The University Of North Dakota - Online & Distance Education

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Application Deadlines:

  • June 1 (Fall)
  • November 1 (Spring)
  • April 1 (Summer)

Degree Info

32+ Credits
1.5+ Years to Complete
Online
All Classes Offered Asynchronously
In-State Tuition Regardless of Residency

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Current Distance Degree Program Student?

Master of Science in Special Education

Master's Degree
Begins every Fall (August), Spring (January) & Summer (June)

Degree Requirements

Curriculum for the Visual Impairment (VI) Specialization

Required courses are indicated with an asterisk (*). Depending on your interests, you will work with your faculty advisor to develop a program of study with a minimum of 32 credits from the following courses.

If you are seeking special education endorsement in VI in North Dakota, please confer with your advisor reguarding these requirements. If you are seeking teacher certification in a state other than North Dakota, please refer to that state's requirements.

Major Courses = 25 Credits

SPED 500*

Education of the Visually Impaired

3 Credits

Online

TBA

A course which provides an overview of the field of visual impairment to include the following areas of emphases: History/Philosophy; Service-delivery models; medical, psychological and educational implications of partial vision or total blindness; curricula methods and materials; current issues/trends.

SPED 501

Diseases & Functions of the Eye

2 Credits

Online

TBA

A course which introduces students to: a) the structural parts of the eye and its functions; b) common ocular conditions and diseases and their implications for education; c) interpretation of medical eye examination reports; and d) special considerations for infant, school-age academic, multiply disable and adult populations.

SPED 502

Braille Reading & Writing

2 Credits

Online

TBA

In this course students learn: 1) to read and write the literary code of grade 2 braille, and 2) to teach the literary code of grade 2 braille to students of all ages.

SPED 503

Orientation & Mobility / Visually Impaired

2 Credits

Online

TBA

This course introduces students to basic orientation and mobility techniques used by specialists when working with individuals with low vision and blindness. Concept development, kinesiology, tactile map construction, dog guides, electronic mobility devices and parental involvement are topics covered with respect to various populations (i.e., infants, school-aged academic children, multiple disabled children and adults).

SPED 504*

Communication Media & Methods / Visually Impaired

3 Credits

Online

TBA

Prerequisite(s): Consent of instructor.

This course provides an overview of the communication devices and adaptive technology used by the visually disabled. Students learn to read and write the braille codes for mathematics and music, do basic calculations on the abacus, brail and talking calculator and gain familiarity with computers and software currently used in the field.

SPED 505*

Low Vision Assessment & Remediation

2 Credits

Online

TBA

Prerequisite(s): T&L 315 or consent of instructor.

A course which focuses on children who have severe visual deficits but with proper training are able to utilize their vision for learning. Effects of low vision are studied with respect to psychological/sociological development, academic learning, skills of independent living, and vocational choice. Methods of assessing visual function are examined with emphasis on adaptions needed in the educational settings. Optical and non-optical aids are compared and evaluated.

SPED 509

Individualized Education Plan (IEP) Development

2 Credits

Online

Every Semester

This course is an introduction to the individualized education plan (IEP) process, including an understanding of how to develop and write effective IEPs for students with disabilities. In addition, the IEP template and process used by the state of North Dakota (i.e., TIENET) will be addressed.

SPED 521

Transition to Adult Life

3 Credits

Online

Fall

This course focuses on education, personal and vocational transition issues for students with disabilities across all grade levels into adult life. Assessment and transition program planning will be covered along with interagency collaboration skills and career awareness.

SPED 528

Advanced Assistive Technology

1 Credit

Online

Fall/Summer

This course covers the types and functions of assistive technology for students with disabilities across a variety of settings, e.g., home, schools and community. Assistive technology assessment and a working knowledge of best practices of assistive technology in the lives of students will be addressed. Identification of funding sources and assistive technology resources will also be covered.

SPED 552

Inclusive Methods

3 Credits

Online

Fall/Summer

The study of a variety of methods and materials for teaching and assessing children and youth with learning and behavior problems in the general education classroom.

SPED 578

Behavior Management for Special Needs Students

3 Credits

Online

Summer/Fall

Prerequisite(s): Admission to the special education master’s program.

The study of a variety of effective behavior management and assessment techniques appropriate to the needs of children and youth with special needs. Topics include procedures to increase self-awareness, self-management, self-control, self-reliance, self-esteem, and assessment procedures and techniques for determining behavioral needs.

SPED 585*

Internship: Visual Impairment

1-6 Credits

Onsite Near Your Local Community

Every Semester

Prerequisite(s): SPED 500, 501, 502 and consent of instructor.

This is a culminating experience for students who are seeking licensure or an endorsement in the area of visual impairment. This course is designed for students to synthesize previously learned information from coursework as they apply and implement their knowledge and skills through written products and classroom performance.

SPED 593

Independent Project: Braille Code

1 Credit

Online

TBA

Complete an independent study on braille code.

T&L 553

Collaborative Relationships: Home, School & Community

3 Credits

Online

Every Semester

A course appropriate for anyone working with families, early childhood educators, general educators, special educators, related service personnel, administrators and outside agency personnel. Topics covered include: (1) the various models of collaboration and consultation and the stages of each; (2) communication skills; (3) problem-solving; (4) conflict management; (5) diverse perspectives; (6) information collection procedures; (7) supervisory skills; (8) family characteristics and structure across the lifespan; (9) family focused intervention; (10) school choices; and (11) school issues such as poverty, domestic violence, teasing, bullying, and school violence.

EDL 529

Special Education Law

3 Credits

Online

Every Semester

A course designed to give participants a working knowledge of the legislative, judicial, and administrative changes which have revamped the areas of teaching and administering special education since 1974. It will provide information useful to administrators, practitioners, attorneys, parents, and advocates on topics including: student records, discipline, related services, due process, least restrictive environment, and appropriate education.

Scholarly Tools = 6 Credits

EFR 509*

Introduction to Educational Research

3 Credits

Online

Summer

An introduction to the research methodologies used to study education. The course covers quantitative as well as qualitative types of research. The paradigms of both types of research will be contrasted and the application of the methodologies in actual research investigated.

SPED 557*

Progress Monitoring / Special Needs Students

3 Credits

Online

Spring/Summer

Prerequisite(s): Admission to the special education master’s program.

This course covers all aspects of progress monitoring including what it is, how it works, the benefits of progress monitoring, various ways and strategies for conducting progress monitoring and how it functions in a Response to Intervention (RTI) model. Students will learn how to track students in reading, math, and written language by collecting data and then using that data to measure student progress and in instructional decision-making. The strongest research-based strategy for progress monitoring, curriculum-based measurement, will be covered in depth.

Final Master’s Project = 2 Credits

SPED 995*

Scholarly Project

2 Credits

Online

Every Semester

The scholarly project demonstrates critical analysis and application of information and experiences gained throughout the program of study. The project allows students to demonstrate scholarly skills in an integrated manner that is directly related to their roles as teachers, program evaluators, and action researchers. The scholarly project must be approved by the student's advisor.

Subject to change without notice.

A maximum of ¼ of the total credits required for the graduate program may be transferred to UND from another regionally accredited program. These credits must be approved by your academic advisor and the UND School of Graduate Studies.

Apply Now

Application Deadlines:

  • June 1 (Fall)
  • November 1 (Spring)
  • April 1 (Summer)