Elementary Education / Special Education

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The Elementary Education/Special Education major leads to eligibility for State of Florida certification in both Elementary (K-6) and Exceptional Student Education (K-12). It is a program designed for students interested in pursuing a career in teaching and This major also leads to eligibility for endorsements in Reading and English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL).

Inclusiveness is at the heart of our education mission. This means learning to teach in a way that includes and builds on the cultural, linguistic, and individual skills of all children, with an emphasis on their learning strengths. Our undergraduate program has received a grant of $1.5 million from the United States Department of Education’s Office for Special Education Programs (OSEP) to restructure our program to prepare elementary teachers for dual certification in general and exceptional student education. The new program is called Project INCLUDE: Inclusive, Collaborative, Leaders United for Diversity in Education.


First Year students should enroll in one or both of the following courses:

  • TAL 103 Psychological Foundations of Education



Every freshman is required to enroll in an English course OR have earned English Composition credit though Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB), Dual Enrollment (DE), or transfer work.

  • If you have earned a score of 5 on the AP English Composition & Language Exam or a score of 6 or 7 on the IB (Upper level exam), then you will earn 6 credits for English Composition and this requirement is complete.
  • If you have earned a 4 or 5 on the AP English Composition and Literature Exam then you will receive 3 credits and equivalency for ENG 210. You are required to enroll in WRS 105.
  • If you earned an SAT Verbal score greater than 700 or an ACT score greater than 32, then English 105 is waived.  You may proceed to enroll in English 106 or you have the option to wait until the spring semester to enroll in English 106.

Enroll in either:

WRS 105  English Composition I (All students who have not been waived or earned credit)


WRS 106 English Composition II (Only students who have been waived out of WRS 105)



First Year Students who have not completed a Mathematics course at the College Algebra level are required to begin their Mathematics sequence upon entering the University of Miami.

Your Canelink account will have your Math placement level indicated for you based on the following criteria:           

  • If you have earned AP/IB credit for Math, then your Math requirement will be satisfied.
  • If you have earned Dual Enrollment credit, you may have satisfied your Math requirement.  You will need to meet with an advisor prior to the start of the semester to verify your correct Math placement.
  • If your Math placement is Math 113 (MTH 113), then you will take this class in the spring semester with other education majors.  You may select another course in place of Math for your first semester.
  • MTH 101 (College Algebra)   –>   MTH 113 (Finite Math) 



The University of Miami’s General Education Requirements ensure that graduates have acquired essential intellectual skills and have engaged a range of academic disciplines.  All new students will fulfill the General Education requirements by selecting a Cognate, which is a cluster of courses arranged by their content, field and interest. The web site link for the Cognate Search engine is here.

  • A cognate is a group of at least three related courses for at least 9 credits.
  • The courses in a cognate are related in a topical, thematic, interdisciplinary, sequential, or other such fashion, so that completion of a cognate provides coherent depth of knowledge in the area.
  • Students must take three cognates to fulfill the Areas of Knowledge requirement, one in the Arts & Humanities (A&H), one in People & Society (P&S), and one in Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics (STEM).
  • Each cognate has course options that allow students to complete the cognate in ways that meet their individual interests, while staying within the coherent focus of the cognate.
  •  In addition to the cognates that have been designed by faculty, each major and minor fulfills the cognate requirement in one area.
    • Elementary Education Majors will fulfill the P&S Cognate.
  • ALL ELEDS majors must fulfill the Areas of Knowledge requirement by selecting one cognate from each of the following areas:
    • Arts & Humanities (A&H)
    • Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM).
  • Please go to the link for Cognates and begin your search for selecting a topic of interest that you think you would like to study in order to complete your General Education Requirements.


ENG 105 3 credits
MTH 101 3 credits
TAL 103 3 credits
Elective course toward cognate (A&H or STEM)


KIN 150 nutrition is an example of a class in a STEM cognate
3 credits
Elective course toward cognate (A& H or STEM)


TAL 203 (Children’s Literature) is an example of a course for an Arts & Humanities Cognate
3 credits