Special Education Certificate

Elisa Jamgochian, Program Coordinator
340 HEDCO Education Building

The department offers a certificate in special education for students who are interested in a career in public education, human services and social work, or a related field. This certificate is designed to provide foundational knowledge about the field of special education and would benefit students interested in a career in supporting students with disabilities in public school, agency, or community settings. The certificate has an emphasis on developing skills and knowledge in three areas: foundations of disability, instructional methods for students with disabilities, and behavioral and social emotional supports for students with disabilities.

The certificate is available to all students interested in working with students and families with disabilities but does not replace formal teacher licensure programs that are available through graduate study at the University of Oregon. Completion of the certificate will, however, waive some of the prerequisites for students who enter the graduate special education program, providing certificate recipients an option for an accelerated pathway to licensure in special education and a master's degree.

Program Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this program, students will be able to:

  • Create and contribute to safe, respectful, and productive learning environments for individuals with exceptionalities through the use of effective routines and procedures and use a range of preventive and responsive practices to support social, emotional and educational well-being (CEC Initial Prep. Sub-standard 6.1), as measured by a grade of B- or better in SPED 426/526 Behavior and Classroom Management.
  • Consider individual abilities, interests, learning environments, and cultural and linguistic factors in the selection, development, and adaptation of learning experiences for individuals with exceptionalities (CEC Sub-standard 5.1), as measured by grades of B- or better in all instructional methods courses.

Special Education Certificate Requirements

The certificate requires 31 400-level course credits.

Courses must be taken for a letter grade unless only offered pass/no pass. Graded courses must be passed with a grade of B– or better so that students are sufficiently prepared to be successful in completing the required practicum experience. If a student receives a grade lower than a B–, the certificate advisor and clinical supervisor will meet to determine if the student has the skills and knowledge to complete the required practicum experience, Terminal Project (SPED 409).

Students completing this certificate cannot also obtain the minor in special education.

Admissions and Application

Before applying to the certificate program, students must complete at least 1 credit of Practicum: [Topic] (SPED 406) (or have a Petition to Waiver form on file with the minor coordinator), Seminar: [Topic] (SPED 407), and Foundations of Disability I (SPED 411) with a minimum grade of B– or P.

Applications are available online. Students are asked to submit a professional goal statement, character questionnaire, and two letters of recommendation along with their application. An initial interview and advising meeting with the program coordinator is also required. Admitted students must have a signed program plan and verification of a background check from the Teacher Standards and Practices Commission on file with the coordinator.