Special Education Programs
Learning and Behavior Disorders (LBD) with Elementary and Middle School Emphasis, Moderate to Severe Disabilities P-12 Certification Program, and the 2+2 Program
Undergraduate LBD, Graduate LBD, and Graduate Moderate to Severe Disabilities Program Coordinator:
Dr. Barbara Washington, Adolescent, Career, and Special Education
3214 Alexander Hall
Murray, KY 42071-3340
Dr. Ginny Richerson, Adolescent, Career, and Special Education
3225 Alexander Hall • Murray, KY 42071-3340
Working as a special education teacher can make a powerful impact in the education of a special needs child. Special education teachers may work one-on-one with students with learning disabilities or teach a classroom of students with intellectual disabilities or developmental delays. As a special education teacher, you may work with students with specific learning disabilities, speech or language impairments, or a multitude of other health or mental impairments.
Career Outlook: The number of special education teachers is expected to increase by 17 percent from 2008 to 2018, which is faster than the average for all occupations. Although student enrollments in general are expected to grow more slowly than in the past, continued increases in the number of special education students needing services will generate a greater need for special education teachers.
Undergraduate Learning and Behavior Disorders Program
The Special Education Learning and Behavior Disorders Program (LBD) is a Bachelor of Science degree program in Adolescent, Career, and Special Education Department. The program offers dual certification in special education/elementary education and special education/middle school. This program will prepare you to become a certified special education teacher in primary through grade 12, certified in elementary education primary through grade 5, or certified in middle school education grades 5-9. As a special education teacher, you work with students identified as having a learning disability, mild mental retardation, or behavior disorder.
The Special Education Learning and Behavior Disorders 2 +2 Program is also offered program located at two Murray State University regional sites – Madisonville and Paducah. The program offers dual certification in special education/elementary education. This program prepares you to become a certified special education teacher in primary through grade 5.
The program consists of approximately 130 hours, including University Studies, professional education courses, and special education courses. You will be introduced to a wide range of theoretical systems and education systems in their course work and are able to apply this knowledge to real students in real classrooms. Observations, assisting classroom teachers, and teaching experiences in public schools are incorporated into university classes. The culminating experience is a semester-long student teaching experience in two classroom settings in a public school.
Moderate to Severe Disabilities Certificate (P-12)
This program is designed for teachers certified in LBD who wish to obtain a P-12 certification in moderate to severe disabilities. A valid teaching certificate is required for entrance. Your progress will be continuously assessed throughout the program using established program checkpoints and portfolio entries addressing Kentucky teacher standards. This program does not lead to a master’s degree but can be used as a basis for developing a master’s degree or Rank I in Moderate to Severe Disabilities. A minimum 3.0 GPA is required for completion of this program.
Master of Arts in Education, Mild Learning and Behavior Disorders (LBD) Program
This program leads to Rank II certification in LBD, provided the student already possesses initial certification in regular education. Individuals certified in LBD are trained to work with students with learning disabilities, behavior disorders, mild mental retardation, and other mild disabilities. This program requires 31 precise credit hours, the passing of an exit portfolio, and a minimum 3.0 GPA. For additional information on this program, please consult your advisor or refer to the program advising sheet.
Master of Arts in Education, Teacher Leader Program in Special Education Learning and Behavior Disorders
If you want to assume a leadership role within your school but you do not necessarily wish to become an administrator, the Master of Arts in Education, Teacher Leader Program is for you. Upon completion of the 30-hour program, you will earn a Rank II and Teacher Leader Master’s designation as well as the Teacher Leader Endorsement This certification is required to take 15 hours of core courses in addition to the 15 hours required for a specialization. For more detailed information regarding the Teacher Leader Master’s Degree Program, please download the advising guide or speak to your advisor.
Master of Arts in Education, Moderate to Severe Disabilities Certification (P-12)
This program is for individuals with elementary, middle school, secondary or special education certifications (any area) who wish to obtain a P-12 certificate in moderate to severe disabilities. A valid teaching certificate is required for entrance. Your progress will be continuously assessed throughout the program using established program checkpoints and portfolio entries addressing Kentucky Teacher Standards. A minimum 3.0 GPA is required for completion of this program. Individuals currently certified in LBD, IECE, and CDI with teaching experience who are participating in the Alternative Route to Moderate to Severe Disabilities Certification may apply for this program once they have their Provisional Certificate.