Graduate Academic Certificate
Certification in Special Education (IMPACT)

IMPACT is a one-to-two-year path to special education certification. IMPACT is designed to meet the demands of academic rigor and ongoing mentor support for you in a field that is rapidly changing. IMPACT is designed specifically for individuals who view teaching special education as a calling. The program teaches educators to set high expectations for their students; and to individualize curriculum and enhance instruction based on learner characteristics. Additionally, these individuals must develop skills that will enable them to collaborate with parents and other professionals so as to enhance the lives of children and youth with disabilities across their life span.

Candidates who are accepted into our program are eligible to receive a Probationary Teaching Certificate and be employed as a special education teacher during the fall and spring semesters they are completing coursework.

IMPACT Faculty Advisor: Angela Patton (

Admission Requirements

1) Hold at least a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution of higher learning.
2) Meet the requirements for and admission to the Toulouse Graduate School.
3) Select "IMPACT GAC" as the program of study.
4) Complete the Application Procedure as listed below:

Application Procedure

Prepare an IMPACT Application Packet with the following documents:

1) Completed IMPACT Application Form

2) Two Letters of Recommendation from individuals who can give evidence of the candidate's critical thinking ability in order to successfully engage in graduate coursework.

3) Submission of GRE scores.

4) Resume or Vita that includes the candidate's previous work and/or educational experiences, including teaching certifications and degrees held.

5) Personal Statement from the candidate stating his or her goals and rationale for applying to the IMPACT program and a brief description of his/her career and expectations with regard to teaching and further education. Candidates should describe their current reading, critical thinking, and writing and mathematical skills; and their relevant education experiences and strengths. Candidates should also assess their own ability to work independently, and discuss their educational philosophies and future goals.

6) Mail all documents as a complete packet to:

Devyn Dougherty
Student and Program Coordinator
Department of Educational Psychology
1155 Union Circle #311335
Denton, TX 76203-5017

You may also deliver your complete packet to Matthews Hall 316.

If recommended for admission, you will be asked to come for a face to face interview and advising appointment

Requirements for Certificate (applicant must meet course prerequisites, if any)

1. Understanding Learners with Special Needs

EDSP 5710 - Special Education Programs and Practices (3 hours)
EDSP 5510 - Educational Appraisal of Exceptional Learners (3 hours)

2. Promoting Learner Growth and Achievement

EDSP 5330 - Classroom and Behavioral Management Strategies for Exceptional Learners (3 hours)
EDSP 5740 - Learning Strategies for Promoting Proficiency in Math and the Content Areas for Exceptional Learners (3 hours)
EDSP 5750 - Learning Strategies for Promoting Proficiency in Reading and the Language Arts for Exceptional Learners (3 hours)

3. Working in a Collaborative Community

EDSP 5430 - Advanced Practicum and Mentorship in Special Education (must be taken during the fall and spring semesters while employed in a special education classroom) (6 hours)
EDSP 5240 - Collaboration with Parents, Paraeducators, and Professionals (3 hours)

4. State Exams

IMPACT candidates must be able to pass three state exams:

1. The TEXES Examination on Pedagogy and Professional Responsibilities EC-12,

2. The TEXES Examination for Special Education EC-12,

3. Generalist EC-6, or for secondary students; either have 24 subject hours in the content area they are assigned (12 upper level) or have passed the content area test for the subject they are assigned.

5. After completion of coursework, fill out the verification form and send to Dr. Patton. This is what will be used to order the certificate of completion.

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