Special Education, Associate in Arts



Program Code: 0210


The Special Education pathway begins your preparation to teach Special Education to K-12 students. Special Education teachers are also required to earn a bachelor’s degree from an accredited program and obtain a Professional Educators License with a Special Education endorsement from the Illinois State Board of Education. Get started now by earning your associate degree from City Colleges, transfer to a four-year teacher certification program as a junior, and start a career in Special Education.

This is an example course sequence for students interested in pursuing Special Education. This does not represent a contract, nor does it guarantee course availability. If this pathway is followed as outlined, you will earn an Associate in Arts (AA) degree. One course will satisfy the Human Diversity (HD) requirement, and is labeled with an (HD) in the sequence below. Following this pathway will help you get your associate degree, which will increase your chances of transfer to Bachelor’s-level programs of study. Choose Illinois Articulation Initiative (IAI) courses to fulfill general education requirements whenever possible. Visit www.itransfer.org and speak with your college advisor to learn more about IAI.

For information regarding teaching, licensure and certification requirements for the State of Illinois, please visit www.isbe.net. It is important to note that students must pass Illinois Certification Testing System (ICTS) Test of Academic Proficiency (TAP) test, or have 22 composite ACT score and minimum score of 6 on the Writing portion, or have a composite score of 1110 (evidence-based reading and writing + mathematics = 1110 or higher) and a minimum score of 26 on writing and language for entrance into four-year College of Education institutions.

Semester-by-Semester Program Plan for Full-Time Students

All plans can be modified to fit the needs of part-time students by adding more semesters.

Plan of Study Grid
Semester 1Hours
ENGLISH 101 Composition 1 3
Select one of the following: 4
General Education Math 1
Introductory Statistics 1
Math For Elementary Teachers I 1
Fine Arts course 1 3
EDUC 101 Introduction To Education 2 3
PSYCH 201 General Psychology 1 3
Semester 2
ENGLISH 102 Composition 1 3
Cultural Anthropology 2
or Math For Elementary Teachers I
PSYCH 207 Child Psychology 2 3
CHLD DV 101 Human Growth & Development I 2 4
Semester 3
Human Biology 1
or Human Biology
Select one of the following: 3
Intro to Diversity/Ethnic Studies (HD) 1
Humanities course (HD) 1
CHLD DV 102 Human Growth & Development II 2 3
History of American People To 1865 1
or History of American People From 1865
POL SCI 201 The National Government 1 3
Semester 4
SPEECH 101 Fundamentals of Speech Communication 1 3
Select one of the following: 3
Ethics 1
Fine Arts & Humanities course 1
Physical Sciences course 1 3
CHLD DV 205 Development of Exceptional Child 2 3
EDUC 203 Educational Psychology 2 3
 Total Hours60-61

General Education Requirement


Pathway Elective

Choose your courses with your College Advisor.