Lisa Morin, Undergraduate Program Director
The BS in special education draws courses from across the University to prepare teacher candidates interested in teaching special education. Course work spans the disciplines of English literature and composition; history; fine and performing arts; mathematics; natural sciences; social sciences; human growth and development; and educational foundations, technology, assessment, theory, and methods. The broad curriculum, along with the admittance, continuance, and graduation requirements described below, prepares teacher candidates for licensure endorsement for special education general curriculum K-12 for the Commonwealth of Virginia, including passing scores on the Reading for Virginia Educators (RVE; Prior to 5/2022) or Praxis Teaching Reading: Elementary and Special Education (Test #5205; after 5/2022) and the Virginia Communication and Literacy Assessment.
Major coursework is available in both distance learning online and face-to-face formats. Additional information is posted on the departmental website or available in hard copy from the department.
Lower-Division General Education
|Language and Culture||0-6|
|Information Literacy and Research||3|
|Interpreting the Past||3|
|Philosophy and Ethics||3|
|The Nature of Science||8|
|Impact of Technology||3|
Courses in Written Communication, Literature, Human Creativity, Interpreting the Past, Human Behavior, Mathematics, and the Nature of Science are departmental requirements for all teacher candidates and are not met by the associate degree.
Language and Culture: See Requirements for Undergraduate Degrees section of this Catalog for requirement. If language needed, Spanish preferred.
Human Behavior: PSYC 203S required
Interpreting the Past: HIST 104H required
Impact of Technology: met in the major with STEM 370T
Upper-Division General Education
Satisfied in the major.
Requirements for Graduation
To graduate, teacher candidates must:
- Minimum of 120 credit hours.
- Minimum of 30 credit hours overall and 12 credit hours of upper-level courses in the major program from Old Dominion University.
- Complete all program requirements.
- Earn a grade of no less than C- in all departmental requirements (C in ENGL 110C and ENGL 211C), major courses, and core courses.
- Have a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.75 and 2.75 major and core GPA.
- Pass the writing intensive (W) course in the major with a grade of C or higher.
Obtain passing scores on the Reading for Virginia Educators (RVE) assessment (Special Education General Curriculum K-12 only).
Obtain certificate of completion in First Aid/AED/CPR, Dyslexia Awareness Training, Child Abuse and Neglect Recognition and Intervention Training, and Regulations Governing the Use of Restraint and Seclusion in Elementary and Secondary Schools.
- Complete the Senior Assessment Survey.
- Submit a professional portfolio according to Darden College of Education and Professional Studies and program requirements.
Due to changing University requirements, national accreditation standards, and Commonwealth of Virginia licensure regulations, the programs in the Darden College of Education and Professional Studies are under constant revision. Any changes resulting from these factors supersede the program requirements described in this catalog. Students should obtain current program information from their advisors and the Darden College of Education and Professional Studies website at https://www.odu.edu/eps.
Special Education Core
|FOUN 301||Learning and Development||3|
|FOUN 302||Assessment of Learning||3|
|SPED 400||Foundations of Special Education: Legal Aspects and Characteristics +||3|
|SPED 411||Classroom and Behavioral Management Techniques for Students with Diverse Needs||3|
|SPED 417||Collaboration and Transitions||3|
|STEM 370T||Technology and Society (writing intensive; C or better required) **||3|
|TLED 326||Socio-Cultural Perspectives in Education||3|
|TLED 426||Introduction to Literacy Research, Theory and Practice in the Classroom||3|
LiveText is required for all Special Education majors and minors upon registration for SPED 400.
Meets Impact of Technology and writing intensive requirement.
Special Education General Curriculum K-12 Major
|Complete lower-division requirements||35-47|
|Complete upper-division requirements (met in the major)|
|Special Education Core|
|Complete special education core requirements||24|
|Special Education General Curriculum K-12 Major|
|LIBS 110G||Information Literacy for the Digital Age||3|
|or STEM 251G||Computer Literacy: Communication and Information|
|SPED 402||Instructional Design I: Learner Characteristics and Assessment||3|
|SPED 403||Directed Field Experience in Special Education **||3|
|SPED 415||Instructional Design II: Curricular Procedures and Individualized Education Planning **||3|
|SPED 418||Instructional Strategies to Meet Diverse Learning Needs in Math||3|
|SPED 440||Assistive Technology for Diverse Students ***||3|
|SPED 486||Teacher Candidate Internship for Special Endorsement **++||12|
|TLED 408||Reading and Writing in Content Areas||3|
|Total Credit Hours||92-104|
Admission to the undergraduate special education teacher preparation program and completion of a background clearance check is required prior to registration for SPED 403, SPED 415, and SPED 486. SPED 403 and SPED 415 each include a 45-hour practicum requirement. Students enrolled in SPED 415 must request an elementary school practicum placement and students enrolled in SPED 403 must request a middle/high school placement. In SPED 486 teacher candidates will student teach 7 weeks at the elementary level and 7 weeks at the secondary level.
