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Why Pursue Dual Certification in General and Special Education?

Do you want to pursue a Master’s in Education degree? Are you hung up on the differences between a dual certification and a single-focused program?

As someone interested in education, you’re most likely considering taking the next step in your higher education journey. Earning a master’s degree is a common path for teachers, especially if you want to increase your salary, make a greater impact on students’ lives, and create a culturally inclusive environment.

The University of Mount Saint Vincent’s (UMSV) online Master of Science (MS) in Adolescent Education and Special Education (Dual Certification 7-12) program is a great option for professionals who wish to pursue a graduate degree while continuing to work full time. Since students can complete this program in as few as 18 months, graduates can start changing students’ lives in the classroom in no time.

Dual Certification Program vs. Single-Focused Program

A single-focused education program allows teachers to teach general or special needs education, but not both. A dual certification program will enable teachers to teach general and special needs education simultaneously. Dual certification programs have increased in popularity thanks to the policymakers and teacher educators who have encouraged these programs in order to create more inclusive learning environments.

3 Benefits of Dual Certification

The benefits of dual education certification impact both the student and school staff population, as well as the educator themselves. The following are three of the most significant benefits:

  1. Students learn in an inclusive classroom

Dual certification prepares educators to teach general and special needs education populations simultaneously, with the goal of educating students in an inclusive classroom. Students benefit from learning in an inclusive classroom because everyone participates in the same curriculum and school activities. This ultimately fosters acceptance, belonging, and community for a diverse population of students, families, educators, and community members.

  1. School staff    

Schools across the U.S. are suffering from teacher shortages, lack of services, and tightening budgets. Overall, school staff members benefit from teachers with dual certification because they can utilize their budgets better, provide services to varying student populations, and fill teacher openings. This allows for a smoother school year knowing general and special needs students will receive the proper education from knowledgeable educators.

  1. Career versatility 

Professionals benefit from the career versatility that an online dual certification provides. The greater number of qualifications gives you a competitive advantage in the job market, as well as ease in transferring schools or applying for jobs requiring specific skills.

Earn Your MS in Adolescent and Special Education

UMSV’s Master of Science in Adolescent Education and Special Education (Dual Certification Grades 7-12) online program prepares students to take New York licensure exams in both special education and a content area for grades 7 to 12, allowing graduates to pursue dual certification in the state.

With the shortage of special needs educators in our schools today, graduates will have the skills and knowledge to fill these roles and provide an inclusive environment for all students.

Learn more about UMSV’s online Master of Science in Adolescent Education and Special Education (Dual Certification Grades 7-12) program

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