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About the Special Education & Reading Specialist Program

Mission Statement for the Special Education & Reading Specialist Program

The mission of the Special Education and Reading Specialist Program is to prepare effective educators who develop an in-depth understanding of special education and literacy in order to be able to:

    (Special Education focus)

  1. Provide instruction for K-8 students with disabilities
  2. Be knowledgeable about special education law
  3. Maintain a commitment to making informed theoretical and practical decisions related to special education

  4. (Reading Specialist focus)

  5. Enhance literacy learning in the classroom
  6. Be a literacy leader among their peers and
  7. Maintain a commitment to making informed theoretical and practical literacy decisions in their work with students, teachers, administrators, families and the community.

The Special Education & Reading Specialist Program is designed to develop the requisite knowledge and appropriate skills to work with students with disabilities in K-8.

The program is particularly designed for those who seek to hold the master’s degree, reading specialist certificate and/or the special education certificate. The reading specialist may: 1) work directly or indirectly with students in elementary through developmental reading at the college level who have not thrived with general classroom instruction and/or, 2) work in the capacity of resource teacher and curriculum adviser and/or, 3) work with teachers, administrators, and other professionals as a literacy coach, supervisor, or professional developer to enhance and coordinate the total reading program in a school or district.

Reading courses examine the current reading research and psycholinguistic contributions to literacy and mediate these new directions in the light of the practical and proven. The program reflects the recommendations of the International Reading Association, the National Council of Teachers of English, and is approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

Pennsylvania requires PRAXIS Examinations for certification.

Those seeking certification in Special Education will be certified in PreK-8 and have the capability of working with individuals who have a documented disability in the following areas:

  • Learning Disability
  • Intellectual Disability
  • Communication Disorders
  • Emotional and Behavioral Disorders
  • Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder
  • Multiple Disabilities
  • Autism
  • Traumatic Brain Injury
  • Physical Disabilities and Other Health Improvements
  • Hearing Loss
  • Visual Impairment