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Special Education Foundations Transfer Pathway (AS) - 60 credits

Why Choose Special Education Foundations?

Special Education is a rewarding field for individuals who like to help others. This program will prepare people to teach students who have special needs that affect their ability to learn.

Skills Acquired

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Special education and teaching programs include topics such as:

  • Special needs for exceptional students
  • Learning barriers
  • Public policy
  • Individualized study plans

Recognition

The Education Training Academy (EdTrAc) was founded in 2005 through support of a National Science Foundation (NSF) grant.

The grant provided funding to develop and implement certain courses and services that would meet the goals listed below.

Following the expiration of the grant in 2009, Normandale has continued to support the EdTrAc program to ensure the quality foundational preparation of future teachers.

Careers in Special Education

Projected Job Growth

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of special education teachers is projected to grow 6% from 2012 to 2022.

The employment growth of special education teachers will vary by type.

However, overall demand will be driven by increasing enrollment and continued need for special education services.

Minnesota is currently experiencing a shortage of teachers in special education, specifically Emotional/Behavior Disorders (EBD) which our program prepares teachers for.

Types of Jobs

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Individuals taking Special Education Foundations may choose to focus on the following careers:

  • Adult Basic and Secondary Education and Literacy Teachers
  • High School Special Education Teachers
  • Interpreters and Translators
  • Kindergarten and Elementary School Special Education Teachers
  • Preschool Special Education Teachers

Average Pay

ISeek.org lists the median salary in Minnesota for the following classifications of Special Education Teachers:

  • Preschool - $60,780 annually ($29.22 per hour)
  • Kindergarten & Elementary School – $54,132 annually ($26.03 per hour)
  • Middle School - $62,177 annually ($29.89 per hour)
  • High School - $61,902 annually ($29.76 per hour).

Description

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Special education programs prepare students to identify and teach students with emotional disturbances, physical, or developmental challenges. Challenges may include autism, speech and language impairments, blindness, deafness, or emotional disabilities.

Degrees & Certificates in Special Education Foundations

The Associate of Science degree in Special Education Foundations prepares students for a major in special education at a 4-year college or university. It also is excellent preparation for students who wish to work as paraprofessionals or educational assistants in a PK-12 classroom.

This degree incorporates all Minnesota Transfer Curriculum (MnTC) goals. The degree also includes the requirements for entrance into third-year courses in many other four-year universities or private schools offering a special education major.

Normandale has a partnership which enables students to obtain a four-year special education degree from Minnesota State University, Mankato on the Normandale campus. Completion of the degree does not guarantee entrance into any particular program.

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The Special Education Foundations Transfer Pathway (AS) offers students a powerful option: the opportunity to complete an Associate of Science degree with course credits that directly transfer to designated Special Education bachelor's degree programs at Minnesota State universities. *The curriculum has been specifically designed so that students completing this pathway degree and transferring to one of the seven Minnesota State universities enter the university with junior-year status. All courses in the Transfer Pathway associate degree will directly transfer and apply to the designated bachelor's degree programs in a related field. 

*Universities within the Minnesota State system include Bemidji State University; Metropolitan State University; Minnesota State University, Mankato; Minnesota State University Moorhead; Southwest Minnesota State University; St. Cloud State University; and Winona State University. 

Minnesota State University, Mankato offers the Bachelor of Science program in Special Education on the Normandale Community College campus.

Individuals who have been arrested, charged or convicted of any criminal offense should investigate the impact that the arrest, charge or conviction may have on their chances of employment in the field they intend to study or on their chances to obtain federal, state and other higher education financial aid. 

Required Courses

Incorporate the following Required Courses into the General Education/Minnesota Transfer Curriculum or Additional Course Requirements sections below.

Code Title Credits
COMM 1101 Fundamentals of Public Speaking (Grade of B or higher is required) 3
EDUC 1101 Introduction to Education 4
EDUC 2101 Educational Technology 3
EDUC 2222 Multicultural Education and Human Relations in Schools 3
EDUC 2331 Professional Practice and Design of Individual Education Programs 2
EDUC 2408 Individuals with Diverse and Exceptional Needs 4
EDUC 2409 Learning and Human Development for Diverse Learners 4
ENGC 1101 Freshman Composition (Grade of B or higher is required) 4
MATH 1050 Mathematical Foundations 1 3
PSYC 1109 Child and Adolescent Development 3

General Education/Minnesota Transfer Curriculum (MnTC) – 40 credits

*See MnTC Curriculum for specific course options

GOAL 1: COMMUNICATION - 2 COURSES 

  • ENGC 1101 (met by completing required course with B or higher)
  • COMM 1101 (met by completing required course with B or higher)

GOAL 2: CRITICAL THINKING
(met by completion of all 40 credits of the MnTC)

GOAL 3: NATURAL SCIENCES - 2 COURSES (Select from two different departments; at least one must include a lab)
BIOL 1110 and PHYS 1001 & PHYS 1102 recommended

  • Course #1
  • Course #2

GOAL 4: MATHEMATICAL/LOGICAL REASONING - 1 COURSE

GOAL 5: HISTORY AND SOCIAL/BEHAVIORAL SCIENCES -
2 COURSES (Select from two different departments)
GEOG 1121 or HIST 1111 recommended

  • Course #1 - met by completing required PSYC course
  • Course #2

GOAL 6: HUMANITIES AND FINE ARTS- 2 COURSES
(Select from two different departments
ART 1101 and ENGL 2060 recommended

  • Course #1 
  • Course #2

GOAL 7: HUMAN DIVERSITY - 1 COURSE
HIST 1111 recommended

  • Course

GOAL 8: GLOBAL PERSPECTIVE - 1 COURSE 
ART 1101 or GEOG 1121 recommended

  • Course 

GOAL 9: ETHICAL AND CIVIC RESPONSIBILITY - 1 COURSE 
PHYS 1001 & PHYS 1102 recommended

  • Course

GOAL 10: PEOPLE AND THE ENVIRONMENT - 1 COURSE 
BIOL 1104 recommended

  • Course 

Additional recommended courses to meet 60 credits

  • EDUC 2223 Foundations of Instruction (2 credits)
  • MATH 1060 Foundations of Math 2 (3 credits)
  • ENGT 1050 Bridging Engineering and Education (3 credits)
  • SPAN 1120 Spanish for Educators (3 credits)

Additional Degree Requirements - 20 credits

  • Complete Basic Skills Licensure exams
  • Complete required 30 field work hours
  • Demonstrate expected standards in professional disposition
  • Complete additional courses to reach 60 total credits, of which 40 credits must satisfy all 10 MnTC Goals.
  • Earn a minimum cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 for college-level coursework (courses numbered 1000 and above) completed at Normandale.
  • Earn a minimum of 20 college-level credits at Normandale.  

Coursework in this degree program satisfies a portion of the Minnesota Transfer Curriculum (MnTC). Please see MnTC Degree Audit Report.