Jun 12, 2024  
2022-2023 Graduate Studies Bulletin 
2022-2023 Graduate Studies Bulletin [ARCHIVED BULLETIN]

Adolescent Special Education (Grades 7-12), Adv. Cert.

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Professor WilsonGraduate Program Director, 516-463-5788

Program Philosophy, Goals, and Objectives

This advanced certificate in adolescent special education (grades 7-12) is an 18-semester hour program designed for individuals who would like a concentrated study in special education, leading to New York State certification as a secondary special education generalist. Individuals must hold an initial/professional New York State certification in childhood, middle childhood, adolescent developmental levels, or specialty certifications such as Art, Business, Health, Music, Physical Education, and TESOL.

The mission of Hofstra University’s special education programs is to prepare professionals for the education of individuals with special needs. The participants in this program will pursue academic excellence and are dedicated to reflective, participatory, and collaborative processes within various settings and service delivery models. The advanced certificate program in adolescent special education provides in-service teachers with the skills and competencies necessary for effective instruction of students across the full range of disabilities. The assessment techniques and strategies used in identifying exceptional learners, research-based methodologies, and education, including collaborative consultation models and universal design for learning, are major components of the program.

Special education builds upon general education, and all learners in this advanced certificate program must have this prerequisite preparation. Field experiences are linked to the courses within this advanced certificate program. A universal theme woven into the fabric of this program is an appreciation of diversity and the potential of every individual.

Admission Requirements

Applicants for admission to the Advanced Certificate Program in Special Education in the Department of Specialized Programs in Education must possess New York State classroom teaching certification at the childhood, middle childhood, or adolescent developmental level.

Admission is based on a comprehensive review of multiple criteria, including the following:

  • *Possess New York state classroom teaching certification at the childhood, middle childhood, adolescent developmental level, or one of the specialty area certifications such as Art, Business, Health, Music, PE, TESOL.
  • A completed application form to the advanced certificate program;
  • A minimum grade point average of 3.0;
  • Completion of New York State Content Area requirements for SWD generalist (see below)
  • Three letters of recommendation addressing the ’ ‘applicant’s potential to succeed in the teaching of students with special needs;
  • A written personal statement of professional intent; and
  • Interview with a faculty member in special education.

*Teachers who received NY state certification through reciprocity, individual evaluation, or additional certification pathway will need proof of coursework in the following liberal arts areas: Artistic Expression/Humanities (3 s.h.) Communication (3 s.h.) Information Retrieval or placement exam (0-3 s.h.) Concepts in History/Social Science (6 s.h.) Scientific Processes (6 s.h.) Mathematical Processes (6 s.h.) Literature, Analysis and Written Expression (6 s.h.), Languages Other than English (3s.h.).

The Department understands that any single criterion may not reliably predict a candidate’s potential for success in a graduate program. Consequently, candidates are welcome to apply if they do not meet one of the criteria but feel that other aspects of their experience may compensate.

Content Area Requirements

Students admitted to the Advanced Certificate in Adolescent Special Education (Grades 7-12) program are expected to have completed undergraduate course work from each of the content areas below, and attained a minimum grade point average of 2.75. All deficiencies must be completed as co-requisites prior to the conferral of the Advanced Certificate.

  • Math, 6 s.h.
  • Science, 6 s.h.
  • English language arts, 6 s.h.
  • Social studies, 6 s.h.

Program Prerequisite


Field Experience Prior to Student Teaching

Field experiences are integrated extensively into course curricula. Placements are arranged by the Office of Field Placement. Participation/observation field experiences that correspond to the childhood certificate holder are required in each of the following courses:

Graduation Requirements

  • Completion of 18 s.h. with no fewer than 15 s.h. in-residence.
  • A minimum GPA of 3.0 in overall graduate course work.
  • Completion of all required Educational Law Seminars.
  • All course work taken in satisfaction of the degree requirements must have been completed within a five-year period.

Teacher Certification Requirements

Upon successful completion of degree requirements, students will be eligible to apply for the University’s recommendation for New York state certification. Contact the School of Education Dean’s Office for information regarding any required Educational Law seminars* and other certification requirements. 

*Please note, as of December 31, 2013, the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education now require a new six-hour seminar for Training in Harassment, Bullying and Discrimination Prevention and Intervention, required under the Dignity for All Students Act (DASA): http://www.highered.nysed.gov/tcert/news/newsitem05162013.html.

To be eligible for the certification extension in gifted education or bilingual education students are required to have passing scores on the appropriate New York State Teacher Certification Examinations (NYSTCE). Please contact the School of Education Dean’s Office for specific certification requirements.

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