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For mild to moderate disabilities. Leads to teacher licensure
Help empower the students who need you the most.
Our online teaching degree leading to special education certification will prepare you to fill a vital need in your community. The B.A. in Special Education (K-12) teaches the content knowledge and effective teaching skills to become a special education instructor for students with mild to moderate disabilities. This degree is a cross-categorical model for initial certification. You’ll become a highly qualified educator prepared to make a difference with those who need it most. In some states, the program will lead to dual licensure in Elementary Education and Special Education.
Note: WGU is the first exclusively online university to receive NCATE accreditation for its degree programs that lead to teacher licensure, a testament to the fact that WGU graduates "have the knowledge and skills to be effective in helping all students learn."
This program will be flexible and adaptable to your schedule. Click here to learn how your program works.
This online degree program requires the completion of coursework to ensure you have the essential skills and knowledge you need to become a licensed teacher, as well as practice teaching in an actual classroom and the completion of a professional portfolio.
These Courses Add to Your Credentials
Some of these General Education Assessments May Be Cleared through Transfer Credit
In-classroom experience is an invaluable part of becoming a highly qualified teacher. Your in-classroom experience will help you elevate the academic knowledge and teaching skills you’ve developed into a practical way of effectively and confidently tackling the challenges of your own classroom.
The online B.A. — Special Education degree program also requires the successful completion of a professional portfolio.
Your professional portfolio is something to be proud of – it will include your resume and Philosophy of Teaching Statement and serve as a way to showcase the skills you have acquired throughout your degree program and demonstration teaching. You'll take what you've learned and apply it to a real-world situation by recommending strategies for effectively handling actual issues you'll face in the workplace.
WGU is designed to let you go to school on your time, not according to a class schedule. Our online degree program is flexible and puts you at the center of your education: you choose when and where to complete your coursework. Once you demonstrate your competency in a subject area, you can move on to your next course.
Online learning is not easy.
You should expect to work hard and spend 20 hours or more per week on your studies. Still, your program will be flexible enough to fit into your schedule, not the other way around
The standard time it takes to complete the online M.S. — Management and Leadership program at WGU is two years.
The average time it takes to complete a B.A. — Special Education degree program at WGU is 2-2.5 years for students with an associate's degree or equivalent and 4-5 years for students with little or no prior college.
WGU’s competency-based method, which allows you to advance through your courses using the skills and knowledge you already have, may allow you finish your degree in even less time.
The program requires a total of 137 Competency Units (CUs), which are WGU credit equivalents. If you’ve taken courses or received a degree from another college or university, you may be able to clear some of these requirements through transfer credit.
If you’ve taken courses or received a degree from another college or university, you may be able to clear some of these requirements through transfer credit.
Ultimately, the pace at which you complete your online B.A. — Special Education degree program depends on how rapidly you pass assessments.
It’s your program. It’s up to you. Create your own schedule, choose your pace and achieve your personal goals.
"Whether you're looking for a career change with your bachelor's degree or continuing your education with a master's degree, WGU's Teacher College is a quality choice."
Mrs. Karen Pence,
First Lady of Indiana
Western Governors University was the first university in the country to employ a cutting edge, competency-based learning model that lets you use skills and knowledge you already have to accelerate your degree program.
In WGU’s online degree programs, students advance by demonstrating their competence in each subject area. You’ll be able to move quickly through material you already know so you can spend your time focusing on what you still need to learn.
We're committed to keeping tuition low and making sure our online education degree programs remain the very best value for hardworking students. WGU doesn’t spend money on classrooms, research facilities, or football stadiums. Instead, we focus on keeping costs low. In fact, we haven’t increased tuition since 2008. And because we charge tuition at a flat rate each term, if you complete coursework ahead of schedule, you can save yourself money as well as time.
You’ll pay the same low tuition each 6-month term, regardless of how many courses you complete. If you accelerate your degree program, you’ll pay less for your degree.
For this program, a full-time course load is 12 competency units per term. Because we allow you to complete extra courses at no extra cost, you may be able to increase the value of your program by dedicating extra time to your studies.
