College of Communication & Education

Credential Education Specialist


The Preliminary Education Specialist Level I (Mild/Moderate or Moderate/Severe) Credential Program prepares future teachers to serve children, youth, and adults who have special learning or emotional needs. The Education Specialist credential may be used in K-12 resource rooms, special day classes, or alternative settings.

Education specialists function in public schools or private settings as instructors and as consultants to teachers and families. As a student teacher, you may choose to pursue either:

  • The Level I Education Specialist Credential in Mild/Moderate Disabilities, which authorizes teachers to instruct individuals in grades K-12 and adults who have specific learning disabilities, mild/moderate mental retardation, other health impairments, and/or serious emotional disturbance.
  • The Level I Education Specialist Credential in Moderate/Severe Disabilities, which authorizes teachers to instruct individuals in grades K-12 and adults who have autism, moderate/severe mental retardation, deaf-blindness, serious emotional disturbance and/or multiple disabilities.


Vision Statement

The School of Education is a recognized leader in preparing educators to meet the needs of a diverse, democratic, and sustainable society through inquiry, collaboration, and service toward a socially and ecologically just world.

Mission Statement

We believe in the power of education to create a strong democratic and sustainable society that honors diversity and inclusivity. The mission of the SOE, in collaboration with our community partners, is to support the development of effective, reflective, and engaged educators who value the identities of all students, their families, and the communities they serve. We are committed to scholar-practitioner inquiry and responsible praxis–based pedagogies that serve as tools toward cultivating socially and ecologically just practices in classrooms, local communities, and beyond.

Goals & Objectives

  • Subject Matter Knowledge: Candidates demonstrate solid knowledge of and currency in their subject matter/academic discipline and a commitment to continue to expand their depth and range of understandings.
  • Pedagogical/Professional Practice: Candidates demonstrate a sizeable repertoire of pedagogical/professional practice and select strategies, techniques and technological resources appropriately in relation to the learners.
  • Diversity: Candidates are knowledgeable about and responsive to the needs of all learners, including linguistically and culturally diverse learners and special populations.
  • Assessment: Candidates have expertise in the assessment and evaluation of pupil needs and achievements and use data in decision-making.
  • Reflection: Candidates have learned to reflect appropriately on their professional practice and exhibit evidence of having established a habit of self-examination that results in continual improvement of that practice.
  • Collaboration: Candidates actively engage in collaborative partnerships with colleagues, parents, community agencies and professional organizations.
  • Candidates promote civic engagement and community partnerships and take an active leadership role in advocating for all learners.

Student Learning Outcomes

  1. The candidate engages and supports all students in learning. (TPE 1)
  2. The candidate creates and maintains an effective environment for student learning (TPE 2)
  3. The candidate understands and organizes subject matter for student learning (TPE 3)
  4. The candidate plans instruction and designs learning experiences for all students (TPE 4)
  5. The candidate assesses student learning (TPE 5)
  6. The candidate develops as a professional educator (TPE 6)