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Early Childhood Special Education

Program Overview:

The Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) Intern Program at California State University, San Bernardino is a two-year program leading to a Preliminary Education Specialist Instruction Credential: Early Childhood with the English Learner (EL) Authorization.  Interns complete all coursework and supervised fieldwork while teaching full time in the special education classroom. Intern teachers are hired by partner districts on an intern credential, have all of the rights and responsibilities of classroom teachers, and receive teacher salary and benefits.  To facilitate the Intern Program, partnerships are established with local district and county offices of education.  Students are accepted into the program throughout the year and are provided with an individualized course sequence that outlines their coursework for the 24-month program. The course sequence is coordinated so candidates attend classes with the same students throughout the program at the San Bernardino Campus or the Palm Desert Campus. Each fall and spring semesters, interns will have biweekly observations by their assigned university supervisor. The supervisor provides direct support to the intern for the entire program and is the liaison between the personnel at the school site, district, and university. All interns have the additional benefit of the assistance of a District/Site Support Provider.

The Special Education Program integrates credential coursework with the coursework requirements for the Degree of Master of Science in Special Education. Interns may earn their master's degree by completing four additional courses and a culminating experience (i.e., comprehensive examination or project).

The CSUSB Early Childhood Special Education Intern Program provides an opportunity for candidates to complete the teacher preparation program while teaching in a special education classroom.

Program Coordination

The CSUSB Early Childhood Special Education Intern Program can help you realize your goals as an educator by providing you with an opportunity to earn a credential while teaching in a special education classroom!

Intern Program Coordinator:
Shannon Sparks
Office: CE-228
Phone: (909) 537-7328

Intern Program Office:
Tamara Patterson
Phone: (909) 537-5352


Opportunities for Multiple & Single Subject Credential Holders:

Interested applicants who already hold a valid Multiple or Single Subject credential are not held to Pre-service requirements* in order to be eligible for an internship. A letter of Intern Eligibility will be issued contingent upon a satisfactory interview and review of the materials.

*The pre-service requirements must be met during the first year of the intern’s program course of study.


Individuals interested in applying for the ECSE Intern Program must meet the following requirements:

  • A Bachelor's degree and passing CBEST scores
  • Minimum requirements for Graduate Admissions
  • Admission to the Special Education Program at CSUSB
  • U.S. Constitution Course or Waiver Exam
  • Ability to obtain employment as a teacher in a participating district/Office Of Education
  • Experience working with individuals with disabilities and/or young children and families is preferred
  • Successful completion of *prerequisite**/pre-service requirements including:
    1.  *ESPE 5530 and ESPE 5531 – must earn a B or better
    2. **ESPE 5532 

Application Procedures:

Individuals interested in applying for the Early Childhood Special Education Intern Program may obtain an application form from the special education website.

Classroom Supervision:

Intern students are enrolled in six (6) units of ESPE 6624 (Intern Supervision) each semester during fall and spring. Biweekly visits from a university supervisor continue throughout each semester of the intern program. University supervisors are experienced, credentialed individuals who provide support, guidance, and evaluation. Supervisors are also liaisons between the university and school district personnel. A comprehensive feedback summary is provided to the intern after each visit. At the end of each semester, a meeting with the site evaluator, intern, and university supervisor is held to review the candidate's progress toward university competencies.

District Partnerships:

The Early Childhood Special Education Intern Program at California State University, San Bernardino has a partnership with approximately fifty districts and Riverside and San Bernardino County Offices of Education.

New & Current Credential Student Handbooks:

Special Education New Orientation Handbook

Supervised Fieldwork Handbook
This handbook is for Student Teachers, University Supervisors, Resident Teachers, and Principals. It contains a description of the requirements for supervised field experiences in special education as well as responsibilities for all parties.