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How to Prepare for a Major in Special Education

Are you interested in helping people with disabilities learn to access the world around them? Have you considered a major in Special Education? Then this post is for you! BYU offers a plethora of classes that can help you become the educator you hope to be. Below is a list of the prerequisite classes that can get you geared up for your major in Special Education.


Severe Emphasis:

CPSE 403 - Introduction to Special Education

CPSE 425 - Foundations in Language Arts Instruction for Students with Disabilities

MTHED 305 - Basic Concepts of Mathematics

PETE 461 - Adapted and Multicultural Physical Education for Teaching Majors


Mild/Moderate Emphasis:

CPSE 203 - Introduction to Special Education

CPSE 410 - Applied Behavior Analysis

CPSE 480 - Educational and Multicultural Issues in Special Education

MTHED 305 and 306 - Basic Concepts of Math and Concepts of Math


What do these courses entail?


CPSE 203 and CPSE 403- Introduction to Special Education

This is a perfect opportunity to dip your feet in and see what you think about special education. This course focuses on the different categories of disabilities as well as the differences between mild/moderate and severe emphases in the major. You will have the opportunity to spend 12 hours in public school classrooms to gain experience and solidify if this is what you want to study!


CPSE 410 - Applied Behavior Analysis

This course is perfect for any major looking to learn more about people, but especially, how to help those people shape their behavior. An essential course for those working with people with disabilities, CPSE 410 focuses on looking at a behavior and its causes rooted in behavioral principles, rather than blaming a behavior on a student's disability. Talk about activism!


CPSE 480 - Educational and Multicultural Issues in Special Education

In this course, professors will focus on the differences in behavior, communication, and stereotypes between cultures and how to enhance education using this knowledge. This course will allow you to have time to self-reflect and then apply your newfound knowledge not just to education, but also to your everyday life.



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MTHED 305 and MTHED 306 - Basic Concepts of Mathematics and Concepts of Mathematics

When people hear Math Education, they might assume that these courses are hardly essential for the math-minded. However, these two courses don't just review what you learned from kindergarten through elementary school. These courses focus on how to help a student make sense of math problems using activities and principles of reasoning. These courses can help you better understand the depth of knowledge and ability of the children you teach.


CPSE 425 - Foundations in Language Arts Instruction for Students with Disabilities

425 focuses on common communication disorders, how oral language is developed, the component skills that are necessary for reading, and the tools used to measure these abilities. This course will help you develop a foundation in teaching language arts to students with disabilities.


PETE 461 - Adapted and Multicultural Physical Education for Teaching Majors

While this is a Physical Education course, PETE 461 focuses on a range of issues namely the law behind certain mandates, assessing and identifying students with disabilities, multicultural techniques, and instructional techniques. This course helps to establish a base of knowledge on some of the general issues facing Special Educators and their students.


Got any questions? Schedule a time to meet with one of our ambassadors here! Want to know more about a degree in Special Education with the McKay school? Check out our other blogs here.

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