For over 15 years, The College has offered a dual certification program that leads to New York State certification in special education grades 1-6 and childhood education grades 1-6.

This major is informally known around campus as “SEED” which refers to Special and Elementary Education. Perhaps it also refers to the notion that good teachers plant the “seeds” of learning in today’s classrooms. Either way, this program of study equally integrates the field of special education and general education in order to prepare pre-service teachers (often called “candidates”) with the knowledge, skills, and attitudes that are needed to help all children learn, especially those with unique learning needs.


Special Education and Childhood Education

Suggested Four Year Course Plan

Freshman Year


16 credits: Liberal Arts Courses OR Concentration Courses


16 credits: Liberal Ed. OR Concentration Courses
0 credits: SEE 100 – Introduction to the Profession

Sophomore Year


13 credits: Liberal Arts Courses OR Concentration Courses
4 credits: SED 146 – Individuals with Disabilities *
0 credits: SEE 106 – Introduction to Portfolio


11 credits: Liberal Arts Courses OR Concentration Courses
3 credits: EPY 350 or 370 – Educational Psych
4 credits: SEE 245 – Curriculum Instruction Grades 1 to 6*

Junior Year


11 credits: Liberal Arts Courses OR Concentration Courses
4 credits: SEE 249 – Classroom Management *
3 credits: CSD 235 – Language Development


10 credits: Liberal Arts Courses OR Concentration Courses
4 credits: SEE 360 – Literacy & Literature for Children *
4 credits: SED 347 – Curriculum Inst. for Pupils w/Disabilities *

Senior Year


3 credits: Liberal Arts Courses OR Concentration Courses
4 credits: SEE 385 – Methods in Social Studies & English *
4 credits: SEE 386 – Methods in Math, Science, & Technology *
4 credits: SEE 380 – Literacy & Literature for Inter. Grades *
3 credits: EDU 300 – Foundations of Education


2 credits: SEE 485 – Student Teaching Seminar
9 credits: SEE 495 – Student Teaching
1 credits: SEE 486 – Student Teaching Portfolio

* Field experience required

The SEED Major

With each education course, a pre-service candidate can usually expect to spend at least 10 hours in the schools completing embedded field hour assignments. As the program progresses, candidates spend over 150 hours conducting school-based field hours.

Candidates must also complete liberal education and concentration requirements for teaching in New York State. Both liberal education requirements and concentration requirements are outlined in the undergraduate catalog. The education coursework is the same for all SEED majors, however, different concentrations (in English, the sciences, the social sciences, mathematics, American studies, or Spanish) have unique requirements.

Perhaps the key component of the SEED major is the methods block. In this class, candidates are co-taught by professors from general education and special education. Essentially, they model the type of teaching and collaboration expected in schools. After four week of intensive on-campus teaching, candidates enter the school for full day teaching two days a week. While in the schools, the professors are on site to provide feedback and guidance.

At the conclusion of the SEED major, candidates complete two student teaching one at the grades 1-3 level and another at the grades 4-6 level. One placement is in special education, the other in general education. During this time, candidates take over the role of the teacher. Also during the final semester, candidates present their professional portfolio to the faculty and members of the professional community. The portfolio is a compilation of work completed during throughout the undergraduate program. The portfolio process is an exciting time when candidates are given the opportunity to reflect on all they have learned while presenting those accomplishments to other professionals.

Program Features

  • Practical experience in real classrooms from pre-school – high school
  • Course embedded field hours with most education courses
  • Preparation across a wide range of learners with and without disabilities
  • Specific coursework and experience with learners with significant support needs
  • Collaboration with Pk-12 school partners
  • Faculty with practical teaching experience who are also actively involved in schools across the state
  • Coursework across the academic disciplines
  • Opportunities to get involved in campus-based social and academic experiences with children and adolescents with disabilities
  • Use of instructional technology by both professors and students