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  • M.S. in Early Childhood Education: Birth-Grade 2

    Teach infants, toddlers and young children about the world
    Influence a young child’s growth, development and learning with our M.S. in Early Childhood Education: Birth-Grade 2.
    Degree:
    M.S.
    School:
    School of Education
    Location:
    Dobbs Ferry, Bronx, Manhattan & Yorktown Heights
    Credits:
    39

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Early Childhood Education: Birth-Grade 2 M.S. Curriculum

Master of Science in Early Childhood Education, Birth–Grade 2 Course Requirements for Initial Certification Candidates 39 Credits
Master of Science in Early Childhood Education, Birth–Grade 2 Course Requirements for Advanced Teacher Program candidates 39 Credits

Master of Science in Early Childhood Education, Birth–Grade 2 Course Requirements for Initial Certification Candidates

  • EDUC 502 Fndtns Educ Sdnts w/Dsblts
  • EDUC 504 Cltrl Prspctvs Tchng Lrng Prcs or EDUC 607 School Law
  • EDUC 505 Tchng English as 2nd Lang
  • EDUC 506 Ed Evl/Assmt ECldhd-Adol&Dsabl
  • EDUC 507 Aprchs Lit: EChldhd-Adolescenc
  • EDUC 513 Intr Erl Chld Ed:Fndtn/Meth/Mt
  • EDUC 514 Wrk w/Prnts/Famls Erl Chld-Chl
  • EDUC 522 Lang Develop & Lit Acquisition
  • EDUC 552 Soc Studies Cldhd/ECldhd Edu
  • EDUC 605 Assess/Crct Lit Prb EChld/Chl
  • EDUC 617 Literacy Instruct Brth-Grade 6
  • EDUC 642 Ad Mth Tch Lang/SS Chld/EChld
  • EDUC 646 Ad Mth Tch Math/Sci Chld/EChld
  • EDUC 537 Crtcl Issues In Amrcn Edctn

This degree leads to single certification.

Candidates may pursue additional certification as listed below. Please note that the tracks listed below are for New York State certification only and are not part of the degree program.

Track 1
Master of Science in Early Childhood Education: Birth - Grade 2, with additional certification in Childhood Education, Grades 1 - 6
46 credits

Track 2
Master of Science in Early Childhood Education: Birth - Grade 2, with additional certifications in Childhood Education, Grades 1 - 6, and Students with Disabilities
48 credits

 

Track 1: Master of Science in Early Childhood Education, Birth–Grade 2 with additional certification in Childhood Education, Grades 1–6

The M.S. leading to initial certification and additional certification in Childhood Education, Grades 1–6, requires completion of the above 13 courses for degree conferral and completion of the following course:

  • EDUC 573 Lrng Tchnlgy Across Eng Lang

Track 2: Master of Science in Early Childhood Education: Birth–Grade 2, with additional certification in Childhood Education, Grades 1–6 and Students with Disabilities

The M.S. leading to initial certification in Early Childhood and additional certification in Students with Disabilities and Childhood Education, Grades 1–6, requires completion of the above 13 courses required for degree conferral and of the following:

  • EDUC 531 Tchng Stdnts with Dsblts B-6
  • EDUC 546 Educ Assesmnt SWD
  • EDUC 548 Prin/Strat Clsrm Mgt for SWD

Master of Science in Early Childhood Education, Birth–Grade 2 Course Requirements for Advanced Teacher Program candidates

  • EDUC 502 Fndtns Educ Sdnts w/Dsblts
  • EDUC 504 Cltrl Prspctvs Tchng Lrng Prcs or 607 School Law
  • EDUC 505 Tchng English as 2nd Lang
  • EDUC 506 Ed Evl/Assmt ECldhd-Adol&Dsabl
  • EDUC 507 Aprchs Lit: EChldhd-Adolescenc
  • EDUC 513 Intr Erl Chld Ed:Fndtn/Meth/Mt
  • EDUC 514 Wrk w/Prnts/Famls Erl Chld-Chl
  • EDUC 522 Lang Develop & Lit Acquisition
  • EDUC 605 Assess/Crct Lit Prb EChld/Chl
  • EDUC 617 Literacy Instruct Brth-Grade 6
  • EDUC 642 Ad Mth Tch Lang/SS Chld/EChld
  • EDUC 646 Ad Mth Tch Math/Sci Chld/EChld
  • EDUC 537 Crtcl Issues In Amrcn Edctn

This degree leads to single certification. 

