Intervention Specialist Mild/Moderate Disabilities


The master’s degree program in special education, Intervention Specialist Mild Moderate provides advanced knowledge and skills for those who presently work or expect to work as clinical/developmental personnel serving individuals with exceptionalities, as supervisors of special education programs, or as intervention specialist classroom teachers. This degree program may lead to licensure in Ohio or other states. (Students are responsible for checking the requirements in their state if pursuing licensure.) Ohio teachers who hold a teaching license may qualify to earn this license with the passage of state required exams, and possibly additional coursework.

The program is delivered in a fully online format.


Our program is designed to prepare graduates with the knowledge, skills, and dispositions to best serve in schools and agencies in the area. Our accredited Special Education program seeks to meet the educational and service needs of Northeast Ohio and Western Pennsylvania. Our program is exemplified by the quality and diversity of classroom instruction, field experiences, program options, student, faculty, and graduates in the community. We have a long history of producing graduates who have served the area as Special Education teachers, Intervention Specialists, and Special Education Professionals. We have a strong connection with our alumni, program supervisors, schools and agencies, and others who support students with exceptional learning needs in the Youngstown area.

Undergraduate and graduate candidates will find a unique educational experience that prepares them for employment and/or advanced study in Special Education. For more information, review our website and contact Special Education faculty with any questions.

For more information contact the Department Office at 330-941-3251 or visit the Department of Teacher Education and Leadership Studies.

Program Director

For specific questions about the Master of Science in Education -  Special Education program, please contact the program director:

Courtney Cruz
Beeghly College of Liberal Arts, Social Sciences and Education

Department of Teacher Education and Leadership Studies


The Special Education Program supports the mission of both Youngstown State University and the Beeghly College of Liberal Arts, Social Sciences and Education through our work to: 

  • Prepare outstanding potential special education teachers by providing a rigorous educational program that is contemporary in its approaches, up to the minute in its content base knowledge, based upon didactic learning and practical experience and requiring demonstrated competency prior to graduation; 
  • Foster and require community and school based practicum experiences that involve the candidate developing cultural awareness and the acceptance of the diversity; 
  • Encourage candidates to expand their learning experiences though volunteerism by identifying campus and community opportunities for such practices;
  • Connect candidates with community leaders and current practitioners in the field via guest lecturers and campus and community based presentations as a means of enhancing candidates' learning and advancing their awareness of the cultural and economic life of the community; 
  • Extend the University’s efforts in advancing the intellectual and economic life of the state and region by providing advanced education and degrees to enable practitioners in the field to expand their knowledge base, meet the ever changing federal and state requirements to maintain licensure or certification in their field, and improve the economic status of those practitioners through acquisition of advanced degrees.


The Master of Science - Special Education graduate degree program is accredited by the National Council Association of Teacher Education (NCATE). To contact our current accreditation body, please go to: 

Intervention Specialist Mild/Moderate Disabilities

Candidates for the Intervention Specialist Mild to Moderate Licensure option must meet all requirements for admission to the Graduate College as outlined in the YSU Graduate Catalog. 

Candidates with bachelor degrees outside the college of education will be required to complete additional coursework for licensure. Candidates seeking initial licensure are required to successfully complete the Ohio Reading Requirement, PSYC 3709 and student teaching with edTPA for licensure.

For all candidates seeking a new area of licensure, 12 S.H. in reading, which includes a course in phonics, and passage of the appropriate licensure examination, are required by the Ohio Department of Education. Individuals holding teacher certification must fulfill the Ohio Reading requirement (12 S.H.). Completion of the OAE APK exam, Special Education content and the Foundations of Reading test are required by the Ohio Department of Education.

Candidates are given six (6) years in which to complete a master’s degree from the day of acceptance into the Graduate Program. All candidates are required to purchase a Taskstream account to complete the critical tasks for each course, which is essential for the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP). Successful completion of the comprehensive examination is required. Candidates will be required to pass the appropriate licensure exam.

Common Core
TCED 6932Action Research in Urban and Rural Education3
SPED 6900Issues, Trends & Ethical, Legal and Professional Guidelines in Special Education3
SPED 6906Understanding and Addressing the Characteristics and Behaviors of Learners with Exceptional Needs3
SPED 6914Positive Behavior Supports/Intervention Strategies to Support Social-Emotional Needs of All Learners3
SPED 6916IEP Planning and Accommodations for Learners with Exceptional Needs3
SPED 6917Effective Instruction for Learners with Exceptional Needs3
SPED 6928Transition to Adult Life3
SPED 6929Assessment of Exceptional Learners3
SPED 6931Field-based Practicum with Exceptional Learners in Grades K-63
SPED 6932Field-based Practicum on Inclusive Practices with Exceptional Learners in Grades 7-123
Total Semester Hours30

Maximum C Grade Policy

A student may count no more than 6 s.h. of coursework with a grade of C toward the minimum graduation hour requirements.

Learning Outcomes

Candidates develop a deep understanding of the critical concepts and principles of their field of preparation and, by completion, are able to use professional specialty practices flexibly to advance the learning of all P-12 students toward attainment of college- and career- readiness.

Candidates demonstrate their proficiencies to understand and apply knowledge and skills appropriate to their professional field of specialization so that learning and development opportunities for all P-12 are enhanced, through:

Candidates use research and understanding of qualitative, quantitative and/or mixed methods research methodologies to analyze data to impact student learning in the classroom.  

Candidates participate in collaborative activities with others such as peers, colleagues, teachers, administrators, community organizations, and parents;

Candidates use/support appropriate applications of technology for their field of specialization.

Candidates apply professional ethics, standards, dispositions, laws, and policies.

Candidates learn and apply specialized content and discipline knowledge contained in approved state and/or national discipline-specific standards

Admission Requirements

In addition to the minimum College of Graduate Studies admission requirements, all master’s in special education applicants must have the following:

  • Cumulative grade-point average in undergraduate work of at least a 3.0 on a 4.0 scale.
  • Students with a GPA of 2.5-2.99 must present a satisfactory score on the general test of the Graduate Record Exam (GRE), with scores of 150 verb., 148 quant., 4.0 writing.
  • 3 references that include: name, email and phone number
  • Official transcripts of all undergraduate or graduate work completed;

Candidates without a teaching certificate or license may be admitted on an individual basis to special education graduate programs.  However, additional coursework may be required for licensure. Candidates with bachelor’s degrees outside the College of Education will be required to complete additional coursework for licensure.  For all candidates seeking a new area of licensure,  the Ohio Reading Requirement including 12 s.h. in reading is required (TERG OAE exams are required by the Ohio Department of Education (ODE).  

Individuals without a teaching certificate will also need to complete the Ohio Reading Requirement (TERG 3701, TERG 3702, TERG 3703, TERG 2610), OAE APK exam (Special Education content) and Foundations of Reading tests, PSYC 3709, SPED 4849 Supervised Student Teaching, and SPED 4869 Student Teaching Seminar, and passage of the appropriate licensure exam as required by ODE.