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Learn to teach exceptional students, exceptionally

Do you have the drive to help students with disabilities reach their full potential? Are you passionate about serving exceptional students? Do you appreciate working with young people with a variety of different special needs? Then you’re in the right place!

The Bachelor of Science in interdisciplinary studies with a concentration in special education at SFA will prepare you with valuable tools for classrooms that serve students with exceptionalities. As a student in the program, you’ll learn from knowledgeable and caring educators in a supportive program that embraces cultural and linguistic diversity, emphasizes the importance of evidence-based practice, critical thinking skills, interdisciplinary collaboration, ethical principles and promotes continued professional development throughout your career.

Our program has the benefit of a partnership with numerous school districts in the area to place our special education teaching candidates for field experiences. A special education advisory board provides input and feedback to the faculty from practitioners in the field, including special education directors, educational diagnosticians and teachers.

Join a high-demand workforce

As a student in SFA’s special education program, you can be confident in a lasting career. The number of special education students has risen over the past few years, and the need for qualified educators will continue to grow. Many who decide to pursue graduate studies also take on highly coveted leadership roles in their schools.

Getting involved on campus

Become more involved during your time at SFA by joining the Student Council for Exceptional Children. We are a division of the international organization of Council for Exceptional Children, a nonprofit association that supports special education professionals and others working on behalf of individuals with exceptionalities.

The council serves the association’s mission by:

  • Advocating for appropriate governmental policies
  • Setting professional standards
  • Providing continuing professional development
  • Advocating for newly and historically under-served individuals with exceptionalities
  • Helping professionals achieve the conditions and resources necessary for effective professional practice

BS in Interdisciplinary Studies with concentration in special education

The core curriculum of this interdisciplinary major includes 42 hours in communication, mathematics, life and physical sciences, language/philosophy/culture, creative arts, American history, political science and social and behavioral sciences.

The All-Level Special Education provides a comprehensive curriculum providing instruction and experience at all age levels. Teacher candidates take courses with experience in early childhood and middle level students prior to the field experience courses. Field Experience I provides experience at the elementary level, and Field Experience II is at the upper middle or high school level.

For more information email

The special education concentration offers three minors available both face-to-face and online.

The undergraduate program prepares you for certification as an early childhood - grade 12 special education teacher and an early childhood – grade 6 generalist teacher. You may choose a different content area certification rather than the generalist area by working with your advisor.

The face-to-face undergraduate program is the traditional on-campus experience. Your coursework is done at SFA, here in Nacogdoches, and your field work and student teaching take place in local school districts.

Lumberjack Link-Ed Distance Education Program

The Department of Education Studies offers a unique distance education pathway for qualifying, non-traditional students who wish to pursue a Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies in one of three specific concentration areas without attending courses on the SFA main campus. 

The Lumberjack Link-Ed program is designed for non-traditional students who: 

  • are 24 years of age or older
  • or have family responsibilities and financial constraints that prohibit them from attending classes on SFA's main campus
  • or did not receive a standard high school diploma but earned a certificate of completion or GED
  • or delayed enrollment in postsecondary education by a year or more after high school or attended part-time during that year
  • or are employed full time (40 hours/week).

*Documentation may be requested to determine eligibility. 

Apply for SFA through Apply Texas. Indicate that you are interested in applying for the BSIS EC-6 Online Link-Ed Program. An advisor will be assigned to you and will be able to send additional information about applying for the Lumberjack Link-Ed program.

Please note that acceptance to SFA through Apply Texas does not secure admission into the Lumberjack Link-Ed program. You will need to submit a separate application for the program. Information about this application process will be sent to you once you have been accepted to SFASU.

For more information contact the special education program facilitator, Michelle Williams, at to ensure you are eligible to begin coursework.


Special education

A minor in special education is available to students with a major leading to teacher certification at the early childhood - grade 6, middle grades 4-8 or grades 8-12 levels. A minor is also available for students seeking early childhood - grade 12 certification. Admission to the educator certification program is required, and students must work with a special education advisor for course sequence and additional requirements.

Early intervention

An 18-hour minor is available for students majoring in rehabilitation, speech language pathology, psychology or other related fields who are interested in becoming an Early Intervention Specialist (EIS) working with infants and toddlers with special needs and their families.


An 18-hour minor is available for students seeking additional training in working with special populations but who are not seeking teacher certification. This minor is appropriate for students in programs such as psychology, orientation and mobility, kinesiology, rehabilitation, social work, as well as those seeking the Bachelor of applied arts and sciences.


Department of Education Studies
Faculty Directory

Janice A. Pattillo Early Childhood Research Center
Room 209

Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 13017, SFA Station
Nacogdoches, Texas 75962