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Advanced Diploma in Special Learning and Behavioural Needs

  • This programme provides a framework of knowledge and skills and inculcates attitudes which are important to the education of students with special needs. It also examines the range of factors that facilitates or hinders the learning of a student with special needs in mainstream schools; thus enabling teachers to develop competencies in assessing, planning, implementing, and evaluating programmes for students with special needs. Lastly, the programme provides teachers with the basic knowledge and skills for supporting students with various types of disabilities.

  • This programme is offered to serving qualified teachers with a Diploma in Education or its equivalent. Please note that the content is targeted at Primary and Secondary levels.

  • This programme aims :

    • to provide a framework of knowledge and skills and to inculcate attitudes which are important to the education of students with special needs

    • to examine the range of factors (e.g., the student, the teacher, the curriculum and resources, the physical environment, peers, and the larger school context) that facilitates or hinder the learning of a student with special needs in mainstream schools

    • to enable you to develop competencies in assessing, planning, implementing, and evaluating programmes for students with special needs

    • to provide you with basic knowledge and skills for supporting students with various types of disabilities

  • Using the Advanced Diploma for entry into NIE’s full-time Bachelor of Arts (Education) / Bachelor of Science (Education) OR part-time Bachelor of Education

    Upon successful completion of this programme, you may wish to apply for admission into the NIE/NTU degree programme. Admission is not automatic and all applications would be given due consideration. The admission criteria for returning teachers who are interested in using the Advanced Diploma to help gain admission into the full-time Bachelor of Arts (Education) / Bachelor of Science (Education) OR part-time Bachelor of Education are as follows and may be subjected to further updates from the Office of Teacher Education:

    • Obtained at least overall Pass in Dip Ed/ Dip PE/ Cert Ed and a minimum of 'C' Grade in an Advanced Diploma (obtained prior to the introduction of GPA System) or a minimum of CGPA of 2.50 in an Advanced Diploma (obtained after introduction of GPA System)*

    AND

    • Recommendation by Principal

    *For admission to Bachelor of Education (Primary) Part-time Programme, in addition to the above criteria, candidates must also meet the following:

    • Be employed by the Ministry of Education;
    • Have at least two years of trained teaching experience; and
    • Have an annual appraisal grade of at least Grade C or better.
  • You are required to complete at least 20 Academic Units (AUs) (an equivalent of 240 hours) comprising of:

    • 1 foundational course (Total of 1 AU),
    • 5 elective courses of 3 AUs each from Elective Course (Group A), and
    • 2 elective course of 2 or 3 AUs each from Elective Course (Group B)


    • Course Code Title No. of AUs
      Pre-Requisites
      core course
      IEC4019 Engaging Students with Special Needs in Mainstream Classrooms
      1 -
      Elective Courses (Group A)
      IEC4003 Learning Disabilities: Characteristics and Classroom Intervention
      3 IEC4019 or IEC4012 and IEC4013
      IEC4004 Autism Spectrum Disorders: Characteristics and Classroom Intervention
      3 IEC4019 or IEC4012 and IEC4013
      IEC4014 Emotional/ Behavioural Difficulties: Characteristics and Classroom Intervention
      3 IEC4019 or IEC4012 and IEC4013
      IEC4020 Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: Characteristics and Classroom Intervention
      3 IEC4019 or IEC4012 and IEC4013
      IEC4021 Physical and Sensory Difficulties: Characteristics and Classroom Intervention
      3 IEC4019 or IEC4012 and IEC4013
      Elective Courses (Group B)
      IEC4006 Helping Children with Problems in Mathematics
      2 -
      IEC4007 Understanding and Working with Pupils in the Lower Primary Years
      2 -
      IEC4008 Understanding and Providing for Pupils with High Ability in Mainstream Classrooms
      2 -
      IEC4016 School Experience
      3 -

    For its course description, please click here.

