Chatham University

Special Education (M.Ed) Curriculum

The Master of Education in Special Education (M.Ed.) degree is designed for women and men in the teaching profession in grade PreK-12. The mission of the Chatham University Special Education Program is to prepare teachers in reflective, participatory, and collaborative practices to provide exemplary learning opportunities for children and youth with exceptionalities. The program is designed to develop ethical professionals working with diverse populations in a variety of social and cultural contexts. Students will either choose the PreK-8 Special Education major or the 7-12 Special Education major. Education courses are held both in class and online.

This program involves both classroom study and field experiences, culminating in 150 hour practicum experience in a school setting. In accordance with the Pennsylvania State Department of Education (PDE) requirements, candidates must satisfy all regulations pertaining to teacher training contained in the Pennsylvania School Code. These regulations are subject to change by the State. Students will be required to comply with any such regulations that are instituted before they can apply for certification through PDE. In addition, students must have a valid (less than one year old) Child Abuse, Pennsylvania Criminal History and Federal Criminal History Record to enter a school for any and all field work. A P.P.D Tuberculin (TB) Test and a physical exam may also be required to complete field work.

This 30-credit graduate program addresses all required content and competencies for Special Education certification by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. As with all PA Special Ed certification programs, this is an “add-on” program, built on the student’s existing certification in another area, such as PreK-4, middle grades, or a subject area in secondary education.

Program Requirements

+Degree Requirements for PreK-8

30 credits, including:

30 credits, including:
EDU531 Assessment and Adaptation

Students investigate the assessment of individuals with mild to moderate disabilities. Topics include the fundamental principles of assessment tools and the social responsibility of professionals to exercise fairness and accuracy in the assessment process.

3
EDU510 Differentiated Reading and Writing

This course provides the regular and special education teacher with specific data-based knowledge and skills to teach reading and writing in content areas to students with disabilities.

3
EDU605 Instructing Students With Autism Spectrum Disorders

This course is designed to focus on pertinent issues and topics that concern students with autism. Spectrum disorders. This course provides an overview of evidenced-based instructional strategies used to teach students with autism as well as ways to collaborate with individuals in the home, school, and community. Topics will cover specific instructional strategies, family/community relations, behavior, inclusion and transition.

3
EDU634 Inclusion: Issues and Strategies

This course surveys practices of inclusion in education. It encompasses the historical precendents, underlying philosophy, education theory, instructional strategies, and practical implications of it implementation. Students participate in a variety of of learning experiences throughout the course. Prequisites: EDU502, 580, 607 Co-requisites: EDU582

3
EDU661 High Incidence Disabilities: Instructional Strategies Birth-Grade 8

This course focuses on the design and implementation of an individualized education program for a child with mild learning needs and the selection, design, and adaptation of curriculum and instructional techniques in the areas of reading, language arts, and mathematics.Prerequisite(s): EDU 506; Co-requisite: EDU 582

3
EDU664 Behavior Management in the Classroom

Students investigate the principles and systematic approaches used to identify and analyze problem management techniques, individual behavior and affective intervention strategies, and community-based support programs designed to address problem behaviors. Crisis intervention and conflict resolution are explored as strategies for confronting challenging behaviors. Prerequisite(s):EDU506; Co-requisite: EDU582

3
EDU668 Low Incidence Disabilities: Birth-8th Grade

This course focuses on the design of a comprehensive educational program for the child with moderate to severe mental or physical disabilities. Students analyze the child’s cognitive, behavioral, and physical profile; review assessment techniques; and examine curriculum materials and instructional methods to determine the most appropriate educational program. Prerequisite(s): EDU 661; Co-requisite: EDU 586

3
EDU671 Collaboration, Consultation, and Teamwork

This course focuses on developing effective collaboration skills with members of the school community, as well as the community at large, to provide a realistic and integrated program for all children. Students engage in a variety of group activities that call for the need to analyze group dynamics and implement effective communication strategies. Prerequisite(s): EDU 506 or 634

3
EDU690 Practicum in Special Education

This course is designed for students who hold a Pennsylvania certification and are seeking certification in special education. Students demonstrate their ability to plan for and deliver a minimum of 15 lessons to special needs students enrolled in regular education or resource rooms. Pre-requisites: EDU524, 668, 673, Permission of the Education Director

6
For students who have not had at least three credits in Instructional Strategies for Teaching English Language Learners are required by the Pennsylvania Department of Education to take this as one elective.

