Special Education

The special education (Learning Behavior Specialist I) program prepares you for the State of Illinois Professional Educator's License in Special Education, which qualifies you to teach students with special needs from birth to age 21. It also includes an English as a Second Language endorsement that certifies you to teach English Language Learners.

Ready For Anything

You participate in classroom field experiences your freshman year, then you gain additional field experiences your sophomore and junior years. These prepare you for the senior year student teaching experience. Bradley faculty and your supervising teachers are valuable mentors throughout the process. 

Additionally, Bradley is the first university in Illinois to embed the ESL endorsement within its early childhood, elementary, middle school and special education degrees. That experience enhances your value to school districts as English Language Learners are one of the fastest-growing demographics in Illinois schools. 

The teacher education department is accredited by the Illinois State Board of Education and National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education. It also is a member of the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation. The early childhood education program is nationally recognized by the National Association for the Education of Young Children.

By the time you graduate, your experiences include:
  • Professional development and licensure in special education (LBS I)
  • More than 100 hours in classroom settings for the ESL endorsement
  • More than 600 hours of field experiences and student teaching in local classrooms
  • Interaction with faculty who taught on six continents, published 30 books on education and served in educational leadership at state and national levels
  • Use of Smart Board, virtual reality, 3-D printing and wearable technology for classrooms

Making Your Mark

All special education students who completed the program and graduated boast a 100 percent pass rate on Illinois licensure tests, including the national edTPA portfolio evaluation. That success means you can enter the teaching profession or graduate school after graduation. As an educator, you can consider future graduate studies in curriculum and instruction or other fields.

Major Requirements

Professional Education Requirements - 42 hrs.

  • ETE 100 Technology Applications - 1 hr.
  • ETE 107 Mathematics for Teachers I - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 108 Mathematics for Teachers II - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 115 The History of Education in the United States - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 116 Field Experience: Schools and Schooling in American Society - 1 hr.
  • ETE 210 Human Development from Birth to Young Adulthood - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 211 Human Development from Birth to Young Adulthood and Effective Teaching Field Experience - 1 hr.
  • ETE 215 Strategies for Effective Teaching - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 235 Methods of Teaching English Language Learners - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 237 Practicum for Teaching English Learners I - 1 hr.
  • ETE 238 Practicum for Teaching English Learners II - 1 hr.
  • ETE 239 Practicum for Teaching English Learners III - 1 hr.
  • ETE 280 Exploring Diversity: Learners, Families and Communities - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 313 Methods of Literacy I: Reading, Writing and Language Arts Grades 1-2 - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 315 Methods of Literacy II: Reading, Writing and Language Arts Grades 3-8- 3 hrs.
  • ETE 335 Methods of Teaching Social Studies 1-6 - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 336 Methods of Teaching Science 1-6 - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 339 Methods of Teaching Mathematics 1-6 - 3 hrs.

Special Education for LBS I - 46 hrs.

  • ETE 230 Adapting Curriculum to Support Inclusive Environments - 3 hrs
  • ETE 234 Language Development - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 291 Assistive Technology for Individuals with Special Needs - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 305 Novice Teaching Experience for LBS I Setting - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 310 Teacher Performance Assessment - 1
  • ETE 345 Guiding Learners: Creating Safe, Inclusive Learning Environments - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 391 Characteristics and Methods for Learners with Developmental Disabilities - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 393 Characteristics and Methods for Learners with Emotional and Learning Disabilities - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 395 High School Special Education - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 425 Life Planning for Learners with Exceptionalities - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 426 Assessment for Learners with Exceptionalities - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 445 Multidisciplinary Collaboration - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 496 Student Teaching for LBS I - 12 hrs.

Early Childhood Special Education Approval

For those LBS I majors who want the ECE Special Education Approval, the following courses may be added to your program:

  • ETE 324 Early Childhood Special Education Methods - 3 hrs.
  • ETE 433 Early Childhood Assessment - 3 hrs.