Education Specialist Credential Program
The Preliminary Education Specialist Credential Program, with authorizations for Mild/Moderate or Moderate/Severe Disabilities, prepares future teachers to serve children, youth, and adults who have special learning or emotional needs. The Education Specialist Credential may be used in K-12 resource rooms, special day classes, or alternative settings. Education Specialists function in public schools or private settings as instructors and as consultants to teachers and to families. As a credential candidate, you may choose to pursue either the Mild/Moderate or the Moderate/Severe Disabilities Authorization for the Education Specialist Credential.
Types of Credentials
The Preliminary Education Specialist Mild/Moderate Credential authorizes teachers to instruct individuals in grades K-12 and adults who have:
- specific learning disabilities
- mild/moderate intellectual disabilities
- emotional disturbance
- other health impairments
The Preliminary Education Specialist Moderate/Severe Credential authorizes teachers to instruct individuals in grades K-12 and adults who have:
- moderate/severe intellectual disabilities
- emotional disturbance
- multiple disabilities
New Grant Available for Students Earning the Moderate/Severe Credential
The CSU, Chico School of Education is pleased to announce the availability of grant funding to pay for course fees and books for students pursuing the Education Specialist Moderate/Severe Credential. Visit NorCal CLIPP grant program to read complete details and requirements.
Alternative Options for Earning the Education Specialist Credential
The PRISMS Project, which includes the Residency in Secondary Education (RiSE) program, gives graduates the opportunity to become educators through collaboration in an accelerated teaching program. RiSE is an innovative 12-18 month graduate program combining a Master of Arts in Education and an Education Specialist Credential in Mild/Moderate or Moderate/Severe Disabilities. Candidates may also elect to receive financial support with a living stipend. For more information about RiSE, click here. A full list of Education Specialist Credential Pathways may be viewed here.
The Education Specialist Credential Program addresses the California Teaching Performance Expectations (TPEs) and Education Specialist Competencies. In addition, the Preliminary Education Specialist Credential Program offers the following courses and supervised teaching experiences:
- Relevant special education field/supervised teaching experiences
- Teaching of reading and content literacy
- Teaching of evidence-based interventions
- Special education laws and regulations
- Service learning methods
- Strategies for teaching English Learners
- Strategies for teaching students with Autism Spectrum Disorders
- Fall or spring semester entry
- Introductory prerequisite classes offered without formal program admission
- Assistance with preparation for employment
Preliminary Education Specialist Credential holders have five years in which to complete the professional clear Education Specialist Credential through a regional Beginning Teacher Support and Assessment (BTSA) program or any other accredited induction program. An optional program extension you may pursue is a Master's Degree in Education (Special Education Advising Pattern available).