Special Education

Doctoral degree programme, full-time study mode, Czech, 3 years 
Doctoral degree programme, combined form, Czech, 3 years 
Doctoral degree programme, full-time study mode, English, 3 years 
Doctoral degree programme, combined form, English, 3 years 
Doctoral degree programme, full-time study mode, German, 3 years 
Doctoral degree programme, combined form, German, 3 years 
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The aim of the 4-year doctoral study programme in Special Education is to prepare highly qualified experts with the skills for research, teaching and professional activities in the field of special education focused on speech therapy, the education of individuals with hearing impairment, education of individuals with mental, physical or visual impairment, education of individuals with behavioural disorders and specific learning disabilities and prepare them for further academic careers at universities and scientific research institutes both at home and abroad. It is also to allow excellent students to continue their studies in their elected specialization in the framework of the doctoral study programme and to enable them to undertake research projects which many have been engaged in since their Master’s degree. THe doctoral study programme/field Special Education is interdisciplinary and implemented in cooperation with other departments, such as the department of pedagogy, the department of psychology and philosophy at the Faculty of Education and other faculties of Masaryk University as well as other domestic (Prague, Ostrava, Olomouc) and foreign universities (Bratislava, etc.).

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After successfully completing his/her studies the graduate is able to:

  • know deeply and systematically the subject and scope of their teaching and pedagogy in general, in the historical and contemporary contexts, at the level of the contemporary stage of knowledge
  • know deeply and systematically important theories, concepts and methods which are at the forefront of the field in the domestic and international context
  • recognize the system of science and its development and research issues on the border between pedagogy and other fields
  • independently and in cooperation with others choose, plan, manage and evaluate creative research approach in their field and education itself. Through these procedures to recognize educational processes and phenomena of the educational environment
  • know the organization of the scientific community's life in the domestic and international perspectives
  • know how to fully participate in the life of the domestic and international scientific community including publishing activities, planning research projects and obtaining funds for their implementation
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The training of research workers skilled in research, professional and teaching activities lies in the field of special education focused on speech therapy, the education of individuals with hearing, mental or visual impairment, the education of individuals with behavioural disorders and specific learning disabilities.

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The doctoral study programme in Special Education is interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary. The programme is managed in cooperation with other departments, such as the department of pedagogy, the department of psychology and other faculties of Masaryk University, mainly the ENT Clinic of the Children's hospital and the ENT department of Masaryk University (Prof. MUDr. Ivo Šlapák, CSc., where a common learning laboratory for hearing, voice and speech disorders was built based on the support of FRVŠ) and the Clinic of child neurology of the Children's hospital (Doc. MUDr. Hana Ošlejšková, Ph.D). THere is further close cooperation with the Faculty of Arts, mainly in research activities (Prof. PhDr. Milan Pol, Ph.D., Dean of the Faculty of Arts MU).

During their studies PhD students are required to publish as an author or co-author four articles in peer-reviewed journals registered in the list of reviewed non-impact periodicals published in the Czech Republic or periodicals in the database ERIH, Scopus, Web of Science or to publish chapters in scholarly books. Students should also actively attend three domestic or international seminars or conferences and publish in conference proceedings. PhD students should participate in teaching an Inclusive special education course and a selected specialization (2 semesters).

The dissertation thesis deals with the following topics:

Implementation of the Framework Education Programme in elementary education; Analysis of training of children with autistic spectra disorder to transition between kindergarten and primary school with a focus on the structured education method; Teaching a foreign language to pupils with speech disorders; Approach to the education of individuals with specific learning disabilities compared to international approaches; Counselling services for pupils with speech disorders at primary and lower secondary school; Values in individuals with behavioural disorders.

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Teaching practice is not a compulsory part of the doctoral studies. PhD students perform practice in their field with regard to processing the dissertation thesis and the research project. Teaching practice is also implemented through internships, especially foreign internships. About 15 – 25 students including PhD students go abroad every semester for internships of several months in the framework of ERASMUS (German, Finland, Sweden, Slovakia, Poland, France). In 2014 an International doctoral colloquium was held in Leipzig (Germany) and was attended by graduate students and their supervisors from faculties of German universities focused on the education of individuals with physical disabilities. The event was also attended by six Czech PhD students with their supervisors. Students presented their research projects on posters in German and English. A similar presentation was made at the International doctoral conference in Bratislava in 2015. In 2016 the participation of selected students at an International doctoral conference in Dortmund is planned.

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Students take the final state doctoral examination in the areas of wide scientific foundation and their selected specialization on a date set by the individual study plan – usually planned at the end of the third year of the 4-year doctoral study programme. The final state doctoral examination also includes the main theses of the dissertation which have to be defended. During the final state doctoral examination the student is examined on whether they are able to synthetize knowledge from related science areas and apply them practically and whether the student has a knowledge of the elementary methodological approach used in the relevant field of doctoral studies. The content of the final state examination is proposed by the Departmental board and approved by the Dean of the Faculty of Education. THe state doctoral examination is held before a Specialist board approved by the Departmental board consisting of associated professors and professors of the relevant or related fields. The chairman of the board is appointed by the rector. The board consists of seven members (at least), from which at least two are not employed by Masaryk University. One of the members is the supervisor of the student. The state doctoral examination is oral and public.

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After completion of the required conditions the habilitation procedure in the field of Special education can be launched.

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Field of study specifications

Field of Study: Special Education
Abbreviation: SPZP
Code: 7506V002
Type: doctoral degree programme
Degree: Ph.D.
Accreditation: to 31/12/2019
Programme: P7506 D-SPD Special Education
Faculty of Education
Field of study guaranteed by:
Faculty of Education
Field guarantor:
prof. PhDr. Marie Vítková, CSc.