Special Education

  • AST
Student reflects on subject matter.

With an A.S.T. in Special Education you will be on your way to becoming a licensed teacher. Be a champion for students with special needs and make a positive impact on their education. Earn your degree online or in person with classes that fit your schedule.

Associate of Science

The A.S.T. degree will prepare you to continue your bachelor’s degree and the certification required to teach students with special needs in grades pre-K through twelve. Complete the 2-year transfer degree prepared to pursue your bachelor’s degree and become a state-certified, licensed teacher.


Two years


About $9,490 total in tuition and fees.


More About Costs


After Nashville State

The A.S.T. degree in Special Education is best used to transfer to a 4-year college or university. We guarantee a successful transfer to complete your bachelor’s degree at a Tennessee public university with the help of Tennessee Transfer Pathways (TTPs). Complete all the courses listed on the Special Education A.S.T. degree TTP at Nashville State, and you will have completed the first two years of a four-year bachelor's degree. 


More About Transfer Degrees

Campus Availability: Courses for this degree are available at a variety of campus locations and online. To check current course offerings check class schedule.

Ready to apply?

How to Apply

Program Requirements


To earn the A.S.T. degree, students must: 

  • Successfully complete the required course of study as outlined in the catalog 
  • Attain a 2.75 cumulative grade point average  
  • Successfully complete the Praxis Exams for teachers or have a 21 on the ACT or 1020 on the SAT (upon first-time admittance to college) 
  • Receive a satisfactory rating on an index of suitability for the teaching profession (see the section on disposition assessment)

All education courses (EDUC) require completion of fieldwork consisting of K-12 school-based observations and interviews. 

Students should consult frequently with their advisors to ensure the completion of all requirements for this degree. Failure to do so could result in a loss of credits in the transfer process. 

You must pass the Praxis Exams for teachers or attain at least a 21 on the ACT to complete this program. For information on pricing, locations for testing, and registration, see the Educational Testing Service (ETS) website. 

Every Associate of Science in Teaching (A.S.T.) degree candidate will undergo a Disposition Assessment. The purpose of the Disposition Assessment is to provide information about the student’s attitudes and skills that are deemed necessary to be a successful teacher. Download the NSCC Disposition Assessment Form and Cover Letter.  

All education majors must develop a professional portfolio – a collection of work products (such as written papers and artifacts of teaching) from the course of a teacher-preparation program. The professional portfolio will begin in EDUC 2010 - Introduction to Teaching. 

To get a job in education, you must undergo a criminal history and abuse registry background check. This check is required by the state and initiated by the employer, but may also be required in order to complete school observations as part of the fieldwork in EDUC courses. 

All prospective teachers must complete coursework in professional education. Nashville State offers courses that are in the professional education core: 

  • EDUC 2010 – Introduction to Teaching 
  • EDUC 2210 – Educational Psychology 
  • EDUC 2120 – Intro to Special Education 

See the full Tennessee Professional Education Standards. 

More Resources

Use these resources to get ahead in the field of education.

Student Tennessee Education Association (STEA) offers opportunities to be a part of the National Education Association, the largest professional teacher organization in the United States. Participate and meet other prospective teachers, subscribe to professional journals, and stay informed on today's foremost topics in education.

Easily Transfer Your A.S.T. Credits

Similar Programs

Student teacher assists elementary student.
campus availability
  • Online
Student listens to professor.
campus availability
  • Online

More ways to explore

Get In Touch

Program office

Building Icon

Ruth Green

Secretary III

Room C-237C, White Bridge Campus

Karen Stevenson

Dean of School of Business and Professional Studies

Room C-237, White Bridge Campus


Profile Icon

Kurstin Bush

Assistant Professor, Education

Room D-24, White Bridge Campus