Exceptional Student Education K–12 

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Competencies and Skills and Blueprint

The test design below describes general testing information. The blueprints that follow provide a detailed outline that explains the competencies and skills that this test measures.

Test Design

table describing the format of the test, including test time, number of questions, and required passing score
Format Computer-based test (CBT)
Number of Questions Approximately 120 multiple-choice questions
Time 2 hours and 30 minutes
Passing Score A scaled score of at least 200

 

Competencies, Skills, and Approximate Percentage of Questions

graph depicting approximate percentage of each competency's weight toward overall test score, as described in detail in the table below

table describing the competencies, skills, and approximate percentage of each competency's weight toward overall test score
Competency Approximate Percentage of Total Test Questions
1 Knowledge of foundations of exceptional student education 24%
2 Knowledge of assessment and evaluation 13%
3 Knowledge of instructional practices in exceptional student education 21%
4 Knowledge of the positive behavioral support process 12%
5 Knowledge of multiple literacies and communication skills 22%
6 Knowledge of the transition process 8%

Competencies and Skills

Competency 1—Knowledge of foundations of exceptional student education
  1. Identify state and federal legislation that govern the education of students with exceptionalities.

  2. Classify the characteristics of students with exceptionalities using the eligibility criteria of categories included in current state and federal laws and regulations governing K–12 educational programs.

  3. Compare typical and atypical development of physical, cognitive, linguistic, social, and emotional stages of students in the K–12 educational system.

  4. Interpret principles and practices in the provision of education for students with exceptionalities based on legal and ethical standards.

  5. Apply knowledge of the requirements for developing individual educational plans (IEPs), educational plans (EPs), and transition IEPs.

  6. Evaluate the role and function of systemwide models of support for assisting all students, including students with exceptionalities, in accessing the general education curriculum and achieving high expectations.

  7. Apply effective methods of communication, consultation, and collaboration with students, parents, caregivers, and all other stakeholders, including those from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, as equal members of educational teams.

  8. Use effective methods for coaching and supporting paraprofessionals, tutors, and volunteers to assist students with exceptionalities across settings.

  9. Determine the purposes and functions of professionals, advocacy organizations, and agencies relevant to educating students with exceptionalities.

  10. Determine the factors associated with disproportionality in exceptional student education.

Competency 2—Knowledge of assessment and evaluation
  1. Determine the purposes and characteristics of different types of assessments and the appropriate use.

  2. Apply the legal requirements and ethical principles regarding assessment of students with exceptionalities.

  3. Identify measurement concepts (e.g., reliability and validity), characteristics, and uses of norm-referenced and criterion-referenced assessments for students with exceptionalities.

  4. Determine the purpose and requirements for participation of students with disabilities in the statewide assessment program and available accommodations, waivers, and exemptions.

  5. Interpret and apply the results of formal, informal, and performance-based assessments to address specific needs of students with exceptionalities.

  6. Analyze assessment data to identify student needs and evaluate student progress in acquiring, generalizing, and maintaining skills across settings.

Competency 3—Knowledge of instructional practices in exceptional student education
  1. Select reliable sources of evidence-based instructional practices and interventions.

  2. Apply appropriate instructional approaches, strategies, and materials based on assessments of the student’s educational needs (e.g., grade-level standards, academic and functional performance, effect of exceptionality).

  3. Choose effective instructional strategies to promote a student’s generalization of knowledge and skills across content areas, curriculum, and settings.

  4. Identify the characteristics and purposes of the core curriculum, supplemental programs, and intensive interventions as they relate to language arts and mathematics in a multi-tiered system of supports.

  5. Apply techniques for differentiating, accommodating, and modifying classroom instruction to meet the educational needs of individual students with exceptionalities.

  6. Apply flexible grouping strategies (e.g., academic, behavioral, social) for specific instructional activities.

  7. Use criteria for selecting and utilizing print and nonprint media for instructional use to match student needs and interests.

  8. Analyze characteristics of specialized instructional approaches for students with significant disabilities.

Competency 4—Knowledge of the positive behavioral support process
  1. Identify and choose appropriate prevention and intensive intervention strategies for students who display challenging behaviors.

  2. Distinguish the various concepts and models of positive behavior support.

  3. Analyze the legal and ethical issues pertaining to positive behavior support strategies and disciplinary procedures for students with exceptionalities.

  4. Interpret individual and group data to apply interventions that increase positive behavior.

  5. Interpret the essential elements of a functional behavior assessment and measure the effects of the behavior intervention plan through data collection strategies.

Competency 5—Knowledge of multiple literacies and communication skills
  1. Identify language development and the components of language structure.

  2. Distinguish characteristics of communication disorders and the impact on academic achievement and functional skills.

  3. Identify appropriate assistive technology and alternative communication systems to facilitate communication across all educational settings.

  4. Determine the sequence of reading development and the critical components of reading proficiency included in the state standards.

  5. Apply specialized instructional strategies and techniques to address deficits in phonological processing in students with exceptionalities.

  6. Apply evidence-based instructional methods for increasing reading proficiency in phonics, word recognition, and fluency that meet the specific educational and functional needs of individual students with exceptionalities.

  7. Apply evidence-based instructional methods for increasing literacy (e.g., oral language, vocabulary, reading comprehension) in all content areas that meet the specific educational and functional needs of individual students with exceptionalities.

  8. Determine and apply strategies for facilitating students' critical-thinking, executive functioning, and metacognition skills.

  9. Select and use effective instructional methods and supports for teaching writing foundations, the writing process, and purposes of writing to meet specific educational and functional needs of individual students with exceptionalities across all content areas.

  10. Apply evidence-based instructional methods for increasing mathematic skills in all content areas that meet the specific educational and functional needs of individual students with exceptionalities.

Competency 6—Knowledge of the transition process
  1. Determine appropriate programs for career development and career and technical education that meet the needs of individual students with disabilities.

  2. Use results of transition assessments to determine appropriate planning strategies to assist the student, parents, caregivers, and stakeholders in developing postsecondary education, career goals, and postschool outcomes.

  3. Select instructional approaches to assist students with exceptionalities to engage in self-determination and self-advocacy practices.

  4. Identify and compare resources and strategies that can assist individual students with disabilities to function independently in postsecondary education, home and community living, and employment.