Mission: The broad mission of Teacher Education at Fairmont State University is to prepare reflective and responsive educators who possess the knowledge, skills, and dispositions to help all students learn. Faculty in the School of Education, Health and Human Performance and special education in the field collaborate to prepare teacher candidates with the specialized knowledge and professional foundations, instructional pedagogy, professionalism, and collaboration to meet the personalized needs of individuals with mild to moderate disabilities. In addition to preparing graduates to meet West Virginia licensure requirements and obtain certification in special education, the Master of Education in special Education Program provides candidates with an integrated curriculum, intensive field experiences, and ongoing assessment that increases their employability.
Fairmont State University (FSU) offers a graduate empasis in Multi-Categorical Special Education with Autism. The Multi-Categorical Special Education with Autism program at FSU prepares teachers address the needs of learners with mild to moderate disabilities. Students who successfully complete program requirements and state requirements for certification will receive endorsements at both the K-6 and 5-Adult levels in Multi-Categorical Special Education and Autism. This graduate emphasis is designed to meet the needs of two groups of candidates:
- Candidates who hold a valid teaching license at the time of admissions and are seeking to add a certification and obtain a M.Ed. in Multi-Categorical Special Education with Autism.
- Candidates who have completed a Bachelors Degree but who do not hold a valid teaching license at the time of admissions and are seeking a M.Ed. and certification in Multi-Categorical Special Education with Autism.
In addition to the general outcomes for Graduate Studies at Fairmont State University, Special Education candidates are prepared to meet learning outcomes based upon the national Council for Exceptional Children Professional Standards and the state West Virginia Professional Teaching Standards.
All coursework is delivered online and asynchronously, enabling candidates to complete coursework wherever they have access to the Internet, and at times that are most convenient for them. Courses are coupled with clinical experiences either in candidates’ own schools and multi-categorical classrooms or, for those candidates who are not currently teaching, in an arranged placement in a multi-categorical classroom setting in a local school.
The need for teachers who are fully certified in multi-categorical special education continues to grow, both in regions throughout West Viriginia and across the country. Education employment forecasters predict that this need is likely to continue to increase for several more years. Having this certification enhances an educator's marketability and options for employment. The knowledge, skills and professional dispositions developed in FSU's Multi-Categorical Special Education program can be applied in any classroom to benefit all learners. In addition, veteran special educators attest that while the work of a special education teacher is demanding, it is also very rewarding.