Education PK-4 and Special Education Dual Major

The dual major prepares teachers for teaching in Elementary PK4 and Special Education PK12 grades. The Elementary Education PK4 major leading to Level 1 Instructional Teaching Licensure is an accredited program approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) and is aligned with the requirements for teacher certification in PK4. Students will also engage with content and pedagogical approaches relevant to grades 5 and 6 which enables them to add certification to teach grades 5 and 6 with additional testing. Throughout the Elementary Education PK4 program,  students integrate theory with practice through coursework and field experiences in PK4 classrooms. 

Students in the PK4 program have the option to add the Special Education PK12 major to their program of study. The Special Education PK12 program leading to Level 1 Instructional Teaching Licensure is aligned with the Pennsylvania Department of Education requirements for teacher certification for Special Education PK12 grades and for serving the needs of learners of all abilities. In all our teacher preparation programs leading to Level 1 Instructional Teaching Licensure, in-class coursework is combined with weekly field experiences in local PK12 classrooms starting with the first semester of study to give students hands-on experience for teaching young learners. 

The undergraduate Teacher Education and Special Education programs are built upon a strong liberal arts curriculum provided through the General Education Program (GEP) at Saint Joseph’s University. This enables students to integrate their understanding of interdisciplinary content with an understanding of developmentally appropriate pedagogy. 

Special Education PK-12 must be a double major with Elementary PK-4.

Goal 1: Students will demonstrate knowledge of PK-12 learner development and curricular content

Outcome 1.1: The student will be able to identify individual differences and to respond to the needs of individuals with exceptionalities.

Outcome 1.2: The student will be able to use general and specialized content knowledge for teaching across curricular content areas to individualize learning for individuals with exceptionalities.

Goal 2: Students will demonstrate the ability to create positive PK-12 learning environments

Outcome 2.1: The student will demonstrate the ability to use motivational and instructional interventions to teach individuals with exceptionalities how to adapt to different environments.

Outcome 2.2: The student will demonstrate an understanding of ways to collaborate with general educators and other colleagues to create safe, inclusive, culturally responsive learning environments to engage individuals with exceptionalities in meaningful learning activities and social interactions.

Goal 3: Students will demonstrate the use of assessment for diagnosis and progress monitoring

Outcome 3.1: The student will be able to select and use technically sound formal and informal assessments that minimize bias.

Outcome 3.2: The student will assess performance and provide feedback.

Goal 4: Students will demonstrate knowledge of research-based instructional planning and strategies

Outcome 4.1: The student will be able to identify an individual’s abilities, interests, learning environments, and cultural and linguistic factors in the selection, development, and adaptation of learning experiences for individuals with exceptionalities.

Outcome 4.2: The student will be able to use strategies and technology to enhance language development and communication skills of individuals with exceptionalities.

Goal 5: Students will demonstrate knowledge of professional ethical practice

Outcome 5.1: The student will demonstrate an understanding that diversity is a part of families, cultures, and schools, and that complex human issues can interact with the delivery of special education services.

Outcome 5.2: The student will demonstrated the ability to develop a variety of education and transition plans for individual with exceptionalities across a wide range of settings and different learning experiences in collaboration with individuals, families and teams.

The traditional undergraduate programs includes a minimum of 120 credits distributed across three components: A General Education component divided into Signature Courses, Variable Courses, and an Integrative Learning requirement; a Major and Divisional component; and Free Electives. In addition to course requirements as specified in each area, students must complete one certified course in each of the following overlay areas1:

  1. Diversity, Globalization or Non-western Area Studies,
  2. Ethics Intensive
  3. Writing Intensive, and
  4. Diversity

Overlay requirements are part of the 120 credit requirements

General Education Signature Courses

See this page about Signature courses

General Education Variable Courses

See this page about Variable courses. Six to Nine courses

General Education Overlays

See this page about Overlays.

Diversity Intensive3
Schools in Society w/ Field
Language and Culture w/ Field
Writing Intensive3
Cognition & Learning w/ Field
Ethics Intensive3
Intro to Special Edu w/Field
Total Hours9

General Education Integrative Learning Component

See this page about Integrative Learning Component. Three courses:

HIS 201U.S. History to 18773
or HIS 202 U.S. History since 1865
MAT 111The Mathematics of Patterns3
or MAT 118 Introduction to Statistics
SPE 160Intro to Special Edu w/Field3
Total Hours9

Major Requirements

 (Special Education PK-12 must be a double major with Elementary PK-4)

EDU 121Child Development3
EDU 150Schools in Society w/ Field3
EDU 151Cognition & Learning w/ Field3
EDU 155Found of Early Child w/ Field3
EDU 231Assessment and Evaluation3
EDU 232Literacy/Literature I w/ Field3
EDU 240Literacy/Literature II w/Field3
EDU 246Language and Culture w/ Field3
EDU 265Teaching Math in PK2 w/ Field3
EDU 362Soc Stud Thru Arts PK4 w/Field3
EDU 366Teaching Math Gr. 3-6 w/Field3
EDU 498Dual Major Student Teaching6
SPE 160Intro to Special Edu w/Field3
SPE 205Inclusive Classrooms w/ Field3
SPE 320Progress Monitoring w/ Field3
SPE 329High Incid Disabil w/Field3
SPE 339Low Incid Disabil w/Field3
SPE 349Literacy Intervention w/Field3
SPE 359Math & Content Interv w/Field3
EDU 363Science Methods PK-4 w/ Field3
SPE 369Emot-Beh'l Disabil w/Field3
SPE 379Fam School & Comm:Diverse Soc3
SPE 495Special Ed. Student Teaching6
Total Hours75