Course Description

This course is designed to provide educational leaders with information and strategies for administering the legal requirements related to providing an inclusive education to students with special needs. Participants receive a practical guide to the history, laws, and policies of special education, as well as the steps involved in the referral and evaluation processes from response to intervention (RTI) through the development of individualized education programs (IEPs) and transition plans. Another focus addresses the roles, responsibilities, and relationships that parents/guardians and advocates have within processes to ensure appropriate services are provided to a diverse population. Budget management for special education programs is also examined.

This graduate course is 4 weeks.

Attendance and participation are mandatory in all university courses, and specific requirements may differ by course. If attendance requirements are not met, a student may be removed from the course. Please review the Course Attendance Policy in the Catalog for more information.

This course is not available for enrollment to residents of Alabama, Arkansas, and Kentucky.

Course Objectives

History, Law, and Policy

  • Summarize the evolution of special education.
  • Analyze laws that affect special education.
  • Define the role of due process in special education.
  • Demonstrate the application of laws and policies pertaining to diverse learners with exceptional learning needs.

Referral and Evaluation

  • Identify possible needs for interventions related to student learning.
  • Illustrate the response to intervention (RTI) process.
  • Analyze the steps of the individualized education program (IEP) process.
  • Explain the appropriateness of a 504 accommodation plan.
  • Describe the purpose of the individualized transition plan (ITP).

Staff, Outside Service Providers, Families, and Advocates for Special Education

  • Describe the individual roles and responsibilities for serving special needs students.
  • Create a plan for building relationships with professional and paraprofessional educators in the school to serve special needs students.
  • Identify outside service providers.
  • Evaluate effective family involvement that fosters positive engagement in education.
  • Review the importance of early intervention, including services for children from infancy to 5 years old.
  • Discuss the legal aspects of family involvement in the Individualized Education Program (IEP) process and through IDEA 2004 legislation.
  • Describe when an advocate might be used in the special education process.

Budgets and Program Evaluation

  • Evaluate how special education budgets should be managed to promote adequacy, equity, and excellence.
  • Analyze how to evaluate a special education program to ensure effectiveness and legal compliance.
  • Identify best practices for administering a special education program.
  • Summarize the challenges school leaders face in administering special education programs.




The University of Phoenix reserves the right to modify courses.

Although our continuing teacher education courses are accepted by some state agencies in the United States toward teacher certifications and endorsements, this may not be the case in all states or foreign jurisdictions. If you plan to use courses for certification or endorsement, please check with your own state agency and your school district for applicability. Continuing teacher education courses are not eligible to apply to degree programs at University of Phoenix. These courses are not eligible for federal financial aid.

Transferability of credit is at the discretion of the receiving institution. It is the student’s responsibility to confirm whether or not credits earned at University of Phoenix will be accepted by another institution of the student’s choice.

While widely available, not all programs are available in all locations or in both online and on-campus formats. Please check with an Enrollment Representative.

If you have a question contact us at 866-354-1800.


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Instructor Led
T, M
12:00AM to 11:59AM
Oct 20, 2020 to Nov 16, 2020
Online Campus
Online Non-Degree
Schedule and Location
Contact Hours
  • Online Campus
Course Fee(s)
Section Fees
Resource Fee $75.00 Mandatory
3 Credit Hours
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