Welcome to Special Education! The Special Education Program at Grace College is designed for those who are passionate about serving students with disabilities in an educational context.
The Teaching All Learners major is a dual licensure in elementary education and mild intervention that meets the state of Indiana’s exceptional needs licensure requirements to teach students needing mild interventions, including those with learning disabilities, emotional and behavioral disorders, mild cognitive disabilities, autism and ADHD at the elementary level (grades K-6). Our Special Education Program is dedicated to equipping candidates in the dispositions, knowledge and skills needed to be effective in the inclusive classroom. Graduates of the program will be teachers of character who are competent in the profession and have a heart for service.
The program includes a balance of content and methods courses focused on current, research-based practices and methodology. In addition to campus-based coursework, candidates participate in over 100 hours of field experience in local K-6 classrooms.
Faculty teaching in this program include professors who are highly skilled and trained in the area of elementary and special education as well as practicing classroom teachers and administrators. This combination provides for the perfect blend of theory and applied practice. Each faculty member brings unique perspectives and expertise to the major. Students in the major are encouraged to explore the many career options available to professionals both in the elementary and special education field. These careers might include elementary classroom teacher, elementary special education teacher, special education consultant or resource room teacher. Having a dual licensure also prepares the candidate for leadership opportunities within a career and maximizes future professional development. Candidates have the opportunity to broaden the developmental level of their mild intervention licensing to P-12 with additional coursework and field experience.
Some specific highlights of the program include opportunities to collaborate with general education teachers, experiences in a variety of educational settings, and the option to student teach overseas. Grace College is proud to have an active chapter of the Council for Exceptional Children. Through this student chapter, candidates are provided opportunities for leadership, professional development and community service.
The Grace College Special Education Program recently received National Recognition by The Council for Exceptional Children.
Examples of courses in this major:
An introduction to the profession of teaching. Learning experiences are structured both in and out of the classroom with the purpose of assisting the college student in making career decisions relative to this profession such as to teach or not, at which level, and in which subject area. Students observe in local schools. Three hours. A grade of "B-" or better is required to reach candidacy status.
A study of the learner at all grade levels and the many factors affecting learning, which include, but are not limited to, theories of learning, environment, heredity, cultural impact, discipline, classroom management, exceptionalities and development. The measurement of academic aptitude and achievement is also covered. Practical application is stressed. Three hours. Prerequisite: SED 1000
This course is designed to develop an understanding of children with exceptionalities in an educational setting. It provides an introduction to the field of special education with particular focus on inclusive practices. Three hours. Prerequisite: SED 1000
An introductory study of historical, political, and socio-cultural influences in special education. Students will develop an understanding of the implications of special education policy for learners with exceptional needs. This course also includes an in-depth study of the etiology and characteristics of high-incidence disabilities, inlcuding learning disabilities, behavioral disorders, emotional disabilities and mild cognitive disabilities. Also addressed are identification and eligibility considerations in special education. Practices covered include least restrictive environment, response to intervention and the IEP process. Three hours. Prerequisite: SED 2400
This course focuses on providing mild intervention to the K-6 student with learning and behavioral needs. This includes educational organization, curricular modifications and research-based instructional strategies. Students learn to individualize instruction based on the individualized education plan. Students have opportunity to apply course knowledge through applied learning experiences. Three hours. Prerequisite: SED 2410
This course deals with issues of definition, incidence and prevalence of emotional and behavioral disabilities. Students will learn how to implement positive behavior supports and interventions to improve behaviors and socialization. Students apply knowledge through a behavior change project in an applied learning experience. Three hours. Prerequisite: SED 2420
A study of the integration of special education in the regular classroom setting. Service delivery models for students with special needs are identified and explored. Importance is placed on collaborative procedures, special services and instructional modifications that regular and special education teachers use to meet the learning needs of special needs students in regular education classes. Three hours. Prerequisite: SED 2420
Study of the principles and practices of diagnostic procedures in special education. Formal and informal assessments, standardized tests, test administration, test interpretation and summary writing in the academic areas of reading, math and written expression are examined. Utilizing assessment as a means for formulating educational goals and instructional objectives are explored. Three hours. Prerequisite: SED 2420
B.S. in Music Education: All area/All grade, Grace College; B.S. in Applied Music: Oboe Performance, Grace College; M.S. in Special Education, Indiana University, Ed.D. in Special Education, Regent University
Cheryl Bremer has served as a special educator at both the elementary and middle school levels. She earned the Outstanding Student Teacher Award at Grace College in 1992. In addition to her public school teaching experience, Bremer owned and operated an early childhood movement and music studio for eight years. Her research interests include special education recruitment and peer mediated instruction. She is department chair for Special Education for the School of Education, teaches courses in special education, and is the faculty sponsor for the student-led chapter of the Council for Exceptional Children.
