Graduate Alternative Pathway/Special Education Certificate

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Approx. program length:

55 weeks



Cost per credit:


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Gain special skills for students with special needs

Help students with disabilities thrive in their educational pursuits with a Graduate Alternative Pathway/Special Education Certificate. This accelerated certificate program is designed for people looking to change careers, those who require emergency teaching certifications or those seeking preparation for teaching licensure. The program focuses on assessing the learning of students with mild to moderate learning disabilities and providing necessary support for various behavioral and learning disorders.

As you move through the certificate program, you’ll:

  • Design and implement effective instruction
  • Apply professional ethics to teaching practices in special education
  • Create and modify instructional and behavioral plans for a variety of learning needs
  • Create innovative strategies and incorporate technology into the classroom

You can complete your program online in as little as 55 weeks by taking just one course* a time, so you can balance work and life on the path to your graduate certificate.

* Courses are one, six or 12 weeks long

Course length:


* Courses are one, four, six or 12 weeks long

Total credits required:


Max. number of waived credits:


Requirements and prerequisites

You’ll need 24 credits from a set of required courses to complete this Graduate Alternative Pathway/Elementary Education Certificate program. View additional requirements for licensure.

Core courses

This program is not available based on your location. Please edit your location above or search for an alternative program that is available in your current location.
Orientation To Alt Pathway Certificate mte503
Sped -model Theories And Instructional Strategies apse578
Characteristics Of Autism Spectrum Disorders apse576
Structured English Immersion-elementary sei504
Learning Disabilities And Language Development Disorders apse584
Mathematics Instruction For Sped apse575
Clinical Practice apes545

Networking opportunities

Access powerful networking tools through our PhoenixLinkTM career services platform. Take advantage of personal career coaching. Search and apply for jobs, or make your resumé visible to employers. And connect with employers and alumni through career fairs and mixers. It’s all about connections. And we help you make them.

Program purpose statement

The Graduate Alternative Pathway/Special Education Certificate is a program intended to prepare students with no prior teaching experience for special education teacher licensure in Arizona. The program includes a clinical component requiring field experiences and student teaching above and beyond program coursework. As state licensure requirements may change frequently, students must contact the Arizona Department of Education to verify current requirements to become a licensed teacher. There may be additional qualifications and/or disqualifications applicable in order to work as a teacher with any local, state or federal entity.

Licensure requirements

The Graduate Alternative Pathway/Special Education Certificate prepares candidates for initial teacher licensure as a special education school teacher. As licensure requirements may vary by state, it’s your responsibility to learn and meet licensure requirements in any state where you desire to practice.

View additional requirements for licensure.

The goal of accreditation is to ensure that education provided by institutions of higher education meets acceptable levels of quality. Accreditation is your assurance the University meets quality standards.

Institutional accreditation

Regional accreditation is an institution-level accreditation status granted by one of six U.S. regional accrediting bodies. Accreditation by more than one regional accrediting body is not permitted by the U.S. Department of Education.

University of Phoenix is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), Since 1978, University of Phoenix has been continually accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and its predecessor.

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What sets us apart?

When you choose our Graduate Alternative Pathway/Special Education Certificate, you can:

Lock in your tuition

We promise you’ll keep the same affordable tuition until you complete your certificate program. Count on tuition to be as dependable as your education.

Learn on your schedule

Designed to fit into the lives of busy working adults, our Graduate Alternative Pathway/Special Education Certificate can be completed one course at a time.

Prepare for licensure

The certificate program is intended for those who are on an emergency certification or have no prior teaching experience and are seeking preparation for teaching licensure.

Take the next step

It’s time to let your education prepare you for the next phase of your career. You’ve got the will. And, by taking one course at a time toward a Graduate Alternative Pathway/Special Education Certificate, you’ve got the way.

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