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Early Childhood education teacher

Overview

An accelerated and interdisciplinary path to earning your teacher certification. Combine your undergraduate and graduate degree programs in our streamlined teacher preparation program.

The Bachelor of Science and Master of Science Degree Program is an academic program that allows students interested in the teaching profession as a career choice to earn both a bachelor's degree and a master's degree in an accelerated venue.  Through this special program, qualified students who major in psychology or behavioral science can receive teacher certification in Early Childhood or Childhood Education.

A key feature of this program allows students to take up to 15 graduate education credits during their junior and senior years. These credits can be used toward satisfying their bachelor's as well as master's degree requirements. Combining undergraduate and graduate degree programs streamlines the teacher preparation program and enables students to achieve teacher certification on an accelerated basis reducing the time and cost needed to earn a master's degree.

School of Education

Career Opportunities

  • Elementary or preschool school teacher
  • Positions in charter schools
  • Positions in private schools
  • Positions in New York public schools

What We Offer
The Mercy Advantage

  • Strong relationships with elementary and secondary schools across New York City and Westchester
  • Undergraduates may take up to 15 graduate education credits during their junior and senior years
  • Semester-long student teaching experience
  • National accreditation by NCATE & CAEP
  • Some courses completely online

5 Year Program

Career Outcomes
Earn a B.S. or B.A.
and M.S. in just 5 years 

$83K Salary

Average Pay
For a childhood teacher
in the New York region 

144 Credits 

Total Credits to Earn Your Degree 
Classes in Educational foundations
& diverse perspectives

Program Outcomes

  • Candidates will understand, explain, analyze and apply major theories and philosophies that address physical affective and cognitive development during the critical early childhood years.

  • Candidates will create high-quality, meaningful learning opportunities that are based on competencies and content knowledge, utilize developmental knowledge, employ formal and informational assessment strategies, and incorporate collaboration with all aspects of the broad school community to facilitate developmental processes and encourage growth to a child's maximum potential.

  • Candidates will become reflective practitioners who continually reflect on their practice and actively pursue opportunities for professional growth.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I get certified in Teaching Students with Disabilities?

Yes, in the following programs: Childhood Education, Grades 1-6; Early Childhood Education, Birth-Grade 2; Secondary Education, 7-12. 

What are the graduation requirements?

Successful completion of coursework and other academic requirements.

What education programs do you offer?

The School of Education offers a Master of Science in Education with a concentration in one of the following areas: Early Childhood Education, Birth-Grade 2; Childhood Education, Grades 1-6; Secondary Education, 7-12; Teaching Literacy, Birth-Grade 12; Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL); Educational Supervision; Educational Administration.

Program Details & Curriculum

Curriculum Overview

General Education Requirements: 60 Credits

Psychology and Early Childhood Education
Undergraduate Courses: 45 Credits

Early Childhood Education Graduate Courses
Completed for B.S. degree: 15 Credits

Master of Science in Early Childhood Education, Birth-Grade 2
Course work completed during B.S. degree: 15 Credits

Course work completed during M.S. degree: 24 Credits

Total: 144 Credits

New York State requires completion of the following undergraduate prerequisites for students seeking the Early Childhood Education, Birth–Grade 2 Certification, which will fulfill part of the General Education requirements:

  • Mathematical Processes
  • Scientific Processes*
  • Historical and Social Sciences*
  • Language other than English
  • Information Retrieval
  • Communications/Humanities/Written Analysis and Expression
  • Artistic Expression

 

A course in Child Development is required. PSYN 254 is acceptable.
* Coursework in Environmental Science, Evolution, Nutrition or Plants and People is not acceptable for teacher certification requirements.

For specific major requirements please refer to the Psychology section of this catalog listed within the School of Social and Behavioral Sciences.

