Special Education Law and Characteristics – EDSP 323

CG • Section 8WK • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020 • Modified 07/28/2020

Course Description

This course is designed to expose teacher candidates to a variety of special education related topics including: legal/ethical issues, documentation procedures, development of Individualized Education Plan (IEP), models of service delivery, and collaboration. (Formerly EDSP 423)


EDUC 350


Special education is an area that is continuing to expand and change in many ways. It is of utmost importance that beginning special educators are as current as possible on these changes, many of which will have a direct impact on how they will meet the needs of the students they will serve.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the candidate will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of the history of special education.
  2. Analyze and classify various categorizations of special education.
  3. Trace the legal aspects and regulatory requirements associated with identification and education of students with disabilities.
  4. Identify the rights and responsibilities of parents, students, teachers, and school districts as related to disability issues.
  5. Demonstrate an understanding of the eligibility, collaboration, a IEP processes through documentation exercises.
  6. Demonstrate standards of professionalism.
  7. Demonstrate an understanding of educating children w/ disabilities in public and/or Christian schools settings.
  8. Evaluate the collaborative model of service delivery chosen for students with special needs in the general education classroom.
  9. Integrate a biblical worldview in completing course assignments.

Course Assignment

Textbook readings and lecture presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the candidate will complete the related checklist found in Module/Week 1.

Discussion Board Forums (2)

Discussion boards are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the candidate is required to provide a thread in response to the provided prompt for each forum. Each thread must be 350 words and demonstrate course-related knowledge. In addition to the thread, the candidate is required to reply to 2 other classmates’ threads. Each reply must be 150 words. (MLO: B, C, D, F, G, I)

Law Analysis

Part 1

The candidate will complete the activity, “Law Project Part 1.” Using the provided template, candidates will complete a chart for the three major laws of Special Education: Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004 (IDEA), Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504), and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA).  (MLO: A, C, D, E)

Part 2

By jig-sawing specific, landmark, special education court cases, the candidate will be required to analyze a case by stating the facts of the case, the rulings of the case, and the implications to special education. (MLO: A, C, D, E)

Community Engagement Plan (CEP)

This class includes a required 10-hour volunteer service in a community setting (non-school-based setting). There are 3 required parts to this assignment:

Part 1: Plan

The candidate will complete a template chart to inform the instructor of the plan for the required 10-hour volunteer service in a community educational setting (non-school-based setting), including the supervising organization’s name and other pertinent information. (MLO: B, G, H)

Part 2: Reflection

The candidate will complete a reflective journal essay following the completion of 10 hours of observation. The essay will include observations of students and educators and will include a refelection. The essay must be at least 500 words, be in current APA format, and include at least 1 citation of the course textbook and at least 1 biblical reference.  (MLO: B, G, H)

Part 3: Log and Assessment

The candidate is required to log hours throughout the placement in the Community Engagement Log (CEL) which should specify the dates and times of observations as well as activities observed while working with students with disabilities (e.g., LD, ED, ID, etc.) and be signed by the supervisor by the end of the placement. The host supervisor will also complete the CEA to evaluate the candidate’s professional dispositions in the setting. (MLO: B, G, H)

Workbook Summary Assignment

After completing the Gibb and Dyches textbook, the candidate will write a summary of at least 150 words for each section (for a total of at least 1200 words). The paper must follow current APA format and must include a title page and reference page. (MLO: E, G)

IEP Goals

After reviewing the assigned study resources and course presentations, the candidate will use the provided Present Level of Academic Achievement and Functional Performance (PLAAFP) to write 3 standards-based IEP goals specific to Reading and Decoding. (MLO: B, D, E).

Dyslexia Training Module

Online Training is required. The candidate will complete the Dyslexia Training and upload his or her certificate to Blackboard. (MLO: C)

Final IEP

An IEP will be completed using a provided Present Level of Academic Achievement and Functional Performance (PLAAFP). While the length of a completed IEP will vary, the candidate must complete all parts of the provided template form, which includes 3 written, standards-based goals, a list of 5 accommodations/modifications appropriate to the student in the provided scenario, and a rationale for the placement decision. (MLO: B, D, E, F)

Perceptions Reflection

For this particular assignment, each candidate is to complete 1 of the 2 listed asignments to gain the perspective of a student with a disability. Each paper must be 3-5 pages (no more than 5 in length), include a title page, and follow current APA format. (MLO: D, F, G, I)

Option 1: Experience Interview

For this particular assignment, each candidate is to interview either a student with a disability or a parent of a student with a disability.

Option 2: How Difficult Can This Be: A FAT City Workshop

For this particular assignment, candidates will watch “How Difficult Can This Be? The F.A.T. City Workshop: Understanding Learning Disabilities” (2004) (library, Netflix, YouTube, etc.). After watching the video, the candidate will write a reflection.

Exceptionality Chart

The candidate will be expected to complete an exceptionality chart that covers the following: exceptionality and definition, criteria for services, characteristics, and general teaching methods/instructional strategies/technology. (MLO: A, B, C, F)

Quizzes (4)

Each quiz will cover the Reading & Study material for the assigned modules/weeks. Each quiz will be open-book/open-notes, contain a variety of multiple-choice, true/false, short answer, etc. questions, and have a 1 hour time limit. (MLO: A, B, C, D, E)