Candidates may pursue additional certification as listed below. Please note that the tracks listed below are for New York State certification only and are not part of the degree program.

Track 1: Master of Science in Early Childhood Education: Birth–Grade 2 with additional certification in Childhood Education, Grades 1–6

The M.S. leading to professional certification and additional certification in Childhood Education, Grades 1–6, requires completion of the above 13 courses for degree conferral and completion of the following course:

  • EDUC 573 Lrng Tchnlgy Across Eng Lang

Track 2: Master of Science in Early Childhood Education: Birth–Grade 2, with additional certification in Childhood Education, Grades 1–6 and Students with Disabilities

The M.S. leading to professional certification in Early Childhood and additional certification in Students with Disabilities and Childhood Education, Grades 1–6, requires completion of the above 3 courses for degree conferral and of the following:

  • EDUC 531 Tchng Stdnts with Dsblts B-6
  • EDUC 546 Educ Assesmnt SWD
  • EDUC 548 Prin/Strat Clsrm Mgt for SWD

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, 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

A course in Child Development or Developmental Psychology is required.

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.

Advisement

Upon matriculation, the candidate is assigned an advisor from the Office of Student Services. Each candidate must consult with the advisor, program chair or his/her designee regarding required courses and electives for the program of study selected, and to develop a plan of study for degree completion.

Course Load

Full-time candidates may take nine to twelve credits per semester. No candidate may exceed twelve credits per semester. Part-time candidates may take three to six credits per semester. Courses are offered during the fall, spring, and summer semesters.

Online Component

The courses in the programs have a mandatory online component that enables candidates to interact with the instructor and with one another between class meetings. The purpose of the online component is to encourage interaction among candidates and enrich the learning experience using technology as a learning and communication tool.

Transfer Credits

Graduate courses taken at other institutions prior to admission at Mercy College may, if pertinent to the plan of study, be credited to the graduate degree. Permission to transfer credits must be requested at the time of admission and official transcripts and course descriptions must be submitted to the program chair or associate dean for evaluation. Transfer credit is limited to six semester hours of credit for courses taken within the last five years in which the student has received a grade of B or better. Transfer credits are not recorded as part of the GPA. Courses with a grade of B- or below are not transferable.

After matriculation, candidates may not register for courses at another institution with the intention of transferring credit to Mercy College unless written permission from the Associate Dean is obtained prior to registering for courses. If prior approval is not received, transfer credit will not be accepted.

Maintenance of Matriculation

It is expected that candidates will fulfill the requirements for their graduate degree by registering during successive sessions. For cohort programs, registration is required during summer session(s). Registration is accomplished by either enrolling in classes or maintaining matriculation. The Maintenance of Matriculation fee is $100 per session and is processed as a registration.

Candidates who have not maintained matriculation and wish to return to their program within one year after their last course will be charged the Maintenance of Matriculation fee of $100 for each missed term. Maintenance of matriculation without attending classes is limited to one year. Activated U.S. Military Reservists are not required to pay the Maintenance of Matriculation fee.

Maintenance of Good Academic Standing

The cumulative GPA for both good academic standing and degree conferral is 3.0. A student admitted with specific academic conditions is required to achieve a 3.0 GPA or better after completing a certain number of credits as stipulated by the student’s respective program. Grades are subject to review by the associate dean and program chair at the end of each term. If the academic GPA falls below 3.0, the student may be dismissed or placed on academic probation.

Academic Probation and Dismissal Review

Please refer to the college policies in the Academic Regulations and Procedures section of the course catalog.

