Campus Special & Gifted Education Graduate Programs in Tennessee
Pursuing on campus special gifted education graduate programs could potentially be your first step towards creating an inclusive classroom that caters to the learning needs of a wide range of students. Earning a degree or certificate from these programs could expand your teaching methods and techniques to better assist students with hearing disabilities or behavioral issues. You might also learn to support students who are on the autistic spectrum or who require gifted independent coursework. Not only that, but the skills and knowledge gained from graduate study might help create a welcoming learning environment to incorporate these same students into a larger student body. If these programs sound like a great idea for you and your classroom, keep reading to find out which special gifted education graduate programs on campus could be a perfect fit!
Choosing to earn a special gifted education graduate degree on campus could mean entering a community of like-minded educators. By attending classes on a physical campus, you could find yourself amidst a collaborative academic environment wherein you have the opportunity to speak with fellow peers in your profession. Students within your concentration could be a great resource to not only tackle in-class obstacles, but also assist your career. For example, perhaps you’re having an issue in your classroom that one of your peers has dealt with in the past. Their advice might be applicable to solving your problem! In addition to your peers, you may also have access to your professors. Many campuses require instructors to have weekly office hours to answer additional questions students might have about the course material. Office hours could also be a great chance to ask professors about their own experiences in special and gifted education!
Keep reading for more specific information about the different on campus special gifted education graduate programs.
Special gifted education masters programs on campus might offer courses in a wide variety of possible concentrations ranging from general coursework in special and gifted education, to specific areas such a deaf and autistic spectrum disorder assistance. While each program may focus on unique aspects of special or gifted education, many also touch on overarching curriculum to potentially benefit and aid students with special needs. Core subject matter could include assistive technology, behavioral theory, and literacy development.
A masters program could be a perfect choice for students looking to enter the teaching field post-graduation. The curriculum could help develop your overall understanding of special and gifted education in a way a bachelor’s degree might not. In addition, many programs offer students intending to enter the education field assistance with passing state mandated teaching licensure exams. In many states, licensure is required for all teaching faculty. Not only might the coursework mentioned above be a great study tool for these examinations, but universities may provide additional support such as study guides, test prep, and shuttling to testing centers. Be sure to check if your intended program offers licensure assistance to potentially ensure your ability to teach post-graduation.
When applying to on campus special gifted education masters programs, students are typically requested to submit a 3.0 undergraduate GPA along with supplemental materials such as letters of recommendation, statements of intent, and professional résumés. With the above curriculum and licensure requirements in mind, students could expect to complete a masters program in 2 years, if attending full time. Program lengths vary by school.
Whereas masters programs tend to focus more on practical application, special gifted education doctoral programs on campus focus heavily on new research and methods to better serve students with behavioral, emotion, physical, and mental disabilities, and gifted abilities. Research is aimed at improving current special and gifted education learning structures. In a doctoral program, you could conduct your own research to create new teaching methods to assist students with special needs, as well as the administrations that could potentially benefit from them. Candidates may also have hands-on teaching opportunities to practically apply the skills and knowledge they are currently studying, giving them detailed data to add to their analysis.
In addition to research, course topics could include, atypical learning theory, cognitive psychology, autism support delivery systems, curriculum development and implementation, and professional teacher development. Due to the length of time devoted to research and general graduation requirements, students could expect to complete a special education doctoral program in 5 years. Check with your intended program for a complete list of their curriculum offerings and more detailed graduation requirements.
Doctoral work is often the most demanding out of the other potential graduate programs, and this is often reflected in the application process. Many programs require students to submit a 3.0 graduate GPA in addition to GRE scores. Note that these programs may also ask for previous graduate experience, making them potentially ideal for students who have already earned a master’s degree. Supplemental materials may also be requested such as résumés, letters of recommendation, and statements of intent. Contact schools for specific information.
Special gifted education graduate certificate programs could be a great way for current educators to refine their teaching techniques to potentially create an inclusive learning environment for all students. Certificate programs typically emphasize one facet of special and gifted education, as opposed to the more holistic masters and doctoral programs. Through this specialized curriculum, you could engage with valuable teaching methods to accommodate students with special needs, then quickly apply it to your current classroom. Popular certificate concentrations include autistic spectrum disorder, deaf learning and gifted curriculum studies.
Many certificate programs are designed to assist current educators in creating a welcoming and safe learning environment. Therefore, universities often make admission requirements more accessible. Many programs require potential students to submit a 2.5 undergraduate GPA but may not require GRE scores. This could make the application process less time consuming. Graduation timelines also consider your busy professional lifestyle, with many programs being completed in 1 to 1.5 years. Please check with the school, because program lengths vary.
On campus special gifted education graduate degrees could potentially help you jumpstart or enhance a career in the education industry. This career path could give you the opportunity to apply contemporary methods of assisting behavioral, emotional, physical, and mental disabilities in a hands-on classroom setting. Additionally, special education teaching professions[i] and general academic teachers[ii] are projected at seeing a possible 6% growth in available positions from 2014 to 2024. While earning a bachelor’s degree in this area of study may allow you to pursue entry-level positions in the potentially growing field, graduate level coursework could develop your understanding of key education concepts to potentially enhance your career opportunities and make you the best teacher you can be![iii]
When considering a future in special gifted education, be aware that positions are often related to high stress situations. As an educator, you could be required to deescalate incidents in your classroom related to your students’ special needs. Or, on the other side, you may be required to complete supplemental learning plans for gifted students who require extra stimulation. These tasks are in addition to normal teaching duties such as lesson planning, grading, and administrative work. In 2015, special education teachers earned a median annual salary of $56,800.[i] This does not include fluctuations depending on education level taught (i.e. preschool, elementary, etc.).
Hopefully this information has helped in your search for a special gifted education graduate program on campus. On this page you can browse a list of potential programs. To refine your search further, select your preferred degree program or location from the menus. Then request more information from a program, by clicking through its associated link. Good luck finding a great special and gifted education graduate program on campus!
Sources: [i]bls.gov/ooh/education-training-and-library/special-education-teachers.htm#tab-6 | [ii]bls.gov/ooh/education-training-and-library/high-school-teachers.htm#tab-6 | [iii]bls.gov/ooh/education-training-and-library/high-school-teachers.htm#tab-6
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