MA, MS, MEd with Endorsement in Special Education: Early Intervention Licensure

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Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education Master’s and Licensure 

Our licensure program prepares professionals to help children birth through 5 years with disabilities to succeed. Students learn to provide high quality services to young children with special needs with a focus on inclusive practices and family-guided intervention.  

The Early Intervention major leads to a master's degree in Special Education with an emphasis in Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education (EI/ECSE).  

Information Session

Didn't get a chance to attend our virtual information session for our EI/ECSE master's program? That's okay, we've got you covered! Hear from assistant professor Stephanie Shire, PhD, who offers an overview of the program, open discussion from some of the program's faculty and instructors, and learn some tricks and tips from a panel of alumni who are out in the field.

Why get your Master’s+License in EI/ECSE? 

  • Nearly 100 percent job placement rate 
  • The ability to live and work almost anywhere 
  • Oregon preliminary teaching license 
  • A strong lifelong network with cohort peers

Graduates of the program are prepared to fill a variety of professional roles: 

  • EI/ECSE specialist 
  • EI/ECSE service coordinator  
  • Home visitor 
  • Parenting coach 
  • Classroom teacher  
  • Early childhood consultant 
  • Evaluation specialist
  • Research assistant  

At a Glance: 

  • Cohort size = 15-25 students  
  • Can be completed in 1 or 2 years 

Distance Learning Option

Our distance masters/licensure program is ideal for early childhood educators, paraprofessionals, or educational assistants in EI/ECSE that work in Oregon.

University of Oregon College of Education SPED student with professor and child

image of student Kacie Waddell

"After being in the SPED EI/ECSE Distance program for the last two semesters, it’s become apparent that the professors and students are very passionate about creating an environment that values challenges and sees them as a way to adapt and grow."

--Kacie Waddell, EI/ECSE Student

Our faculty has a long history of innovation and cutting-edge research that has served to shape and continues to impact the field of EI/ECSE. Carefully sequenced coursework and hands-on practicum experiences provide students with a rich learning experience focused on effective strategies for supporting infants, toddlers, and preschoolers with disabilities in home, school, and community settings.

Research/Outreach Projects

Early Intervention research, demonstration, and outreach programs expand and improve educational and therapeutic services for infants and young children who are at risk or disabled, and their families.

Areas of research & technical assistance

  • Developing and conducting research on screening instruments and systems for early identification of developmental delays in young children
  • Evaluating effectiveness of learning environments for young children and teachers
  • Developing and conducting research on curriculum-based assessments for infants, toddlers, and preschool children
  • Supporting development of linked systems for early intervention/early childhood special education service delivery
  • Investigating effectiveness of early childhood mental health approaches
  • Providing technical support and professional development for early childhood, early intervention, and related service personnel

Positive approaches and evidence-based strategies are the core of our curriculum: 

  • Linked System: Assess child development, create goals, design and provide intervention, monitor child progress to evaluate results and modify intervention as needed. 
  • Activity-based Intervention: Children learn in routine, planned, and child-initiated activities. 
  • Assessment and Evaluation: Developmental screening and evaluation for EI/ECSE eligibility.
  • Culturally Responsive Practices: Approaches that meet the needs of all young children with or at-risk for disabilities and their families. 
  • Coaching and Consultation: Guide parents and teachers to facilitate successful early learning in diverse contexts. 
  • Teaming and Collaboration: Work effectively within an interdisciplinary team approach. 

SPED EI students by HEDCO fireplace

Relationships matter 

We know that young children learn when they are in relationship with others, and we believe this is true for students too. This belief in the promotion of positive relationships and inspiring interactions with others is at the core of our program. Our students build close relationships with peers, faculty, practicum and community leaders.

image of SPED EI cohort 2019

You can make a bigger difference  

Well-trained professionals in EI/ECSE are in high demand: 

  • Tuition support may be available through grants from the US Department of Education 
  • Opportunity for licensed teachers to expand their reach with our added-endorsement option 

Early Intervention Endorsements

Tuition Support

Virtual Two-Year EI/ECSE Master’s Program

Tuition support may be available for EI/ECSE master’s students who are employed in the EI/ECSE field outside of Lane County. Students who have the support of their employer to complete the part-time virtual EI/ECSE master’s licensure program are encouraged to apply.

For more information, please contact

Project IDEA

Do you identify as a student of color and/or speak a language other than English? Are you excited to work with young children with disabilities and their families? Are you committed to anti-racist approaches that improve outcomes by increasing equity and access to disability services? If you answered yes to these questions, apply to become a Project IDEA scholar today!

Funding is available for scholars' full tuition, fees, books, travel, and professional development. Project IDEA seeks to expand higher education opportunities among students of color, students who speak languages other than English, and students with disabilities. Preference will be given to students who self-identify with these backgrounds. Please view the PDF below for more information.

For more information, please contact Dr. Lillian Durán at

Coursework is directly linked to practicum and student teaching experiences in community-based settings 

Students in the EI/ECSE program have the option to complete the requirements for the master’s degree and licensure program in 1 or 2 years. All aspects of the master’s degree and Oregon teacher licensure requirements are embedded in the program. 

About Licensure  

The preliminary teaching license is granted by the Oregon Teacher Standards and Practices Commission and is required for EI/ECSE specialists serving children birth to five years of age in public school programs in Oregon, including Education Service Districts. 

In addition to successful completion of course and fieldwork requirements for the master’s degree, licensure candidates must also: 

  • Complete full-time student teaching  
  • Successfully complete an additional Teaching Sample 
  • Pass PRAXIS II test for Special Education: Preschool/Early Childhood  

Program Requirements

The master’s degree program conforms to the established University of Oregon and College of Education requirements and procedures:  

  • Minimum of 45 credits in courses approved for graduate credit taken as an admitted master’s degree student (51 credits minimum if doing a specialization area) 
  • Up to 15 credits may be officially transferred in through a petition process 
  • 24 credits must be in UO graded courses passed with a GPA of 3.0 or better 
  • At least 9 credits in 600-level courses must be taken in residence 
  • Minimum 30 credits in SPED courses 

All credits for the degree (including transfer credits) must be completed within seven years. 

EI/ECSE Master’s Degree + Licensure Program Plan

Sample Course Schedule

Summer Term -  10 Credits

course and Title


SPED 511 Foundations of Disability I (online)


SPED 526 Behavior and Classroom Management (online)


EDUC 611 Survey Education Research Methods (online)


Fall Term - 14 Credits

course and Title


SPED 540 Early Literacy for Diverse Learners


SPED 687 EI/ECSE Methods I


SPED 691 Professional Practices I


SPED 680 Foundations in Early Childhood and Early Intervention


SPED 691 Practicum in EI I


Winter Term - 16 Credits

course and Title


SPED 682 Assessment and Evaluation in Early Intervention


SPED 688 EI/ECSE Methods II


SPED 692 Professional Practices II


SPED 681 Early Intervention for Diverse Families


SPED 612 Practicum II


SPED 528 Law and Special Education (online) (also offered in summer)


SPED 686 Autism in Early Intervention (optional)


Spring Term - 16 Credits

course and Title


SPED 689 EI/ECSE Methods III


SPED 693 Professional Practices III


SPED 683 Curriculum in Early Childhood Education and Early Intervention


SPED 625 Final Supervised Field Experience