Graduate Certificate in Teaching Students with Severe Disabilities

The Boston University Wheelock College of Education & Human Development offers a Graduate Certificate program for qualified post-baccalaureate students who are interested in receiving an Initial Licensure as a Teacher of Students with Severe Disabilities, all grades. Students who are successful in completing this program will develop the knowledge and skills necessary as a beginning teacher of students with severe disabilities. Specifically, the learning outcomes are as follows:

Students will:

  1. Plan, implement, and evaluate individualized and assessment-based instruction for students with disabilities using the principles of explicit instruction, school-wide positive behavior supports, and other evidence-based practices.
  2. Demonstrate knowledge of typical child development and learning, characteristics of common impairments and disabilities, and tenets of special education policy and practice; and, describe how they impact students’ experiences in schools.
  3. Demonstrate a disposition, and articulate, a teaching philosophy that promotes equity, includes collaboration with families, and reflects the principles of inclusive education for students with disabilities.
  4. Engage in a professional manner with colleagues, students, and families.

For those students successful in completing all the courses and practica in this certificate program, the Wheelock College of Education & Human Development provides a recommendation for licensure to the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) Office of Educator Licensure. Students must also apply directly to the DESE and are required to take additional tests (Massachusetts Test for Educational Licensures [MTELs]) to secure licenses.

Requirements for licensure as Teacher of Students with Severe Disabilities, all grades are listed below. Please note, prior coursework may be submitted for review to determine equivalency. If determined to be equivalent, required courses listed may be waived as a part of the certificate program.

Total Credits: 56

  • SE 615 Fieldwork in Severe Disabilities (2 cr)
  • LS 560 Language Acquisition (4 cr)
  • SE 706 Introduction to Special Education (4 cr)
  • SE 760 Cognition, Learning & Behavior (2 cr)
  • SE 751 Assessment in Special Education (4 cr)
  • LR 551 Reading Development, Assessment, and Instruction (4 cr)
  • ME 503 Mathematical Reasoning in the Elementary Grades: Number and Operations (4 cr)
  • ME 504 Mathematical Reasoning in the Elementary Grades: Algebra, Geometry, and Statistics (4 cr)
  • SE 504 Introduction to Early Childhood Disabilities (2 cr)
  • SE 505 Introduction to Severe Disabilities (2 cr)
  • SE 507 Severe Disabilities: Assessment and Instruction (4 cr)
  • SE 508 Severe Disabilities: Curriculum & Methods (4 cr)
  • SE 580 Methods in Special Education (4 cr)
  • TL 520 Teaching English Language Learners (4 cr)
  • SE 595 Practicum (8 cr)