Who Should Consider a Master’s Degree in Special Education?

Millions of individuals in the U.S. with exceptionalities benefit from special needs education programs. This incredibly diverse group of people have needs that are unique and varied, from educational support to assistance with skills that help them lead full and successful lives.

If you would like to have a positive impact on the success of those people with exceptionalities, it is important to be familiar with the latest trends in skill assessment, current technologies that meet their needs, and knowledge of laws and theoretical frameworks that drive policy and learning. A master’s degree in special education will arm you with the most current tools to improve the literacy and communication skills of those with exceptionalities. These skills affect not only their performance in the classroom, but their ability to live independently out in the world. This degree is often pursued by teachers who are interesting in becoming proficient at identifying and addressing the unique needs of the students they serve. But family and community members who engage often with special needs students will also find it beneficial and enlightening.

Teachers and Other Educational Careers

As both educator and advocate, special education teachers are uniquely prepared to help all students reach their academic, social and emotional potential by customizing techniques and materials to meet their individual needs. As the National Council for Special Education reminds us, “…each student is different — what works for one may not work for another.”

This emphasis on a highly individualized approach to education is the foundation of a master’s degree in special education curriculum. Upon completion, you will have the skills to assess individual needs and use a variety of tools to design a program for each student.

Advocates and Community Leaders

Services for exceptional students should not stop at the school gates. Because the learning and independence of individuals with moderate disabilities impact their families and communities, it is important for community workers, advocates and family members to be able to assess their needs and to understand how to access the available resources to meet those needs.

An essential part of special education is strengthening a student’s skills in communication, social interactions, and independent living. When families and communities are aware of those needs and know how to support the fulfillment of them, they can reinforce the efforts of the school as well as provide additional support and encouragement.

Beyond assisting in very concrete ways, developing a deeper understanding of the psychological factors of students with disabilities will lead to improved relationships and interactions between you and those students. Even if you do not work in the field of education, the knowledge you gain by earning a master’s degree will provide insight into the services and support systems available for parents, students, and community workers alike.

Preparing to Help Each Person to Succeed

The Master of Education in Moderate Disabilities program from Worcester State University, offered entirely online, will give you the knowledge to help empower those with moderate disabilities to communicate more effectively, become more independent, and lead more fulfilling lives. In addition, as an experienced educator, “… your ability to integrate theoretical frameworks and develop special education services and outcomes for individuals with exceptionalities and their families” will increase your value both as an educator and an advocate, notes WSU. From a global perspective, anyone can benefit from a better understanding of the needs of those with disabilities.

With a clearer understanding of the characteristics and needs of students with special needs, you will be better prepared to support them in school, at home or as they transition into and navigate throughout the community. You can help guide and prepare them to more effectively collaborate with teachers and others. And your knowledge can help you influence policy at the school or other level.

You want to see them thrive in academic and community settings, and your knowledge can help them get there.

Learn more about Worcester State University’s online Master of Education in Moderate Disabilities program.


Sources:

Special Education Guide: What Special Education Teachers Do

Differentiating Science Instruction and Assessment for Learners With Special Needs, K-8: Collaborating to Teach Students With Mild to Moderate Disabilities in the Inclusion Classroom

National Council for Special Education: Moderate General Learning Disability

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