Special Education

The K-12 Special Education Program at BHSU prepares teachers who work with students experiencing the greatest challenges in learning.  BHSU professors partner with school districts to provide experiences in regular classrooms, in special education classrooms, and in inclusive classroom environments. 

Program graduates are competent and confident they can make a real difference.  A high percentage are hired immediately following graduation.  Some continue their education in graduate school to become school psychologists.

Why the K-12 Special Education Program at BHSU?

  • Gain valuable clinical practice experiences while working with highly regarded South Dakota clinicians
  • Become involved with the Council of Exceptional Children and special education advocacy groups

Special Education Major Course Requirements

Pre-Professional Core - 16 semester hours

  • EDFN 338 - Foundations of American Education
  • EDFN 295 - Practicum: Pre-Admission 
  • EPSY 302 - Educational Psychology
  • EPSY 428 - Child & Adolescent Development
  • HLTH 251 - First Aid & CPR
  • INED 411 - South Dakota Indian Studies
  • PSYC 101 - General Psychology

Special Ed Core - 32 semester hours

  • ED 420 - Single Subject Research Methodology
  • SPED 100 - Intro to Persons with Exceptionalities
  • SPED 406 - Introduction to Assistive Technology
  • SPED 410 - Behavior Management of Exceptional Children
  • SPED 413 - Students with MR, DD, and Severe Disabilities
  • SPED 417 - Vocational-Transitional Programming
  • SPED 420 - Curriculum & Instructional Strategies K-12
  • SPED 431 - Identification and Assessment in Special Education
  • SPED 453 - Introduction to Autism Spectrum Disorders
  • SPED 460 - Family Systems and Professional Collaboration
  • SPED 495 - Practicum: Special Education
  • Take one course from the following:
    ELED 459 - Intro to Literacy Assessment & Remediation
    PE 352 - Adapted Physical Education
    PSYC 451 - Psychology of Abnormal Behavior

Teaching Core - 25 semester hours

  • EDFN 365 - Computer-Based Technology & Learning
  • EDFN 375 - Methods of Technology Integration
  • EDFN 440 - Classroom Management
  • MLED 480 - Middle Level Methods
  • SEED 408 - Plan, Manage & Assess the 7-12 Diverse Classroom
  • SEED 450 - 7-12 Reading & Content Literacy OR
    ELED 315 - Foundations & Theory of Reading
  • ELED 495 - Practicum: Pre-Student Teaching OR
  • SEED 495 - Practicum: Pre-Student Teaching
  • EDFN 475 Human Relations
  • SPED 488 - Student Teaching in Special Education

Internships and field experiences are an important part of our education programs and are coordinated by the faculty.  Students spend a minimum of 45 hours in the classrooms during their sophomore year, 100 hours during their junior year, and end their program with a 16 week student teaching experience.

The local chapter of the American Association on Mental Retardation and the Student Council for Exceptional Children (AAMR/SCEC) is an excellent opportunity for BHSU students.  You can join the group and expand your education with special and exceptional needs through activities and conventions.  The group hosts several local activities, including holiday dances for the Northern Hills Training Center and the Black Hills Special Services groups.  In the past, the group has participated in an annual Chili Feed and an open forum on special education.  Fundraisers such as the Silent Auction and Ladies’ Night Out are also an important part of AAMR/SCEC.  Members raise money to help them attend state and national conventions.

Several other student organizations, such as the Black Hills Association for the Education of Young Children, Honors Program, Kappa Delta Pi, and the Reading Council, are also available. 

Laura TurnerSchool of EducationInstructor, Computer Technology(605)642-6235
Jessica ZantonSchool of EducationAssistant Professor, Special Education(605)642-6887