Department of Special Education and Education Leadership, Woodring College of Education
This plan of study is designed to prepare personnel to work with children from birth through eight years who have been identified as at-risk for developmental delay and disability and with their families. The major combines studies in Early Childhood and Special Education.
Students in this major typically seek employment in private child development centers and governmental agencies; they do not qualify for a teaching certificate.
Why consider an Early Childhood Special Education major?
There are two definitions of Special Education. One is the education of students with disabilities. The other is the application of exceptional teaching. We in the Special Education Program at Western Washington University believe very strongly in the second definition. We think that it is our mission to prepare exceptional teachers and, while students who have disabilities often require the services of such teachers, we also believe that there are many other students who can benefit from high quality instruction. We also think that there is much satisfaction to be gained from the acquisition of the highest levels of teaching skill and that the teachers trained in our program benefit professionally and personally from the acquisition of these skills. That is why the word “Special” in our title is a source of pride to us and to our graduates.
Private Child Development Centers | Governmental agencies | Working with children in non-school settings
How to Declare (Admission and Declaration Process):
Admission to Western Washington University and admission to the Department of Special Education are required before a student may begin taking courses in education. Requirements include:
- completion of a minimum of 45 credits (see list of recommended GUR courses),
- cumulative grade point average of 2.75 or higher for the last 45 credits,
- completion of an English composition course, with grade of B- or higher,
- Meet the Washington Education Skills Test-Basic (WEST-B) requirement. This may be met by a) passing the West-B exam, b) SAT minimum scores, c) ACT minimum scores. See the WEST-B Requirement website for more information, www.wce.wwu.edu/Admiss/West-B.shtml/. Passing scores must be on file by the application due date.
Students must earn a grade of C (2.0) or better in the special education professional program and in all courses required for the endorsement.