The Loading... program is 100 percent online and is recognized by the Council for Exceptional Children and the New York State Education Department, and accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) Standards. Upon completion, candidates will meet the academic requirements for certification in their current certification area, and be recommended for their Initial/Professional certification in one of the following special education teaching levels: Early Childhood (Birth-Grade 2), Childhood (Grade 1-6), or Adolescent (Grade 7-12, Generalist). Please note that students may also receive certification at both the Early Childhood and Childhood levels.
What You Will Learn:
- A deep understanding of learning disabilities and differences, as well as the methods and strategies to empower student success.
- The ability to assess and diagnose students with mild to moderate disabilities, and design interventions and curriculum to meet their needs.
- Expertise in creating an inclusionary classroom environment, and implementing differentiated instruction to help students with special learning needs and styles perform at the highest level possible.
- Creative approaches for integrating technology into your classroom to enhance learning.
- Collaboration and communication skills central for working as part of a school team addressing the unique needs of B-12 learners.
- Knowledge of behavior management strategies to help your classroom run smoothly.
- Foundational knowledge about current issues, policy, and educational research in the field of special education.
The Fieldwork Experience:
- Two semesters of hands-on field experiences with students with disabilities under the mentorship of the classroom teacher and college supervisor.
- A close relationship with your field supervisor, who is committed to offering the support and insight you need to reach your highest potential as an educator.
Unique Program Features:
- Field placements frequently result in full-time employment upon graduation. Our faculty has a large network of contacts that lead to information about job opportunities, and our graduates regularly call for recommendations to fill positions.
- Flexible class scheduling including full-time and part-time options.
- Opportunities to attend professional development workshops and/or conferences to help further your understanding of educational content and pedagogy.
- Small class sizes promote close relationships with professors and fellow classmates. Students graduate with a cohort who provides support throughout the length of their future careers.
“Making the decision to attend SUNY Potsdam changed my life and allowed me to have a career in helping others with special needs. Small class sizes and hands-on experiences in classrooms make this a great program for anyone that wants to work with students with special needs.”
~ Pamela Charleson, ‘09