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Mild to moderate cross-categorical certification in special education qualifies candidates to teach K-12 students with special needs in co-teaching classrooms, resource support settings, and self-contained classrooms.

In today's schools, the special education teacher is considered a school leader and expert in instruction design and teaching so that all children can learn. At Lindenwood Univeristy, graduates of our special education program have earned distinction as the outstanding teacher of the year in their school districts and Dabney scholar from the Missouri Council for Exceptional Children.

Lindenwood University offers several options for special education teacher certification (mild/moderate cross categorical) in the state of Missouri. Undergraduate students can major in special education and receive a BA with the last semester consisting of student teaching. if you already have an undergraduate degree, our Master of Arts in Teaching program will lead you to certification. If you are already a practicing teacher, the MA in Education with an emphasis in special education will lead you to an add-on certificate in mild/moderate cross categorical.

This program design reflects the philosophy of IDEA (Individual Disability Education Act) with an emphasis on educating the “whole” child through inclusive practices and effective collaboration. Additionally, program evaluation and assessment is based on the subject-specific competencies for Special Education set forth by the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE).

Through the years, the School of Education has continued to integrate the core education goals with the special education program. The program is designed to prepare both “regular” education teachers and “special” education teachers to work collaboratively to design and implement effective educational programs for all students. This requirement provides teachers seeking to add-on certification in special education a comprehensive understanding of the student’s entire educational delivery system.

Clinical experiences are embedded within the program. Students who hold Missouri teacher certification will receive their clinical experience through practicum requirements.

Upon completion of all the required courses, you will need to take and pass the required Missouri assessments to be considered a “highly qualified” teacher in the state of Missouri.

If you currently possess a teacher certification, you are encouraged to contact DESE and request a transcript evaluation in the area of special education K-12. DESE will then identify the remaining required courses. This information will then be used for your program planning.

For more information on this program, contact one of the advisors listed below:

Special Advisors for Undergraduate Secondary and Graduate Students

Dr. Kelly Hantak
Roemer 319
(636) 627-2588

Dr. Jill Hutcheson
Roemer 305
(636) 627-2950


Lindenwood University
209 S. Kingshighway
St. Charles, MO 63301