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Special Education

At EMU in Harrisonburg, Virginia we prepare future teachers to change the world through their teaching. Our students explore the teaching field through regular practicum experiences. You will learn effective teaching methods for an evolving world and a diverse student body. 

Two key characteristics of our teacher education program are: sending future teachers into classrooms early, and reflective practice, which is woven into all education courses at EMU.

Our teacher education program has carried the highest national accreditation standards in the nation for more than 40 years. EMU is one of only five private colleges in Virginia to be NCATE-certified.


Special Education (K-12) Licensure for special education in grade levels K-12 includes successful completion of general education requirements, a liberal arts major and supporting special education courses. Candidates work closely with their advisors to determine specialty emphases as outlined by the Virginia Department of Education. 

Professional Sequence for Special Education

Course Credits
ED 101 Exploring Teaching 2
ED 201 Computers and Instructional Technology in Education 1
EDS 301 Introduction to Exceptionalities 3
EDS 331 Individual Instruction in the Content Areas for Students with Exceptionalities 3
EDS 332 Adapting Curriculum for Students with Exceptionalities 4
EDS 333 Medical Issues and Assistive Technology for Individuals with Exceptional Learning Needs 1
*EDS 351 Intervention Strategies for Middle and High School Learners with Exceptionalities 3
*EDS 371 Evaluation and Planning in Special Education 3
EDS 381 Special Education Professional Field Experience 2
*EDS 401 Supporting Positive Classroom Behavior  2
 *EDS 451 Educational Foundations and Due Process  2
 ED 341 Language Arts  2
 ED 342 Reading/Diagnostic Reading  3
 ED 343 Content Area Reading and Writing  2
ED 411 Reflective Teaching Seminar and Portfolio  1
 EDS 461 Student Teaching: Elementary Exceptionalities  7
EDS 462 Student Teaching: Middle School/High School Exceptionalities  7

Twenty-four semester hours of the above are devoted to professional studies; 24 semester hours involve practica.