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Special Education

The Doctor of Education with a concentration in Special Education is designed for educators, administrators, parents, and mental, health or social service providers with a sincere desire to improve opportunities and the quality of life for individuals with disabilities. This concentration fosters the development of leadership skills through self-reflection, analysis, and best practices used to solve real problems in the workplace through practical application. The concentration in special education focuses on facilitating the development of logical, critical, and reflective thinking skills in the areas of teacher collaboration, law, assessment and evaluation, administration, and multicultural issues.

The FCE programs in Exceptional Student Education/Special Education prepare professionals to assume positions as professors, administrators, and disability service providers. The Doctor of Education (EdD) program, with a concentration in Special Education, addresses the academic and professional needs of personnel who currently hold or aspire to attain positions of leadership in organizations that serve individuals with disabilities and their families. The program entails advanced coursework, seminars, and research activities that provide the knowledge and skills necessary to effectively perform leadership positions in  a variety of settings including direct service agencies, advocacy and policy organizations, and research institutes.

In collaboration with a full-time faculty member, each student is offered the opportunity to develop a customized program of study that: (a) recognizes and respects prior learning and work experiences, and (b) enables studies directed toward specific personal, professional career goals and objectives.

Who Should Apply
  • Practicing teachers, administrators, human service professionals, mental and healthcare providers, and others working with individuals with disabilities; OR
  • Individuals with master's degrees or above who wish to obtain a doctoral degree and increase their knowledge and skills in special education; OR
  • Individuals considering a Ph.D. in special education or an online Ph.D. in special education who would instead like to explore the benefits of an Ed.D. in special education program

The following are specific admission requirements for entry into the Doctor of Education programs. Please refer to the admissions application or catalog for specific program admission requirements and information for international students.

  • Completed online application for admission, including ($50) nonrefundable application fee
  • An official transcript from a regionally accredited institution indicating a conferred master’s degree with a minimum CGPA of 3.0, and official final transcripts from all institutions of higher education (community colleges, bachelor’s programs, post-graduate programs)
  • Professional letters of recommendation from two (2) individuals who can attest to the applicant’s ability to succeed in a doctoral program
  • A test score report* from one of the following exams showing that the applicant received
    • Miller Analogies Test (MAT): Raw score of 37 (scaled score 391–396) on the Miller Analogies Test (MAT)

OR

    • Graduate Record Examination (GRE): For tests taken prior to August 1, 2011, a combined score of 1000 on the verbal and quantitative sections; for tests taken on or after August 1, 2011 a combined score of 300 on the verbal and quantitative sections.

*The test must have been taken within the past five years. Applicants who do not meet the minimum recommended test score are not required to submit additional information or retake the exam to be considered for admission

  • Completed Personal Statement of Goals
  • Completed Transfer of Credits form if applicable

FOR NON-NATIVE ENGLISH SPEAKERS

Applicants whose native language is not English are required to demonstrate English proficiency by providing proof of a minimum score of 213 on the computer-based or 550 on the paper-based Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) exam or 6.0 on the International English Language Testing System (OELTS) exam.

SPECIAL EDUCATION COURSE OF STUDY

(54 CREDITS MINIMUM)

ORIENTATION (0 CREDITS)

Course Number Course Title and Description Credits
DSO 8000 Doctoral Studies Orientation 0

CONCENTRATION AREA COURSES (24 CREDITS)

Course Number Course Title and Description Credits
SPED 8402 Families, Law, and Exceptionalities 3
SPED 8405 Collaboration and Consultation 3
SPED 8409 Multicultural Issues in Special Education 3
Choose 5 additional courses from across the following areas:
SPECIAL EDUCATION
SPED 8401 Special Education Law 3
SPED 8403 Conferencing with Parents and Families 3
SPED 8404 Organization and Administration of Special Education Programs 3
SPED 8406 Transition: Career Development and Independent Living 3
SPED 8407 Assessment and Evaluation of Special Needs: Cognitive Domains 3
SPED 8408 Assessment and Evaluation: Behavioral and Clinical Domains 3
SPED 8411 Critical Issues in Special Education Administration 3
AUTISM
SPED 8801 Advanced Topics in Interventions for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder 3
SPED 8802 Seminar in the Nature of Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder 3
SPED 8803 Advanced Topics in Interventions for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder 3
SPED 8804 Advanced Interventions for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder 3
SPED 8805 Seminar in Professional Issues in Leading Programs for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder 3
SPED 8806 Special Topics Across the Lifespan for Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder 3
APPLIED BEHAVIOR ANALYSIS
SPED 9650 Behavioral Principles and Concepts 3
SPED 9655 Functional Behavioral Assessment 3
SPED 9660 Application of Applied Behavior Analysis in Education and Human Services 3
SPED 9665 Leadership and Ethical Issues in Applied Behavior Analysis 3
SPED 9670 Ethical and Professional Conduct in Applied Behavior Analysis 3

The Behavior Analyst Certification Board, Inc.® (BACB) has approved the following course sequence as meeting the coursework requirements for eligibility to take either the Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst (BCaBA) or Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA) Examination.  Students wishing to fulfill BACB requirements for professional certification should contact the BACB for specific information and advisement. It is recommended that students register with the BACB in order to receive monthly newsletters and stay well-informed of credentialing requirements.  Please check with an academic advisor regarding course planning and selection.

