May 25, 2024  
2003-2004 Springfield College Graduate Catalog 
2003-2004 Springfield College Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Teacher of Students with Moderate Disabilities (TSMD) (PreK-8 or 5-12)

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The Graduate Initial Licensure Program in TSMD prepares teachers to work effectively with students with mild and moderate disabilities. The program offers a combination of courses that lead to the Initial Licensure as a Teacher of Students with Moderate Disabilities. The interdisciplinary nature of the program provides a wide frame of reference for the students as they develop a foundation in the theoretical, historical, social and political foundations of special education. These academic courses and the pre-practicum and practicum provide ample opportunity for the graduate student to participate in self-evaluation, peer evaluation, and discussion with faculty and public school teachers. Because students are participating in the field placement while taking the academic courses, students are able to use these practical experiences to deepen their understanding of the skills and responsibilities of the teacher of students with moderate disabilities. A special emphasis is placed on: Reading and Language Arts instruction; Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks; assessment of physical, social, emotional, intellectual and social development of children and adolescents; educational terminology for students with mild and moderate disabilities; preparation, implementation and evaluation of Individualized Education Programs; design and modification of curriculum, instructional materials, and educational environments for students with moderate disabilities; behavior management and transitional assistance for students with mild and moderate disabilities; services provided by other agencies and federal and state laws and regulations pertaining to special education.

A Massachusetts Initial Licensure as an Elementary or Secondary Teacher or simultaneously enrolled in the Springfield College Graduate Initial Licensure Program at that level; a course in child development; and an introductory course in Special Education.

Massachusetts Tests for Educator Licensure Required:
All students in the TSMD Graduate Initial Licensure Program are required to pass the following exams with a score of 70 or better:

  • Communication and Literacy Skills exam (prior to pre-practicum, EDUC 673)
  • Content Area exam depends on grade level(prior to practicum)
  • Foundations of Reading exam (prior to practicum)

Education Department Programs

The Springfield College Education Department is committed to preparing effective teachers for the 21st century who will demonstrate strong critical thinking skills, knowledge of curriculum, and reflective teaching practices. Our graduates will be prepared to create dynamic learning environments in which teaching and assessment meet the needs of students. The department strives to strengthen partnerships with the community and foster teaching that empowers students, promotes equity, celebrates diversity and demonstrates a commitment to the humanics philosophy.

Graduate study in the Education Department is designed to enable educators to earn their initial teaching license or to enhance their teaching or administrative skills in order to better serve Pre K - 12 schools, early childhood education centers, and other educational institutions. Interdisciplinary study characterizes the teacher preparation programs, providing adult students with greater knowledge and understanding of their profession, enhancing their ability to work with youth and their families. Programs in the department lead to a Master of Education (M.Ed.) or a Master of Science (M.S.) degree. Graduate students in the department who are not writing a thesis must pass a comprehensive examination, and present their research endeavor before a panel of faculty.

The strength of the Education Programs at Springfield College is our low faculty-student ratio that allows us to support adult learners in their professional development through challenging courses that explore current knowledge about theory, practice, multicultural issues, educational research, technology and urban education. Continual exploration of effective professional practice in the field of education, by the Education faculty through research, and conference attendance provides for a dynamic learning environment.

Admission Requirements
The admissions requirements for the education graduate programs can be found in the Admission Information section of the catalog.

Educator Licensure Information
For those seeking an educator license, the course work will encompass the competencies required for a teacher or administrator under Massachusetts licensure regulations. Graduate candidates may be required to complete prerequisites depending on the content of their undergraduate study, so that they can fulfill the content of our approved programs. Students who seek licensure must also complete the fieldwork requirement pertaining to the license for which they will apply, and pass the Massachusetts Tests for Educator Licensure (communication and literacy skills, and subject matter knowledge appropriate to license sought).

Standards for Practicum Placement
To be eligible for practicum placement, students pursuing an initial license must meet the standards found on page 6 for all educator preparation programs.

  1. Have an overall GPA of 3.0 or better.
  2. Have scored a 70 or better on all required MTEL exams for license sought, i.e., Communication and Literacy Skills Test and the appropriate subject tests (where they are required).
  3. Obtain a grade of “B” or better in designated methods courses: Early Childhood - EDUC 551, 555 and 627 Elementary - EDUC 551, 552 and 627 Secondary - EDUC 585, 628 and 640 Teacher of Students with Moderate Disabilities - EDUC 542, 640, 673 and 683
  4. Demonstrate the personal characteristics needed to become an educator (for example, responsible, dependable, hard working, professional, committed to the field of education, etc.)

Those who are seeking a Master’s degree for enrichment of their professional abilities, without licensure, will complete the required course work in the Educational Studies Program or the non-license track of the Early Childhood, Elementary, Secondary Education and Teacher of Students with Moderate Disabilities, or Administration programs.

For more information regarding graduate program opportunities in the Education Department, please contact the department directly at (413) 748-3295 or

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