Meets Impact of Technology requirement.
Passing scores on the Special Education exit exam, the Reading for Virginia Educators Assessment, and Virginia Communication and Literacy Assessment are required prior to SPED 486.
Note: All students must earn a minimum of 120 credit hours for the baccalaureate degree, which must include both a minimum of 30 credit hours overall and 12 credit hours in upper-level courses in the major program from Old Dominion University.
Additional Requirements and Information
Declaration of Major
To declare the major, teacher candidates must have a C or better in ENGL 110C and meet with an advisor in the Darden College of Education and Professional Studies.
Virginia Board of Education Prescribed Assessments for Admission to an Approved Teacher Education Program
Old Dominion University students seeking admission to an approved teacher education program must satisfy the Virginia Board of Education required assessment for admission into an approved teacher education program. The requirement can be satisfied by meeting a passing score in the following:
- Virginia Communication and Literacy Assessment (VCLA): Scaled passing score of 235 for the reading subtest and score of 235 for the writing subtest OR a composite score of 470 for the assessment.
For the most current information on the prescribed Virginia Board of Education admission assessment, visit the Virginia Department of Education at https://www.doe.virginia.gov/.
Admission to Undergraduate Teacher Education Program
All teacher candidates must be admitted to the special education program as a requirement of continuance and graduation. Admittance to the special education program requires that the teacher candidate:
- Be a declared BS in special education student.
- Have a cumulative GPA of 2.75.
- Have a 2.75 GPA in major and core courses.
- Have no grade below a C- in any course required in the program.
- Submit passing score on the Virginia Communication and Literacy Assessment (VCLA).
- Submit an application for admittance that is approved by the program and the Darden College of Education and Professional Studies.
Additionally, teacher candidates should be admitted to the special education program by the end of their 60th credit hour. Transfer students with 60 or more credits should be admitted to the special education program by the end of their second semester enrolled at the University.
Teacher candidates must:
- Maintain a cumulative grade point average of 2.75 and a 2.75 major and core GPA.
- Earn a grade no less than C- in all departmental requirements, major courses, and core courses.
- Successfully complete a background clearance check.
Background Clearance Requirement: Old Dominion University requires a background clearance check of candidates interested in professional education programs. Professional education programs have several field experiences that are required for continuance and graduation from the program. The background clearance must be successfully completed prior to a field experience placement. The process to complete the ODU clearance background check is located at: http://www.odu.edu/success/academic/teacher-education/placement/background-checks. The ODU clearance process includes the FBI fingerprint SP-24 form, the child protective service/social service check, and the sexual offender registry check. Candidates interested in professional education programs are advised to complete this clearance process immediately upon entry since the clearance process takes a minimum of eight weeks to complete. Please contact the Office of Clinical Experiences at 757-683-3348 with any questions.
Teacher candidates who fail to meet program requirements for two consecutive semesters will be encouraged to consider other academic and professional goals.
Additionally, passing scores on the Special Education exit exam, the Virginia Communication and Literacy Assessment (VCLA), and either the Reading for Virginia Educators (RVE; Prior to 5/2022) or the Praxis Teaching Reading: Elementary and Special Education (Test #5205) are required prerequisites to enrollment in SPED 486. Special Education exit examination scores will be submitted to the Office of Clinical Experiences by the Undergraduate Program Director; however, students must submit copies of VCLA, and RVE or Praxis Teaching Reading, results to both the Office of Clinical Experiences and the Undergraduate Program Director. All teacher candidates must consult with an academic advisor every semester to review their academic progress.
