Special Education

Master of Education

Program Requirements

Teacher candidates are required to register for and activate MED 6102, E-Folio as the initial course in the program as this course will allow them to document various course requirements needed to satisfy individual program competencies.

Teacher candidates are expected to complete all requirements associated with the Master of Education in Special Education degree, including content course work, required special education courses, and clinical experiences. All sections of ETS Praxis Series Core Academic Skills for Educators (ETS # 5712, 5722, and 5732), or other approved tests of general knowledge that satisfy Professional Standards Board regulations, (or relevant exemption tests), and prior to Practicum I, and the appropriate PRAXIS II category and content test must be satisfied prior to taking MSE 8802, Student Teaching/Teaching Internship. All courses have one or more goals for diversity in education and writing across the curriculum.

Teacher candidates must apply to the Office of Clinical Studies for a Student Teaching/Teaching Internship placement for the Fall semester by February 1 or for the Spring semester by August 1. Student Teaching/Teaching Internship applications are to be submitted electronically in Taskstream. Applications do NOT take the place of registering for Student Teaching/Teaching Internship. Registration and payment of all fees, including laboratory fees for Student Teaching/Teaching Internship, are still required. All sections of ETS PRAXIS Series Core Academic Skills for Educators and the relevant PRAXIS II category and content tests, a 3.0 grade point average, and approval from the Office of Clinical Studies are required for Student Teaching/Teaching Internship.

The College of Education sets a required minimum grade of “C-” for all education core courses as well as courses needed to satisfy the content major. However, an overall GPA of 3.0 is required for program completion.

Fieldwork Requirements

All fieldwork placements are arranged by the Office of Clinical Studies in accordance with school district partnership agreements and placement protocols. However, final placement decisions are made by school district officials and are based on the availability of qualified school mentors. Candidates are not permitted to seek or make arrangements for their own placements.

Practicum Courses (Practicum I, II, III)

These courses require 80 hours of commitment. This includes 50 clock hours of field experience during the regular school day in an approved setting, plus 30 clock hours of seminar-format classes. The 50 hours of field experience will usually take place in the specific county where the student attends the seminars. A sealed Federal and Delaware CBC (Criminal Background Check) Report, a recent TB/PPD (less than one (1) year old) and a completed CPR (Child Protection Registry Form) are required. For students entering the program Fall 2014, passing scores on the ETS Praxis Series Core Academic Skills for Educators (ETS #5712, 5722, and 5732), or other approved tests of general knowledge that satisfy Delaware Department of Education regulations are required.

Although Practicum courses only require candidates to register and pay for one (1) credit for each course, the courses are actually structured as three (3) credit courses. The reason for this approach is to keep the total credit hours as low as possible while still meeting state requirements. Otherwise, candidates would have to register and pay for an additional 6 credits. This benefit represents a tuition cost savings of more than $2,000.

Capstone Clinical Experience (Student Teaching/Internship)

The capstone clinical experience (is a full-time, full-day placement for at least 80 school days in an approved inclusive setting and in a content area/grade level that corresponds to a candidate’s content area concentration.

Registration for the capstone clinical experience requires prior approval from the Office of Clinical Studies and the following: a 3.00 or higher cumulative GPA, no Incomplete grades in required courses, passing PRAXIS (CORE) and PRAXIS II scores, a sealed Federal and Delaware CBC (Criminal Background Check) Report, a recent TB/PPD (less than a year old), a completed CPR (Child Protection Registry Form) and a completed health form.

A new Federal and Delaware CBC (Criminal Background Check) Report sent / delivered to the Office of Clinical Studies in its original sealed envelope. A new TB/PPD, Health Authorization Form and completed CPR (Child Protection Registry Form) uploaded into Taskstream. A completed Student Teaching Fieldwork application in Taskstream by the deadlines of February 1 for placement in Fall and August 1 for placement in Spring. At the time of application, candidates must have submitted passing scores and subset scores for Praxis CORE and Praxis II Content Specific Examination. It is the responsibility of candidates to make sure that complete test score reports are provided to the College of Education. All test score requirements for Delaware certification can be viewed at https://www.ets.org/praxis/de/requirements. Chair approval is required for course registration.

Teacher Dispositions and Values

A significant element of programs for the preparation of teachers deals with developing a teacher candidate’s proficiency in working with students who present a wide variety of needs, learning styles and exceptionalities. Teacher candidates also learn to work with students from a wide variety of backgrounds in order to ensure that each student has an opportunity to learn. Clinical experiences associated with the MSE program require teacher candidates to interact with exceptional students and students from different socioeconomic, gender, racial, language, geographic and ethnic groups.

A second area of importance for teacher candidates is the realization that they work with students, families, and communities in ways that reflect the dispositions expected of teachers as delineated in professional, state, and institutional standards. MSE teacher candidates must recognize, develop, and model dispositions that are expected of professional educators.

