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Cheryl Light Shriner


Dr. Light Shriner has had cross disciplinary training and she approaches the preparation of teachers and other future professionals in a similar manner across all age ranges and settings. She has a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology with a Concentration in Special Education/Severe Disabilities. She is also a Board Certified Behavior Analyst-Doctoral Level (BCBA-D) which indicates that she has substantial training in applied behavior analysis. She also has training in augmentative and alternative communication, systematic instruction within special education settings, educational psychology, and therapeutic recreation. She has expertise working with individuals: 1) with limited communication and social skills, 2) who demonstrate challenging behaviors, 3) with autism, 4) with moderate to severe intellectual or developmental disabilities, and 5) with physical or multiple disabilities. Dr. Light Shriner promotes collaboration between community agencies, faculty, college students, families, and individuals with disabilities in order to improve awareness, knowledge, and supports for these individuals.


SPED 199: Undergraduate Open Seminar (SPED 199) Topics will vary. See course schedule.

SPED 391: Thesis (SPED 391) Prerequisite: Senior standing.

SPED 395: Independent Study (SPED 395) Study of problems not considered in other courses; designed for students who excel in self-direction and intellectual curiosity.

SPED 431: Assistive Technology and Physical Disabilities (SPED 431) Course focuses on specialized health care needs, policies, and procedures for working with students with disabilities. An overview is provided of methods for accommodating students including task or environmental modifications, assistive technology, and adaptive equipment options.

SPED 438: Collaborating with Families (SPED 438) The impact of children with special needs on their families; models for the study of family systems are applied to understanding families of children with special needs; emphasis on planning family-focused interventions and exploring strategies for working with parents in a variety of settings.

SPED 448: Curriculum Development III (SPED 448) Review and application of curriculum development and adaptation principles and strategies to life skill domain areas. Curriculum areas addressed include domestic/home-living, leisure and recreation, community living, and vocational programs and job preparation. Emphasis on designing instruction to address life skill curriculum needs in inclusive educational programs and on critically evaluating curriculum and program effectiveness.

SPED 460: Communication and Physical Disabilities (SPED 460) Focuses upon issues and intervention strategies that can impact the communication skills of persons with moderate or severe intellectual and/or physical disabilities. Specific assessment and intervention strategies are discussed as they relate to both verbal and augmentative communication.

SPED 461: Alternative and Augmentative Communication and Literacy (SPED 461) Course focuses on issues and strategies for teaching communication and literacy to individuals with significant intellectual or physical disabilities. Specific assessment and intervention strategies are discussed as they relate to alternative and augmentative communication (AAC) and the development of beginning literacy skills.

SPED 471: Learning Environments II (SPED 471) Course is designed to provide participants with specific information on intervention and evaluation strategies related to designing and managing effective learning environments and to becoming a discriminating consumer of the professional literature related to behavior interventions.

SPED 488: Ethics and Professional Behavior (SPED 488) Designed to introduce students to ethical issues and challenges that teacher educators and other professionals, including Board Certified Behavior Analysts, may encounter in practice. The topics to be covered all revolve around ethical conduct in practice and research, as well as the decision-making foundations for resolving ethical issues. Students will obtain knowledge and skills through readings, discussion and various case scenarios, reflections, and discussion of the concepts of issues addressed in the reading and assignments.

SPED 599: Thesis Research (SPED 599) Individual direction of research and thesis writing.