M.Ed. in Curriculum & Instruction: The Inclusive Classroom (SPED)

The M.Ed. in Curriculum & Instruction: The Inclusive Classroom (SPED) is designed for the general education teacher and will provide the knowledge and skills needed to work effectively with students with disabilities mainstreamed or fully included in general education classrooms. This is a non-licensure concentration and does not result in Special Education licensure.

Particular emphasis is placed on instructional strategies used to differentiate instruction, to serve students with disabilities in inclusive general education classrooms and to implement the Response to Intervention model at the classroom or school level.

The Next Start Date is January 9th

M.Ed. in Curriculum & Instruction: The Inclusive Classroom (SPED) Program Goals

In addition to meeting the objectives and requirements for the M.Ed. in Curriculum & Instruction: The Inclusive Classroom (SPED) online degree program, successful candidates will also demonstrate:

  • Expertise in the utilization of new methods of authentic assessment and strategies as tools to evaluate student learning progress in relation to Oregon's Common Core State Standards and specific district standards
  • Effective instructional skills in planning, implementing, and assessing instruction in settings that include diverse cultural populations and special needs students
  • An understanding of the ways that the specific curricular/instructional area has the potential to be responsive to classroom diversity
  • A clear understanding of the moral leadership required of them as advanced scholars in the chosen area of curriculum and instruction
  • The ability to modify instructional plans and promote alternative goals and strategies when necessary, particularly in relation to assessment results

Course Descriptions

Students enrolled in The Inclusive Classroom (SPED) program must complete:

  • Four core courses required for the Curriculum & Instruction degree
  • Foundation courses for the specific concentration

M.Ed. in Curriculum & Instruction - The Inclusive Classroom (SPED)
15 credits
EDCI 528 (3)
Foundation Concepts for Inclusive Teaching

The general education classroom teacher’s role in identifying and teaching a growing population of students with other special needs in the general education classroom is the major focus of the Foundation Concepts for Inclusive Teaching. This course presents the fundamental concepts related to teaching students with disabilities and students with other special needs in transformative general education classrooms. Information on the history of special education and the federal policies related to serving students with disabilities in public schools is reviewed in the initial phase of the course. Included in this review is an analysis of the general education teacher’s role in the various phases of serving students with disabilities in the general education classroom including the implementation of an Individualized Education Program (IEP) or a 504 plan. The second phase of the course will examine: the characteristics and needs of students with persistent academic disabilities, students with significant cognitive disabilities, and the categories of disabilities (high incidence and low incidence disabilities) as they relate to teaching students with disabilities in general education classrooms and are defined within the Individuals with Disabilities Improvement Act of 2004 (IDEA). A similar analysis of the characteristics and needs of students with other special needs who are served in general education classrooms will also be conducted. Accommodations, modifications and adaptations that support the success of students with disabilities and students with other special needs in transformative general education classrooms will conclude this course of study.

EDCI 548 (3)
The Inclusive Classroom: Instructional Strategies and Interventions
The effective use of transformational instructional strategies and interventions to maximize teaching and learning for all students in an inclusive classroom will be studied. Accommodations and modifications that provide access to the general education curriculum specific to the categories of disabilities defined in the Individuals with Disabilities Improvement Act of 2004 (IDEA) will be identified. A focus on differentiated instruction and adaptations appropriate for students with other special learning needs (students with gifts and talents, English language learners and low language native English speakers, and students at-risk for school failure) will be included. Emphasis will be placed on practical instructional strategies and interventions that promote learning and can be readily implemented by the general education classroom teacher in an inclusive learning environment.
EDCI 549 (3)
Effective Classroom Management Strategies
The focus of this course is the use of strategies and procedures proven effective in establishing and maintaining a positive and supportive learning environment for all students in an inclusive general education classroom. Practical, preventative strategies rooted in positive teacher-student relationships and well-designed learning activities as well as more formal classroom management strategies will be studied. In addition, effective responses to inappropriate and disruptive behavior will be identified with an emphasis on appropriate academic and social behavior development that results in optimal student motivation and engagement.
EDCI 545 (3)
Principles of Collaboration and Partnerships
The role of the general education inclusive classroom teacher in establishing and working effectively in building partnerships through collaboration with school personnel, parents and community agencies will be defined and explored. Specific partnering and collaboration responsibilities of the general education classroom teacher as part of providing services to students with disabilities will be addressed including the general education pre-referral process, implementing a response to intervention model, co-teaching, and practices and procedures essential to the successful inclusion of students with disabilities.
EDGR 601 (3)
Educational Research

This course provides students with the basic competencies necessary to understand and evaluate the research of others, and to plan their own research with a minimum of assistance. This course includes the basics of both qualitative and quantitative research.

The Master of Education culminates with one of three courses
3 credits
EDGR 698 (3)
Action Research (CAPSTONE)

Action research is one of the capstone projects for the Master of Education program. During this five-week course, candidates will learn more about the action research methodology, complete final edits of the Literature Review, and design a complete Action Research proposal including data collection methods and analysis approaches. (During this course, the proposal will NOT be implemented with students/participants.)
This design provides students with the requisite skills and means to pursue the transformative practice called "Action Research" in their classroom, school, district or other work environment. The design method for the capstone project closely aligns with current classroom realities, with district and school requirements, and the needs of teachers and students.

EDGR 699 (3)

The Thesis offers the graduate student the opportunity to investigate, in depth, a topic in the field of education. The student, working with his or her thesis instructor, will explore relevant literature and present a thesis following the procedure established by the College of Education.

EDGR 696 (3)
Practitioner Inquiry (CAPSTONE)

Practitioner Inquiry focuses on the reflective acts of the candidate as an educator seeking to improve teaching practice. Premised in the self-study research methodological traditions (Samaras, 2011), Practitioner Inquiry provides the opportunity to reflect on teaching practice and generate improvements based on classroom observation. Practitioner Inquiry focuses on the educator and her/his own practices, developing skills of inquiry, observation, reflection, and action in teachers. Prerequisite: Successful completion of EDGR 601 Educational Research

Any of the above options provide candidates with an understanding of the role of research in the field of education as a tool to solve problems and as a way to improve student learning.

Earning Your Curriculum & Instruction: The Inclusive Classroom (SPED) Master's Degree Online

Using cutting-edge curriculum and easy-to-use online learning tools, Concordia University - Portland’s experienced faculty will provide you with the best in theory and practice to prepare you as an instructional leader. Concordia Portland’s five-week classes can be accessed via the Internet at the times and locations most convenient for you. Assignment submission is convenient, submission deadlines are achievable, and all requirements for a course fall within the dates stipulated for the courses.


Career Opportunities

  • K-12 General Education Inclusive Classroom Teacher
  • Higher Education Instructor: The Inclusive General Education Classroom
  • Consultant/Advisor, Inclusion of Students with Disabilities and Other Students with Special Needs
  • Schoolwide General Education Classroom Inclusion Coach/Mentor
  • Professional Development (K-12), Strategies for Inclusion
  • General Education Inclusion Classroom Tutor: Accommodations, Modifications for Students with Disabilities and Adaptations for Students with Other Special Needs
  • Lead General Education Classroom Teacher, Response to Intervention Model (RtI)
  • Inclusion General Education Classroom Teaching Advisor to State Legislatures/Congress

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