+Degree Requirements for 7-12:

30 credits, including:

30 credits including:
EDU531 Assessment and Adaptation

Students investigate the assessment of individuals with mild to moderate disabilities. Topics include the fundamental principles of assessment tools and the social responsibility of professionals to exercise fairness and accuracy in the assessment process.

3
EDU510 Differentiated Reading and Writing

This course provides the regular and special education teacher with specific data-based knowledge and skills to teach reading and writing in content areas to students with disabilities.

3
EDU605 Instructing Students With Autism Spectrum Disorders

This course is designed to focus on pertinent issues and topics that concern students with autism. Spectrum disorders. This course provides an overview of evidenced-based instructional strategies used to teach students with autism as well as ways to collaborate with individuals in the home, school, and community. Topics will cover specific instructional strategies, family/community relations, behavior, inclusion and transition.

3
EDU634 Inclusion: Issues and Strategies

This course surveys practices of inclusion in education. It encompasses the historical precendents, underlying philosophy, education theory, instructional strategies, and practical implications of it implementation. Students participate in a variety of of learning experiences throughout the course. Prequisites: EDU502, 580, 607 Co-requisites: EDU582

3
EDU662 Advanced Instructional Interventions 7-12

This course provides an advanced application of recent research and reviews of interventions for individuals with high incidence disabilities in the 7-12 grades. Topics will include: recent research on interventions in reading, writing and math, effective instructional practices, learning strategies, reading, writing and math instructional strategies, content area accommodations, testing accommodations and transition. Prerequisite EDU 510. Co-Requisite: EDU 690

3
EDU664 Behavior Management in the Classroom

Students investigate the principles and systematic approaches used to identify and analyze problem management techniques, individual behavior and affective intervention strategies, and community-based support programs designed to address problem behaviors. Crisis intervention and conflict resolution are explored as strategies for confronting challenging behaviors. Prerequisite(s):EDU506; Co-requisite: EDU582

3
EDU669 Low Incidence Disabilities 7-12

This course focuses on the design of a comprehensive educational program for students having low incidence disabilities in 7-12.Teacher/Teacher candidates will be exposed to the curriculum of students with low incidence disabilities such as life, vocational, and social skills, and functional academics.  In addition, student will be able to identify and define various low-incidence disabilities as well as develop and implement lesson plans, curriculum and assistive technologies. Student will learn how to consult and research available journals and resources for teaching students with low-incidence disabilities. * This course requires an embedded 10 hours of field placement. Students must have valid federal FBI, PA Criminal and PA Child Abuse clearances to complete the field placement.

3
EDU671 Collaboration, Consultation, and Teamwork

This course focuses on developing effective collaboration skills with members of the school community, as well as the community at large, to provide a realistic and integrated program for all children. Students engage in a variety of group activities that call for the need to analyze group dynamics and implement effective communication strategies. Prerequisite(s): EDU 506 or 634

3
EDU690 Practicum in Special Education

This course is designed for students who hold a Pennsylvania certification and are seeking certification in special education. Students demonstrate their ability to plan for and deliver a minimum of 15 lessons to special needs students enrolled in regular education or resource rooms. Pre-requisites: EDU524, 668, 673, Permission of the Education Director

6
For students who have not had at least three credits in Instructional Strategies for Teaching English Language Learners are required by the Pennsylvania Department of Education to take this as one elective.

+Core Courses (15 cr)

COM525 Communications Research and Theory

Course provides an overview of the major theoretical and research developments in the communications discipline. The emphasis will be on the application of theory to practice and on applied research. Topics include quantitative and qualitative research methods, research ethics, and the history of development of communication theories.

3
COM528 Risk and Crisis Communications

Students acquire an understanding of crisis management and risk communication. Course topics include public opinion research, data collection and analysis, crisis and risk management theory, and communication tactics and strategies. Students develop case studies relating to their areas of professional interest.

3
COM625 Communications Campaigns

Students explore the use of communication campaigns to reduce health risks and promote public health and awareness. Course prepares students to develop, implement, and assess health campaigns. Drawing on health behavior theory and communication research and theory, students work on case studies and develop original campaigns employing multiple commuication channels.

3
COM675 Communication Law & Ethics

Course provides an examination of the legal and ethical dimensions of communications. The historical development of media law is covered, altheough emphasis is placed on contemporary legal issues. Students explore complex ethical challenges facing media practitioners through case studies, exercises and class discussions.

