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University of Nevada - Las Vegas (UNLV)

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University Undergraduate Catalog Fall 2010 - Spring 2012

University Graduate Catalog 2009 - 2011


UNLV Department of Special Education

The UNLV Department of Special Education works with students and others on a common vision of achieving premier status as a leader of thought and best practices in special education, early childhood and related human services that enable all children and their families of diversity to learn, become empowered to make life choices, and experience happiness.


Mission Statement 

The mission of the Department is to extend knowledge and competent performance in university students, children, families, and significant others through ethical experimentation, pedagogical interventions, and comprehensive evaluations designed to create new understandings and paradigms for the present and future that contribute to increasing the quality of lives. The Department will provide systems, support, and mentoring opportunities for each person to acquire necessary sets of knowledge, skills, and attitudes in a learning environment that nourishes enthusiasm and respects the pursuit of individual dreams through lifelong education. The Department invites synergistic relationships with world and community groups as well as individuals to invest mutual efforts and resources in creating promising futures and supporting choices of children, families, and educators. Undergraduate and graduate students are provided with opportunities to pursue their interests in special education through well established, challenging degree and licensure programs that lead to employment. Finally, the Department maintains as a major mission the conducting of exemplary research to discover new knowledge in addition to attracting and retaining outstanding faculty and highly able students who can apply their knowledge and skills to help meet the challenges facing persons who require the best professional practices of special education. 


Current Early Childhood Degree Options: 

Bachelor Degree Programs

Purpose and Focus

The Bachelor of Science in Education degree allows the student to pursue special education in preparing for professions in teaching and human services. The degree seeks to integrate a general academic background, professional education courses, successful completion of all major course work, and supervised teaching. The Department of Special Education offers a Generalist Preparation Program. In this program, students learn the profession as a whole, working with students with mental retardation, learning disabilities, emotional disabilities, and/or other disabilities. 

Undergraduate Majors

  • Special Education - Bachelor of Arts in Education 
  • Special Education - Bachelor of Science in Education
  • Early Childhood Education - Bachelor of Science 

Certification and Licensure Programs 

  • Generalist Endorsement Certificate/Teaching License:
    Students will be qualified for certification by the Nevada State Department of Education to work with children in a special education resource room setting (kindergarten-12th grade).
  • Early Childhood Education Certificate/Teaching License:
    Students will be qualified for certification by the Nevada State Department of Education to work with children birth through second grade. 

Admission to the Major 

  • GPA : 2.75

Admission Policies

All students leading to the Bachelor’s degree and admitted into the Division of Teacher admitted to the department. The Department of Special Education offers graduate degree programs at the master’s, specialist, and doctoral levels. All Special Education graduate programs are designed to provide the professional experiences required by teachers, specialists, administrators, and future professors of special education.


Master Degree Programs

The Department of Special Education offers a Master of Education (M.Ed.) and a Master of Science (M.S.) degree in special education. The Department of Special Education also offers a Master of Education (M.Ed.) in early childhood education. All degrees require a minimum of 36 semester hours of study with six semester hours in research (3) and multicultural perspectives (3).  Program Options: M.S. and M.Ed. 

M.Ed. and M.S. programs can be designed to meet the needs of persons who hold a baccalaureate degree and wish to earn a master’s degree in special education or early childhood education, with or without licensure.


UNLV/CSUN Preschool

As one of its primary goals the Lynn Bennett Early Childhood Education Center (LBECEC) supports research conducted by UNLV faculty and their students. The LBECEC Research Advisory Council was established with the specific purpose to facilitate the achievement of that goal. It meets regularly to identify obstacles to faculty research use of the facility and to develop strategies to eliminate those obstacles. To that end it has established a procedure for the submission of requests for access to children and/or their parents to serve as participants in university-approved research, which may include use of equipment and space in the facility.

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