William and Mary School of Education

Special Education - K-12 General Curriculum

Helping those who need it the most

The master's degree program in Special Education: General Curriculum (K-12) prepares special education teachers to work in a variety of educational settings. Graduates of this program will be qualified for licensure or endorsement to teach K-12 students with varying disabilities (e.g., learning disabilities, emotional disabilities, intellectual disabilities, attention deficit hyperactivity disorders, autism spectrum disorders) whose individual education programs are based on the general curriculum of the school district.

Students who have an undergraduate degree in arts and sciences, elementary education, or secondary education may apply to this program.  Successful applicants to this program will demonstrate the dispositions, experiences, and commitment to teaching students with disabilities in inclusive settings.

Candidates in the special education program enroll in two sections of student teaching and spend ten weeks student teaching at one level of education (elementary or middle/high school) and another eight weeks at a different level during a second semester to meet program requirements for K-12 internships.

Note: Applications for full-time study are considered with the January 15th application deadline date, and applications for part-time study are considered with the October 1 and January 15th deadline dates.

First Aid , CPR and AED Training Licensure Requirement

Students seeking licensure in Virginia will need to complete training in emergency first aid, cardiopulmonary resuscitation, and the use of automated external defibrillators.  Students will need to provide documentation of completion of this training, which is usually an official card.  Training courses are offered by the American Red Cross and the American Heart Association.

Special Education: General Curriculum (K-12) master's degree program requirements:
Foundations Courses
EDUC F11 Social, Philosophical, Cultural, And Historical Foundations of Education
EDUC F12 Advanced Educational Psychology & Development
EDUC F65 Research Methods In Education
Praxis I (or the equivalent) must be passed by the time students have completed 12 credit hours of coursework and prior to their first student teaching experience.
* If exempted from EDUC F11 for any reason, the student must notify the Office of Teacher Education and Professional Services in order to complete a required training module in Child Abuse Recognition and Reporting for Virginia licensure
Special Education Core
CRIN E07 Elementary Mathematics C&I   2

Elementary Mathematics C&I Practicum


CRIN X48 **Current Trends And Legal Issues In Educating Special Populations   3
CRIN X51 Language Development And Reading Instruction For Exceptional Students
CRIN R11 Reading and Writing Across the Curriculum
CRIN X52 Instructional Design/Methods For Students With Disabilities in the General Curriculum.
CRIN X86 Advanced Teaching Strategies For Exceptional Students With Learning Problems
CRIN X56 Classroom Management and Positive Behavorial Supports for Students with Disabilities
CRIN X59 Assessment for Instructional Design
CRIN X83 Individual Education Program Transition Planning & Services
CRIN X54 Characteristics and Adaptations for Students with Developmental Disabilities and Autism Spectrum Disorders
CRIN X53 Characteristics and Accommodations for Students With Mild/Moderate Disabilities in the General Curriculum
CRIN X16 Supervised Teaching in Special Education - Elementary Students with Disabilities in the General Curriculum
CRIN X17 Supervised Teaching in Special Education - Secondary Students with Disabilities in the General Curriculum
Culminating Experience
For students who have never taught full-time
EDUC P56 Consultation in the Schools
For students who are currently teaching full-time - Select one of the following:
EDUC P56 Consultation in the Schools
CRIN X87 Collaboration for Teaching and Learning
Total Hours 48-49
** If not completed at the baccalaureate or master's level within the past five years.
Additional Requirements:
  • (a) earn at least a B- grade in designated “methods” courses (CRIN X51, X56, and X52 or X86);
  • (b) complete all courses and requirements from previous semesters; and
  • (c) earn an overall GPA of at least 3.0 for completed courses prior to being allowed to register for and complete their second student teaching experience. Students are also required to successfully complete their program portfolio prior to graduation.
Licensure Testing Requirements

Students are required to achieve passing scores on assessments prescribed by the VA State Board of Education, both for program completion and for licensure.  To satisfy the state of Virginia's Testing Requirement in the Special Education General K-12 Initial Licensure Program, students must pass Praxis I, the Virginia Communication and Literacy Assessment (VCLA), and the Reading for Virginia Educators (RVE).

  • Praxis I is an academic skills assessment of mathematics, reading, and writing and  must be passed before student teaching.
  • VCLA is a test of communication, reading, and writing skills.
  • RVE is a test of  knowledge of reading instruction.

Students are responsible for providing copies of test results to the Office of Professional Services prior to student teaching (Praxis I) and prior to program completion (VCLA, and RVE).  Information about test registration is available in the Office of Teacher Education and Professional Services.

Meeting the Praxis I Requirement

There are three alternate means by which a teacher candidate may meet the Praxis I requirement in lieu of taking the full battery of Praxis I subtests (i.e., reading, writing, and math).

  • SAT Qualifying Score Option: A composite score of 1100 on the SAT, taken after April 1, 1995, with at least a 530 on the critical reading and a 530 on the mathematics tests or a score of 1000 on the SAT, taken prior to April 1, 1995, with at least a 450 on the critical reading and a 510 on the mathematics tests may be used as a substitute for Praxis I.
  • ACT Qualifying Score Option: A composite score of 24 on the ACT may be substituted for Praxis I if taken after April 1, 1995, with the ACT mathematics score no less than 22 and the ACT English plus Reading scores no less than 46, or a composite score of 21 may be substituted, if taken prior to April 1, 1995, with the ACT mathematics score no less than 21 and the ACT English plus Reading scores no less than 37.
  • VCLA Qualifying Score combined with a Qualifying Score on the Mathematics Subtest of Praxis I or SAT or ACT:  A composite score of 470 on the VCLA with subtest scores of at least 235 on writing and 235 on reading may be combined with a qualifying score on the mathematics portion of the Praxis I mathematics subtest (minimum 178) or the SAT mathematics subtest (530 after April 1, 1995, or 510 prior to that date) or the ACT mathematics  subtest (22 after April 1, 1995, or 21 prior to that date).
Special Education General K-12 Curriculum Contact:

[[shdefu, Dr. Sharon deFur]]