SPED-230 : Foundations of Special Education

Academic Level:
Special Education
Special Education

This course serves as an introduction to the field of special education. Included among the topics addressed are the history of special education; its legal and legislative foundation; and the purpose of the Individual Education Plan (IEP), its development and requirements for implementation. A focus on the nature and causes of disabilities will give students an overview of the needs of exceptional children. The entire range of disabilities requiring special education intervention will be addressed. This includes children with hearing losses; visual problems; speech disorders; attention deficit; traumatic brain injury; autism; emotional, behavioral, and social disorders; mental retardation; learning disabilities; physical disabilities; and giftedness. Current trends will focus on minority representation, inclusion, and standards. Models for collaboration including the multidisciplinary team and trans-disciplinary approaches for effective communication with family and among related service providers will be addressed. Lastly, definitions, prevalence, causes, assessment, characteristics, and educational considerations for several exceptionalities will be reviewed. This course is designed to nurture in students a critical stance towards research, theory, and practice. The goal is that students become educated consumers of the special education knowledge base. For this purpose, the prevailing as well as alternative perspectives on topics will be reviewed. In addition, cultural diversity and social justice will be emphasized throughout the course. 3 credits