MA in Bilingual Special Education Studies (BiSPED) | Bilingual Bicultural Education | Arts and Humanities

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Bilingual/Bicultural Education

In the Department of Arts & Humanities

MA in Bilingual Special Education Studies (BiSPED)


Bilingual Special Education Studies  -  44 Points (Minimum)

  • Leading to Initial Certification in Childhood Education (1-6), the Bilingual Extension Certification, and the Teaching Students with Disabilities Certification
  • Optional Middle Childhood Education Extension Certification (5-9)

It has become clear that the New York DOE is faced with the urgent need to have teachers who can attend to the range of needs of the learners they serve. Students who speak a language other than English now add up to 42% of the total NYC student population. In addition, 22.4% of students classified as English Language Learners (ELLs) have been identified as having a disability in the 2012-2013 academic year alone. Principals of bilingual schools with students with disabilities are struggling to find highly qualified teachers who are certified in both Bilingual Education and Teaching Students with Disabilities. The lack of qualified teacher to address the diverse needs of bilingual learners is pushing children with disabilities out of high quality dual language programs.

The Program in Bilingual/Bicultural Education and the Program in Intellectual Disability/Autism have created a new program, Bilingual Special Education Studies (BiSPED) for teacher candidates who wish to work with bilingual students with disabilities. Teacher candidates in the BiSPED program will be asked to participate in a research study for learning about how to improve teacher education teaching and learning in BiSPED. This will include pre- and post-yearly interviews, collection and analysis of data in relation to teaching and learning, and participation in coaching sessions with mentor teachers and supervisors in the Program in Bilingual/Bicultural Education to analyze student work using the Principles for Dual Language Education and the NYS Bilingual Common Core initiative. 


  • To be considered for this triple certification program, you must meet the requirements for the Stream A track and: 
    1. have prior experience with children in formal or informal contexts; 
    2. demonstrate through your statement of purpose and life experiences an understanding of equity issues in education, the value of native language and culture, and the transformative power of education; and 
  • We do not recommend getting an Internship Certificate after completion of 50% of the program. However, if these are your plans, please see your advisor during the first Fall semester.
  • In the first Spring semester, students will communicate with the Student Teaching Coordinator regarding initial teaching placement for the coming Fall.
  • If you already have your own classroom, take Student Teaching for 3 credits. If you need a classroom placement, you must take Student Teaching for 4 credits.
  • Even if you have your own classroom, it is NYSED policy that you cannot get paid while doing your student teaching.

Required Courses

Fall I 

  • A&HB 4021 Foundations of Bilingual/Bicultural Education (3 points)
  • A&HB 4121 Bilingual/Bicultural Curriculum Design: Social Studies (3 points)
  • A&HL 4076 TESOL Methodologies for K-6 (3 points)
  • A&HB 4801-04 Language Workshops in Bilingual Education (1 points)
  • A&HB 4020 Foundations of Bilingual Special Education (3 points)

Spring I 

  • A&HB 4024 Linguistic Foundations of Bilingual/Bicultural Education (3 points)
  • A&HB 4028 Teaching Literacy in Bilingual Settings (3 points)
  • A&HB 4133 Curriculum & Methods for Bilingual Ed: Science (1-3 point)
  • A&HB 4134 Curriculum & Methods for Bilingual Ed: Math (1-3 point)

Fall II 

  • C&T 4132 Learning & teaching Reading/Writing in the Classroom (3 points)
  • A&HB 4150 Teacher Inquiry: Bilingual Education (1 point)
  • A&HB 4720 Student Teaching in Bilingual Institutions (3-4 points)
  • HBSE 4082 Assessment & Evaluation of Children with Exceptionalities (3 points)

Spring II 

  • A&HB 4721 Student Teaching in English with Students with and without Disabilities (3-4 points)
  • HBSE 4002 Curriculum & Instruction for Students with and without Disabilities (3 points)
  • HBSE 4011* Education of Students with Intellectual Disabilities/Autism (3 points)
  • A&HB 4075 Cross-Cultural Communication and Classroom Ecology (3 points)

Additional Requirement for optional Middle School Extension 

  • C&T 4145 Critical Perspectives in Secondary Education (3 points, optional)

Additional Requirement for NY State Certification

  • HUDK 4022 Developmental Psychology: Childhood (or equivalent) (3 points)
  • HBSS 4116**  Health Education for Teachers (1 point) - (optional, may take workshops instead)
  • Students seeking Teaching Students with Disabilities certification need to take the NYSED exam: Content Specialty Test- Students with Disabilities

* = meets the requirement for the Autism workshop needed for Teaching Students with Disabilities Certification

** = offered in the Summer

Get connected and gain access the BiSPED blog:

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