Incomplete Grades

If, for unforeseeable and extenuating circumstance, a teacher candidate has been unable to complete all course assignments, and has been in attendance for the full term, and has completed the majority of the course assignments, she/he may request an incomplete grade. The issuance of an incomplete grade is at the discretion of the course professor and is not automatic. If granted, the “AGREEMENT FORM FOR INCOMPLETE GRADE” must be completed by both the professor and the teacher candidate.

After receiving the assignment(s) by the specified due date, the professor will grade the assignment(s), and will contact the registrar and the Associate Dean of Academic Affairs to have the final grade changed based upon the accomplishment of the course objectives according to a specified evaluation plan as presented in the course syllabus.

If the assignment(s) are not completed by the specified due date, the professor reserves the right to change the grade to that which the candidate had earned before requesting the incomplete, or to let it remain a permanent incomplete as outlined in the Mercy College Graduate Catalog.

Time Limit

The School of Education Degree must be completed within five years from the date of the candidate’s admission (exclusive of time spent in the Armed Forces). Exceptions will only be made if a candidate requests an extension in writing and receives the approval of the school dean.

TaskStream Requirement

All School of Education degree, advanced certificate and non-degree candidates must register for and establish an electronic portfolio account through TaskStream. TaskStream accounts are free for candidates and faculty. Course instructors have the information needed to set up an account, if you do not already have one, or to renew a previous account. Candidates will contribute assignments to the portfolio throughout their program of study and will include the course key assessments and specific assignments as required by the candidate’s degree or advanced certificate program. The key assessments are critical to our program improvement efforts and to continuing accreditation. A student’s final course grade for courses with a key assessment cannot be submitted until all necessary assessments have been uploaded to TaskStream.

The completed e-Portfolio is the capstone requirement in all School of Education degrees and certificate programs and successful evaluation of the e-Portfolio is required for the degree or certificate.

Organization of the Program

Candidates in both the Initial and Advanced Teacher certification programs follow a three-transition point progression through the program leading to the completion of degree and certification requirements.

Transition Point One: Admission to Program

Admission is determined by transcript analysis and GPA review. Candidates admitted to an initial certificate program must pass the Academic Literacy Skills Test (ALST) within 12 credits of registration in order to continue to register. Additionally, candidates must pass the Educating All Students (EAS) within 24 credits of registration, in order to continue to register.

Transition Point Two: Admission to Clinical Practice

Candidates seeking initial certification in Early Childhood, Childhood, Secondary or Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, must complete a clinical practice to meet degree and certification requirements. Depending on your current classroom employment and teaching experience candidates will register for either:

EDUC 709 Student Teaching Experience
EDUC 713 Seminar in Teaching — Open to candidates who are employed as teaching assistants or paraprofessionals.
EDUC 537 Current Critical Issues in American Education - Open to candidates who are the teacher of record in a private, charter or parochial school.

The “Student Teaching Experience” or “Seminar in Teaching” course provides the candidate with an on-site college supervised classroom experience in a school. Appropriate course registration is determined by current or prior classroom experience. Candidates are expected to demonstrate all competencies during the clinical practice experience.

Candidates seeking Initial certification must also complete specific methods courses and pass the relevant Content Specialty Test(s) within the first 27 credits of registration in order to proceed in the program and to register for the appropriate clinical course.

Students in the Advanced Teacher programs in Childhood, Early Childhood, and Secondary Education will register for course EDUC 537, “Current Critical Issues in American Education” and will complete an action research comprehensive project and may be required to complete additional student teaching and fieldwork hours to meet certification requirements.

Admission to clinical practice requires candidates to apply for placement the semester prior to the anticipated course registration. Applications should be submitted in TaskStream to the Office of Clinical Practice and Certification in the School of Education at the Dobbs Ferry Campus.

Clinical Practice Application Deadlines:
Fall.................................February 15
Spring........................... October 15

Effective for spring 2014, initial candidates will also need to receive a passing score on the edTPA, Teacher Performance Assessment, which will be completed during the clinical practice course. Successful completion of the edTPA is a New York State certification requirement.

