Remember the teacher who unlocked the mystery of reading for you  in first grade?  You can be the person who opens doors for students of all abilities by earning a Special Education Teaching Certification (Grades Pre K-8 and 7-12) at Alvernia University.
This certification prepares future educators to be certified in Special Education (Grades Pre K-8 and 7-12) and is designed for licensed teachers who hold an Instructional I or Instructional II Teaching Certification. The program provides coursework and field experiences that prepare students to be successful in inclusive special education classroom settings.
The Special Education Certification complies with current Pennsylvania and national standards. In addition to coursework that focuses on young students with special needs such as learning disabilities, social/emotional disorders, and autism, the program includes coursework in technology, literacy and teaching strategies and methods for the instruction of students. To enhance their understanding of working with children with various abilities and disabilities, students are required to complete classroom field experiences. 



Evaluation of Credentials (required prior to entering program):
Verification of Valid Pennsylvania Elementary Certification or   
Verification of Valid Pennsylvania Secondary Certification

Praxis Examination (must be passed prior to applying to the program)
Praxis - Education of Exceptional Students: Core Knowledge and Application
Test 0354 or 5354

Background checks and clearances (required prior to field experience placements):
Act 34 – Child Abuse               
Act 114 – FBI Fingerprinting Background Check
Act 151 – PA Criminal Background Check   
Tuberculosis Screening


Program Offered at the Following Locations:


Academic Advisor

Sister Margaret Anne Dougherty, RSM, Ph.D.

Coordinator, Graduate Programs in Education



Admissions Staff

Kelly Burr, M.Ed

Coordinator of Graduate Admissions & Student Services, School of Graduate and Adult Education

610-796-8296 (phone) 610-796-8367 (fax)


Cynthia Mensch

Director of Schuylkill Center

1544 Route 61 Hwy S. Suite 6190

Pottsville, PA 17901



Dana Baker

Director of Philadelphia Center

1355 West Cheltenham Avenue

Melrose Park, PA 19027


Special Education Certification
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