Specialized Education Services

Special Education K-12

The Special Education Program provides opportunities for the study of school-age learners with mild to moderate disabilities (learning disabilities, behavior and/or emotional disabilities, and mild/moderate intellectual disabilities.

Students enrolling in this program learn about trends and issues in the field of special education, characteristics and needs of students with mild to moderate disabilities, specialized teaching methods for working with these students, strategies for collaboration with parents and/or families and colleagues, positive means for providing behavior supports, and technology applications that support students’ education.

The Departments of Teacher Education & Higher Education and Specialized Education Services offer a dual licensure concentration in elementary education and special education. Students completing this program are eligible for initial licensure in Elementary Education K–6 and Special Education: General Curriculum K–12.

The Dual Licensure Concentration provides undergraduate teacher candidates clinical and field-based experiences across educational settings. Throughout their course of study, students apply their knowledge and skills in classrooms to be prepared for a career in education.  The program culminates in a student teaching placement in an inclusive educational context.

For more Information about our programs, please review the academic program pages below:

Still have questions?

Review our SPED FAQs document

Special Education Faculty and Staff

Below is a list of Special Education Services (SES) faculty teaching courses in special education. Click on their name, to learn more about them and their research interest.

Julie Bost headshot

Julie Bost

Dr. Bost’s research interests include co-teaching, collaboration, positive behavior interventions and supports, high-leverage practices, and educational leadership.

Learn more about Dr. Bost from her Bio Page.

Dr. Bost is currently accepting graduate students!

Christie Cavanaugh

Christie Cavanaugh

Dr. Cavanaugh has spent much of her career preparing future teachers and providing ongoing professional development to educators in the areas of language and literacy, with a particular focus on at-risk children and high-need schools in various contexts. 

Learn more about Dr. Cavanaugh from her Bio Page.

Dr. Cavanaugh is currently accepting graduate students!

Dr Morgan Chitiyo

Morgan Chitiyo

Dr. Morgan Chitiyo is the Chair of the Specialized Education Services. Dr. Chitiyo’s research interests include positive behavior supports, autism, inclusive education, and special education professional development—in the area of behavior management. He is also interested in the development of special education in different countries. He currently serves as an associate editor of the Journal of International Special Needs Education and is past editor of the Journal of the International Association of Special Education.

Learn more about Dr. Chitiyo from his Bio Page.

Debra Holzberg

Dr. Holzberg’s research focuses on the self-advocacy and academic skills relative to the transition of students with disabilities to postsecondary education.

Learn more about Dr. Holzberg from her Bio Page.

Marcie Rock

Dr. Rock’s a passion for Special Education Teacher Education, eCoaching, Technology Enabled Teacher Development, Positive Behavior Intervention and Support (PBIS), Self-Monitoring, Behavior Disorders.

Learn more about Dr. Rock from her Bio Page.

Dr. Rock is currently accepting graduate students!

Diane Ryndak Headshot

Diane Ryndak

Dr. Ryndak’s work focuses on teacher and doctoral level preparation, with a focus on collaborative teams meeting the complex needs of students with significant intellectual and other disabilities through the use of evidence-based practices that result in access to general education curriculum and contexts. 

Learn more about Dr. Ryndak from her Bio Page.

Dr. Ryndak is currently accepting graduate students!