Special Education Endorsement

Inclusive Practice & Special Education

Meeting the needs of all students is central to the work of professional educators. Having the knowledge and skills necessary to meet the diverse learning needs of our students both supports quality learning in the classroom and educators’ career development.

The Inclusive Practice in Special Education endorsement (SPED) is designed to equip K12 teachers with the knowledge and skills necessary for supporting the positive academic and social-emotional development of children and youth with disabilities in inclusive classroom and school settings.

The endorsement structure facilitates professional learning through the movement from knowledge and skills acquisition to application via case based learning and practical experience. Areas of curricular focus include: a) foundations, b) assessment, c) planning, d) instruction, and e) communication and collaboration.

Earn the Special Education endorsement through this program:

This endorsement is connected to existing programming. A non-matriculated Special Education endorsement-only option is not currently available.

Endorsement Requirements

Coursework Requirements (20 credits)

Additional Course Requirements

  • Courses must be taken in sequence
  • Grades of 2.0 GPA or higher are required in all Special Education coursework

Practicum Experience Requirement (200 hours)

Special Education candidates are required to complete a 200-hour practicum in a special education classroom, mentored by a practicing teacher.

Practicum Details

  • Candidates will be in their ESOL classroom placement approximately 2-3* days a week for a total of 10 weeks (not including district spring break week) during the UW quarter.
    • *Number and days of the week may be determined by a candidate‚Äôs assigned mentor teacher schedule. Mentor teachers will work closely with the placement coordinator to arrange a schedule to meet this requirement.
  • Practicum will consist of a minimum of 200 hours spread across the UW quarter.
  • Placement will be in a public school classroom identified by the School of Educational Studies placement coordinator.
  • Students will be mentored by a cooperating/mentor teacher and supervised by a university field instructor

Content Testing Requirement

To be recommended for the Special Education endorsement, students are required to pass the Washington Educator Skills Test (WEST-E) Special Education test (070).

This test is required by the State of Washington and is designed to measure knowledge of specific Special Education content.

Students are requested to take the WEST-E in Special Education during their SPED practicum term.

What Teaching Positions Can I Pursue with the SPED Endorsement?

With the SPED endorsement added to your residency certificate, students can pursue SPED-only teaching positions (such as Resource Room teacher), or general education teaching positions (traditional or inclusion classroom situations).

Candidates with the SPED endorsement are highly qualified and, due to the shortage of SPED-endorsed teachers in Washington State, they will be sought after whether or not they accept a SPED-only teaching position.