Students may apply through the Office of Graduate Admissions. Admission to the M.S. in Education program in Inclusive Elementary Special Education program in the Department of Special Education is based on a comprehensive review of multiple criteria, including the following:
- Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university with a liberal arts and sciences concentration.
- A completed application form to the master’s program
- A minimum grade point average of 3.0.
- Three letters of recommendation addressing the applicant’s potential to succeed in the teaching of students with disabilities.
- A written personal statement of professional intent.
- Interview with a faculty member in Special Education.
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.
Students will qualify for admission to Student Teaching SPED 219G-219S, (219C) when they have satisfied the following requirements:
- Successful completion of 37 semester hours of core course work, including all courses from Phase I and II;
- A grade point average of 3.0 or higher in overall graduate course work and all special education core courses.
Admission by permission of the graduate program director and application to the Office of Field Placement and the Department of Special Education , due on May 1 for the succeeding spring semester and February 15 for the succeeding fall semester. Application forms are available in Hagedorn Hall, Room 118.
Teacher Certification Requirements
Upon the successful completion of a Hofstra state-approved teacher education program, students are eligible for the University’s recommendation for New York state certification. A request for recommendation must be submitted to the Office of Educational Support Services the semester in which the student is graduating. There will be opportunities to attend a certification workshop during the student’s final semester, to receive all the necessary information regarding applying for certification. Individuals who apply directly to New York state for certification are responsible for learning about and satisfying the certification requirements set by the state. It should be noted that such requirements may differ from those in Hofstra’s registered programs.
All prospective early childhood (Birth-Grade 2), childhood (Grades 1-6), adolescent (Grades 7-12) and special subject, students with disabilities, gifted, TESOL, bilingual, literacy, speech and language disabilities teachers, as well as school leadership candidates, are required to pass the New York State Certification Examinations (NYSTCE) administered by National Evaluation Systems, Inc., For state certification requirements, students should consult with the Office of Educational Support Services regarding the appropriate examinations for their area of study.
We anticipate that teacher and school building leader candidates applying for certification on or after May 1, 2014, will be required to take certain new exams. Candidates who graduate and apply for certification on or before April 30, 2014, but do not meet all the requirements for an initial certificate on or before April 30, 2014, will also be required to pass the new exams. Candidates will not be permitted to mix and match examinations from the old and new tests. Please contact the Office of Educational Support Services at Hofstra University at 516-463-5747 or consult the state website.
In addition to fulfilling the required courses of study, the Commissioner’s Regulations mandate that all prospective teachers, pupil personnel and education leaders receive instructions regarding:
- Identification of Child Abuse and Maltreatment
- Fire and Arson Prevention
- School Violence Prevention and Intervention
- Prevention of Alcohol, Tobacco and Drug Abuse
- Highway and School Safety/Prevention of Child Abduction
- Training in Harassment, Bullying and Discrimination Prevention and Intervention required under the Dignity for All Students Act (DASA)
New York state legislation also requires all persons seeking certification in special education, speech and language disabilities or school administrators working in special education, to have training in the area of children with autism.
Hofstra University offers the above listed educational law seminars through the Office of Educational Support Services. All of these seminars must be completed before the conferral of the degree and recommendation for certification.
Forms for applying for certification can be found at the Office of Educational Support Services Web page under the certification tab.
Chapter 180 of the Laws of 2000, the Schools Against Violence in Education (SAVE), requires that applicants for teaching and administrative and pupil services personnel certification and perspective employees of covered schools (school districts, charter schools and BOCES) must undergo fingerprint supported criminal history background check. However, many school districts and institutions across the metropolitan New York area are now requiring that all student teachers, observers, interns or externs receive fingerprint clearance before they are placed in educational settings that are required for this degree program. Therefore, we recommend that you apply for fingerprint clearance upon acceptance to the program. Fingerprinting can be completed through Hofstra University using LIVESCAN technology, arranged by the Office of Educational Support Services each semester. You may contact us at 516-463-5747 or visit Hagedorn Hall, Room 129. You may also register online. Fingerprint clearance is also required for New York state certification.