B.S. in Elementary Education, Grace College; M.A. in Special Education, Indiana University at South Bend
Christina Teevan's experience in the field includes itinerant teacher of students with severe emotional disabilities, shifting to K-6 resource at the elementary level, fifth grade general education, and instruction at Grace College about all disability types. She has the most experience with students who have LD, MIMH, MOMH, other health impairments, severe emotional disabilities and autism spectrum disorder.
A.A. in Criminal Justice, Manchester College; B.A. in Social Work, Manchester College; M.S.W. in Clinical Social Work, Fordham University, New York City; M.S. in School Administration and Supervision, Indiana State University; Ed.S. in Educational Administration, Indiana State University
Tony England has been teaching classes in general and special education for the past 15 years. He has worked as a school social worker, principal and assistant director of special education. He is currently the director of special services for the Wabash-Miami Area Program for Exceptional Students. His interests focus on alternative and special education, specifically regarding students with emotional disabilities, autism or hearing impairments, as well as school leadership. He has presented at national and international conferences on the topics of alternative education, positive behavior intervention and support/school-wide discipline, crisis training, and the use of mental health services in public schools. England is currently a Ph.D. candidate at Indiana State University. He lives with his wife, Sara, and their three daughters near Warsaw.
Some of the positions you can obtain:
What others are saying:
When starting at Grace, I did not expect to go into Special Education. I can truly say that making the change to add Special Education to my degree was one of the best decisions of my life. The hands-on approach, small class sizes, and strong relationships with peers and professors made the process of earning my degree a fun and personal experience. Grace's Special Education Program equipped me not only for the logistical side of my career, but it also molded my self-awareness of difficulties and challenges that students who have mild disabilities face each and every day. I will be forever thankful for Grace College's Department of Education and their dedication to personally prepare future educators.
-Rachel Jensen, special education teacher, B.S. Elementary Education/Special Education dual licensure 2013
I have thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to work alongside Grace College in order to better prepare students for a long term career in special education. I have been impressed with both the professors and the students. Grace students come to my classroom with a strong foundation of curriculum planning and they are well-versed in the Indiana state standards. They have had experience with writing IEPs and lessons, assessing students, and completing evaluation reports. They possess the skills that are crucial in order to be successful. I alsways look forward to hosting Grace students in my classroom, whether it be for student teacher, observation, or practicum placements.
-Krista Polston, special education teacher
I feel very privileged to have earned my teaching degree from Grace College. They do a wonderful job preparing their students to enter into a teaching job. I personally felt that my time at Grace in the special education program was beneficial in preparing me for my own classroom. Dr. Bremer played a huge role in advising me on the current laws and process of special education, and so much more. When I got my first job right out of college, I found myself falling back on those classes and experiences I had in college to help me through the difficulties of the first year.
-Amy Staton, special education teacher, B.S. Special Education 2010
The Grace student teachers have had the training, character, and desire to continue learning that you hope all future educators possess. They have the understanding of the responsbility and hard work required of teachers as well as the importance of relationship building. It has been a joy and honor to work alongside them for more than twenty years.
-Sue Mock, special education teacher
Working with Grace College student teachers has been a wonderful experience. While they are well-prepared with the necessary knowledge and skills, it is amazing to watch these student teachers grow and develop into effective teachers. It is exciting to see enthusiasm and commitment to meeting the needs of all children. Grace College student teachers always demonstrate a passion for teaching and a desire to make a dfference in the lives of their students.
-Janet Bosler, Grace College student teacher supervisor