WGU's online B.A. — Special Education degree program is designed to be affordable for hard-working adults with bills to pay.
Learn more about tuition and fees.
WGU’s B.A. — Special Education degree program is about half the cost of a comparable program at another online university. An online teaching degree at a traditional university can cost close to $50,000 while a typical four-year bachelor's degree program at WGU is less than $24,000.
*Note: This chart is for illustration only and reflects the tuition information made public by other institutions and WGU’s standard tuition of $2,890 per term as of February 1, 2015. Tuition for the MBA and nursing programs is higher at $3,250 per term. Actual rates will vary depending on the number of terms needed to complete the program. Check the website for the most current tuition information.
WGU’s financial aid experts are on hand to help you finance your education in the smartest way possible. 76% of WGU students receive some type of financial aid.
Federal Financial Aid is available to most students.
Western Governors University is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities. The Northwest Commission is also responsible for the accreditation of other major universities in the West, including the University of Washington, the University of Oregon, Gonzaga University, and the University of Utah, among many others. Learn more about accreditation here.
Western Governors University was the first exclusively online university to receive accreditation for its degree programs that lead to teacher licensure from the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE). WGU has Teachers College graduates working in all 50 states, and has been recognized by the White House as an example of what works in postsecondary education.
The NCATE accrediting team extensively reviewed the entire WGU Teachers College curriculum to ensure that “candidates have the knowledge and skills to be effective in helping all students learn.” This involved intensive interviews with students, faculty, graduates, school district personnel, and education experts, as well as a review of WGU student performance on national performance exams.
An online teaching degree from WGU tells employers that you're serious about success.
Take the next step into a prosperous future.
Our latest survey of leading employers speaks volumes about our ability to prepare grads to work in many industries:
90% of employers rate the teaching skills of WGU graduates as very good or excellent.
of employers rate the performance of WGU grads as excellent.
of employers said they would not hesitate to hire another WGU graduate.
of employers agreed that WGU graduates meet or exceed their expectations.
of employers rated WGU grads as equal to or above other employees who graduated from other colleges or universities.
of employers consider WGU graduates strongly prepared for their jobs.
Note: 2013 Survey of Employers by Harris Interactive
You can learn more about how employers view WGU grads by exploring our Student Success and Performance Data.
"The big draw was the fact that it was online. I could work at my own pace."
James Dye, WGU Alumnus
You set your own pace by demonstrating your skills. In the online degree programs at WGU, you'll advance through each course by first mastering the course content, then completing and passing challenging assessments that measure your knowledge and skills in each subject area.
These rigorous assessments (tests, papers, assignments, and projects) let you demonstrate your competence in each subject area in order to pass the course and earn Competency Units (CUs), or credit equivalents.
WGU sets a high standard, and we want our students to succeed. You'll be given ample opportunity to master subject matter and re-take assessments as needed in order to graduate.
Enrollment is easy. View our Enrollment Checklist for the seven easy steps to getting started.
To be admitted into this Teachers College program, you must possess a high school diploma or its equivalent. Applicants who do not possess an AA or AS degree will also be required to take and pass the WGU Readiness Assessment — a short, multi-part online admissions test that helps determine the likelihood of success in a WGU program.
See More about Teachers College Admission Requirements
You'll be on your way to a successful career. A world of opportunity awaits.
As a nonprofit university, WGU doesn’t need to benefit shareholders. Our students are our main concern. We also try to keep our operating costs low. And since we’re an exclusively online university, we don’t need to maintain expensive classroom buildings, a campus, and other non-academic programs.
Using financial aid is a personal decision. When making this decision, you should know that a degree is a great investment in yourself that will pay for itself many times over. Individuals with a bachelor’s degree earn on average almost a million dollars more over the course their careers compared to those without one. A master’s degree typically has a similar impact on your wallet. You should definitely consider federal financial aid if it means the difference between getting your degree or not. Speak to an
to learn more.
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