Special Education is a field that has expanded tremendously in recent years. As more and more students are diagnosed with learning disabilities, autism spectrum disorders and other challenging issues, special education teachers are in short supply. If you are interested in helping students with disabilities work through their school years productively, you will do well in a Special Education program.
Special Education is a branch of education that deals with students with mental or physical disabilities. Some students are severely challenged while others are borderline or able to function in most areas on their own. You will be helping to coordinate a program of learning for students who otherwise are not able to follow the traditional school day curriculum. You will often work with students in a private special education area or room within the school building. Often, you will enter the classroom and assist while the classroom teacher is giving a lesson. And many times you will arrive at the classroom door to take a student out for their time of special education training.
As more and more schools integrate students with disabilities into the mainstream of school life, there is no longer a separation gap between special ed students and other students. You will find that your teaching takes place at different areas during the school program from providing lunchtime monitoring and assistance for lower functioning individuals to planning speech and language programs for autism spectrum students.
Many students choose to take a graduate degree as a Master of Arts in Education with a concentration in Special Education. Others who are earning their undergraduate degrees will earn a Bachelor's degree with a Special Education minor. Schools look for graduates who have shown themselves successful in courses like differentiation, emotional disturbances, visual impairments, hearing loss, autism, mental retardation and learning disabilities. You will have coursework in all of these when you study for your Special Education degree online.
Whether you opt for a Master's degree in Special Education or a PhD in Special Education Leadership, you will find that your presence is highly sought after and respected within the school districts. You may also opt to become a classroom teacher with a Bachelor's degree in Educating Special Needs Students.
Special Education teachers are well-paid and welcomed into every school district. As the need has risen for specialized services within the regular school classrooms, the need for specialized teachers has risen as well.