M.A.T.: Special Education - Adapted Curriculum

Admission Requirements | Program of Study | Course Descriptions | Apply Now! | Financial Aid | Student Policies

This program prepares candidates to teach PK-12 grade students with moderate to severe disabilities in an adapted curriculum program. Successful completion will result in recommendation for initial certification in Special Education Adapted Curriculum in the State of Georgia and an M.A.T. degree from Valdosta State University. The program focuses on preparing candidates with the knowledge and skills to implement evidence-based interventions that have a positive impact on the PK-12 learner. Candidates are expected to demonstrate competence in assessment, teaching, and the ability to implement and evaluate specific teaching strategies. The program is aligned with the NCATE and CEC (Council for Exceptional Children) Standards.

  • Special Requirements: Students must be employed as teachers with a non-renewable, non-professional certificate. They must spend a minimum of 20 hours each week (excluding summers) in a classroom setting with students with disabilities appropriate to their selected area of certification. At the time of entry to the program, the school administrator must commit to releasing the teacher from current teaching responsibilities and assign him/her to the role of a special educator, full-time, for a minimum of a four-week period. During this four week period, the applicant will complete a clinical practice experience which will occur during the final fall or spring semester of enrollment.
  • Delivery: The program is fully online, with no on-campus attendance requirements. Students conduct all work online, including team projects, exams, discussion posts, and case studies. Students have access to online academic resources, such as the library. Courses are asynchronous; there are no scheduled online meetings except those you might make with peers for group work.
  • Technology: Students must have access to Webcam software and hardware to enable remote conferencing, and a digital video camera for recording episodes of their classroom teaching competence.
  • Transfer credit: A maximum of 6 semester hours of graduate coursework may be considered; they must be less than 7 years of age at the point of degree completion. Eligibility is determined by the student’s academic advisor.
  • Cost: Please see the Fees / Aid link for details.
  • Financial Aid: Student loans are available through the VSU Office of Financial Aid - 229-333-5935. Though limited, there are potential scholarship opportunities, such as the Teach Grant.

Admission Requirements: Graduate School

  • Online application for admission - a non-refundable $50 application fee must be paid online by debit or credit card.
  • Submit two (2) official transcripts from each school (undergraduate and graduate) where you have previously enrolled.  VSU transcripts will be obtained by the Graduate School.
    • Applicants must have a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.50 on all attempted, college-level undergraduate and graduate coursework. 
    • Transcripts must provide documentation of a content concentration consisting of fifteen (15) semester hours of academic content that conforms with the GAPSC preparation requirements of content concentrations for middle grades.
  • Provide documentation of passing scores on the GACE Basic Skills or documentation of an exemption based on the GAPSC exemption criteria (documented with score report directly from SAT, ACT, or GRE testing services, or or college or high school transcript with posted test scores):
    • SAT - 1000 Verbal plus Quantitative
    • ACT - 43 English plus Math
    • GRE - For tests taken after August 1, 2011: 297 Verbal plus Quantitative. For tests taken prior to August 1, 2011: 1030 Verbal plus Quantitative.
  • Complete the Verification of Employment as a Teacher Form.  This form must be completed by your school principal.  The form certifies that you are employed as a teacher and hold/will hold the non-renewable non-professional (NNT) certificate required by the program. The form verifies that you serve as the teacher for students with disabilities appropriate for the selected area of certification (i.e., general or adapted), and that you have a minimum of 20 contact hours per week throughout fall and spring semesters with students who have disabilities appropriate to the area of certification. During the last semester of enrollment, excluding summer, you must complete a minimum of four weeks of full time clinical practice, in which you assume the role of a special educator. If you are not serving in the role of a special educator, you must provide verification from the school administrator that you will be assigned to this role full time for a minimum of four weeks.
  • Complete the student information section (top of page) and distance learning exemption (bottom of page) on the VSU Medical Form

    For additional admission information, please contact the VSU Graduate School at (229) 333-5694 or by email gradschool@valdosta.edu. All required documents must be submitted prior to close of business on the application deadline.  For semester deadlines visit the VSU GOML Calendar.  

    Submit all admissions documentation to:
    Graduate School
    Valdosta State University
    1500 N. Patterson Street
    Valdosta, GA 31698-0005
    Fax: 229 -245 -3853
    Email: gradschool@valdosta.edu

Admission Requirements: College of Education & Human Services

In the first term of enrollment, students will:



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Program of Study for Candidates Admitted Fall, 2010 and Thereafter

M.A.T. Core Curriculum in Special Education  (9 hours):

Hrs.

