Special Education Law and Characteristics – EDSP 323

CG • Section 8WK • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020 • Modified 02/01/2024

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 Programs, models of service delivery, and collaboration.

For information regarding prerequisites for this course, please refer to the Academic Course Catalog.


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.

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 the Course Overview.

Discussions (2)

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

Law Analysis Assignment

Law Analysis Assignment

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).  (CLO: A, C, D, E)

Case Law Analysis Assignment

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. (CLO: A, C, D, E)

Community Engagement Plan Assignment

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

Community Engagement Plan: Placement Information Assignment

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

Community Engagement Plan: Journal Assignment

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

Community Engagement Plan: Log Assignment

The candidate is required to log hours throughout the placement in the Community Engagement Log and Assessment 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. (CLO: B, G, H)

Workbook Summary Assignment

After completing the Gibb & Dyches (2016) 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 references page. (CLO: E, G)

IEP Goals Assignment

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 three standards-based IEP goals specific to Reading and Decoding. (CLO: B, D, E).

Final IEP Assignment

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 three written, standards-based goals, a list of five accommodations/modifications appropriate to the student in the provided scenario, and a rationale for the placement decision. (CLO: B, D, E, F)

Perspective Reflection Assignment

Each candidate is to interview either a student with a disability or a parent of a student with a disability tp gain their perspective.  Candidates will then compose a paper summarizing the information and perspective they have gained. The paper must be 3-5 pages (no more than 5 in length), include a title page, and follow current APA format. (CLO: D, F, G, I)

Exceptionality and Other Behavioral Concerns Chart Assignment

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. (CLO: A, B, C, F)

Quizzes (4)

Each quiz will cover the textbook material for the assigned modules: weeks. Each quiz will be open-book/open-notes, contain multiple-choice questions, and have a 1 hour time limit. (CLO: A, B, C, D, E)