Special Education


Student Learning Outcomes


The program requires that successful candidates:

  1. understand how exceptionalities may interact with development and learning and use this knowledge to provide culturally responsive, meaningful, andchallenging learning experiences for individuals with exceptionalities;
  2. understand how to create and implement personalized, safe, inclusive, and culturally responsive learning environments for all individuals with exceptionalities to become active and effective learners with positive social interactions, self-determination, and healthy well-being;
  3. use knowledge of general and specialized curricula, including curricula used in Montana schools, to implement individualized learning opportunities that align with the needs of students with exceptionalities;
  4. use multiple methods of assessment and data sources to identify individualized learning needs and make a variety of education decisions (i.e., administer and score standardized assessments, interpret and present assessment results, write Present Levels of Academic Achievement and Functional Performance (PLAAFPS) (34 CFR 300.320(a)(1)), write measurable goals and objectives, and use data to monitor progress);
  5. select, adapt, and use a repertoire of evidence-based instructional strategies and assistive technology to advance learning of individuals with exceptionalities;
  6. guide professional practices by using foundational knowledge of the field along with professional ethics and standards;
  7. collaborate and communicate in culturally responsive ways with all individuals involved in the special education process to improve programs, services, and outcomes for individuals with exceptionalities and their families (i.e., facilitating meetings, scheduling services, implementing accommodations and modifications);
  8. demonstrate an understanding of the philosophical, historical, and legal foundations of special education;
  9. demonstrate knowledge of typical and atypical language development and use systematic evidence-based instruction to enhance language development and teach communicative competence;
  10. demonstrate knowledge and understanding of special education laws and regulations, procedural safeguards, ethical concerns, evaluations/documentation, and appropriate instructional strategies and techniques to support students with social-emotional/behavioral needs (e.g., positive behavior intervention plans/supports); and
  11. demonstrate proficiency in Montana special education procedural competencies including knowledge of state and federal laws along with the 13 legally defined categories, knowledge of the Achievement in Montana (AIM) system and state forms, special education processes, identification of social and cultural movements in special education law, and court cases which shaped special education law, understand legal resources to assist decision making, and the ability to navigate federal and Montana law.