Department: Elementary and Early Childhood Education
Students who wish to be early childhood teachers are required to select a major in early childhood education as well as a major in the liberal arts or sciences. A major in liberal arts or sciences is a requirement of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
The Department of Elementary and Early Childhood Education offers a major in early childhood education for public school licensure, which enables the student to prepare for career opportunities with young children from infancy through age 8. Students are provided with professional preparation in understanding stages of child growth and development, curriculum planning, teaching procedures and program evaluation.
Students seeking public school licensure must apply for admission and be accepted into professional education after completion of ECED 230 and before the professional semester. ECED 230 must be taken prior to official acceptance into a professional education program.
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts requires three Massachusetts Tests for Educator Licensure® (MTEL) for Early Childhood PreK-K (public school) licensure: Communication and Literacy, Early Childhood and the Foundations of Reading. All three of these exams must be passed as a prerequisite to professional semester courses.
All matriculated day students seeking this Early Childhood Education degree must take the professional semester as a block of courses and must register with the department. These courses are usually taken the semester prior to student teaching. Part-time students should contact the department concerning special scheduling arrangements.
Students seeking professional licensure should consult the Educator Preparation and Licensure Policies and Procedures section of this catalog for professional education admission and retention information and important institutional deadlines.
Students must complete 80 hours of prepractica experience. A 40-hour experience is attached to the course ECED 230 , 15 hours at a preschool or kindergarten level and 25 hours at the primary level (grades 1 or 2). An additional 40 hours is attached to the professional courses. Undergraduates who are not taking these courses together in a professional block must meet with their professor to plan appropriate prepractica experiences.
After completing all education professional courses, students must complete a full‑time, semester-long student teaching experience in a local school under the joint supervision of a university supervisor and a supervising practitioner.
Students successfully completing this program will be eligible to meet Commonwealth of Massachusetts teacher initial licensure requirements for the Early Childhood Teacher of Students With or Without Disabilities (PreK-2) license.