Special Education Initial Certification Graduate Program

Applicants seeking admission to a master's degree program must satisfy the general admission requirements for the School of Graduate Studies and the Special Education Program. The following criteria are required:

  • A one-page, handwritten letter of intent stating professional background, experience and rationale for wanting to be admitted to the department
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • A resume
  • An official transcript(s)
  • An interview with the chair or program advisor
  • A minimum undergraduate GPA of at least a 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. Students with a GPA of 2.7 – 2.99 will be considered for provisional acceptance. (No Cs may be earned during a probationary period.)

The College of Education requires up-to-date documentation on file in the Department of Exceptionality Programs Office of all clearances (i.e., criminal record, child abuse and FBI), TB results and liability insurance coverage prior to enrollment in a course(s).


Students must complete the criteria listed in the Teacher Education - Special Education Initial Program packet prior to the completion of 24 graduate credits. Required GPA, child abuse, FBI and criminal clearances, TB results and liability insurance coverage is described within the PRP 3810 - Admission, Monitoring and Exit Procedures for Teacher Education Initial Certification Programs and the program of study packet.

Some requirements must be completed before course work can be initiated (e.g., all clearances, TB results and liability insurance coverage). See Initial Teacher Certification Graduate Program Packet.

Certification and Graduation Requirements

Students may complete certification course work to access teacher certification prior to completion of the M.Ed. Some pre-requisite courses or their equivalents are required. A diversity experience (see packet) is also required for the completion of the program. The complete requirement of courses is listed below.

Initial Certificate Program Worksheet

Pre-certification Requirements

Completion of the following undergraduate courses/equivalents is required.

    SPECED 101/516 Intro to Individuals with Exceptionalities/Orientation to Exceptionalities
    SPECED 202 Technology for Individuals with Disabilities/may substitute UG Education Technology Equivalent
    PROFSTUD 494/594 ELL Strategies/Methods OR AUDSLP 432/532 Communication/Education ELL

Core Course Requirements for M.Ed. (15 credits)

    SPECED 502 Principles of Special Education Law
    SPECED 547 Technology Applications for Individuals with Disabilities
    SPECED 565 Special Education Research Methods I
    SPECED 567 Special Education Research Methods II
    SPECED 575 Seminar in Current Issues in Special Education

Certification Courses (equivalent courses may be considered)

    ELEMED 526 Methods/Materials in Science and Math
    ELEMED 532 Fine Arts/Play in the Early Childhood Education Classroom
    ELEMED 537 Methods/Materials in Language Arts/Social Studies
    READING 540 Introduction to the Teaching of Reading
    SPECED 506 Introduction to Early Intervention
    SPECED 517 Foundations of Behavior Intervention and Support
    SPECED 530 Effective Instructional Practices for Students with Moderate/Severe Disabilities
    SPECED 533 Literacy Instruction for Students with Disabilities
    SPECED 544 Academic Assessment for Instruction
    SPECED 550 Effective Instructional Practices for Students with Mild Disabilities PK-8
    SPECED 557 Linking Assessment and Instruction
    SPECED 558 Methods of Instruction
    SPECED 588/589/SPECED 561 Student Teaching/Seminar

Note: PROFSTUD 500 Graduate Professional Seminar is required at the beginning of any COE Graduate Program of Study (0 credits; no fee).

Please contact Alma George, secretary, Department of Exceptionality Programs at 570-389-4074 for more information.

Important note regarding out-of-state licensure/certification:

Bloomsburg University is approved to offer Education programs that lead to certification in Pennsylvania. While we regularly monitor licensure/certification laws in each state, state requirements are subject to change without notice. If you are interested in certification outside of Pennsylvania, we encourage you to contact the appropriate state licensing agency to seek guidance and verify requirements before beginning a program and during your program of study. Please visit http://intranet.bloomu.edu/state-authorization and https://www2.ed.gov/about/contacts/state/index.html for more information. If you are planning to teach in New Jersey, please note that you may be required to complete the edTPA, a performance based assessment. It is strongly recommended that you contact the school district(s) of interest and the New Jersey Department of Education for more information specific to New Jersey.