Grounded in the liberal arts tradition and consistent with the University’s mission of service, our elementary and special education programs integrate content-oriented curricula with comprehensive study of teaching methods and practical field experience in diverse settings. We emphasize culturally responsive teaching and attentively revise our curriculum to ensure that our students are implementing the most current, innovative and effective practices in the schools where they work.
Our practice-based elementary education curriculum delivers diverse content knowledge designed to ready students to apply for Rhode Island teacher certification in grades 1-6. Rigorous coursework espouses a general, liberal and humanistic education while emphasizing foundational studies, specialized methods and a program of expanding field experience – all of which culminates with required student teaching in one of our many partnering elementary schools.
The special education program – which can only be taken as a double major with elementary education – prepares majors to work with students impacted by mild and moderate special needs. Our students examine exceptionality and its relation to learning styles, teaching styles and service delivery models. Through comprehensive coursework and field experience, majors develop strategies that respond to students’ behavioral needs while effectively managing their classrooms and their teaching practice.
Our elementary education and special education programs are committed to graduating highly qualified, well-prepared teachers who are active participants in the lives of children and the vitality of schools.
Life After Salve
Our program prepares graduates to become certified teachers, but the diverse knowledge and skills that are gained – including organization, writing and presenting, working with parents or guardians, summarizing ideas, flexibility, creativity, explaining ideas clearly, decision-making, lesson planning, working in teams, technological skills and so much more – makes our majors ideal candidates for a wide variety of jobs and careers, both in and out of the classroom.
Some of those may include:
- Adult education teacher
- Alumni relations coordinator
- Athletic coach/director
- Child life specialist
- Curriculum specialist
- Day care administrator
- Education management
- Educational materials sales
- Educational therapist
- Employee trainer
- Financial aid counselor
- Grant writer
- Guidance counselor
- Instructor, college/university
- Media center specialist
- Missionary worker
- Physical education instructor
- Registrar/admissions director
- Resource teacher
- School administrator
- School psychologist
- Social services volunteer
- Special education administrator
- Speech pathologist
- Student affairs administrator
- Student personnel administrator
- Teacher, industrial arts
- Training specialist
- Vocational rehabilitation counselor
This program is in a league of its own. I am a better educator because I am capable of reaching all students of all academic and functional abilities.
Jennifer Laramie ’18, special educator, Dothan Brook Elementary School, Wilder, Vermont