The Early Childhood graduate courses that must be completed for the B.S. degree are the following:

  • EDUC 500 Edu Fnd Diverse Perspectives
  • EDUC 502 Fndtns Educ Sdnts w/Dsblts
  • EDUC 505 Tchng English as 2nd Lang
  • EDUC 507 Aprchs Lit: EChldhd-Adolescenc
  • EDUC 513 Intr Erl Chld Ed:Fndtn/Meth/Mt

The above 15 credits are taken as an undergraduate student as part of the B.S. degree program. The remaining 24 credits are taken as a graduate student after receiving the B.S. degree and after meeting the admission requirement for acceptance into the M.S. degree program. Please see Graduate Catalog for course descriptions of the above courses and for specific requirements for the M.S. degree.

The total credits for B.S. and M.S. degrees in Psychology and Early Childhood Education, Birth–Grade 2, is 144 credits.

Purpose

The programs of study in the School of Education are designed to provide professional preparation for candidates planning to teach and serve as educational leaders.

Mission Statement of the School of Education

The Mercy College educational unit is dedicated to preparing effective educators, including teachers and other school professionals, who are reflective practitioners, equipped with the knowledge base, technological skills, research tools, and professional strategies and insights to empower them to help diverse populations of students succeed in their learning and community environments. The values of competency, diversity, and ethical practice support the proficient development of candidates enabling them to become skilled professionals and lifelong learners. The unit is committed to creating innovative, flexible, and accessible programs of study for its candidates, and to developing partnerships and opportunities for collaboration and clinical experiences within Mercy College and with external communities.

Admission Requirements

Please refer to the general requirements for admission and matriculation in the Graduate Admissions section of the course catalog. Please review the prerequisite preparation for each program and consult with the program chair or associate dean. 

To be accepted into the B.S. and M.S. Education program, a student must:

  • Be a high school graduate who has earned a New York State Regents Diploma with an 85 average or better

or

  • Be a high school graduate with a score of 500 or better on the verbal portion of the SAT and 500 or better on the math portion of the SAT or corresponding ACT

or

  • Place at ENGL 111 and MATH 115 on the Mercy College Placement exam

Students must have earned an associate degree in Liberal Arts with an overall GPA of 3.0. Students must maintain a GPA of 3.0 each semester at Mercy College to remain in the Five-Year Program and must adhere to the above requirements. An interview is also required. 

Students who do not meet the above admission criteria may apply to the dual program upon completion of the 60-credit General Education requirement and completion of at least 15 credits in their major field of study with a GPA of 3.0 or better. Thirty credits must be taken in residency at Mercy College.

Degree Requirements

To remain in the Five-Year Program, a student must:

  • Maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 each semester at Mercy College
  • Register for an introductory 3-credit graduate education course in the upper junior year or upon completion of 70-75 undergraduate credits with a B or better average
  • Register for 12 credits in graduate education courses in the senior year

Please note that all graduate course descriptions as well as specific teacher certification parameters can be found in the Mercy College Graduate Catalog. 

Additionally, all matriculated Mercy College students are required to demonstrate an appropriate level of achievement in each of the six college competencies to ascertain that they can communicate clearly and effectively both orally and in writing. They must also demonstrate their ability to use critical thinking and established methods of computation and use of contemporary technology.

Accreditations

All initial certification programs are nationally recognized by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) and the Council for Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).

Psychology and Early Childhood Education, Birth-Grade 2 Objectives

Childhood Education Program Goals

  • Candidates will understand, explain, analyze, and apply major theories and philosophies that address physical, affective, and cognitive development during the childhood years.
  • Candidates will create high-quality, meaningful learning opportunities that are based on competencies and content knowledge, utilize developmental knowledge, employ formal and informal assessment strategies, and incorporate collaboration with all aspects of the broad school community to facilitate academic achievement to a child’s maximum potential.
  • Candidates will become reflective practitioners who continually reflect on their practice and actively pursue opportunities for professional growth.

Goals of the School of Education

The unit goals establish the shared vision, mission, philosophy, and guiding principles agreed to by members of the faculty and other stakeholders in the learning community. The unit’s proficiencies, strategies, and assessments are designed to ensure that candidates acquire the academic, pedagogical, professional, and interpersonal skills required of teachers and other school professionals who prepare students to succeed in a rapidly changing global environment. The six goals reflect the integrated knowledge, skills, and dispositions that together ensure that candidates develop as effective educators and reflective practitioners. These goals are as follows:

Content Knowledge: Candidates demonstrate a solid content knowledge base that enables them to deliver effective educational and professional services based on current research, theory and practice.

