Special Education, Minor

Program Code: SPLED_UMNR

Program Description

This minor provides undergraduate students with the opportunity for concentrated work in instructional practices to support the achievement of students with special education needs in general education classrooms. Students will learn strategies for creating a positive classroom environment that will promote student growth and achievement, effective instructional practices for students with special education needs, and techniques for assessing the academic progress of students. The targeted instructional practices have been demonstrated to be effective both with students with and those without special education needs.

The minor in Special Education responds to the growing need to provide appropriate instructional services to students with special education needs in general education classrooms.

What is Special Education?

Our goal is an educational system in which teachers, families, and communities share responsibility and commitment for preparing students to live independent, productive, and personally satisfying lives to the fullest extent possible. This goal includes: Having a positive influence on the inclusion of persons who are culturally, physically or intellectually diverse in the mainstream of American life; Providing national leadership in the development of new knowledge in special education; Preparing teachers to use effective practices in special education. The SPLED minor provides coursework on instructional practices to support the achievement of students with disabilities and is open to all undergraduate students.

You Might Like This Program If...

  • You are interested in learning instructional strategies and techniques to improve educational, vocational, and societal outcomes for people with disabilities.
  • You enjoy designing educational programs that address the interests and aspirations of persons with a wide range of abilities and experiences.
  • You appreciate that we are most effective as teachers when we create educational experiences that incorporate student interests and address outcomes valued by the learner.

Program Requirements

Requirement Credits
Requirements for the Minor 24

Requirements for the Minor

A grade of C or better is required for all courses in the minor, as specified by Senate Policy 59-10. In addition, at least six credits of the minor must be unique from the prescribed courses required by a student's major(s).

Prescribed Courses
Prescribed Courses: Require a grade of C or better
EDPSY 14Learning and Instruction Keystone/General Education Course3
SPLED 400Inclusive Special Ed Foundations: Legal, Characteristics, Collaboration, Assessment, and Management4
SPLED 419Assistive Technology for General Education Teachers2
SPLED 461Introduction to Autism Spectrum Disorders: Issues and Concerns3
Additional Courses
Additional Courses: Require a grade of C or better
SPLED 403AEvidence-Based Instruction for Elementary Students with Disabilities in Reading, Math, and Writin3
or SPLED 403B Evidence-Based Methods for Teaching Secondary Students with Disabilities in Inclusive Settings
Select one of the following:3
Individual Differences and Education Keystone/General Education Course
Infant and Child Development Keystone/General Education Course
Adolescent Development Keystone/General Education Course
Select 6 credits of the following:6
Introduction to Communication Sciences and Disorders
American Sign Language I
Deaf Culture Keystone/General Education Course
Developmental Considerations in the Assessment and Treatment of Language Disorders
Introduction to Disability Culture Keystone/General Education Course
Children and Families in Rehabilitation Settings and Human Services
Inclusive Leisure Services Keystone/General Education Course

Academic Advising

The objectives of the university’s academic advising program are to help advisees identify and achieve their academic goals, to promote their intellectual discovery, and to encourage students to take advantage of both in-and out-of class educational opportunities in order that they become self-directed learners and decision makers.

Both advisers and advisees share responsibility for making the advising relationship succeed. By encouraging their advisees to become engaged in their education, to meet their educational goals, and to develop the habit of learning, advisers assume a significant educational role. The advisee's unit of enrollment will provide each advisee with a primary academic adviser, the information needed to plan the chosen program of study, and referrals to other specialized resources.


University Park and Berks

David McNaughton
125 CEDAR Building
University Park, PA 16802

Career Paths

The minor in Special Education enhances the education of students who anticipate working with people with disabilities as educators, speech language pathologists, and/or therapists. The minor will enhance graduate study preparation for many students interested in working with people in applied settings, as well as persons who wish to pursue certification as a special education teacher.


Education, speech language pathology, occupational therapy.

Opportunities for Graduate Studies

Students who complete the Special Education minor will complete coursework that will prepare them for graduate study in special education.



University Park and Berks

125 CEDAR Building
University Park, PA 16802