Special Education Teacher Resume Examples for This Year

Special education teachers need specific knowledge and skills to excel in individualized education programs. How do you create a resume that shows this?

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What to Highlight in a Special Education Teacher Resume

Special education teachers work hard to guide students with special needs, helping students progress at the same level as pupils in mainstream school. In a special education teacher resume, you’ll need to show the hiring manager or recruiter that you can prepare lesson plans for students with different disabilities. 
 
The best resumes will show the employer that candidates have all the key skills to navigate a learning environment. To give yourself the best chance at securing a special education teacher job, you can produce a professional resume that stands out to the recruiter.


The Structure of a Special Education Teacher Resume

The structure of a resume depends mostly on the resume format you choose. There are three resume formats you can use: the chronological, which is best for those with extensive work history, the functional resume format, which is ideal for recent graduates or those who have just earned a teaching certificate, and the combination resume format, which emphasizes both experience and skills.
 
Contact information
The resume header contains your contact information, including your name, address, phone number, and email address. You can also include a link to a professional networking site if you have one. This will provide the hiring manager access to more information about your background and experiences. 
 
Resume summary or objective
The next section is the resume summary or resume objective. This section consists of two to three brief sentences. The resume summary is designed to grab the hiring manager’s attention, and summarize your most significant experiences and key skills. If you don’t have a lot of experience, you can create a resume objective, which shifts the focus to your best skills and career intentions.
 
Skills
The skills section goes a long way towards convincing the hiring manager whether you have the right abilities to navigate a special learning environment. Your skills section should have a good mixture of hard skills and soft skills for the best resume. Hard skills are role-specific knowledge while soft skills are personal traits that are transferable across multiple industries and consist of general life skills. 
 
Consider including some of these skills in your resume: 
  • Adaptability
  • Behavior management 
  • Classroom management 
  • Interpersonal skills 
  • Organizational skills 
  • Problem-solving 
  • Critical thinking 
  • Knowledge of different learning styles 
  • Thorough evaluation skills 
  • Microsoft Office (Word, PowerPoint, Excel) 
  • Preparing individual education plans 

Work history

If you have lots of previous teaching experience, your work history section should be robust. Here, highlight past jobs and achievements associated with those jobs to show how your experience have given you the vital skills to excel as a special education teacher. 
 
Present your experience in reverse-chronological order, starting from the most recent job. To ensure this section is structured correctly, you can use a resume template or resume builder to help you. 
 
Education
To become a special education teacher, you’ll usually need a bachelor’s degree or master’s degree in special education. This shows you know how to teach different types of learners and can tailor the teaching curriculum to fit the needs of students. 
 
In this section, provide the title of your degree, your college name, and any associated studies or academic accomplishments such as making the Dean’s List or graduating cum laude.


Do’s and Don’ts for a Special Education Teacher Resume

Here are some dos and don’ts for creating a great special education teacher resume: 
 
Do:

  • Research the job posting and job description to understand the right skills and experience you need, and apply them to your resume. 
  • Proofread your resume and ensure there are no spelling, punctuation, or grammar mistakes.
  • Look over the job description for key skills and job requirements that you can address in your resume. This will help your resume pass applicant tracking systems (ATS) that employers often use to scan your resume.

Don’t:

  • Include your high school credentials. A college degree or more advanced studies is the only information the employer will need. 
  • Include any experience that is either over a decade old or unrelated to the role. 
  • Forget to include details about the types of disabilities you’ve worked with, such as autism, ADHD, and other impairments.

FAQ: Special Education Teacher Resume Examples

Q: How can I write a special education teacher's resume without a lot of work experience?

If you don’t have a lot of experience outside of your mandated student teacher placement, you can still produce an impressive resume. Simply choose a functional format and use the resume objective to explain why you’re the ideal candidate. Match the skills that are outlined in the job description to help the hiring manager match you to the role.

Q: How do I know if I’m able to teach special education students?

To become a special education teacher, you must complete the following steps:

1. Earn a bachelor’s degree in special education for learning disabilities. 

2. Complete a student teaching placement in a special education school.

3. Pass your state-required tests.

4. Apply for your teaching license.

Q: Can I include a cover letter in my application?

Yes! Cover letters are a great way to explain why you’re the ideal candidate in greater detail. Most employers will tell you if you need to include a cover letter in a resume, but in general it’s a good move to submit one. This allows you to explain your special certifications and knowledge at length, grabbing the hiring manager or recruiter’s attention. Check out how you can write a teacher cover letter with this guide!

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