Transition Point Three: Completion of Program

Upon completion of the capstone project and all other degree requirements, the School of Education will process the candidate’s application for certification. All prerequisite course requirements must be satisfied prior to seeking certification. Program completion requires a 3.0 GPA. Initial New York State certification also requires achieving qualifying scores on the Academic Literacy Test, ALST, the Educating All Students Test, EAS, and the Content Specialty Test (CST), in the area of each certificate being requested and receiving a passing score on the edTPA assessment.

Other certification requirements include:

  • Participation in a Child Abuse Awareness seminar and a Violence Identification and Prevention seminar; and completion of the Dignity for All Students Workshop (DASA).
  • Fingerprint Clearance.
  • Only United States citizens, or those who declare their intention to become United States citizens, are eligible for New York State certification. 

What are the fieldwork requirements?
There are two types of classroom experiences required in our programs, per state requirements: 1. In each class, there is a 10 hour fieldwork observation experience. This will vary by class and is integrated into the class assignments. For example, in the math methods course, students would observe math lessons. The experiences in multiple classrooms makes students much more marketable for a job and prepares them better for student teaching. 2. The Clinical Experience (student teaching) – EDUC 709 or EDUC 713 is a semester-long capstone course.
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. You can also get certified in special education as an extension to your already existing certification.
Which state exams do I need to take to earn my initial certification as a teacher?
The following exams are required: ALST, EAS, CST(s) in your certification area(s), and the edTPA during student teaching, which is the last semester. Other state requirements include fingerprinting and workshops (DASA, Child Abuse Prevention, Violence Prevention).
If I am already certified in Childhood Education (1-6) and want to add on the Early Childhood (B-2) certification, how do I go about it?
If you already have a valid certification in Childhood Education, you may self-certify through New York State's TEACH system: http://www.highered.nysed.gov/tcert/teach/. The procedure would be to submit official transcripts to New York State with a cover letter requesting to take the appropriate courses necessary to individually certify in Early Childhood. The state will evaluate the transcripts and send a letter stating which courses are needed for this new certification. Once the letter is received, the state requirements can be aligned with Mercy College course offerings. For most students, a course specific to early childhood education, our EDUC 513, is required. In some cases, the state may require additional courses, but is dependent on a candidate’s prior coursework. More information on non-matriculated student status can be found at: https://www.mercy.edu/admissions/apply-now/non-matriculant-visiting-students/
How do I apply for student teaching?
Student teaching, either EDUC 709, 713, or 537, is the last course in the program. The semester before you are expecting to start student teaching, students must apply for student teaching or contact one of our certification officers: Helen Gerken (hgerken@mercy.edu) for New York City or Ivan Toper (itoper@mercy.edu) for areas outside of New York City.
What are the graduation requirements?
Successful completion of coursework and practicums, passing grades on state examinations.
How can I find out about job postings in Early Childhood and Childhood Education?
Our department often receives job postings for Early Childhood and Childhood teaching positions. Please contact the Chair of the Department, Elena Nitecki, for the current listings or to post a job: enitecki@mercy.edu.
What are the admission requirements for the Early Childhood & Childhood Education Programs?
Applications are accepted for Fall, Spring, or Summer admission. The requirements for Admission into the Early Childhood or Childhood Program are: Minimum GPA: 3.0 Resume: Required Assessment Interview: Recommended Course Pre-Requisites, if any: Bachelor's Degree Other Admissions Requirements, if any: 1. Mathematical processes (6 credits) 2. Scientific processes (6 credits) 3. Historical and social sciences (6 credits) 4. Language other than English (3 credits) 5. Information retrieval (3 credits) 6. Communications/humanities/written analysis and expression (3 credits) 7. Artistic expression (3 credits) Official GRE General Test scores reported from ETS on Quantitative Reasoning, Verbal Reasoning and Writing* *Please note that all students must take the GRE General Test unless applying for the non-certification (Educational Studies) option.
Teresa Quackenbush Instructor, Childhood Education
Elena Nitecki Associate Professor, Childhood Education
Wendy Mages Associate Professor, Childhood Education
Aki Ohseki Assistant Professor, Childhood Education
Alexandra Miletta Assistant Professor, Childhood Education
Helge Wasmuth Assistant Professor, Childhood Education

Early Childhood Education: Birth-Grade 2 Overview

Early childhood is a critical period in human development. Influencing a young child's growth, development and learning during this stage has lifelong implications. Early childhood professionals can find their work deeply fulfilling as they witness children say their first words, paint their first pictures or learn to write their names.

