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What is Special Education?

Education teachers design instruction to accomodate meeting the unique needs of students with an identified disability via support, instruction and services—to prepare them for success in post-secondary and/or workplace environments.

Special Education Careers With a Bachelor's Degree

Earning an education bachelor’s can equip graduates with the ability to work with other professionals and parents to aid with student development. Graduates will also gain knowledge of how to assist students with disabilities, manage behavior, assess student’s unique needs and more.

Early Childhood Special Educator

Early childhood special educators provide services to infants, toddlers and preschool children with disabilities. They also work with other professionals and families to provide services and identify strategies to meet the unique needs of their students. The primary focus of this career is providing students the necessary skills to begin coping with their unique disabilities.

Special Education Teaching Assistant

Special education teaching assistants work with special education teachers to educate children with disabilities. Responsibilities can vary, however, the following are common duties:

  • Overseeing students in a group or one-on-one setting
  • Supporting teachers via student interaction, lesson plans and/or paperwork
  • Utilizing exercises to aid with the development of students with disabilities

Special Education Careers with a Graduate Degree

Whether you seek a specialized endorsement or an advanced degree, gaining expertise in special education will expand your eligibility to teach and your career opportunties to lead in a variety of special education contexts.

Special Education Teachers

Special education teachers work with students who have a wide range of disabilities and are responsible for the following:

  • Assess each student’s skill set to determine their unique needs
  • Develop, implement and update Individualized Education Programs (IEP) for each student
  • Develop, implement and modify lessons to meet the unique needs of each student
  • Educate students on various skill sets throughout the year
  • Measure and share each student’s progress throughout the year


Prepare for a Career in Special Education at NLU

Start your journey to a rewarding career in special education today! Learn more about NLU’s:


    NLU’s Chicago campus on South Michigan Avenue occupies five floors of the historic Peoples Gas Building. This landmark building, across the street from the Art Institute of Chicago and Grant Park, is easily accessible by train, bus and car and is surrounded by restaurants, parking lots/garages and shops.

    122 S. Michigan Avenue
    Chicago, IL 60603
    (888) 658.8632
    Info » | Directions »

    Conveniently located in a fast-growing business district off I-90 and Route 31, NLU Elgin features 10 classrooms with high-tech media equipment; a computer lab with high-speed Internet access; two conference rooms; and comfortable student lounges. Parking is free at this recently remodeled and upgraded teaching site, which now includes wireless Internet access.

    620 Tollgate Road
    Elgin, IL 60123
    (888) 658.8632
    Info » | Directions »

    Opened in the summer of 2006, NLU North Shore at Skokie is a state-of-the-art modern campus located just off the Edens Expressway near the Old Orchard Shopping Center. The campus includes 44 wireless classrooms equipped with high-tech media equipment; four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, including a walk-in lab in the library; six conference rooms; a public café for beverages and snacks; a student welcome center; a library for research and study; and multiple, comfortable student lounge areas.

    5202 Old Orchard Road
    Skokie, IL 60077
    (888) 658.8632
    Info » | Directions »

    Located just minutes from the East-West Tollway (I-88), NLU Lisle features 42 wireless classrooms equipped with high-tech media equipment; four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, including a separate walk-in lab in the library; a café for beverages and snacks; a student welcome center; a library for research and study; conference rooms; and six comfortable student lounge areas with wireless access.

    850 Warrenville Road
    Lisle, IL 60532
    (888) 658.8632
    Info » | Directions »

    Located in one of Chicago's major northwest suburbs, the newly renovated NLU Wheeling includes 20 classrooms with high-tech media equipment, four conference rooms, four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, large student lounge areas with wireless capabilities and interactive video capabilities, and an extensive research library. The site also houses the university library research collection.

    1000 Capitol Drive
    Wheeling, IL 60090
    (888) 658.8632
    Info » | Directions »

    Established in 1988 and located in one of Tampa's major business districts, NLU's Florida Regional Center serves students in 13 counties in central Florida. In addition to its classrooms, the National Louis University Tampa Regional Center features a computer lab, student lounges, and conference room.

    5110 Sunforest Drive, Suite 102
    Tampa, FL 33634
    (800) 366.6581
    Info » | Directions »