensure in their chosen area (e.g., Elementary Education, Middle Level Education, Secondary Education, Art Education, Music Education) along with endorsement as a Special Educator for students in corresponding age levels (i.e., K – 8 or 7 – 21). Students complete core courses in assessment, applied behavior analysis, early or adolescent literacy, and research-based instructional methods for including students with disabilities in general education classrooms. Students also complete a 6-credit special education internship, generally in the same school where they complete student teaching.

Applying to the Undergraduate Special Education Minor

Students interested in the Special Education Minor need to complete EDSP 005 with a GPA of at least 3.0, and be in good standing academically at the time of the application. Applications are due November 1 and March 15 of each year. There are a limited number of spaces in the minor program, and preference is given to CESS students.

Students interested in the Dual Endorsement option must be enrolled in CESS in a teacher licensure program. These students complete a second application process during their Junior year to determine acceptance into the 6-credit special education internship.

For more information on the application process, please contact us: spedminor@uvm.edu or (802) 656-3468.

For general information on the program, please contact Katharine Shepherd (Program Coordinator) or George Salembier (Department Chair):

Add a link to the application forms here.

Program Features

The Special Education Program is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP, formerly known as NCATE).

In addition to the undergraduate Special Education Minor, we offer a graduate program in Special Education.

Click here to learn more about our M.Ed. program and the accelerated M.Ed. option for students who have completed the Special Education Minor.

Our Faculty

Our faculty are experienced special educators whose research contributes to the identification and use of evidence-based practices in special education and informs our curriculum and teaching methods. Click here to link to our faculty profiles:

What Students Are Saying

Here’s what students are saying about our Special Education Minor and Dual Endorsement Programs:

  • I felt so connected to my special education professors. It takes a certain kind of person to do this work and the special education professors exemplified that.
  • I loved the internship. It felt like such an authentic experience and gave me an incredible perspective on both general and special education. I felt so valued and appreciated —people would thank us every day for what we were doing.
  • A few years into my teaching career, my mentor teacher from studentteaching still plays an integral role in my professional life. Whether itis integrating something she taught me into my classroom or the impact she
    had on my teaching style, she influenced me in ways I never could have imagined.
  • The dual endorsement program at UVM provided me with the foundation to be a successful elementary/special educator. I have been teaching for 3 years and not a day goes by that I don't utilize something I learned from the hands-on, research-based and practical experiences from the dual endorsement program.

Last modified May 15 2014 11:22 AM