Master of Arts in Early Childhood Education:
View the requirements for this program in the GSU Catalog.
The Master of Arts in Early Childhood Education program provides three options (see immediately below) in order to meet the educational needs of a variety of candidates. Graduate level coursework will extend your comprehension of primary curricula and teaching methodology while addressing the required knowledge, skills and disposition reflective of the professional standards identified by NAEYC and NCATE accrediting agencies. The Early Childhood Education study sequence provides students with an integrated academic approach that connects pedagogical theory to on-site field applications, and concludes with a culminating graduate research experience. The Early Childhood Education Program is fully approved by the Illinois State Board of Education to prepare you for teacher certification as well as early childhood special education approval.
Option I: Students Holding an Illinois Elementary or Special Education Certificate
A student holding an Illinois elementary or standard special education teaching certificate is not required to complete additional clinical hours in those areas in which they have previously had supervised experience. Such a student is not required to repeat student teaching if he/ she provides documentation from the institution at which he/she completed student teaching, showing that his/her student teaching was in K through third grade and/or he/she has successfully taught at these grade levels. Students who have an Illinois teaching certificate do not need to complete additional general education requirements.
Option II: Students Without Illinois Elementary or Special Education Teaching Certificates
Students who do not hold Illinois elementary or special education certificates must complete EDEC499, Student Teaching, in addition to the course work listed below. Depending on their previous course work, they may be required to complete additional undergraduate general education course work, including the completion of a teaching specialization area. Please see an education advisor for further details.
Option III: Students with Undergraduate Preparation in Early Childhood Education
Students who have significant undergraduate preparation in early childhood education or a closely related field and wish to pursue advanced study of early childhood education are required to complete the core and professional courses.
View the Program Fact Sheet
Certificate Only Program Option
The ECE Program also offers to those teachers already holding an ELED or SPED teaching certificate a “certification only” track that does not lead to an MA degree. See the EC academic advisor for more information or click here.
Certification and Endorsement
Completion of the certification options in this program (and compliance with other requirements published in the "Teacher Certification" section of the Governors State University catalog) leads to the Illinois Type 04 Early Childhood Certificate for Birth-Grade 3. Individuals applying for the certificate are subject to state testing requirements. This program may also be configured to include the early childhood special education approval on the earned Type 04 certificate.
Program Coordinator: Dr. Colleen Sexton, Chair, Division of Education
Academic Advisor, Cynthia Hutson