Initial Early Childhood and Special Education - Overview

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The Initial Certification in Early Childhood with Special Education program is designed for candidates holding a bachelor's degree in a field other than education. Students enrolled in the program will gain the knowledge and skills needed to teach in general and special education settings. The program is designed for post-baccalaureate students seeking a Master of Education degree leading to initial and professional certification.

The focus of this program is to learn how to teach the many types of learners found in today's elementary classrooms. Throughout the program, students will study research on how children learn and will integrate course content through field experience, simulations, and student teaching.

This exciting and dynamic program is a 45-credit, 4-semester program leading to dual certification with a strong Literacy focus. Courses are carefully designed and sequenced with expertise from General Education, Special Education, and Literacy faculty working collaboratively. All courses in the Development strand incorporate universal design, technology, lesson planning, diversity, fieldwork, and research in meaningful ways.

Full-time students take 12 credits each of their first three semesters and nine credits their fourth and final semester when they are student teaching. Fall and Spring semesters are 15 weeks, while the Summer semester is 10 weeks. New York State requires 150 hours of fieldwork in the certification areas. Students will complete one placement for 75 hours in the Fall semester and another placement for 75 hours in the Spring semester. The program begins every Fall and Spring semester. Each student will be supported by faculty that review progress throughout their program; provide information and preparation for the NYS Teacher Certification Examination, including required workshops; monitor thesis/projects; and review student portfolios during their Student Teaching Seminar.

Related Majors

Adolescence and Special Education, M.Ed. - Prepare for New York State teaching certification and earn a Masters in Adolescence Education, as well as a Masters in Adolescence Special Education (Grades 7-12) in an affordable and flexible dual certification program developed for time constrained adults.
School Psychology, M.S. - Our Masters in School Psychology program prepares students to evaluate, diagnose, and treat children and adolescents, in consultation with parents and teachers.
Adult and Graduate Admissions - 585.594.6478 -