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Special Education (Minor for BSE)

Bring the value of differentiated learning to all of your future students by adding a Special Education minor to your Teaching degree at the University of Central Missouri.

A minor in Special Education for the BSE will prepare you to work effectively and compassionately with children with a wide variety of disabilities and developmental delays. You’ll learn assessment techniques and individualized curriculum design, as well as how to partner with your students’ families and communities to support them along their path to success.

Qualify for additional certification

This minor in Special Education will give you the knowledge and skills you need to advance your career. Once you’ve graduated with your bachelor’s degree and received your initial teaching certification, you can take Missouri’s content assessment for Cross Categorical Disabilities K–12. Although the knowledge base on its own will enhance your appeal as a candidate for any teaching job, pursuing special education teaching certification will maximize your career opportunities.

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Prepare for Special Ed certification

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CEC- and CAEP-accredited program

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Learn an in-demand specialty

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Hands-on learning with field experience

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Expert faculty are leaders in the field

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Learn skills that benefit all students

What you will study

UCM’s Special Education minor for future teachers is designed to expand your practical knowledge of working with students with exceptionalities in a school setting. Coursework for this minor will prepare you to take the content assessment for Cross-Categorical Disabilities K–12.

This minor is offered by UCM’s fully accredited, standards-aligned Special Education program, and includes courses such as:

  • Collaborating With Families of Exceptional Children: Understand the impact of exceptionality on family systems and how empowerment and community resources can strengthen the school-family partnership. Requires a directed field experience.
  • Methods of Cross-Categorical Special Education: Gain knowledge of and practical experience in applying the most effective, research-based methods for developing materials and curricula teaching students who have mild to moderate developmental disabilities.
  • Evaluation of Abilities and Achievement: Learn how to administer and interpret intelligence tests and diagnostic procedures to determine your students’ needs, and how to use that knowledge to create individualized learning plans that best support them.


Excellence in Special Education

  • UCM's Special Education program, including the minor in Special Education, is accredited by the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) and the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP)
  • A Best Value Bachelor's Degree College for General Special Education (College Factual, 2022)
  • A Best Value College for Elementary Education (College Factual, 2022)
  • A Best Value College for Junior High/Intermediate/Middle School Education & Teaching (College Factual, 2022)
  • Top 15%: Best Value Bachelor's Degree Colleges for Elementary Education (College Factual, 2022)
  • One of the Most Focused Bachelor's Degree Colleges for Education (College Factual, 2022)
  • One of the Most Focused Colleges for Secondary Education (College Factual, 2022)
  • Top 15%: Most Focused Colleges for Education (College Factual, 2022)
  • Top 4.5%: Most Popular Colleges for Secondary Education (College Factual, 2022)
  • Top 5.5%: Most Popular Bachelor's Degree Colleges for Education (College Factual, 2022)
  • Top 6%: Most Popular Colleges for Education (College Factual, 2022)
  • Top 6%: Most Popular Colleges for Elementary Education (College Factual, 2022)


Unique learning opportunities in teaching special education

The University of Central Missouri emphasizes experiential learning in all of our degree programs. We offer “hands-on, minds-on” learning within our Special Education minor to ensure you graduate with applicable, real-world skills and experience, as well as a more complete understanding of the content area:

  • Practicum in behavioral management: Work with our expert faculty to design behavioral management programs and environments, so you can offer personalized support systems for your future students with exceptionalities.
  • Collaboration with families of exceptional children: Raising children with exceptionalities has a meaningful impact on these children’s families. In a directed field experience, you’ll explore how empowering a family and connecting them with appropriate community resources can strengthen the school-family partnership and lead to better outcomes for the child. 
  • Assessment techniques: Learn first-hand how to perform and interpret individualized intelligence tests, formal and informal diagnostic procedures and prescriptive instruction, so that you can confidently assess the needs of your future students.


What can you do with a Special Education minor from UCM?

The need for qualified educators of children with exceptionalities is at an all-time high. By minoring in Special Education while earning your BSE at the University of Central Missouri, you’ll learn an in-demand specialty that will increase your job options in any district where you qualify to teach.

In addition to increasing your appeal as a candidate for teaching jobs, a Special Education minor will enable you to improve learning outcomes for all of your future students by being able to tailor your instruction to their individual learning needs. A better understanding of the principles and mechanics of child development will enhance your entire teaching practice.

Careers for educators with special education expertise 

Use our interactive tool below to explore employment and salary trends for educators working in the fast-growing field of special education.




Financial assistance options for your Special Education minor

Adding a Special Education minor is an excellent way to access the additional value of our accredited, standards-based Special Education program and increase your hiring potential in districts across the state and nation.

UCM distributes financial aid every year to over 90% of our undergraduate students. Dedicated financial aid advisors will help you find the best way to finance your college education. Our extensive options include grants, loans, work-study opportunities and scholarships.

Program scholarships for undergraduate students

Based on your major, you may qualify for additional program-specific scholarships. Learn more by using the UCM Scholarship Finder.


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Take your degree further.

If adding a Special Education minor to your Bachelor of Science in Education ignites your interest in the field, consider returning to UCM to pursue one of these graduate degrees:

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Explore programs related to teaching special education.

UCM also offers an alternative minor for students interested in special education:



UCM is the longest continuously CAEP accredited public institution in Missouri

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The program is nationally recognized by the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC), the leading advocacy organization for special education in the country.


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