EDU-296: Exceptional Child

Health & Human Services
Academic Level
Course Subject
Course Number
Course Title
Exceptional Child
Cross-Referenced Course
Credit Hours
Instructor Contact Hours Per Semester
47.00 (for 15-week classes)
Student Contact Hours Per Semester
47.00 (for 15-week classes)
Grading Method
PSY-131 with a C grade or better
Catalog Course Description

Focuses on the characteristics, identification, assessment, and instruction of students with exceptionalities. Explores special education children’s syndromes and their learning environments. Covers how to provide free and appropriate academic services to children with exceptionalities. Includes the theories, laws, and procedures surrounding special education. Course topics also include specific learning disabilities, autism, mild and severe behavior disorders, emotional impairment, intellectual disability, visual and hearing impairments, speech impairment, giftedness, physical impairments and chronic medical conditions. Additional discussions revolve around different special education learning environments such as inclusion, mainstreaming, pullout programs, resource rooms, co-teaching environments, and the self-contained classroom.

Goals, Topics, and Objectives

Core Course Topics
  1. Special education terminology, labels and statistics
  2. History of special education and the different special education roles
  3. The special education policies, practices and programs
  4. Addressing the cultural and linguistic diversity of special education students
  5. The parent/guardian-professional relationship
  6. Family dynamics
  7. Persons with intellectual disabilities
  8. Persons with learning disabilities
  9. Persons with emotional or behavioral disorders
  10. Gifted and talented persons
  11. Speech and language disorders
  12. Hearing Impairments
  13. Visual Impairments
  14. Persons with physical or health disabilities
  15. Autism
  16. Modifying the regular education environment to meet the needs of students with exceptionalities
Core Course Learning Objectives (Separated)
  1. Discuss the different historical special education perspectives.
  2. Identify the different policies, practices and programs related to special education.
  3. Explain the cultural and linguistic implications on diversity and exceptionality.
  4. Compare and contrast the different roles of the special education professionals as they relate to the families and children they serve.
  5. Identify the different professional group dynamic approaches used to provide educational programs to students with exceptionalities.
  6. Compare and contrast the aspects of the different exceptionalities.
  7. Compare and contrast the different special education learning environments.
  8. Identify the components of an Individualized Education Plan (IEP).
  9. Explain the IEP process.
  10. Discuss the implications of law on school practices.
  11. Relate special education theory to educational practice.
  12. Identify and discuss the different familial interrelationships contributing to exceptional children's family dynamics.
  13. Analyze the different teaching approaches used with exceptional children within the classroom.

Assessment and Requirements

Assessment of Academic Achievement

Assessment may include but not be limited to the following assignments: 1. With a partner, or individually, students will create a case study identifying multiple aspects of the exceptional child's home and school environment. 2. Individually, students will conduct an interview on ONE of the individuals given below. Suggestions for interview questions will be discussed in class. The interview will be 3-4 pages typed. * A special education teacher * A parent of a special education child * A disabled teen or adult * A teacher in an inclusive or co-taught classroom * An administrator of special education. 3. Individually, students will analyze an article from a special education journal (i.e. Journal of Learning Disabilities, Teaching Exceptional Children). Article critique guidelines will be distributed in class. 4. Students will create a lesson from their major or minor area of study and adapt the lesson to meet the needs of at least two categories of exceptionalities. 5. Multiple choice examinations.

General Course Requirements and Recommendations

This course should be taken before EDU 201 and EDU 202.


Textbooks will be determined by the program faculty.


General Education Categories
  • Social Sciences
Institutional Outcomes
  • Civil Society and Culture - U.S. and Global
MTA Categories
  • Category 4: Social Sciences
Satisfies Wellness Requirement

Approval Dates

Effective Term
Fall 2019
ILT Approval Date
AALC Approval Date
Curriculum Committee Approval Date