HDFS 317 - Disabilities in Early Childhood Education

  • 3 credits

Recommended practices for fostering development of young children with disabilities. Knowledge of atypical development in early childhood (birth through grade 3). Practices for assessment, intervention, adapted instruction and materials, and inclusive environments to facilitate children's attainment of educational goals.

Learning Objectives:

Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

1. Describe and compare historical approaches to educational programs and services for children with disabilities in early childhood including current legislation and federally-funded programs.

2. Describe and apply knowledge of developmental delays and disabilities (e.g. developmental domains of motor, cognition, communication, social-emotional development and mental health) in early childhood.

3. Describe, compare, and apply knowledge of both informal and formal assessments appropriate to early childhood education for the following areas: motor, cognition, communication, social-emotional development, and mental health.

4. Identify and apply knowledge of the functions of an Individual Family Service Plan (IFSP) and Individualized Education Program (IEP) including child and family goals, team collaboration, and plans for service delivery.

5. Apply current research on effective developmentally appropriate educational practices to teaching young children with disabilities.

6. Select appropriate educational materials and environments to meet the educational needs of children with various disabilities.

7. Describe and apply means of collecting data on children's progress.


HDFS 310 (Infant and Child Development in Context) or completion of 30 credits.

Important Information

All prerequisites must be completed or consent from the instructor given prior to enrollment.

If you register for this course after the start of the term, please contact the instructor at the time of registration. By contacting the instructor, you ensure you are added to the CANVAS section as soon as possible and have access to the course and details about the class requirements.

Textbooks and Materials

Textbooks and materials can be purchased at the CSU Bookstore unless otherwise indicated.


  • Adapting Early Childhood Curricula for Children with Special Needs, 10th Ed. (2019)
    Cook, R.E., Klein, M.D., & Chen, D.


Abbey Schneider
Abbey Schneider


Abbey Schneider has been an instructor in the Human Development and Family Studies department since 2012. During this time, she has taught courses related to early childhood development and intervention, including those for children with developmental delays. In addition to her work as an instructor at CSU, Abbey provides clinical therapy services at her private practice in Fort Collins as a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) and Infant Mental Health Endorsed provider. Abbey provides services to individuals, couples, and families with specialization in infant and early childhood mental health. Areas of clinical focus include behavioral interventions to promote regulation in young children, early intervention with children with developmental delays and/or trauma, and pregnancy and postpartum related topics. By offering courses closely related to her clinical work, Abbey brings knowledge of real-life application of course topics into her teaching approach and work with students.