What Is an IEP? - Definition, Examples & Objectives

An error occurred trying to load this video.

Try refreshing the page, or contact customer support.

Coming up next: What is Cooperative Learning? - Definition & Theory

You're on a roll. Keep up the good work!

Take Quiz Watch Next Lesson
Your next lesson will play in 10 seconds
  • 0:04 Definition of an IEP
  • 1:15 Objectives of an IEP
  • 1:50 Example of an IEP
  • 3:24 Lesson Summary
Save Save Save

Want to watch this again later?

Log in or sign up to add this lesson to a Custom Course.

Log in or Sign up

Speed Speed

Recommended Lessons and Courses for You

Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Peggy Olsen
An IEP is an individualized education program developed for students with disabilities to ensure their educational goals are achieved. Learn more about IEPs, objectives, and examples and test your knowledge with quiz questions.

Definition of an IEP

An individualized education program (IEP) is a required step in the process of receiving special education services. A student's parents, teachers, and other service providers meet to come to a consensus about the educational accommodations necessary to assist the student in meeting the objectives. This group of professionals and parents are known as the IEP team.

Before an IEP can be written a student must be identified as needing services, evaluated, and found eligible (as defined by the Individuals with Disability Education Act, IDEA) for services. IEPs can be written for academic, social, emotional, and behavioral disabilities.

Once the IEP is written and approved by the parents and school personnel, services can be provided. Parents are provided with a copy of the IEP. Progress is reported regularly so parents know if the objectives for the year will be met. At least once a year the IEP team meets to review. During reviews, school personnel and parents (and student if it's appropriate) evaluate the progress and decide if revisions should be made. If they're unable to come to consensus, the parents may ask for mediation or a due process hearing.

Objectives of an IEP

The purpose of an IEP is to meet the child's needs based on the child's development rather than on predetermined expectations based on grade level. The IEP takes both strengths and challenges into consideration, using a child's strengths to improve his or her challenges. The IEP team must determine the proper placement for a child using the environment that is the least restrictive possible. A child is pulled out of a regular classroom and put in another environment only when absolutely necessary for the child's education. Any time spent outside the regular education classroom must be explained in the IEP.

Example of an IEP

IEPs are required to include certain information including, but not limited to, the child's current level of performance, goals, accommodations, modification, services, and least restriction environment explanations.

To unlock this lesson you must be a Member.
Create your account

Register to view this lesson

Are you a student or a teacher?

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 30 million people use

Become a member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back
What teachers are saying about
Try it risk-free for 30 days

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 200 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it risk-free for 30 days!
Create an account