spe300 | undergraduate

Orientation To The Exceptional Child

Explore by:

or call us at



This course provides an overview of the categories of exceptionality for elementary-age students with special needs. The course focuses on differentiated methods and techniques used for the identification, assessment, and instruction of diverse populations. Historical perspectives and information related to special education law and current policies and practices are examined.

This undergraduate-level course is 5 weeks This course is available as part of a degree or certificate program. To enroll, speak with an Enrollment Representative.

Course details:

Credits: 3
Continuing education units: XX
Professional development units: XX
Duration: 5 weeks

topic title goes here


    • Define related services for special education students.
    • Identify the roles and responsibilities of the specialists and paraprofessionals who may participate in educating students with disabilities.
    • Give examples of the placement settings for students with disabilities.

    Types of Disabilities

    • Give examples of low- and high-tech assistive technology that can be used with students with special needs.
    • Define the different types of disabilities according to IDEA.
    • Define the characteristics of different disabilities.
    • Identify instructional strategies for working with students with different disabilities.

    Other Diverse Learners

    • Identify the characteristics and needs of gifted and talented learners.
    • Identify emotional and behavioral disorders and the attributing factors associated with these conditions.
    • Identify the characteristics and needs of culturally and linguistically diverse students.
    • Identify characteristics of students who may be at risk for school failure.
    • Give examples of strategies for working with diverse learners in the general education classroom.

    Response to Intervention (RTI)

    • Explain progress monitoring in the RTI process.
    • Describe the Response to Intervention process and the Classroom-Based Problem-Solving Model.
    • Explain how Response to Intervention supports student learning.
    • Analyze how Response to Intervention supports the decision making process for special education.
    • Interpret RTI assessment results to determine appropriate interventions.

    Addressing the Needs of Diverse Learners in the Classroom

    • Demonstrate how a lesson plan can be modified to accommodate students with special needs.
    • Define the three options for accommodating students with disabilities when participating in state-wide or district-wide testing.
    • Explain the use of pre-assessment in the development of instructional sequence.

    Assessment of Exceptional Children

    • Determine appropriate assessment techniques needed to evaluate diverse learners.
    • Describe how to differentiate assessment of gifted and talented students.
    • Define how to use technology to assess student learning of diverse learners.

    Overview and Historical Background of Exceptional Children

    • Identify historical perspectives and current practices.
    • Define success for all students in the general education classroom.
    • Describe the benefits of including all students in the general education classroom.

    Collaboration and Team Approach

    • Explain the key components of effective professional collaboration.
    • Define the role of each of the teams serving students with special needs (Pre-referral, Assessment, and Individualized Education Program Teams).
    • Identify the process for pre-referral by the general education teacher.
    • Explain the referral process in a local school.
    • Identify different types of collaboration approaches.

    Special Education Law

    • Explore the federal, state, and local laws that govern current practices for educating students with disabilities.
    • Differentiate between Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Americans with Disabilities (ADA), and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.
    Tuition for individual courses varies. For more information, please call or chat live with an Enrollment Representative.

    Please ask about these special rates:

    Teacher Rate: For some courses, special tuition rates are available for current, certified P-12 teachers and administrators. Please speak with an Enrollment Representative today for more details.

    Military Rate: For some courses, special tuition rates are available for active duty military members and their spouses. Please speak with an Enrollment Representative today for more details.

    The University of Phoenix reserves the right to modify courses.

    While widely available, not all programs are available in all locations or in both online and on-campus formats. Please check with a University Enrollment Representative.

    Transferability of credit is at the discretion of the receiving institution. It is the student’s responsibility to confirm whether or not credits earned at University of Phoenix will be accepted by another institution of the student’s choice.