Effective Spring 2017 - This program is not accepting any new students. Students with initial licensure in elementary or special education and seeking Early Childhood Education endorsement on their initial license may pursue the Early Childhood Education for Currently Licensed Teachers Certificate.
Current students, please refer to the FAQ web page linked here to learn about the “teach out” process. Please meet with your Academic Advisor regarding your current Study Plan.
The College of Education graduate degree in Early Childhood Education offers options to students who have prepared and are licensed as elementary or special education teachers and now seek EC licensure. It also offers to those who have pursued other objectives at the undergraduate education level the opportunity to seek initial EC licensure. A third option is available for those who prepared in early childhood at the undergraduate level and now seek advanced study in this area.
This program is approved by the Illinois State Board of Education for recommendation of the Initial Early Childhood License by entitlement, as well as the Early Childhood Special Education Approval. Four courses required for EC SPED approval are offered in this program: EDEC-7780, EDEC-6641/EDEC-6640, EDEC-6650/EDEC-6651, and EDEC-8830. To be recommended for licensure by Governors State University, students must complete the requirements listed under Option I or Option II and meet the requirements listed in the Teacher Licensure section of this catalog.
To be recommended for an Illinois State Board of Education teaching certificate, the student must present evidence of having passed the Test of Academic Proficiency (TAP), Content Area, and Assessment of Professional Teaching examinations of the Illinois Certification Testing System.
To be recommended by Governors State University, students must apply for the licensure within one year of completing the program.
Upper Level Coursework Requirements:
In order to graduate with a master’s from Governors State University, the student must complete a minimum of 12 graded credit-hours in graduate only courses.
Option I: Students Holding an Illinois Elementary or Special Education License
A student holding an Illinois elementary or standard special education teaching license is not required to complete additional clinical hours in those areas in which they have previously had supervised experience. Those without Kindergarten through third grade experience will be required to complete a practicum experience in one of those grade levels. Students who have an Illinois teaching license do not need to complete additional general education requirements.
Option II: Students without Illinois Elementary or Special Education Teaching Licenses
Students who do not hold Illinois elementary or special education licenses must complete EDEC - 4999 Student Teaching in Early Childhood Education (12) 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. See an education advisor for further details.
Option III: Students with a B.A. Degree and/or a Teaching License 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.
In order to continue in the program after meeting university admission requirements and before completing nine hours of graduate course work which must include EDUC-6100 and EDEC-8810 or EDEC-8820.
Students must submit to the College of Education a supplemental application packet containing:
- transcripts showing a cumulative G.P.A. of 2.75 or higher in all undergraduate work attempted and a grade of “B” or better in current graduate course-work;
- scores from the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) (General Test); and
- if seeking the Early Childhood Education license, evidence of having passed the Test of Academic Proficiency of the Illinois Licensure Testing System or evidence of possessing an Illinois teaching license that required passing this test.
- if seeking the Early Childhood Education license, complete the GSU approved criminal background check prior to enrolling in any field experience courses. Also, some assigned field site locations may, due to state licensing, require students to submit a brief physical including a TB test, as well as finger print background check. For more information, please consult with your advisor.
After the student has completed EDUC-6100 and EDEC-8810 or EDEC-8820, the faculty will review this information and recommend that the student be permitted to continue in the program, continue in the program conditionally, or be dismissed from the program. To receive a recommendation to continue, the student must earn a grade of “B” or better in EDUC-6100 and in either EDEC-8810 or EDEC-8820.
The faculty may permit a student to progress conditionally. In such cases, faculty review of the applicant’s record and performance identifies evidence that the student is likely to be successful in the program. The status of all students permitted to progress conditionally is reviewed by the appropriate professional (i.e. advisor, program coordinator, chair of student progress, etc.) each semester, and students are informed accordingly of the conditions necessary for them to be transferred to good standing status. When conditions are met, the students are transferred to good standing status. Students may not be admitted to the culminating project without achieving good standing status. Conditional continuation is an option for program decisions. Students neglecting to meet state requirements for teacher licensure are not eligible to progress conditionally.
The program faculty members monitor and evaluate student progress continually. The section, Licensure of Teachers and Other School Professionals, in this catalog provides a general description of the standards used to evaluate student progress. A more detailed statement of the standards and processes followed by the Early Childhood Education faculty is available in the Graduate Early Childhood Education Student Handbook.
The Graduate Early Childhood Education Graduate Student Handbook referred to in this catalog can be accessed via the internet through the GSU student portal.
Admission to Lab Courses
Before enrolling in any lab courses, students must:
- submit to their advisor verification of a passing score on the Illinois Test of Academic Proficiency;
- verify the completion of the general education requirements of English 1 and 2, Math 1 and 2, one science, and one social science course before entering labs 3 and 4;
- complete all prerequisite coursework successfully; and
- maintain a cumulative 3.0 G.P.A. with a grade of “C” or better in all coursework, having no more than two core or professional courses with a grade of “C”.
Admission to Student Teaching
Students required to student teach must:
- if seeking teacher licensure for the first time, verify completion of any undergraduate general education requirements as well as documentation of an 18-19 credit hour in as teaching specialization area;
- complete all professional education requirements maintaining a G.P.A. of 3.0 or higher, with a grade of “B” or better in EDUC-6100 and EDEC-8810 or EDEC-8820, and a grade of “C” or better in all other coursework, having no more than two core or professional courses with a grade of “C”;
- have no more than a total of nine approved general education/specialization hours outstanding; and
- verify successful completion of the early childhood content area state examination.
To continue in the program, the student must be accepted as a candidate for the M.A. in Early Childhood Education degree after completing EDUC-6100 and three other EDEC graduate courses on the student’s approved study plan.
Students must submit to the Division of Education Graduate Advising Office an application for candidacy in the term that they expect to have completed nine credit-hours in graduate EDEC courses or 15 hours in the program by the following date: September 30 for fall term, January 31 for spring term, or May 31 for summer term. Application forms are available via the student portal of the GSU website - College of Education Graduate Programs.
To qualify for candidacy, a student must:
- attain a score of “4” or higher on the GRE Writing Exam; students scoring a “3” may be granted probationary status with additional requirements assigned;
- complete undergraduate preparatory courses, SPED-2100/SPED-6101, EDEC-3320, and EDCP-6101 with a “B” or better;
- complete all course work applicable to the degree with a G.P.A. of 3.0 or higher, with a grade of “B” or better in EDUC-6100 and EDEC-8810 or EDEC-8820, and a grade of “C” or better in all other courses having no more than two core or professional courses with a grade of “C”;
- display, or be judged as developing, the dispositions expected of graduate students as listed in the section, Licensure of Teachers and Other School Professionals; and
- be recommended for candidacy by the Early Childhood Education program faculty.