RESEARCH COURSES (12 CREDITS)

*Denotes required course that will be offered blended and online

Course Number Course Title and Description Credits
RES 8100* The Nature of Knowing: Epistemology and Inquiry-Based Learning (Required Course) 3
RES 9300* Methods of Inquiry (Required Course) 3
Select two additional research courses:
RES 8912 Statistical Methods 3
RES 8913 Program Evaluation 3
RES 8914 Educational Assessment 3
RES 8915 Survey Research 3
RES 8916 Qualitative Research 3
RES 8919 Single Subject Research 3
RES 8920 Mixed Methods Research 3

APPLIED DISSERTATION BENCHMARKS (12 CREDITS)

The Applied Dissertation is a detailed, accurate, and cohesive account of a scholarly investigation designed to answer one or more research questions. It is required of all FCE doctoral students and its purpose is to improve practice in education and human services. The dissertation process consists of a total of 12 credits encompassing four major benchmarks.

Course Number Course Title and Description Credits
DISR 8966 Applied Dissertation 1: Prospectus 3
DISR 8967 Applied Dissertation 2: Proposal Development 3
DISR 8968 Applied Dissertation 3: Proposal 3
DISR 8969 Applied Dissertation 4: Applied Dissertation 3

ELECTIVE COURSES (6 CREDITS - *1 REQUIRED COURSE, CHOOSE 1 ADDITIONAL COURSE)

Course Number Course Title and Description Credits
EDD 8200* Leadership, Communication, and
Technology
3
ELECTIVE Choose one elective from a variety of special education courses 3

SUMMER INSTITUTE (0 CREDITS)

The Summer Institute is an opportunity for students to meet with Fischler College classmates, professors, and staff on-campus in Ft. Lauderdale, FL. Students will be able to schedule individual sessions with their applied dissertation committee chairs to discuss dissertation work and with representatives from various service areas, including distance library services, student financial assistance, and program advising. The conference will also offer applied dissertation workshops enabling students to learn valuable information about the dissertation process, as well as roundtable sessions affording students the opportunity to present their dissertation work to a group of peers and receive immediate feedback. 

Course Number Course Title and Description Credits
FSC 8000 Summer Institute (Residency Requirement)         Students must attend one Summer Institute during the 36 months of study. 
0

CONTINUING DISSERTATION SERVICES (0 CREDITS)

Beginning the 37th month of the Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) program, students will enroll in ADS 8091, Applied Dissertation Services, in order to receive dissertation services and support from Dissertation Committee Chairs and/or other NSU faculty and staff. In cases where students are not enrolled in any classes prior to the 37th month and where Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) students require support from Dissertation Chairs and/or other NSU faculty and staff, ADS 8090 may be used to satisfy Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) requirements for continuous matriculation.

Course Number Course Title and Description Credits
ADS 8091 Applied Dissertation Services 0

*Note: Students must be registered for ADS 8091 to be eligible for continuing services.


RECOMMENDED 3-YEAR PROGRAM SEQUENCE

DOWNLOAD PLAN



Coursework for the Doctor of Education is offered in a variety of formats—completely online or in a combination of on-site and online (blended). This allows busy professionals to complete their degrees without leaving their jobs or traveling great distances.

  • Online courses allow students to interact in a virtual classroom.
  • Blended programs combine on-site and online instruction. On-site courses are offered periodically over weekends and supplemented with online study.

In addition to coursework, all doctoral students are required to participate in the Summer Institute in Florida.

Faculty members in the Department of Curriculum & Instruction are dedicated to preparing aspiring teachers and those seeking careers as professionals in education-related fields. Hailing from NSU and other major universities and institutions throughout the country and around the world, our faculty are highly respected professional practitioners and recognized scholars who are carefully selected on the basis of their subject area expertise, teaching abilities, and professional involvement. Furthermore, they are united in their desire to not only educate, but to inspire students to use what they learn to motivate others.

Meet the Faculty and Staff of the Department of Curriculum & Instruction

The purpose of the Doctoral Studies Orientation (DSO 8000) is to provide an overview critical to beginning the Ed.D. program. This noncredit course is a requirement for all doctoral students at NSU's Fischler College of Education. Students should register for and complete the online DSO modules in the first term along with the first "credit-bearing" course. For additional information, please visit the DSO Web site.

The Summer Institute is a week-long conference designed for doctoral students. During the doctoral program, students are required to attend at least one FCE Summer Institute as part of required coursework.  

LEARN MORE

  • Completion of the Doctoral Studies Orientation (DSO 8000)
  • Participation in the Summer Institute (FSC 8000)
  • Satisfactory completion of all required courses
  • Successful completion of an applied dissertation
  • Cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or higher
  • Completed application for degree and satisfaction of all NSU/FCE financial obligations

Coursework for the Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) may not meet state department of education requirements for certification and/or licensure. It is the responsibility of the student to contact his or her state department of education for specific requirements and current information regarding teacher certification/licensure.

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