Field Experiences

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Block I courses are taken after students have been admitted to the Special Education Program and involves approximately 165 clock hours of practicum. This practicum is done in diverse settings in general education classrooms. Practicum activities include application of methods to teach reading, development and delivery of instruction plans and modified materials, and effective implementation of the classroom management plans.  

Block I Courses:

SPED 310:  Instructional Strategies for Students with Disabilities 
SPED 312:  Effective Reading for Students with Disabilities 
SPED 471:  Classroom and Behavior Management 
TEFB 413:  Science in the Elementary School  
EPFB 301:  Field Experience

Field experiences are usually Tuesdays and Fridays with the associated seminar on Mondays.   

PROFESSIONAL COMPETENCIES:

The student is able to: 

  •  work collaboratively with school personnel
  •  follow rules established for school personnel
  •  take initiative in all classrooms in which you are placed
  •  establish and maintain positive rapport with students
  •  display professional behavior at all times
  •  implement classroom behavior management strategies appropriately
  •  have materials/equipment/technology prepared for lesson
  •  secure the student learners' attention while teaching
  •  introduce the lesson including stating the objective and purpose
  •  present lesson information in clear and sequential way
  •  provide and model activities to support the lesson objective
  •  effectively re-state lesson objective and purpose to provide lesson closure

IMPORTANT DATES:

Block I

Week 1: 1st Seminar;  Placements Distributed 
Week 2: Placements Begin  
Week 8: Midterm Conferences (usually on Thursdays) 
Week 14: Placement Folders Due

FIELD EXPERIENCES: BLOCK II

Block II consists of advanced methods in special education. During this semester, students will spend approximately 160 clock hours of practicum in two of a variety of special education settings. Students will take courses that include instructional methods in assessment and IEP development, teaching students with low incidence disabilities, and teaching students with emotional and behavior challenges.  Practicum activities include developing complete learning plans to teach EC-12 students with special needs, delivering instruction to individuals, and in small and whole group settings, which reflect individualized modifications, and using thoughtful reflections to adjust instruction and management techniques to benefit the learner.

BLOCK II COURSES:

SPED 311:  Assessment of Students with Disabilities
SPED 314:  Effective Mathematic Strategies for Students with Disabilities 
SPED 414:  Methods and Issues in Low Incidence Disabilities
SPED 442:  Teaching Students with Emotional Disturbances and Behavior Disorders
EPFB 401:  Field Experience

Field experiences are the full school day on Mondays and Wednesdays with the associated seminar held on Tuesdays. 

PROFESSIONAL COMPETENCIES:

The student is able to :

  •  work collaboratively with school personnel
  •  follow rules established for school personnel
  •  display professional behavior at all times
  •  take initiative in classroom activities
  •  deliver lessons from a written plan
  •  have materials/equipment/technology prepared for lesson
  •  establish climate of courtesy and rapport
  •  implement classroom behavior management strategies appropriately
  •  secure the students' attention and set behavioral expectations
  •  positively and specifically reinforce students' efforts and desired behaviors individually and collectively
  •  relate lesson to prior knowledge
  •  introduce the lesson to include the purpose and objective
  •  present lesson information in clear and sequential way
  •  incorporate modifications appropriately
  •  monitor and assess students' understanding, participation, and progress; adjust instruction accordingly
  •  use questioning strategies for higher level thinking
  •  provide and model activities to support the lesson objective
  •  positively and specifically reinforce students' efforts and desired behaviors individually and collectively
  •  redirect off task/inappropriate behavior (verbal/non-verbal)
  •  ensure objective and purpose are stated while including students in lesson closure

IMPORTANT DATES:

Block II

Week 1: 1st Seminar;  Placements Distributed  
Week 2: Placements Begin
Week 8: Midterm Conferences (Friday) 
Week 14: Placement Folders Due 

FIELD EXPERIENCES: BLOCK III

Block III includes education issues particular to adolescents, multicultural education, and students with limited English proficiency. SEFB 420 requires 39 clock hours or practicum working in a secondary classroom or related setting and focuses on transition from school to work. Other courses in this block may have associated labs that require additional practicum hours.

BLOCK III COURSES:

SEFB 420:  Education and Employment Issues in Secondary Special Education (writing intensive course)
EDCI 365:  Using Technology in the Classrooms 
RDNG 372:  Reading and Writing across the Middle Grades Curriculum 
INST 363:  English as a Second Language Methods II 
GEOG 301:  Geography of the United States

FIELD EXPERIENCES: BLOCK IV (STUDENT TEACHING)

The final semester consists of student teaching, which provides field experience in a special education setting. It is designed to provide applied experiences in public schools that facilitate the development of acceptable and realistic perceptions of roles, responsibilities, and relationships. The cooperating teacher becomes the vital force in articulating what is expected of a professional teacher and in interpreting the culture of the school and its attitudes, values, and behaviors. During the application process and prior to making student placements, the students are asked about their grade level and setting preferences. Students are placed in classroom settings appropriate to their training program, with certified teachers who have a minimum of three years experience in that setting. 

All student teachers are required to have professional liability insurance.

BLOCK IV COURSES:

SEFB 425: Student Teaching in Special Education
 

CRITICAL MEETINGS AND INFORMATION:

  • Mandatory Student Teacher Application Meeting: semester immediately prior to student teaching
  • Student Teacher Application: due semester immediately prior to student teaching 
  • Mandatory Orientation: to be determined by field placement coordinator
  • First Day of Student Teaching: no later than the first day of the semester public school students begin
  • Duration: 15 weeks
  • Graduation Reception: Usually held the Friday morning of graduation weekend