Childhood with Special Education

Candidates accepted in the undergraduate Childhood with Special Education program will work toward a B.S. in Education degree and eligibility for New York State initial certification in both Childhood and Special Education (Grade 1 - 6).

The program is organized into a sequence of six blocks of related courses.  All teacher candidates must complete 150 hours of field experience, as part of the education coursework, prior to student teaching.  The field experience allows candidates to gain practical experience through application of the knowledge from coursework.

Program Requirements

For more information, specifically with regards to scheduling, please see the Master Schedule.


In addition to the General Education requirements, candidates in the grades birth-6 Education programs will need to select a Liberal Arts Concentration in: Art History, Dance, English, Environmental Studies, Foreign Language, Geography, History, Latin American Studies, Mathematics, Music, Natural Science, Political Science, Theatre, Urban Studies, or Women's Studies.

Please review the Undergraduate Bulletin regarding the courses required for each concentration.  Note that the linked Bulletin is for 2019-2020; students must refer to the Bulletin for the academic year in which they matriculated into SUNY Geneseo. 

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Education Coursework



Block I
  • INTD 203 Social Foundations of American Education
  • SPED 231 Introduction to Special Education

PSYC 215 should be taken in Block I or II as it is a prerequisite or co-requisite for Block II.

Block II
  • SPED 224 Inquiry-based Teaching and Learning Strategies for Diverse Children (25 hours of field experience)

MATH 140 should be taken in Block I or II as it is a prerequisite for Block III.

MATH 141 should be taken in Block II or III as it is a prerequisite or co-requisite for Block III.

Block III


  • CURR 213 The Reading and Writing Processes
  • CURR 316 Teaching Science and Math to Children

(12.5 hours of field experience shared by CURR 213 and CURR 316)

Block IV
  • CURR 313 Classroom Reading and Literature Programs
  • CURR 317 Social Studies and Curriculum Integration

(25 hours of field experience shared by CURR 313 and CURR 317)

  • SPED 371 Teaching Students Low Incident Disability (12.5 hours of field experience)
  • SPED 383 Special Education Classroom Management Skills
Block V
  • SPED 372 Teaching Students High Incident Disability
  • SPED 382 Assessment Strategies and Prescriptive Teaching for Students with Disabilities
  • SPED 385 Team Approaches to Education of Individuals with Disabilities

(25 hours of field experience shared by SPED 382 and SPED 385)

Block VI
  • EDUC 331 or 332 Student Teaching - Primary or Intermediate
  • SPED 391 Student Teaching - Special Education - Mild Disabilities

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Related Course Requirements

  • PSYC 215 Child Development
  • MATH 140 & MATH 141 Mathematical Concepts for Elementary Education I & II
  • H&PE 350 Health & Safety Issues in Schools

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Seminar Requirements 

  • Infectious Control Seminar (Blood Borne Pathogens) held two times per semester; candidates are notified through campus e-mail
  • Child Abuse Seminar held as part of H&PE 350 as well as one time per academic year outside of H&PE 350; candidates are notified through campus e-mail
  • SAVE Seminar held as part of H&PE 350 as well as one time per academic year outside of H&PE 350; candidates are notified through campus e-mail
  • Dignity for All Students Act held as part of H&PE 350 as well as one time per academic year outside of H&PE 350; candidates are notified through campus e-mail

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Other Requirements

Foreign Language Competency

All initial certification programs require the satisfactory completion of the foreign language requirement. For candidates who entered SUNY Geneseo in 2003 or later, the College language requirement is proficiency through the second semester (102) of a foreign language. The foreign language requirement for certification can be satisfied in any one of the following ways:

  • a grade of C- or better in a foreign language course at the 102 level or a score on the foreign language placement test that places the student at the 102 level,
  • four units of a foreign language in high school (completion of foreign language sequence through Level IV, one year beyond regents exam) and a grade of 85% or better in the New York State Regents Exam,
  • a score of 4 or better on the advanced placement examination in a foreign language, or
  • equivalent coursework with a minimum grade of C- transferred from another college

American Sign Language proficiency equivalent to 102 level also can be used to fulfill this requirement for students seeking teacher certification.

Minimum Competency Requirement

Teacher candidates must maintain a 2.5 cumulative grade point average to continue in a certification program. In addition, a grade of C- or better is required for each of the following courses:

Childhood with Special Education: INTD 203; CURR 213, 313, 316, 317; SPED 224, 231, 371, 372, 382, 383, and 385; FORL 101/102 (for FORL requirement); MATH 140 and 141

Writing Requirement

Candidates in the Childhood with Special Education degree program meet the College writing requirement by successfully completing SPED 383.

Admission of Persons with Prior Felony Convictions Policy

All teacher education programs include a clinical/field component. If you have been convicted of a felony, your criminal history record may impede your ability to complete this program and/or become a NYS certified teacher. Please review the SUNY Geneseo policy.

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