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BHSU K-12 SPECIAL EDUCATION PROGRAM

HELP EVERYONE LEARN

    • WORK WITH STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES
      A core philosophy of Special Education (SPED) is that all students can learn. The BHSU SPED program will prepare you through specialized training in instructional methods, behavior management, assessment, and assistive technologies for students with disabilities. Following completion of the program, you will be well-equipped to serve as an effective and dynamic SPED teacher.

  • BECOME PREPARED AND GET CERTIFIED
    The Black Hills State University K – 12 SPED program will prepare you to become a certified SPED teacher in Kindergarten through High School classrooms; therefore, the K-12 SPED degree will provide you with the option of teaching a variety of disabilities at any age level. You will gain field experience through an internship in a special education classroom, and a general education classroom as well. Core SPED classes are offered online. On-campus opportunities are offered through webinars, guest speakers, and membership in our student organizations.

HANDS-ON EXPERIENCE

    • LEARN FROM EXPERIENCED EDUCATORS
      The K – 12 Special Education teacher education program is rigorous and taught by faculty who hold doctorates in the field of Special Education, and have several years of experience as public school SPED teachers. The SPED faculty at BHSU will provide you with learning opportunities focused on real-world applications of state-of-the-art educational research.

    • ABUNDANT JOB OPPORTUNITIES
      Investing time in a K-12 Special Education degree is investing time in job security. Currently there is a national shortage of Special Education teachers. At any given point in time, there are hundreds of vacant Special Education teaching positions ready to be filled in every state. Special Education teachers are eligible for $17,500 dollars of federal loan forgiveness. As a K-12 SPED major, you will have access to several grants and other tuition-assistance opportunities. Furthermore, many school districts offer competitive salaries, additional stipends, and substantial sign-on bonuses for SPED teachers.

  • ON-CAMPUS ORGANIZATIONS
    By participating in student organizations you have will have the chance to attend and present at state and national conferences. As a student at BHSU you will have access to research opportunities which will aid you in advancing your knowledge and career quickly.

Internships and field experiences are an important part of our education programs and are coordinated by the faculty.  Students spend a minimum of 45 hours in the classrooms during their sophomore year, 100 hours during their junior year, and end their program with a 16 week student teaching experience.

The local chapter of the American Association on Mental Retardation and the Student Council for Exceptional Children (AAMR/SCEC) is an excellent opportunity for BHSU students.  You can join the group and expand your education with special and exceptional needs through activities and conventions.  The group hosts several local activities, including holiday dances for the Northern Hills Training Center and the Black Hills Special Services groups.  In the past, the group has participated in an annual Chili Feed and an open forum on special education.  Fundraisers such as the Silent Auction and Ladies’ Night Out are also an important part of AAMR/SCEC.  Members raise money to help them attend state and national conventions.

Several other student organizations, such as the Black Hills Association for the Education of Young Children, Honors Program, Kappa Delta Pi, and the Reading Council, are also available. 

GET INVOLVED

COUNCIL FOR EXCEPTIONAL CHILDREN (CEC)

You can join the group and expand your education with special and exceptional needs through activities and conventions. The group hosts several local activities, including holiday dances for the Northern Hills Training Center and the Black Hills Special Services groups.

SOUTH DAKOTA EDUCATION ASSOCIATION (SDEA)

The SDEA works to better education for both teachers and students. They work with elected officials to pass bills that help the education system. They also work with local leaders to increase education funding for local schools. The SDEA also provides development sessions and trainings for educators to help continue developing their craft through hands-on learning.

TALKING HANDS

BHSU Talking Hands strives to educate others about sign language (American Sign Language, Signing Exact English, along with other forms of sign language). Its purpose is to help students, faculty, staff, and community members learn sign language while developing lasting relationships. BHSU Talking Hands aims to have both community and university involvement by volunteering and participating in university activities. In the community, members have participated in activities such as teaching sign language to children at area Boys and Girls Clubs as well as performing for community groups to introduce them to the power of sign language.

CAREER OPPORTUNITIES

Teach students who receive special education support at all levels of schooling in the following eligibility categories:
» Autism Spectrum Disorders
» Deaf-Blindness
» Law School
» Emotional-Behavioral Disorders
» Hearing Impairment/Deafness
» Intellectual Disabilities
» Learning Disabilities
» Orthopedic Impairments
» Other Health Impairments
» Speech-Language Disorders
» Visual Impairment/Blindness

fair

THE ANNUAL TEACHERS FAIR

Open to all teaching majors each spring semester, BHSU holds its annual teachers fair welcoming over 60 employers to campus to meet with students seeking job opportunities.

Contact Info

Dr. Faye LaDuke-Pelster, Ed.D.
Department Chair
Faye.LaDuke@BHSU.edu
Phone: 605.642.6627
BHSU.edu/SpecialEducation

Associate Professor, School of Education
Black Hills State University
1200 University St.
Spearfish, SD, USA 57799