Undergraduate Minor: Severe Disabilities
Students focusing on special education have an opportunity to work as instructors, resident advisors and mentors in the Mason LIFE program
The Severe Disabilities minor is designed to provide students with background knowledge in teaching students with severe disabilities and to allow students to begin coursework applicable to Virginia teacher licensure.
Students who complete the minor and continue in the graduate teacher licensure certificate program Students with Disabilities who Access an Adapted Curriculum may waive 15 credits of graduate coursework in the licensure certificate program, enabling them to complete graduate licensure certificate program with 18 versus 33 graduate credits. Additionally, the 18 graduate credits taken as part of the graduate certificate program are applicable to the Master's in Special Education. Students who intend to pursue graduate coursework in Special Education following completion of the minor should contact an advisor before beginning the undergraduate minor to discuss options for continuing their coursework in the graduate program.
Students must meet one of the following criteria to add the minor:
- Official VCLA scores with a minimum composite of 470.
- Completion of 24 credits of undergraduate coursework with a minimum GPA of 2.8
- Completion of at least 6 credits of EDSE coursework with a minimum GPA of 3.5 in EDSE courses
- A GPA of 2.75 in the last 24 hours of undergraduate coursework
Undergraduate Minor: Severe Disabilities Degree Requirements
There are no pre-requisites in the coursework, but students are strongly encouraged to complete EDSE 401 as the first course in the sequence.
- EDSE 401: Introduction to Special Education (3 credit hours)
- EDSE 402: Classroom Management and Applied Behavior Analysis (3 credit hours) OR EDSE 432: Positive Behavior Supports (3 credit hours)
- EDSE 434: Communication and Severe Disabilities (3 credit hours)
- EDSE 447: Medical and Developmental Risk Factors for Children with Disabilities (3 credit hours)
- EDSE 469: Interdisciplinary Approach for Children with Sensory and Motor Disabilities (3 credit hours)
Total: 15 credits
Suggested additional courses:
Students may request permission to take additional Special Education graduate courses for undergraduate credit or for reserve graduate credit. Students who wish to complete more than 15 credits of coursework in Special Education as part of their undergraduate program should contact an advisor to discuss the option that best meets the needs of their educational and career goals.
Tuition Assistance and Grant Funding
Severe Disabilities Consortium: The Virginia Consortium for Teacher Preparation in Severe Disabilities is comprised of five state approved teacher preparation programs for endorsement in teaching students with disabilities who access an adapted curriculum,. The consortium's primary goals is to prepare teachers across the state to be highly skilled at working with learners with severe disabilities. The consortium is supported by grants from the Virginia Department of Education and the US Department of Education. Every semester, a limited number of tuition stipends are awarded to qualified applicants.
LIFE Assistantships: The Learning Into Future Environments (LIFE) Program is an innovative post-secondary program at Mason for young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities who desire a university experience in a supportive academic environment. Students focusing on special education have an opportunity to work as instructors, resident advisors and mentors in the LIFE program which provides them with field experience in a supportive, supervised setting.