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Community Staff Training Program


Level I Orientation Training

Licensed DD Providers are to provide in-service training to all full and part-time direct support professionals, prior to the staff member assuming direct responsibility for the individual(s) receiving services. Employees learn the philosophy of community based services for individuals with developmental disabilities and agency specific information. Staff receive focused instruction on topics specific to the needs of the individuals they will support.

Level II Position Based Competency

Position based competencies are required of all full and part-time professional or direct support professional (DSP) positions in agencies serving individuals with an intellectual or developmental disability. Position based competencies ensure that personnel employed to carry out particular functions have the needed knowledge and skills to appropriately implement each individual’s program, as well as ensure the individual’s rights and safety. Level II training is for all employees to be successful at their jobs and should be completed prior to the staff member working without supervision.  

Level III Certificate of Completion

A certificate of completion is issued to staff members who successfully meet the competencies established for the certificate by the Department of Human Services. The certificate requires successful completion of eight core modules and six elective modules, and a course of supervised field experiences. Elective modules are determined by agency based on a staff member’s responsibilities.

In addition to the supervised practica experiences, there are elective modules available in the areas including, but not limited to, basic health, behavior management, aging, communications, recreation and leisure, and working with families. Occasionally, an agency may require completion of one or more of the elective modules because of a staff member’s particular responsibilities.

Level IV Advanced Certification (optional)

Staff members of agency organizations who have already acquired the certificate of completion have the option to pursue the advanced certification program. The program consists of ten additional modules dealing with a variety of training issues, including: aging issues, communication, leisure, behavior management, and basic health, and working with families. Staff members who successfully complete the advanced certification requirements are issued an additional certificate.

Level V Association of Science in Human Services: Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities (optional)

The purpose of the Associate of Science degree with emphasis in DD is to provide the opportunity for professional growth and career advancement for high school graduates who are employed in agencies serving persons with ID/DD.

Minot State University will award the Associate of Science degree upon satisfactory completion of the designated 27 SH of I/DD coursework and 38 SH of general education coursework. The Associate of Science degree is available as an employment benefit offered to personnel employed in approved residential and day programs serving persons with I/DD. Tuition for the 27 semester hours of Special Education core curriculum is subsidized through a contract with the ND Department of Human Services. Employees pay only the recording fee for each of the twelve Special Education courses ($50 per semester hour course). Instruction is delivered onsite by the agency’s regional staff trainer in cooperation with the State Training Director at MSU.

The 38 semester hours of general education coursework may be completed through distance education alternatives or through local accredited post-secondary institutions.

Level VI Bachelor of Science in Human Services:
Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities

Individuals who desire to pursue a B.S. in Developmental Disabilities after completion of the Associate of Science degree in DD may attend Minot State University or complete through MSU Online. The student must fulfill all requirements for the degree as specified by Minot State University. Developmental Disabilities courses can be completed through on campus or through distance delivery (IVN and Online).

Graduates of this program typically seek program coordination and supervisory positions in the adult developmental disabilities service industry. Although this degree is designed as a career ladder choice for graduates of MSU’s Associate of Science program, the Associate of Science degree is not required for graduation with a Bachelor of Science in Developmental Disabilities degree.

Level VII Master of Science in Developmental Disabilities and Autism Spectrum Disorder

Individuals may earn a M.S. degree in Special Education at Minot State University after successful completion of a graduate courses in assessment, behavior intervention, program development, provision of physical care, habilitative techniques, assistive technology, social skills training, parent training, and team planning. The program is available through distance technology for remote students. Anyone interested in pursuing the Master’s program should contact the Department of Special Education at MSU.

Online Human Service Career Ladder Certificate and Degrees (www)

Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities Program Fact  (pdf)


For More Information

individual in wheel chair being pushed by another individual Kari Schmidt (701) 858-3260

Minot State University
500 University Avenue West
Minot, North Dakota 58707
Fax (701)858-3483 or 1-800-233-1737

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