SEAC5140: Collaborative Roles in Education

3

SEAC 5190: Physical & Health Manage of Students with Disabilities

3

SEAC 6010: Integrated Instruction: Individual Education Programs

3

SPEC 2999
0
subtotal
9

---------Major Area of Concentration (21 hours):

Hrs.

SEEC 5050: Assistive Technology

3

SEAC 5500: Characteristics of Students with Low Incidence Disabilities

3

SEAC 5530: Systematic Instruction

3

SEAC 5540: Positive Behavior Support

3

SEAC 5550: Communication Strategies for Students with Low Incidence Disabilities

3

SEAC 5570: Assessment and Curriculum for Students with Low Incidence Disabilities.

3

SEAC 6200: Internship
3
subtotal
21

---------Research Core: (6 hours):

Hrs.

SEAC 5030: Single Subject Research in Special Education

3

SEAC 6110: Capstone Course

3

subtotal
6

TOTAL Semester Hour Credits

36

Certification information:

Prior to completion of the M.A.T. and recommendation for initial certification, the following additional requirements must be met:

  • Applicant must pass GACE Special Education Adapted Curriculum Tests: Test I (083) Test II (084)
  • Applicant must complete an Exceptional Child course and submit either transcripts showing completion of the course or a certificate of completion to the Georgia Professional Standards Commission.
  • Once a candidate has completed the M.A.T. program, he/she must apply for certification. Certification applications are available at the GAPSC website: http://www.gapsc.com/Certification/index.asp
  • Completed applications should be sent to VSU’s certification office, as VSU must recommend each candidate for certification. Information about applying for certification can be found here: http://www.valdosta.edu/COEHS/teached/gencertinfo.shtml
  • SEAC 5050 is designed to meet the computer competency requirement

Program of Study for Candidates Admitted PRIOR to Fall, 2010

M.A.T. Core Curriculum in Special Education  (9 hours):

Hrs.

SEAC5140: Collaborative Roles in Education

3

SEAC 5190: Physical & Health Manage of Students with Disabilities

3

SEAC 6010: Integrated Instruction: Individual Education Programs

3

SPEC 2999
0
subtotal
9

---------Major Area of Concentration (21 hours):

Hrs.

SEAC 5500: Characteristics of Students with Low Incidence Disabilities

3

SEAC 5510: Curriculum for Students with Low Incidence Disabilities
3

SEAC 5520: Assessment for Students with Low Incidence Disabilities

3

SEAC 5530: Systematic Instruction

3

SEAC 5540: Positive Behavior Support

3

SEAC 5550: Communication Strategies for Students with Low Incidence Disabilities

3

SEEC 5050: Assistive Technology

3

subtotal
21

---------Research Core: (6 hours):

Hrs.

SEAC 5030: Single Subject Research in Special Education

3

SEAC 6110: Capstone Course

3

subtotal
6

TOTAL Semester Hour Credits

36

Certification information:

Prior to completion of the M.A.T. and recommendation for initial certification, the following additional requirements must be met:

  • Applicant must pass GACE Special Education Adapted Curriculum Tests: Test I (083) Test II (084)
  • Once a candidate has completed the M.A.T. program, he/she must apply for certification. Certification applications are available at the GAPSC website: http://www.gapsc.com/Certification/index.asp
  • Completed applications should be sent to VSU’s certification office, as VSU must recommend each candidate for certification. Information about applying for certification can be found here: http://www.valdosta.edu/COEHS/teached/gencertinfo.shtml
  • SEAC 5050 is designed to meet the computer competency requirement. The program of study listed above was approved as having the content of Georgia House Bill 671 embedded within the program.

Course Descriptions

SEAC 5030 Single Subject Research in Special Education    3 cr.    
Application of single subject research methodology in classroom settings with students who have disabilities. Focus is on acquisition of skills necessary to allow a functional relationship to be established between teaching practices and changes in student behavior.

SEAC 5050 Assistive Technology 3 cr.
A study of various applications of technology for young children with disabilities that support inclusive services. Topics to be addressed include assistive technology assessment of young children with disabilities, selection and use of a variety of forms of assistive technology, and methods of securing funding for assistive technology.