3
COM685 Communications Project

This is the capstone project for all students in the Master's in Communications program. This applied learning experience bulids upon previous coursework. Students develop a major project designed to meet their professional interests. The project will demonstrate mastery of the knowledge and skills gained throughout the program.

3

+Concentration: Environmental Communication (9 cr)

COM515 Environmental Communications

Course offers an overview of environmental communications providing an analysis of how individuals, institutions and corporations describe and portray our interactions with the environment. Discussion topics include environmental discourse, environmental conflicts, risk communication, environmental disasters, environmental social movements, and the nature-society relationship.

3
SUS504 Introduction to Sustainability and Systems

This course provides students the skills to understand, communicate, and critique the fundamentals of sustainability at multiple scales and across disciplines and cultures. It explores sustainability's origins and foundations, application, and assessment. We evaluate the inter-relationships among environmental, societal, and economic well-being and the implications on individual and social decision-making.

3
SUS580 Sustainable Behavior Change

This hybrid course combines classroom and online instruction with real-world application. Students learn the latest science concerning sources of environmental degradation. In teams, students apply motivational theory, collect secondary and primary data, and develop an action plan for increasing pro-environmental behaviors (PEB) in a specific context.

3

+Concentration: Health Communication (9 cr)

COM510 Health Communications

Course provides an introduction to the essential concepts and theories of health communication. Students study how individuals understand health issues and how communication processes help shape and influcence our acceptance of health-related messages. Topics include health literacy, media coverage of health issues, and health risk communications.

3
BUS511 Health Policy & Advocacy

Analyze and synthesize innovative approaches to issues in health care delivery at all levels. Politics, policy, market forces, and advocacy are used to assess how system approaches affect health care delivery. Transformational leadership for political and policy activism are emphasized, while exploring regional, national, and global health issues and trends. licy activism are emphasized, while exploring emerging regional, national, and global health issues and trends.

3
BUS540 Leadership for Change in Healthcare Organizations

Focuses on the needs of health care leaders to take health care delivery into the future through innovative initiatives. Includes: variables impacting health care delivery systems; reimbursement and funding for design change; managing competition; creating the health care delivery system of the future; and managing human and financial resources.

3

+Concentration: Strategic Communication (9 cr)

COM550 Organizational Communications

Course covers current theory and research in the area of organizational communications. Includes formal and informal organizations and public and private organizations. Topics include organizational culture, employee information needs, decision making, leadership and power. Emphasis will be placed on developing the analytical tools to analyze and improve organizational communications.

3
COM518 Strategic Communications

Course provides an overview of concepts, tactics and skills employed in strategic internal and external communications. Students learn how to determine the communications objective(s), define the target audience(s) and stakeholders, and develop key messages to improve strategic communications.

3
COM610 Media and Social Change

Course focus is on the relationship between media and social change. It examines the way various entities have employed mass media, the Internet, mobile media, and social networks to prompt social change. Topics include social marketing, persuation and influence, community engagement, strategic philanthropy, and corporate social responsibility.

3

+Electives (6 cr)

BUS511 Health Policy & Advocacy

Analyze and synthesize innovative approaches to issues in health care delivery at all levels. Politics, policy, market forces, and advocacy are used to assess how system approaches affect health care delivery. Transformational leadership for political and policy activism are emphasized, while exploring regional, national, and global health issues and trends. licy activism are emphasized, while exploring emerging regional, national, and global health issues and trends.

3
BUS540 Leadership for Change in Healthcare Organizations

Focuses on the needs of health care leaders to take health care delivery into the future through innovative initiatives. Includes: variables impacting health care delivery systems; reimbursement and funding for design change; managing competition; creating the health care delivery system of the future; and managing human and financial resources.

3
BUS551 Health Informatics: Database Management for Evidence-based Decision Making

This course is designed to assist the student in understanding the various database systems used within a healthcare setting. Key to this course is understanding how healthcare professionals can collect and extract data from database systems to assess the organizations performance and impact on patient outcomes.

3
BUS570 Global Business

This course introduces students to international business and management by studying cultural influences, government, and business structures in our global economy. Students also learn about trade relations, international finance and legal and labor agreements. Also covered, are topics on information needs, production systems, marketing and promotion, and career planning.

3
BUS570 Global Business

This course introduces students to international business and management by studying cultural influences, government, and business structures in our global economy. Students also learn about trade relations, international finance and legal and labor agreements. Also covered, are topics on information needs, production systems, marketing and promotion, and career planning.

