Early Childhood Program
The Early Childhood Program offers the Master of Education (M.Ed.) degree and also supports the Ph.D. in Education for those candidates who choose to focus in the area of Early Childhood. Within the Master’s program students select either the Early Childhood Education or the Early Childhood Special Education options as a major.
The program is designed for experienced teachers and other early childhood practitioners who wish to improve their professional competence and broaden their career opportunities. The curriculum emphasizes the acquisition of knowledge and competencies in child development (birth through eight years), learning environments, developmentally appropriate curriculum, developmental and cultural diversity, parent collaboration, and professional leadership. The course work culminates in an extensive 1-year internship experience. This program emphasizes the personal development of each student in close collaboration with faculty and fellow students.
The Early Childhood program is designed to prepare leaders for new careers in early childhood education such as:
♦ Early childhood teachers and team leaders
♦ Curriculum consultants and staff development coordinators
♦ Coordinators for home-based infant and toddler programs or for family and group day care programs
♦ Junior college and vocational school child care instructors
♦ Administrators of early childhood programs
♦ Early childhood special education teachers
♦ Early Interventionists
Candidates may elect to add teacher certification to their master’s degree. To be recommended for certification, candidates must demonstrate completion of teaching methods courses (Reading, Math, Science, Social Studies). This requirement can be fulfilled through elective credit coursework in the Master’s degree or through transcript evaluation of prior coursework. Master’s degree students who complete additional targeted coursework can be recommended for teacher licensure as either an early childhood educator (PreK-3) or an Early Childhood Special Educator (birth - 8 yr).
A blended approach to teacher preparation is a hallmark of the Early Childhood Program. All students take a core curriculum that emphasizes understanding the development of young children, the affect of diversity on teaching and learning, and a family centered community-based approach to education. Teacher candidates take course work in relevant teaching methods to the area of certification being sought and the PRAXIS II examination. Lastly, students complete a full year internship in an inclusive education setting with a licensed teacher in the area of certification they seek. The curriculum content of the program is keyed to National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) and the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) guidelines for advanced degree programs along with New Hampshire State Teacher Certification standards.
Early Childhood Teaching Methods Core Coursework
Literacy Course (4cr.)
EDUC 806 Introduction to Reading Instruction OR
EDUC 907 Foundations of Literacy Instruction
Content Knowledge (6 cr.)
EDUC 803 Teaching Elementary Science (2 cr.)
EDUC 803 Teaching Elementary Social Studies (2 cr.)
EDUC 845 Math with Technology in Early Education (2 cr.)
Requirements for Early Childhood Teacher Certification (PreK-3)
Requirements for Early Childhood Special Education Teacher Certification (Birth-8yr)
* Note: A passing score on the PRAXIS II Early Childhood must be reported to the UNH Department of Education prior to graduation to obtain recommendation for certification to the NH Department of Education
The Early Childhood Special Education Assistive Technology Project is a Federally funded US Department of Education Office of Special Education grant to prepare Early Childhood Special Educators with an expertise in assistive technology. Stipends of up to $20,000 are available to support educational expenses (e.g., tuition, fees, and books) is available for qualified students. Applications are currently being accepted for Scholars in the program. For more information click here