  • Foundational Course (Compulsory)


    IEC 4019 – Engaging Students with Special Needs in Mainstream Classrooms

    This course seeks to equip teachers with an introduction to the context of special needs education in Singapore as well as an understanding of the attitudes and perceptions of stakeholders in this process. Participants will be introduced to a framework for supporting pupils with special needs in their classrooms drawing on strengths within the classroom context and incorporating other resources within the school and community. This would include existing systems within current school contexts such as The Systemic Model for Support and Case Management Teams. In addition, course participants will also be introduced to the ecological framework and a systematic approach for intervention involving assessment, planning, implementation and evaluation (APIE).  This course will provide a foundation for building supportive partnerships with families of pupils with special needs.


    Group A (Complete all 5 courses)


    IEC4003 - Learning Disabilities: Characteristics and Classroom Intervention

    This course provides an overview of characteristics and prevalence of learning disabilities, as well as the challenges faced by students with learning disabilities. Educational approaches including learning strategies and social skills development for these students will be examined.
    * Pre-requisite: IEC 4019 or IEC4012 and IEC4013


    IEC4004 - Autism Spectrum Disorders: Characteristics and Classroom Intervention

    This course provides an overview of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) with a primary focus on students with high functioning autism and Asperger’s syndrome. The definitions and characteristics of learners with ASD will be examined in the light of planning intervention programmes. The participants will learn strategies for supporting these learners in local mainstream schools.
    * Prerequisite: IEC 4019 or IEC4012 and IEC4013


    IEC4014 – Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties: Characteristics and Classroom Intervention

    This course provides an overview of emotional/behavioural disorders (E/BD). Conceptual models and approaches of E/BD and common conditions of the various types of E/BD and their causes will be examined. Assessment of E/BD, as well as classroom management to reduce challenging behaviours will be included. Students will learn how to prevent some difficult behaviours and respond appropriately when behavioural problems occur.
    * Prerequisite: IEC 4019 or IEC4012 and IEC4013


    IEC4020 - Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorders: Characteristics and Classroom Intervention

    An overview of how to support children and youth with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in the classroom will be provided through this course. The definitions, characteristics and challenges of learners with ADHD will be examined through use of case studies and the opportunity to apply theory to practice, in the light of deriving practical and pragmatic strategies to address challenges faced by both the student and teacher in local mainstream schools in a holistic and systematic fashion employing frameworks introduced in earlier course(s) such as the ecological framework and the APIE within one’s school context.
    * Prerequisite: IEC 4019 or IEC4012 and IEC4013


    IEC4021 - Physical and Sensory Difficulties: Characteristics and Classroom Intervention

    An overview of how to support children and youth with physical and sensory difficulties in the classroom will be provided through this course. The definitions, characteristics and challenges of learners with physical and sensory difficulties will be examined through use of case studies and the opportunity to apply theory to practice, in the light of deriving practical and pragmatic strategies to address challenges faced by both the student and teacher in local mainstream schools in a holistic and systematic fashion employing frameworks introduced in earlier course(s) such as the ecological framework and the APIE within one’s school context.
    * Prerequisite: IEC 4019 or IEC4012 and IEC4013


    Group B (Choose 2 from the following Courses)


    IEC4006 - Helping Children with Problems in Mathematics

    The course will focus on factors affecting children with mathematical difficulties and techniques for identifying these children. Diagnosis and remediation in mathematics and strategies for improving pupils’ understanding in mathematical concepts and problem-solving strategies will be examined


    IEC4007 - Understanding and Working with Pupils in the Lower Primary Years

    This course aims to extend participants’ breadth and depth of understanding about the developmental learning needs of young children. Current programmes that adopt a more holistic approach to learning will be introduced and evaluated for use in the lower primary setting. Practical on-site workshops and visits to preschool centres will be conducted in order to identify the skills necessary for working constructively and creatively with young children in mainstream settings.


    IEC4008 - Understanding and Providing for Pupils with High Ability in Mainstream Classrooms

    This course seeks to help participants understand and provide for the needs of highly able pupils in mainstream classrooms. Participants will be given a broad overview of the nature and needs of highly able children and learn how to modify the curriculum for these learners. Participants will also explore the use of appropriate teaching methods and materials for instructing the highly able.


    IEC4016 - School Experience

    This course aims to provide observation opportunities for participants with no prior experience of interacting with students with special needs. Participants will be given the chance to observe and/or assist students in settings that include mainstream schools, special schools, and/or home/community environments.

  • Please click here.