3
BUS576 Sustainable Human Capital

Cultivate theoretical understanding and ethical and practical skills for managing human capital. Explore individual, group, and organizational levels of analysis focusing on topics of motivation, communication, group dynamics, decision making, culture, power, and politics. Analyze the effectiveness of tools for talent acquisition and development, such as compensation, feedback, and assessment.

3
FST505 Food and Representations

Food is elemental to survival, culture, home, and subjectivity - to rituals of love, oloss, and celebration. Focusing on representations of food and eating in spiritual narratives, epic texts, myth, novels, and film, this class examines the cultural work food performs along with the varying meanings assigned to food and eating.

3
FST515 Writing About Food

Students will develop technique and skills for writing about food and culture by studying ethics; journalism; advertising, multimodal and new technology venues; recipe writing; food criticism; writing about food in a variety of genres from history to fiction, magazines, and websites. Course emphasizes both print and online media.

3
PWR601 Introduction to Professional Writing

This foundational course is designed as an introduction to professional writing genres, models, standards, and formats of the online Master of Professional Writing degree. The course features practical writing and editing experience in a collaborative work environment. The class will establish a basic level of writing skills among MPW students and will begin with the development, or enhancement, of students' skills in analysis, synthesis, summarizing, and expository writing. In the latter part of the course, students focus on the techniques that make professional writing flow and hold the reader's interest. A workshop approach helps beginning writers learn to craft their work so that it reads smoothly and communicates effectively. Topics include creating leads that command interest, developing a story idea without floundering, making graceful and unobtrusive transitions, enriching the theme, and perfecting the ruthless art of self-editing. Students write short essays and critique their own published work.

3
PWR606 Grant Writing

This course focuses on teaching the conventions and fundamentals of writing successful grants for nonprofit organizations, educational institutions, and government agencies.

3
PWR616 Technical Writing

This course teaches students how to prepare letter reports and technical reports about subjects that require technical explanations, diagrams, charts, and jargon understood by technical readers. In addition, this course teaches students how to present technical information to technical readers so they understand the concepts and can apply them in their work.

3
PWR620 Political and News Writing

This course is designed to give students a working knowledge of the practice of reporting and writing for newspapers, magazines and online venues. Through comprehensive writing projects and student prepared news blogs, students practice with the leading edge techniques and tools required for writing.

3
PWR621 Use of New and Social Media

This course seeks to give students the skills and confidence to create interesting and informative digital presentations based on simple presentation design and delivery options.

3
PWR625 Business and Organizational Writing

This course teaches students the rhetorical principles and writing practices necessary for producing effective business letters, memos, reports, and collaborative projects in professional contexts. All sections are offered in networked computer classrooms to ensure that students taking the course are prepared for the writing environment of the 21st century workplace. The course teaches the rhetorical principles that help students shape their business writing ethically, for multiple audiences, in a variety of professional situations.

3
PWR632 Science and Environmental Writing

This course focuses on the practice of writing about science, environment, medicine, and technology for audiences ranging from the general public to scientists and engineers. It starts with basic science writing for lay audiences, emphasizing organization and clear writing techniques and also explores problems of conveying highly complex technical information to multiple audiences, factors that influence science communication to the public, and interactions between scientists and journalists.

3
PWR641 Financial Writing

This course is concerned with the communication of financial information in writing: How should financial professionals construct documents? What are the writing techniques needed to make the numbers tell their own story? Topics include genres of financial writing (reports, presentations, correspondence), successful writing strategies (audience analysis, grammar usage, information gathering), organizing information, and using tables and charts.

3
PWR662 Writing for Digital Media

This class will prepare students to enter these fields by teaching the strategies and skills needed to make compelling interactive experiences. Specifically, students will focus on developing their abilities to conceptualize, design, and create multimedia applications. Areas of focus will include: strategies for understanding and documenting audience needs and expectations; basics of effective user interface design; and typical process and artifacts involved with multimedia application development.

3
PWR673 Web Design and Development I

This course will provide an introduction to the technical skills needed for designing on-line content and interactive multimedia. Current multimedia tools for use in creating web-based products will be taught with ample opportunity for practice. Students learn authoring tools and multimedia techniques while covering topics, including non-text-based communication, integration of visuals, the animation of text and graphics, and digital video web-deployment.

3
PWR674 Web Design and Development II

A continuation of Web Design and Development I, this course will advance student knowledge and understanding of multimedia authoring tools.

3
Graduate students can take up to 6 credits at PCHE institutions with prior approval.