Degree Program Guide
The Degree Program Guide is a suggested curriculum to complete this degree program in four years. It is just one of several plans that will work and is presented only as broad guidance to students. Each student is strongly encouraged to develop a customized plan in consultation with their academic advisor. Additional information can also be found in Degree Works.
|First Semester||Credit Hours|
|ENGL 110C||English Composition (C or better required)||3|
|PSYC 203S||Lifespan Development (C- or better required)||3|
|Interpreting the Past (HIST 104H with a C- or better required)||3|
|Elective or Language and Culture (may be waived; if needed SPAN 101F preferred)||3|
or ENGL 231C
|Writing, Rhetoric, and Research (C or better required)
or Writing, Rhetoric, and Research: Special Topics
|Human Creativity (C- or better required)||3|
or STEM 251G
|Information Literacy for the Digital Age (C- or better required)
or Computer Literacy: Communication and Information
|Elective or Language and Culture (may be waived; if needed SPAN 102F preferred)||3|
|Literature (C- or better required)||3|
|FOUN 301||Learning and Development (C- or better required)||3|
|Philosophy and Ethics||3|
|Nature of Science I (C- or better required)||4|
|Select one of the following:|
|Biology for Nonscience Majors I|
|Biology for Nonscience Majors II|
|Environmental Science for Non-Majors|
|Environment and Humanity|
|General Biology I|
|STEM 370T||Technology and Society (writing intensive; C or better required)||3|
|FOUN 302||Assessment of Learning (C- or better required)||3|
|TLED 326||Socio-Cultural Perspectives in Education (C- or better required)||3|
|Nature of Science II (C- or better required)||4|
|Select one of the following:|
|Introductory Astronomy of the Solar System|
|Introductory Astronomy of Galaxies and Cosmology|
|Natural Hazards and Disasters|
|TLED 426||Introduction to Literacy Research, Theory and Practice in the Classroom (C- or better required)||3|
|SPED 400||Foundations of Special Education: Legal Aspects and Characteristics (C- or better required)||3|
|SPED 440||Assistive Technology for Diverse Students (C- or better required)||3|
|SPED 402||Instructional Design I: Learner Characteristics and Assessment (C- or better required)||3|
|SPED 411||Classroom and Behavioral Management Techniques for Students with Diverse Needs (C- or better required)||3|
|SPED 417||Collaboration and Transitions (C- or better required)||3|
|TLED 408||Reading and Writing in Content Areas (C- or better required)||3|
|SPED 418||Instructional Strategies to Meet Diverse Learning Needs in Math (C- or better required)||3|
|SPED 403||Directed Field Experience in Special Education (C- or better required)||3|
|SPED 415||Instructional Design II: Curricular Procedures and Individualized Education Planning (C- or better required)||3|
|SPED 486||Teacher Candidate Internship for Special Endorsement||12|
|Total Credit Hours||120|
BA or BS to MBA (Master of Business Administration) Linked Program
The linked BA/MBA or BS/MBA program is an early entry to the MBA program of study. The early-entry program is designed for well qualified non-business undergraduate ODU students to start their MBA program prior to completing their undergraduate degree. Well qualified non-business undergraduate students may take MBA-level courses as early as three semesters prior to graduation and count up to 12 graduate credits toward their undergraduate degree. Students participating in the early-entry program must earn a minimum of 150 credit hours (120 discrete credit hours for the undergraduate degree and 30 discrete credit hours for the graduate degree). Early-entry program students should carefully consider their undergraduate degree program requirements when planning their course of study. Students in the early-entry program work in close consultation with the MBA Program Office and should refer to information in the Strome College of Business section in the graduate catalog to develop an individualized plan of study based on the required coursework.
BA or BS to MPA (Master of Public Administration) Linked Program
The linked BA/MPA or BS/MPA program provides qualified Old Dominion University undergraduate students with the opportunity to earn a master's degree in public administration while taking credits in the MPA program as an undergraduate student. The program is designed for highly motivated students with the desire to immediately continue their education after the bachelor's degree. The program is especially relevant to individuals seeking to work (or currently working) in the public or non-profit sectors, but is suitable for students from any undergraduate major. Graduate courses may be taken during the fall and spring semester of the student's senior undergraduate year. Up to 12 graduate credits can count toward both the undergraduate and graduate degree and can meet upper-level General Education requirements. After receiving the undergraduate degree, a student will continue with the MPA program, taking MPA courses until completing the required 39 credit hours. Students in the linked program must earn a minimum of 150 credit hours (120 discrete credit hours for the undergraduate degree and 30 discrete credit hours for the graduate degree).
Requirements for admission to the graduate program can be found in the School of Public Service section of the Graduate Catalog. For additional information, please contact the School of Public Service in the Strome College of Business.