Online Special Education Programs
Individuals who graduate with a certificate or degree in special education may seek employment in private or public schools, childcare centers, residential homes, private religious schools, or hospitals. Programs may provide students with the appropriate training and knowledge to work as a special needs teacher, behavioral specialist, speech and audio therapist, autistic teacher, or resource room special education teacher.
Available Degree Levels
- Certificate: One to two years to complete
- Associate Degree: Two years to complete
- Bachelor’s Degree: Four years to complete
- Master’s Degree: One to two years to complete
- Doctoral Degree: Three to five years to complete
Online certificate programs in special education are designed to provide teachers who work in traditional classroom settings the necessary skills to work with special needs students. Coursework may include assessment and evaluation of exceptional learners, behavior and classroom management for students with special needs, and issues in special education.
Associate-level programs in special education typically provide students with comprehensive training through general education courses, professional education classes, and coursework within the special education field. Coursework for these programs may include diversity of schools and society, educational psychology, introduction to special education, language development, and technology for educators.
Online bachelor’s programs in special education teach students the best practices for working with individuals with mild to moderate disabilities. These programs may have the option for students to earn an education certification, therefore becoming appropriately qualified to work in K-12 settings. Coursework for these programs may include foundations of special education, classroom management and motivation, effective teaching practices, and educational psychology.
Master’s-level programs in special education provide students extensive practical experience through observation, supervised practice, discussion, and research in special education settings. These programs typically provide students with in-depth training in assessment, evaluation and management practices, professional planning and development, research methods, and instruction problems and design. Coursework may include problems in the education of the emotionally disturbed, research in special education, and supervision of education programs for exceptional children.
Doctoral-level programs in special education are geared towards individuals who would like to work in leadership positions, educating others on all aspects of special education. These programs may provide students with the practical skills and knowledge to work with other educators in special needs settings, research special education, work on the continuous development of special education law and policy, and contribute to others’ understanding of the field in a multitude of settings. Individuals may become versed in supervision, technology, grant writing, and individualized instruction as they relate to special education.
Special education programs may provide individuals the necessary skills to work in private, public or charter schools, childcare centers, or private religious and secular schools with students who have some level of learning, mental, emotional, or physical disabilities. Individuals who have earned a certificate or degree in special education may have learned how to assess students’ knowledge and skills, develop education programs, work with other teachers to ensure the needs of special education students are being met, adapt lessons, and work closely with special needs students.
Possible career fields include:
- Special Needs Teacher
- Behavioral Specialist
- Speech and Audio Therapist
- Autistic Teacher
- Resource Room Special Education Teacher