Early Childhood Practice, B.A.

The Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Practice (non-licensure) is designed for students whose interests are in early childhood development and education, but who do not wish to be licensed teachers. Students may seek or continue employment in child care centers or other settings that do not require state licensure. 

Candidates who complete the program will be eligible to earn the Early Childhood Level 5 credential awarded by Gateways to Opportunity and the Infant/Toddler credential. Candidates will also have the opportunity to earn the Family Child Care or Illinois Director credential. 

This program does NOT lead to a Professional Educator License. Students will not be eligible to be licensed to teach in settings that require a licensed teacher. 

In addition to National Louis University Undergraduate Admission Requirements, applicants must:

  • Sign and submit the “Student Acknowledgement of BA ECP Program (Non-licensure) Limitations” form to the Office of Admissions

Program Details:

  • Requires 180 QH, including 60 QH of General Education, for completion
  • 72 QH of coursework must be taken at NLU
  • Credit by examination is accepted for general education and elective credit
  • The Professional Courses, internship and concentrations must be taken at NLU
  • A minimum grade of “C” or better in all courses in the program is required
  • Requires a practicum
  • Requires an internship
  • Candidates must complete the Infant/Toddler concentration. In addition, they must complete a second concentration in Family Child Care  OR Illinois Director.

Required Courses

Communications

LAE 101English Composition I

5

LAE 102English Composition II

5

LAE 202Effective Speaking

5

Humanities

LAE 307Literature for Children

5

or

RLL 220Children’s Literature and the Literacy Learning Environment

5

Fine Arts

Choose 5 QH of introductory coursework that includes content for the appreciation of art, and/or music, and/or drama. The courses listed below meet that description, though others may be accepted.

LAA 101Art Appreciation I

2

LAA 102Art Appreciation II

3

LAA 110Introduction to Art

2

LAA 200Arts in Chicago

5

LAT 220Introduction to Theatre

5

LAU 110Introduction to Music

2

LAU 220Music as Social Experience

5

Quantitative Reasoning

LAM 112Math Content for Teachers I

5

LAM 213Math Content for Teachers II

5

Physical and Life Sciences

LAN 110General Biology

5

LAN 150Survey of Physical Science

5

Note: One course must have a lab.

Social Sciences

LAS 203Survey of U.S. History

5

LAS 120Introduction to American Politics

5

or

LAS 118Introduction to Politics and U.S. Government

5

Note: Another U.S. History course may be accepted. 

Behavioral Science

LAP 100General Psychology

5

Library

LIBR 200Digital Information Literacy

2

Undergraduate Core - 16 QH

ECE 210History and Philosophy of Education

3

EPS 300Educational Psychology: Theory in Classroom Practice

5

SPE 300Introduction to Special Education and Methods of Teaching Students with Disabilities

5

TIE 300Introduction to Technology in the Classroom

3

Foundational Requirements - 29 QH

RLL 330Foundations of Emergent Literacy

5

CIL 331Cross Cultural Education

5

ECE 205Observation and Assessment: Infants, Toddlers, and Two Year Olds

4

ECE 215Speech and Language Development

3

ECE 220Child, Family, and Community

5

ECE 460Early Childhood Practicum

7

Notes: Application to participate in field experiences (ECE 460) must be made two quarters prior to the quarter of the field experience.

Professional Courses - 23 QH

ECE 308Writing for Early Childhood Professionals

3

ECE 324Integrated Preprimary Methodology in Early Childhood Education

5

ECE 345Curriculum, Differentiation, and Assessment

5

ECE 337Ethics and Professionalism in Early Childhood Education

5

ECE 340Positive Guidance in Early Childhood Environments

5

Infant Toddler Concentration - 22 QH

ECE 301Understanding Infants and Toddlers

5

ECE 302Planning for Quality Infant/Toddler Programs

5

ECE 321Curriculum in Infant/Toddler Programs

5

ECE 493Internship: Infant and Toddler Care and Development

7

Family Child Care Concentration - 27 QH

Candidates must complete a second concentration in Family Child Care OR Illinois Director.

ECE 311Administration I: Leadership Strategies and Staff Development

1 TO 5

ECE 335Best Business Practices in Family Child Care

1 TO 5

ECE 313Administration III: Implementing and Evaluating the Program

1 TO 5

ECE 303The Early Care & Education Administrator as Advocate

1 TO 5

ECE 492BInternship: Family Child Care

7

Notes: ECE 511, ECE 335, ECE 313, and ECE 303 must be taken for 5 quarter hours. 

Illinois Director Concentration - 27 QH

Candidates must complete a second concentration in Family Child Care OR Illinois Director.
ECE 311Administration I: Leadership Strategies and Staff Development

1 TO 5

ECE 312Administration II: Managing Center Operations and Finance

1 TO 5

ECE 313Administration III: Implementing and Evaluating the Program

1 TO 5

ECE 303The Early Care & Education Administrator as Advocate

1 TO 5

ECE 492AInternship: Child Care Administrator

7

Notes: ECE 311, ECE 312, ECE 313, and ECE 303 must be taken for 5 quarter hours.

Electives - 1 QH

Choose elective courses to meet the minimum degree requirement of 180 QH