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BSEd in Special Education (Adapted Curriculum and Autism)

Get the preparation and certification you need to teach students with mild to severe disabilities or young children with or without disabilities. Our program fosters inclusion, diversity, and multiculturalism through theory and practice-based learning.

Adapted Curriculum prepares you to teach students with developmental and intellectual disabilities and autism. It is the only undergraduate program of its kind in the state.

This adapted curriculum may include teaching functional academics, lifelong personal and social skills, vocational skills, recreational and leisure skills, and community involvement. It emphasizes training in behavior management, instructional strategies, technology-based supports, and transition skills. The students who are most frequently served under adapted curriculum are those with moderate, severe, or profound intellectual disability and moderate to severe autism.

Throughout your time in the program, you will gain experience working exclusively with children with severe disabilities. Upon completion of the program, you will be certified to teach students with autism and other developmental and intellectual disabilities (preschool through grade 12).


  1. Athens campus cohort groups start each Fall
  2. Small class sizes ensure individualized attention and mentoring
  3. Field experiences every semester, culminating in a semester of student teaching
  4. Earn Georgia teacher certification


You will enter the program in the Fall of your junior year with a group of cohorts who progress through the required coursework together. Each semester features practicum experience, culminating in a semester spent student-teaching in a local area special education, prekindergarten, or kindergarten class. During the course of the program, all candidates will have an opportunity to work with children in each of the grade bands as required by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission. The grade bands are PK–2, 3–5, 6–8, and 9–12.

All Special Education students must complete:

  • 6 hours in required courses on classroom and behavior management and working with families and other professionals
  • 30 hours of coursework related to their area of emphasis
  • 9 hours of practicum experience
  • 15 hours of student teaching

Coursework for Adapted Curriculum students covers:

  • Language development
  • Reading instruction
  • Assessment of students with disabilities
  • Teaching methods for teaching autism spectrum disorders
  • Teaching students with severe disabilities and severe behavioral problems
  • Collaboration
  • Behavior management
  • Contemporary issues in special education

Download 2023-2024 Four-Year Plan (PDF) Download 2024-2025 Four-Year Plan

Additional information and disclosures regarding state licensure for professional practice in this field can be found at the UGA Licensure Disclosure Portal .

Learn More About The Special Education Double Dawgs Pathways

The Special Education program has Double Dawgs pathways that offer students the opportunity to earn both a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in five years or less to save time and money while positioning themselves for success after graduation.

Admission Requirements

In typical cohort years, this program admits approximately 15-20 students.

Prior to applying, you should consult with the Special Education advisor in the Office of Undergraduate Advising . They can advise you on how to arrange your program of study prior to application, so you are well-positioned for enrollment if accepted.

Minimum Eligibility Criteria

  • Overall minimum GPA of 2.80
  • Completion of Core Areas I-VI is required by the end of the semester of application
  • No grade lower than C in Core Area VI and no grade lower than B in EDSE 2000
  • Completion of (1) Federal and Georgia Constitution and (2) U.S. and Georgia History University requirements by the end of the semester of application (Note: You may only take the exemption exams for these subjects a certain number of times. Please consult with the UGA Testing Center to ensure your timeline works.)

All students admitted to the pathway are required to have a GAPSC pre-service certificate prior to taking EDSE 4441, 4442, and 4443: Practicum in Special Education.

Course Prerequisites

  • EDSE 2000

Special Requirements Upon Admission

  • Overall GPA of 2.80
  • Completion of all Core Areas I-VI
  • Minimum grade of C in all Special Education program courses
  • Minimum grade of B- in practicum and student teaching courses
  • Minimum grade of B in the exceptional children course requirements for certification
  • Teacher certification candidates must (1) earn a GaPSC Pre-Service Certificate prior to beginning field experience and (2) complete several assessments prior to certification

How to Apply

Part 1: Apply to the University of Georgia

The UGA Office of Undergraduate Admissions oversees the application process required for the university. Therefore, a student must be accepted to UGA before entering a College of Education program.

Start UGA Application

Part 2: Apply to the B.S.Ed. in Special Education (Adapted Curriculum and Autism)

You are ready to apply to this program when you have completed or are in the process of completing the minimum eligibility requirements. If you are in the process of completing any required core coursework, you may be provisionally accepted contingent upon satisfactory completion of the required courses while maintaining the required minimum 2.80 GPA for admission.

Fall 2024 Major Admissions Timeline

  • Application Opens – December 20, 2023
  • Application Deadline for Priority Consideration – January 19, 2024 at 5:00 p.m.
  • Admissions Decisions Released for Priority Applicants – February 5, 2024
  • Rolling admissions decisions for applications received after January 19, 2024

Application Materials

To apply for the Special Education program use the College’s Major Application. In your application, you’ll submit the following materials:

  • Unofficial Transcript
    Applicants should upload a copy of their unofficial transcripts in a single PDF file using the naming format Last Name, First Name_Semester_Transcript.

Apply to the Program

Selection Process

Applications are evaluated by a committee consisting of faculty and staff in the Special Education program. The evaluation process examines all applicant materials for adherence to minimum eligibility criteria, including consideration of GPA and completion of Core Areas I-VI.

B.S.Ed. Program Application FAQs

Selection Process

Applications are evaluated by a committee consisting of faculty and staff in the Special Education program. The evaluation process examines all applicant materials for adherence to minimum eligibility criteria, including consideration of GPA and completion of Core Areas I-VI.

Candidates meeting minimum eligibility criteria will be admitted to the program emphasis of their choice on a space available basis. Full consideration will be given to candidates meeting the application deadline.

Simply meeting the minimum eligibility criteria does not guarantee acceptance to the program. Applicants who are not accepted may apply again in the following application cycle. Students may apply for admission in the Spring if the requirements will be completed in the Summer.

Admission decisions will be made by March 1. You will be notified via email of the admission decision by the program coordinator or other program contact.

Admission Contact

Alicia Davis

Student Outcome Data

2022-2023 Program Assessment (PDF)

Additional Resources

Please use our online form if you have any questions for the department. Please be as specific as possible so that we may quickly assist you.

Faculty and Advisors

The College’s programs are taught by dedicated faculty who are experts in a range of areas and are passionate about helping students succeed both in their programs and professionally.

Meet the Faculty

All undergraduate students at UGA meet with an academic advisor each semester. This meeting is critical to student success and provides a chance to discuss courses and electives, certification criteria, and general graduation requirements.

Find Your Advisor

Tuition and Financial Aid

Almost all in-state students begin their studies at UGA paying limited tuition or fees. Please note that these amounts are subject to change and are meant to give prospective students an idea of the costs associated with a degree at the University of Georgia College of Education.

Students may qualify for a variety of assistantships, scholarships, and other financial awards to help offset the cost of tuition, housing, and other expenses.

Tuition Rates   Browse Financial Aid

Student Life

Connect with others who share your interests and stay informed about special education trends and news through our student chapter of the Council for Exceptional Children, which promotes the advancement and education of people with exceptionalities.

Expand and apply your learning by getting involved with area and campus groups such as Extra Special People, UGA Special Olympics, or AutismUGA. You also can choose to participate in faculty research projects.

See for yourself how much UGA College of Education has to offer! Schedule a tour of campus to learn more about the UGA student experience.

Schedule A Visit

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