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A man and woman participating in an online graduate certificate program that will lead to Wisconsin DPI Certification License Code 80.

Director of Special Education and Pupil Services (DSEPS)

Frequently Asked Questions and Requirements for Admission 


UW-Eau Claire ONLINE
GRADUATE CERTIFICATION PROGRAM
Leads to Wisconsin DPI certification
(License Code 80)

 

Answers to FAQs


Why should I choose the UW-Eau Claire Program?

  • Community of learners utilizing Desire2Learn (D2L) asynchronous instruction — Enhance your career from the comfort of your own home!
  • Complete the program in as little as one year! (but take longer, if you’d like)
  • Approved by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction
  • Apply for Wisconsin License 80, Director of Special Education and Pupil Services, as soon as you’ve completed the coursework. When finished, you’ll be prepared to lead!



What did past students think about it?

“...the assignments were all relevant to real life experiences within special education."
“It was instructed using REAL situations and examples that will pertain to my future.”
“Our class interactions were phenomenal in my opinion. The professors started discussion and let us go...”
“...very insightful, organized, thoughtful and informative...I so appreciate the support and the relevant assignments with no busy work.”
“The knowledge that I have gained in this program has already benefited me in my new job.”



What courses will I take?

SPED 782  |  Special Education Law
SPED 786  |  Leadership in Special Education  SPED 787Leadership in Pupil Services
SPED 695  |  Budget & Finance for Special Education & Pupil Services
SPED 789  |  Practicum: Leadership in Special Education and Pupil Services

NOTE:  Minimum grade of B in each course required in order to be recommended for licensure.



I work full time – Will I be able to keep up?

Here are some facts that may help you decide:
  • SPED 782 and 786 (3 cr. each) are offered over 4 work- intensive summer weeks. Think of each one as a 4-week full-time job! 
  • SPED 787 (3 cr.) is offered in the Fall semester. 
  • SPED 695 (1 cr.) is offered in the 3-week “Winterim” – between the New Year Holiday and the start of the spring semester.
  • SPED 789 (3 cr.), your final Practicum, is offered in the spring semester.



What about the Practicum?

It is your responsibility to request release time from your District and/or Supervisor before applying for this program. You will be required to devote 8-10 hours per week (most during the regular work day) throughout your school’s semester in order to fulfill the experiential requirements of the course.  

It is your responsibility to find a qualified mentor — preferably someone who works in or near your district. This person will oversee and evaluate your Practicum experience. Your mentor must meet the requirements of the Wisconsin DPI, and be approved in advance by the DSEPS director or representative. If an approved mentor becomes unavailable for any reason or decides not to participate at any point, the candidate’s progress in the program will be postponed until he/she finds another suitable mentor.

Please use the Responsibilities of the Mentor Administrator and Documentation of Qualifications as a resource for choosing a qualified mentor.  Share this information with any potential mentor to provide a description of the role of the mentor in the practicum experience, and the minimum educational and professional requirements to serve as a mentor.

Twice during the Practicum, you will be observed by a qualified UW-Eau Claire representative. This person will meet with you and your mentor, and will also evaluate your work.
 


Am I certain to be admitted if I meet the relevant minimum requirements listed above?

All complete applications received by the deadline will be reviewed. Those candidates deemed to be the most qualified will be admitted, as space allows. Note: Priority will be given to applicants who hold degrees and licensure in either Special Education or School Psychology, and who currently serve in a position under that license.



How do I apply?

Download, complete and print the DSEPS Program application form.
Submit it along with all additional materials to the address indicated on the application form.



When is the Application Deadline?

Only completed applications received by April 1st will be considered. Applicants will be notified of acceptance or denial no later than April 15th.



If admitted, when will I start?

We will hold an orientation via distance media the second Wednesday in May at 7 p.m. Your first class, SPED 782, will begin in June.



Where do I go for more information?



Requirements for Admission



Do you have a graduate degree from an accredited program and 
institution in
Special Education
?  These are your requirements:

Current Educational Licensure
and Professional Position
Must have a current license in one of the following
AND work in that position:
WI License Code 801 (Cross-Categorical SpED), 
WI License Code 810 (Cognitive Disabilities), 
WI License Code 811 (Learning Disabilities),
WI License Code 830 (Emotional Behavioral Disorders)
Minimum GPA
3.0
**Professional experience
in an academic setting with
Special Needs Students
3 years successful employment in Special Education
Additional 
Requirements None


 

Do you have a graduate degree from an accredited program and 
institution in
School Psychology
?  These are your requirements:

Current Educational Licensure
and Professional Position
School Psychology
Minimum GPA
3.0
**Professional experience
in an academic setting with
Special Needs Students
3 years successful employment including
experience with students with special needs
Additional 
Requirements DPI requires that School Psychologists must verify,
within program application, at least 540 hours of
successful teaching experience working directly with
Special Education students. Acceptable teaching
experience may include classroom instruction,
consultation with 
classroom teachers, and/or direct
work with an individual student. (Time spent in
activities such as IEP meetings may not be included.)
Documentation may be included within letters of
reference from relevant school administrator)


 

Do you have a graduate degree from an accredited program and 
institution in
Educational Administration / Leadership –AND– Education in another area
approved by the Wisconsin DPI
? These are your requirements:

Current Educational Licensure
and Professional Position
Administration / Leadership
-AND-
Teacher Licensure
Minimum GPA
3.0
**Professional experience
in an academic setting with
Special Needs Students
3 years successful employment including
experience with students with special needs
Additional 
Requirements Completion of three pre-requisite Special Education
courses taken after July 2006. 
Please contact the
Program Manager before enrolling in coursework
from another 
institution to ensure equivalency.
1 – Introduction to Special Education
2 – Inclusion of Special Needs Students
3 – One graduate-level Special Education course


 

No graduate degree?  These are your requirements:

Current Educational Licensure
and Professional Position
Currently enrolled in UW-Eau Claire
Master of Special Education degree program
Minimum GPA
Graduate plan of study listing all DSEPS courses
**Professional experience
in an academic setting with
Special Needs Students
Advisor approval
Additional 
Requirements Completion of at least 15 credits toward the M.S.E.
(only SPED 782 may be taken within the first 15 credits)


** All documented administrative and teaching experience must be in US schools which function under IDEA-2004 Rules and Regulations. This includes special education programs in public schools as well as private schools whose sole purpose are to educate children with disabilities in accordance with IDEA mandates.

 

Please Note:  With the exception of the prerequisite courses, no credit will be accepted in transfer from another institution to the UW-Eau Claire DSEPS program. There are no course substitutions for any of the required coursework

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