Candidates are expected to participate in dispositional surveys and self-assessments at different program points. Because of the importance accorded to these surveys/assessments, candidates are expected to participate fully and to comply with these tasks as assigned.

Program Prerequisites

Each option requires five prerequisite courses which could be satisfied with either undergraduate or graduate level courses.

  • Methods/Content in Elementary Reading/Writing
  • Methods/Content in Elementary Mathematics
  • Classroom Management/Strategies of Effective Teaching
  • Introduction/Education of Exceptional Children or Education of Diverse Populations and Exceptional Children
  • Adolescent or Child Growth and Development

In addition, fifteen (15) credits in the selected content area must also be satisfied prior to Student Teaching/Internship.

MSE Course Requirements

Each option requires the following core courses: (27 credits)

MED 6102 E-Folio Electronic Portfolio (0 credits)

MED 6000 Mathematics for Teachers (3 credits)

MRD 7802 Available Online Process and Acquisition of Literacy (3 credits)

MRD 7901 Available Online Diagnosis/Assessment of Reading Difficulties for Non-Reading/Literacy Majors (3 credits)

MSE 7401 Available Online Curriculum in Special Education (3 credits)

MSE 7402 Available Online Applied Behavior Analysis (3 credits)

MSE 7403 Available Online Diagnosis/Assessment/IEP Development (3 credits)

MEE 7604 Available Online Technology for Instruction (3 credits)

MSE 8102 Available Online Legislation/Implementation of Policy and Procedure (3 credits)

MSE 8800 Applied Assessment and Research in the Classroom (3 credits - co-requisite with MSE 7993 or MSE 7990)

In addition to the courses listed above each option has specific courses which must be completed. By option, those requirements are:

Option A - Licensure and Certification Program (18 credits)

MAS 7602 Available Online The School in a Multicultural Society (3 credits)

MSE 7991 Practicum I in Special Education (1 credit)

MSE 7992 Practicum II in Special Education (1 credit)

MSE 7993 Practicum III in Special Education (1 credit)

MSE 8101 Available Online Severe Disabilities (3 credits)

MSE 8802 Student Teaching Internship in Special Education (9 credits)

Option B - Instructional Program (18 credits)

Option B is only available for licensed/certified teachers.

MSE 7990 Practicum in Special Education (3 credits)

Electives (choose five from the list below):

(Courses used as prerequisites may not serve as electives)

MAS 7651 Available Online Adolescent Growth and Development (3 credits)

MAS 7701 Available Online Classroom Culture and Student Behavior (3 credits)

MED 7703 Available Online Curriculum and Teaching: Research, Theory, and Practice (3 credits)

MEE 7631 Available Online Child Growth and Development (3 credits)

MSE 7404 Assistive Technology (MH, SED, LD) (3 credits)

MSE 7409 Methods of Instruction in Academic Standards and Functional Skills* (3 credits)

MSE 7501 Introduction to Autism and Severe Disabilities (3 credits)

MSE 7502 Available Online Educating Pre-Schoolers with Special Needs (3 credits)

MSE 7506 Available Online Functional Communication* (3 credits)

MSE 7507 Competency-based Practicum* (3 credits)

* Course is part of a program of study contributing to eligibility for DE certification in Autism or Severe Intellectual Disabilities.


Eligibility for the Delaware Certificate in Autism and Severe Disabilities requires:

  • a valid initial teaching license
  • current content area certification
  • current certification as a Teacher of Exceptional Children – Special Education
  • completion of the Wilmington University courses listed below

Wilmington University courses approved for Delaware certification in Autism and Severe Disabilities:

MED 6102 E-Folio

MSE 7402 Available Online Applied Behavior Analysis

MSE 7409 Methods of Instruction in Academic Standards and Functional Skills

MSE 7501 Introduction to Autism and Severe Disabilities

MSE 7506 Available Online Functional Communication

MSE 7507 Competency-Based Practicum

Students taking courses to satisfy certification requirements are personally responsible for verifying with the Delaware Department of Education (or the appropriate licensure/certification authority in another state) that such course work is applicable and acceptable. Students are also responsible for meeting all state-mandated testing requirements (PRAXIS I, PRAXIS II, etc.), for fulfilling state-mandated degree and/or teaching experience requirements, and for applying for credentials.

Any changes in state regulations for certificates could cause Wilmington University to make course and/or program adjustments in order to align with new or revised state requirements. Wilmington University reserves the right to change requirements to comply with any licensure/certification mandates of the Delaware Department of Education.

Qualifications for Degree

To qualify for the Master of Education in Special Education (MSE) degree, a teacher candidate must complete all course work and clinical experiences with at least a “B” average (a cumulative grade point average of 3.0). An electronic portfolio - E-Folio - is required. The portfolio must provide evidence of mastery of program and graduation competencies. The program must be completed within five years.

This information applies to students who enter this degree program during the 2016-2017 Academic Year. If you entered this degree program before the Fall 2016 semester, please refer to the academic catalog for the year you began your degree program.