The Special Education Teacher Preparation PreK-8 (SETP PreK-8) specialization is a post baccalaureate program with two paths for completion. One option combines special education teacher certification with a Master of Education (MEd) degree in Instruction and Learning. The other option is for special education teacher certification only. This specialization prepares special educators to teach children and youth with a range of disabilities and emphasizes educational needs rather than categorical labels. Individuals holding the PreK-8 certification may provide specialized support and instruction to eligible students with cognitive, behavior, physical, and/or health disabilities within the specified grade level range in a variety of settings. Pennsylvania requires all special educators to also be initially certified to teach the general education population and curriculum. In that case, these programs accept previously certified elementary level teachers and reading specialists and furthers their ability to effectively teach a diverse student body.
Additionally, the Combined Accelerated Studies in Education (CASE) program is a five-year program that combines undergraduate and graduate work. Students who successfully complete the program will receive a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree in Applied Developmental Psychology and a Masters of Education (MEd) degree in Instruction and Learning. This program prepares students to apply for dual teacher certification in PreK-Grade 4 and Special Education PreK-8. The CASE program provides prospective teachers with a rich blend of coursework and field experiences. Students who complete the program will gain a strong background in the liberal arts along with the specific professional and pedagogical knowledge and practice skills necessary to be an effective educator.