Prepare for a person-centered teaching career.
Many Special Education programs limit licensure to a grade level or a specific level of ability. At UW-Whitewater, you’ll earn a Special Education bachelor’s degree with breadth and depth.
Our program is cross-categorical, meaning that it prepares future Special Education teachers to work with students of varying ages and need levels. This inclusive approach encourages you to help students based on their individual needs.
UW-Whitewater credentials more cross-categorical Special Education teachers than any other program in the state.
100% of our recent graduates are employed in their field or enrolled in graduate school (2018-19).
We’re ranked No. 1 for value among all schools in the University of Wisconsin System.
With our inclusive curriculum, dedicated faculty and long-standing reputation for teacher preparation, UW-Whitewater is among the best colleges for Special Education majors in Wisconsin.
As our department also houses two graduate degree programs, you’ll be surrounded by faculty members and students committed to researching and advancing the field.
Here are a few other advantages to earning your degree in Special Education at UW-Whitewater:
Special Education majors complete at least three fieldwork experiences before their final student teaching semester. This allows students to actively engage in classrooms through observation and co-teaching, and gain practical experience in a specialty area, such as intellectual disabilities or emotional/behavioral disorders (learning disabilities, autism, and dyslexia).
Student teaching, also called directed teaching, is a semester-long experience in a classroom.
Our Special Education students have various opportunities to interact with classmates or volunteer on campus or in the local community.
Special Education majors often join UW-Whitewater organizations such as:
Aspiring Educators of Wisconsin
Provides educational and social opportunities to future teachers, and is a branch of both the National Education Association and the Wisconsin Education Association Council.
As part of this national organization, our chapter matches college students with people with intellectual disabilities for one-on-one friendships.
CARE: Creative and Resourceful Educators
Advocates for the community of young children and their families through education, fundraising and service.
LIFE: Learning is for Everyone
The LIFE program offers a complete college experience to young adults (ages 18 to 25) who have an intellectual disability. Participants gain independent living skills and prepare for meaningful employment experiences. Special Education majors have an opportunity to work and engage with students in the LIFE program.
Most of our graduates become special education teachers, and many pursue graduate degrees. With their advanced training, these students could work in special education careers such as:
Hannah Brenner, from Kenosha, Wisconsin, earned a BSE in special education and was hired as a special education teacher at Northside Intermediate School in Milton, Wisconsin.
"Eric Johnson was my professor for multiple special education courses and he has shown me the kind of teacher I aspire to be. His kindness, consideration and understanding meant a great deal to myself as well as my peers."
Mackenzie Edinger has always wanted to have a place where people with disabilities felt equal and valued. At her company, her goal is for 50% of the staff to be people with disabilities. “I wanted to make sure to make that opportunity available for those who would like to work here,” she said.
In addition to our traditional on-campus Special Education bachelor’s degree programs, UW-Whitewater offers additional learning opportunities and credentials for teachers and other educational professionals:
Graduate degrees in Special Education
Post-Baccalaureate Special Education certificate programs
The UW-Whitewater Special Education faculty have a range of educational and clinical experience. Among the faculty are board-certified behavioral analysts and recipients of various teaching, advising and publishing awards.
Our faculty members have research and professional interest in areas such as:
This program leads to a Bachelor of Science in Education in Cross Categorical Special Education.
Your class schedule will likely include:
Minors in our department include:
While you can declare Special Education as your major when you enter UW-Whitewater, you’ll need to be admitted to Professional Education separately. This requires:
UW-Whitewater also offers an online Special Education degree completion program (SpecEd4U) designed for paraprofessionals wanting to complete a bachelor’s degree and be licensed to teach special education. Learn more about the online degree »
To apply, you’ll complete the UW-Whitewater application for admission and indicate your interest in earning a degree in education.