Pedagogical and Professional Knowledge: Candidates employ multiple pedagogical and professional strategies and tools to enable them to be effective practitioners in educational settings and deliver services that promote students’ intellectual, social, and emotional development.

Diversity: Candidates understand the diverse cultural, linguistic, learning, and social strengths and needs of all populations, and incorporate and demonstrate sensitivity to the richness of diverse cultures when providing educational and other school-services.

Technology: Candidates employ technology to deliver information, instruction, and professional services to all members of the school community.

Reflection: Candidates reflect on professional practice to make educational decisions and enhance student learning.

Dispositions: Candidates demonstrate positive dispositions that enable them to work as effective educators, citizens, and practitioners within the school and broader community.

The six unit goals are supported by the professional literature including theories, research, wisdom of practice, and education policies.

Student Classification and Prerequisites

Candidates who meet all prerequisites and admission requirements will be accepted and classified as matriculants.

Candidates without a sufficient undergraduate background in the liberal arts and sciences will be required to take recommended prerequisite courses in accordance with New York State certification requirements. Sufficient college-level background includes: English, mathematics, science, social studies, information retrieval, artistic expression, a language other than English, and a 30-credit concentration in a liberal arts and science academic subject. Candidates will be able to take the necessary prerequisite courses at Mercy College.

Undergraduate prerequisites for students seeking the initial certificate in Childhood, Early Childhood, Literacy, TESOL*, the Dual Certifications programs or the Tri-Certification program are:

  • Mathematical Processes - 6 credits
  • Scientific Processes - 6 credits
  • Historical and Social Sciences - 6 credits
  • Language other than English - 3 credits*
  • Information Retrieval - 3 credits
  • Communications/Humanities/Written Analysis and Expression - 3 credits
  • Artistic Expression - 3 credits

*TESOL majors require 12 credits of the same language.

A course in Child Development or Developmental Psychology is required.

Candidates should consult with the program chair or designee regarding acceptable academic concentrations or majors.

Undergraduate prerequisites for candidates seeking the initial certification in Secondary Education and the Dual Certification program are:

  • Communications - 3 credits
  • Humanities - 3 credits
  • Written Analysis and Expression - 6 credits
  • Historical and Social Sciences - 3 credits
  • Scientific Processes - 3 credits
  • Mathematical Processes - 3 credits
  • Artistic Expression - 3 credits
  • Information Retrieval - 3 credits
  • Language other than English - 3 credits

A 30-credit major or equivalent in a liberal arts and science academic subject taught in secondary schools:

  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Physics
  • Social Studies (at least 21 credits must be in the history and geography of the U.S. and the world)

Candidates must present at least 18 of the 30 required prerequisite credits in the specific secondary content area or 18 of the required 30 prerequisite credits in the liberal arts and sciences area for matriculation into a program of study. Transcripts are subject to review regarding the appropriateness of courses for specific programs of study.

Language Proficiency

Since the ability to communicate effectively in English with pupils in the classroom is considered paramount, all candidates seeking teacher certification are expected to demonstrate competencies in oral and written English.

Certification Tests

Initial certification candidates must pass the CST in their main certification area prior to their student teaching semester. Additionally, a candidate in a clinical practice course - EDUC 537, EDUC 709 and EDUC 713 - must submit an edTPA examination to Pearson as one of the course requirements. A candidate will not pass the clinical practice course without submitting proof of his or her edTPA submission in the form of a receipt from Pearson by the end of the semester's grading period. 

Mercy College provides support for candidates to prepare for these tests. Workshops are provided for the EAS and some CSTs. Also, candidates or graduates who need to retake the edTPA may opt to take a workshop for more support. Interested candidates should contact the School of Education or more information. 

Other certification requirements include:

  • Completion of a Child Abuse Awareness seminar
  • Completion of a Violence Identification and Prevention seminar
  • Completion of the Dignity for All Students Workshop (DASA); and
  • Fingerprint clearance

Only United States citizens, or those who declare their intention to become United States citizens, are eligible for New York State certification.