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Pre-Kindergarten Special Needs Endorsement

Pre-K CLassroomThe purpose of the PKSN Endorsement program is to increase the quantity of high-quality PKSN teachers across the state of Ohio. This program will help to ensure that there are a sufficient number of fully-credentialed and well-prepared teachers to instruct preschool children with disabilities and developmental delays so that the quality of instructional services received by children and their families is resolute. Early childhood teachers and intervention specialists will benefit from the PKSN program by acquiring advanced knowledge and skills to enhance the early educational opportunities for preschool children with special needs. 

Through a series of three courses, teachers licensed in early childhood or as an intervention specialist can add the state’s professional teaching Endorsement in PKSN, which permits teachers to work with children 3-5 years of age with developmental delays and disabilities.   One course is offered each semester. All courses are online.  Each course requires 20 field hours working with children 3-5 years with developmental delays or disabilities.

  • Summer: EDSP 5800 Typical and Atypical Development (3 credit hours)
  • Fall: EDSP 5820 Assessment in Early Childhood Special Education (3 credit hours)
  • Spring: EDSP 5830 Methods in Early Childhood Special Education (3 credit hours)

Only currently licensed teachers or undergraduates who graduate in spring and are expecting to receive licensure over the summer are eligible for this program. Because courses are offered at the graduate level, they may be used to renew your teaching license.  Unfortunately, this endorsement is not part of the senior to graduate students program. Endorsement cohorts are not eligible for GA/GRS tuition waivers. You must have at least a 2.9 Undergraduate GPA to be accepted.  In order to be recommended for the Endorsement, complete all courses with a 2.75 cumulative GPA and pass the Ohio Assessments for Educators (OAE) Early Childhood Special education Exam 013 with a score 220.

Please visit the Office of the Bursar 2018-2019 Tuition Schedule (select Off Campus Graduate Programs) for current tuition and fees.  Ohio University Faculty and Staff should contact us before registering. Students pursuing the PreK Special Needs Endorsement program may consider the private alternative loan as a resource.  Information about alternative loans is found on the website for the Office of Student Financial Aid and Scholarships.  For assistance with financial aid questions, please e-mail

Apply Today!Our next cohort is scheduled to begin in May during our Summer term.  The deadline for applications is May 15. Please complete the online application on our website and include the following items: Ohio University application with official transcripts from previous institutions; copy of Early Childhood or Intervention Specialist teaching license; resume; statement of professional goals; and one letter of recommendation.  You may submit official transcripts from any previous institutions to: Graduate College, Ohio University, 220 Research & Technology Center Athens, OH 45701.  

If you have questions about eligibility, please contact Jennifer Ottley at

Please note:  Due to a change in the Ohio Administrative Code 333-1-05, all endorsement programs in the State of Ohio must now show alignment with a 50 clock hour field experience for each endorsement and each additional license beyond the initial license. This change in code was approved by the State in November 2016. Students being admitted into programs beginning in the Fall 2017 Semester will be subject to this change in law. 

A new policy will take effect beginning with the Fall 2017 Semester. Candidates seeking licensure within eighteen (18) months of successfully completing an educator preparation program at Ohio University will be recommended for licensure if they apply within that timeframe to the Ohio Department of Education. If application for licensure is made after eighteen (18) months to the Ohio Department of Education, candidates will be required to meet with their program coordinator for consultation regarding any additional state and/or program requirements they need to complete. Following this consultation and the satisfaction of any additionally identified requirements, recommendation by Ohio University will be granted on a case-by-case basis. This applies to all candidates including past graduates who have not earned the license for which they were prepared.