At Mercy College, the 39-credit Master of Science in Early Childhood Education, Birth - Grade 2, prepares teacher candidates and early childhood professionals for New York State certification. Coursework, field experiences and clinical practice, such as student teaching, help candidates for a career in early childhood education.

Early Childhood Education candidates can pursue multiple certificates:

  • Early Childhood, Birth to Grade 2
  • Early Childhood, Birth to Grade 2 and Childhood Education, Grades 1 - 6, Dual Certification
  • Early Childhood, Birth to Grade 2, childhood Education, Grades 1 - 6, with Students with Disabilities, Triple Certification

Dual or Triple certifications require additional courses and field experiences. In order to gain initial certification, candidates must complete the required coursework and practicums and pass state examinations. Professional certification (permanent) requires and initial certificate and three years of teaching experience.

Early Childhood Education: Birth-Grade 2 FAQS

What are the fieldwork requirements?
There are two types of classroom experiences required in our programs, per state requirements: 1. In each class, there is a 10 hour fieldwork observation experience. This will vary by class and is integrated into the class assignments. For example, in the math methods course, students would observe math lessons. The experiences in multiple classrooms makes students much more marketable for a job and prepares them better for student teaching. 2. The Clinical Experience (student teaching) – EDUC 709 or EDUC 713 is a semester-long capstone course.
How can I find out about job postings in Early Childhood and Childhood Education?
Our department often receives job postings for Early Childhood and Childhood teaching positions. Please contact the Chair of the Department, Elena Nitecki, for the current listings or to post a job: enitecki@mercy.edu.
School of Education

Career Opportunities

Graduates of the Early Childhood Education, Birth-Grade 2 program may pursue teaching positions in pre-schools and in Kindergarten-Grade 2, or work in childcare and daycare settings.

Other Education Programs

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.

Requirements for admission and matriculation include:

  1. Minimum GPA of 3.0
  2. Resume
  3. An Assessment Interview is recommended
  4. Pre-Requisites: B.S. Degree
  5. Other Admissions Requirements:
    1. College Transcript with evidence of the following credits and a 3.0 average in these courses:
      1. Mathematical processes (6 credits)
      2. Scientific processes (6 credits)
      3. Historical and social sciences (6 credits)
      4. Language other than English (3 credits)
      5. Information Retrieval (3 credits)
      6. Communications/ Humanities/ Written analysis and expression (3 credits)
      7. Artistic expression (3 credits)
  6. Official GRE General Test scores reported from ETS on Quantitative Reasoning, Verbal Reasoning and Writing*

*Please note that all students must take the GRE General Test unless applying for the non-certification (Educational Studies) option.

Early Childhood Education: Birth-Grade 2 Objectives

  1. Candidates will understand, explain, analyze and apply major theories and philosophies that address physical, affective and cognitive development during the critical early childhood years. 
  2. 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 developmental processes and encourage growth to a child's maximum potential.
  3. Candidates will become reflective practitioners who continually reflect on their practice and actively pursue opportunities for professional growth.

Program Outcomes

By the end of this program, students should be able to:

  • Demonstrate a solid content knowledge base that enables them to deliver effective educational and professional services based on
    current research, theory and practice
  • 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
  • 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
  • Employ technology to deliver information, instruction, and professional services to all members of the school community
  • Reflect on professional practice to make educational decisions and enhance student learning
  • Demonstrate positive dispositions that enable them to work as effective educators, citizens, and practitioners within the school and
    broader community