SDSU/CDBS Intervener Training Program 

 (Click here for program  flier in PDF format) 


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SDSU/CDBS Intervener Training Program 2019 / 2020

Response to the SDSU/CDBS intervener training first-year pilot program was overwhelming.
We are very pleased to begin the scond year of this program.


We are pleased to announce that San Diego State University (SDSU) and California Deafblind Services (CDBS) are collaborating to provide a university-based intervener training program to prepare paraeducators to effectively serve learners who are deafblind. Interveners are paraeducators with specialized knowledge and skills in deafblindness. Trained interveners allow school districts and agencies to effectively meet the unique individualized support needs of students who benefit from intervention services.

Over the course of two semesters (Fall 2019 and Spring 2020) students will engage in an online course of study that includes the rigorous and nationally recognized Open Hands, Open Access Deaf-Blind Intervener Learning Modules. Through self-guided study students will access the modules asynchronously (i.e., at days and times of their own choosing), with three synchronous class meetings each semester. Course instructors will be deafblind specialists from SDSU and CDBS.

District and LEA support of the participant’s efforts (e.g. release time, stipend) will increase the likelihood of successful completion of this training program. This is a non-credit bearing university program. Upon successful completion each participant will receive a university certificate of completion of the SDSU/CDBS Intervener Training Program.


Please visit the Intervener Training Program section of the SDSU website for more information and to begin enrollment now.



Recruitment Criteria:
● Desire to work with and support individuals with deafblindness
● High school diploma (or equivalent)
● Commitment to 2.5 hours of module participation per week for the 2 semesters
● Basic internet skills, knowledge of computer functions, and ability to use online communication tools (email, video conferencing, and online learning platform)

Benefits of this training program include:
● High-quality professional development for the paraeducator
● Increased knowledge and skills for the paraeducator regarding the use of evidence-based practices for learners with deafblindness
● Support staff that meet Council for Exceptional Children paraeducator competencies in the area of deafblindness ● University certificate of completion of the SDSU/CDBS Intervener Training Program

Courses of Study:
The training utilizes 11 prescribed and one elective learning module from the Open Hands, Open Access Deaf-Blind Intervener Learning Modules, which are aligned with all seven of the CEC standards for special education paraeducators intervener for individuals with deafblindness.

During the training, participants will receive:
● Feedback on all assignments
● Support and monitoring to ensure active engagement
● Opportunities for discussion with other participants via web conferencing
● Course materials (provided at no additional cost)

Fall 2019 Semester (Aug. 19, 2019 - Dec. 20, 2019):
Overview of Deafblindness and Principles of Intervention

Spring 2020 Semester (Jan. 20, 2020 - May 29, 2020):
Intervention Practices with Learners who are Deafblind


Testimonials from first year participants:

These modules are an invaluable tool when teaching deafblind students.   — Michelle, California

This program is well organized and packed with helpful tools. I definitely feel more equipped to jump into the world of deafblindness. The instructors are so much more than your typical online program. Julie, Maurice and Christopher are true advocates for those that have a passion for this role. I truly believe their support will reach far beyond this course.   — Amber J., California

Taking this course really helped me better understand my student and her needs. The professors were there for support and help anytime I needed it. It didn’t matter if I needed help with my course work or my actual job, they were willing to help by giving suggestions or just being there to listen. This is a great way to understand your role as an intervener better.   — Amber R., California


Registration and Program Fees:

Register online at: (on the SDSU website). The tuition for the two semesters through San Diego State University will cost $240 per semester (totaling $480 for the two semesters).


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For more information please contact:


Christopher Brum, Ph.D.

San Diego State University - or 619-594-4814


Maurice Belote

California Deafblind Services or 415-405-7558


Julie Maier

California Deafblind Services - or 415-405-7559



Logo: Ideas that Work - US Office of Special Education ProgramThe contents of this website were developed under a grant from the US Department of Education, #H326T180015. However, those contents do not necessarily represent the policy of the US Department of Education, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government.  Project Officer, Susan Weigert.

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