SEAC 5140 Collaborative Roles in Education and Community Settings 3 cr.
A critical analysis of issues, research, implementation approaches, and recommended practices for employing collaborative models to support learning. Evaluation and accessing community resources, and developing and maintaining interdisciplinary and interagency partnerships will be studied. The course will focus on transition and collaboration with related service providers as critical components of programs for students with low incidence disabilities.

SEAC 5190 Physical & Health Management of Students with Disabilities 3 cr.
A study of physical and health management procedures necessary for individuals with disabilities. Course content addresses knowledge of roles and responsibilities of the educational team in meeting the physical and health needs of individuals with disabilities. Emphasis is placed on developing an understanding of the role of the teacher in meeting the needs of children with physical and health management needs as well as working with other professionals (e.g., nurses, physical therapists) in assuring that those needs are met.

SEAC 5500 Characteristics of Students with Severe Disabilities 3 cr.
A study of current and future historical, philosophical, social, legal, medical, and educational perspectives of students with low incidence disabilities. The identification, classification and unique characteristics of these individuals is included in the course content.

SEAC 5530 Systematic Instruction 3 cr.
Strategies and methods to facilitate the acquisition, generalization, and maintenance of skills for children and youth with low incidence disabilities in both school and community-based settings. This course will focus on evidence based methods of systematic instruction.

SEAC 5540 Positive Behavior Support 3 cr.
A study of the principles and application of positive behavioral support strategies for managing challenging behaviors of individuals with low incidence disabilities. Course content focuses on the development of behavioral support strategies derived from functional assessments.

SEAC 5550 Communication Strategies for Students with Severe Disabilities 3 cr.
Strategies and methods to facilitate acquisition, generalization, and maintenance of functional language and communication skills for children and youth with severe disabilities in both school and community-based settings. Course content includes methods for identifying and implementing augmentative and alternative communication systems.

SEAC 5570 Assessment and Curriculum for Students with Low Incidence Disabilities 3 cr.
Curricular approaches to design, implement, and monitor functional and age-appropriate programs for children and youth with low-incidence disabilities in school, home, and community settings., Required activities include informal assessment procedures across curriculum areas to generate IEP objectives, measurement strategies, and methods for monitoring progress.

SEAC 6010 Integrated Instruction IEP 3 cr.
The theoretical and practical basis of curriculum design for individuals with disabilities throughout the life cycle. Individualized Education Plan development and program planning that incorporates student access to the general education curriculum are components of this course.

SEAC 6110 Capstone Project in Adapted Curriculum 3 cr.
Culminating course. Students will implement a project that demonstrates their ability to apply evidence-based research to impact programs or practices that affect k-12 student learning.

SEAC 6200 Internship 3 cr.
A clinical practice experience completed in the last semester of program and designed for candidates in the online M.A.T. program in special education, adapted curriculum who are seeking initial certification. Candidates will complete a minimum of four weeks of full-time teaching in the role of a special educator, with supervision provided by a university supervisor and the school principal or the principal’s designee.

Retention, Graduation, Dismissal & Readmission Policies

  1. The maximum time allowed for completion of the master’s degree is seven calendar years.  No work completed more than seven years prior to degree completion will be accepted toward the degree, except with special permission from the candidate’s  advisor, Dean of the College of Education & Human Services , and approval from the Dean of the Graduate School.
  2. No more than 6 semester hours of academic work may be transferred from another institution into the M.A.T. program.  Transfer credit will be evaluated after admission, by the academic advisor.
  3. To graduate from this program, a student must have a cumulative institutional graduate GPA of 3.0 or higher.
  4. Earning grades below “B” in graduate courses will result in the following consequences:
    • Students admitted Fall 2011and thereafter will be dismissed from the Graduate School if they accumulate three or more academic deficiency points unless otherwise indicated by individual program policy. A grade of “C” (although it may be credited toward a degree) equals one deficiency point. A grade of “D,” “WF” or “F,” or “U” (none of which will be credited toward a degree) equals two deficiency points.
    • Candidates admitted BEFORE Fall 2011 and receiving two grades below “C” (“D”, “F”, “WF”,“U”) will be dismissed from the program. One grade below a "C" results in a warning.
  5. If dismissed from the program a student must not be enrolled for two semesters. Application for readmission may be initiated during the second semester. Readmission is not guaranteed, and prior academic performance and student conduct/disposition in the program will be considered. The academic program reserves the right to place specific conditions and contingencies on any offer of readmission.