Special Education Advocacy Credential

Next Start TimeDurationFormatCredits
Fall 20242 semestersOnline15
special education advocacy student


The world of special education can be daunting, but you can help families navigate the confusion! The Special Education Advocacy Credential prepares you to be an effective special education advocate on behalf of public-school children—covering all requisite education law, disability needs, and legal standards. Upon completion of the classes, you will develop an understanding of law and case, legal research, and the specific rules, regulations and procedures involving advocacy for students with non-typical needs.  

This credential is appropriate for individuals interested in:

  • Assisting parents in advocating for their child’s educational needs 
  • Assisting schools’ administrations in addressing special educational needs 
  • Working with attorneys in law offices that represent parents, educational entities, or both 


The Special Education Advocacy Credential at Tompkins Cortland requires you to earn a passing grade in four courses, which can typically be completed in as little as two semesters. These four courses can be applied towards the Paralegal A.A.S. degree. Courses are available fully online. 

Printable version of credential checklist

  • ENGL 100  Academic Writing I (3 credits) 
  • PARA 101  Introduction to Paralegalism (3 credits)  
  • PARA 130  Legal Research and Drafting (3 credits) 
  • PARA 206  Special Education Law and Advocacy (3 credits)
  • ENGL 101 Academic Writing II (prerequisite)

Our Partners

Thank you to the Cuddy Law Firm for helping create this microcredential. Our industry and community partners are vital to the success of our microcredential programs and many are leading employers of our graduates. Types of employers that typically recruit individuals with these skills, include:

  • Law offices 
  • Publics primary and secondary schools  
  • Colleges and universities 

Ready to get started?

Sign up today! 

Financing your Microcredential

There are many resources available to assist you in paying for your microcredential. Discuss your options with an Admissions representative when you register. 

  • Part-Time TAP for Non-Degree Programs is now available for many microcredentials at TC3! For more information the HESC website. A valid FAFSA must be on file to be eligible. To apply and for questions, contact Associate Director of Financial Aid Sarah Dockstater at seh@tompkinscortland.edu
  • Grant money is available through the Tompkins Community Recovery Fund for Tompkins County residents 
  • Grants are available through Tompkins Workforce NY Career Center and Cortland Works Career Center for county residents 
  • Several employers in our community offer tuition reimbursement and sponsorship specifically for microcredentials  
  • Financial aid is available to eligible students who pursue the credential while matriculated in a degree program. 


Fall 2024ENGL100Asynchronous, OnlineAsynchronous, Online
Fall 2024PARA101 or PARC101Asynchronous, OnlineAsynchronous, Online
Spring 2025PARA130 or PARC130Asynchronous, OnlineAsynchronous, Online
Spring 2025ENGL101Asynchronous, OnlineAsynchronous, Online
Spring 2025PARA206Asynchronous, OnlineAsynchronous, Online