Early Childhood Education, B.A.

The Early Childhood Education program is designed for those interested in teaching children in a pre-kindergarten environment through age eight. Successful completion of the program enables students in Illinois to apply for a Professional Educator License, endorsed for early childhood and self-contained general education (age 0 to grade 2).

For more information on state licensure and certification information please visit NLU’s Public Disclosures page. 

Program Learning Outcomes (PLOs):

PLO1. Apply knowledge of self, students, curriculum content, and effective instruction to develop appropriate learning outcomes and design activities to meet diverse learner needs including students with special needs and diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds.

PLO2. Develop a variety of assessments and explain how they will use them to anticipate varied ways students might perform, make accommodations, monitor student progress, and adjust and evaluate instruction.

PLO3. Demonstrate respectful and responsive interactions with students that motivate, support, and advance students’ development and learning.

PLO4. Establish a culture of appropriately high expectations for student learning and behavior and design a classroom environment that supports all students to be successful.

PLO5. Persist in their efforts to engage all students in content learning through effective instructional discourse, use of appropriate technologies, ongoing performance monitoring, flexibility, and adaptability to support students’ behavior and advance their learning.

PLO6. Apply knowledge of human development and learning to interpret a variety of assessments to inform their instruction and provide meaningful feedback.

PLO7. Use feedback from a variety of stakeholders to develop meaningful professional learning goals and identify appropriate professional activities to continuously improve their practice.

PLO8. Demonstrate the capacity to collaborate effectively and ethically with colleagues, families, and community members to promote positive and inclusive learning for all students.

Admissions Requirements: 

Admission to the Early Childhood program is a two step process. In the first step, students are admitted to National Louis University with a preliminary status. In the second step, students must be admitted with full status before beginning their Early Childhood Education Major courses.

Full Admission requirements for students beginning Early Childhood Education Major courses: 

  • Successful completion of GEN 103
  • Successful completion of all Education Concentration courses
  • Successful completion of all pre-requisite general education courses as determined by the program
  • Achieve a GPA of 2.5 or better on all previous coursework with a grade of “C” or better in all courses 

Program Details:

  • Requires 180 QH including 70 QH of General Education for completion 
  • A minimum grade of “C” or better in all courses in the program is required
  • Credit by examination is accepted for general education and elective credit
  • All program major courses must be taken at NLU
  • Students must complete a program Concentration
  • Students may choose one of the two optional Minors: ESL/Bilingual or ECE Special Education
    • Note: Students seeking ESL/Bilingual endorsement must pass appropriate Target Language Proficiency or English Language Proficiency test. Student seeking Learning Behavior Specialist I (LBS1) endorsement must pass test 155.
  • A minimum of 15 QH of the Minor coursework must be taken at NLU
  • A minimum GPA of 2.5 is required 
  • Requires completion of the following field hours built into courses across the entire program:
    • 75 hours in infant/toddler
    • 165 hours in pre-K (15 of which are in a pre-K observing a child with disability or special need)
    • depending upon Minor chosen, 100 hours in ESL/Bilingual pre-K or 50 hours in ECE SPE pre-K
    • 125 hours in kindergarten classroom
    • 537.5 hours in 1st/2nd grade classroom
  • Requires the following courses to be completed within 6 years of degree completion: ECE 200, ECE 324, ECE 334, ECE 470, EDU 300, EDU 350, EDU 400, EDU 410, EDU 479, EDU 480, EDU 481 and EDU 482.

Required Courses

Student Success Seminar- 5 QH

GEN 103Student Success Seminar

5

Communications- 15 QH

ENG 101Beginning English Composition

5

ENG 201Intermediate English Composition

5

ENG 203Effective Speaking for the Undergraduate

5

Humanities- 5 QH

EDU 220Children’s Literature for Educators

5

Note: Students transferring credit from other institutions or applying coursework previously completed at NLU may only use a course in Children’s Literature substantially equivalent to the NLU’s course at the discretion of the program.

Fine Arts- 5 QH

ART 101Basic Art Appreciation

5

Note: Students transferring coursework from other institutions or applying coursework previously completed at NLU may use other coursework in Introductory Art, Music, or Theater including any Fine Arts History or Appreciation courses. Studio Arts and Performance courses cannot be used to fulfill the licensure requirements.

Quantitative Reasoning- 10 QH

MTH 105Math for Educators I

5

MTH 115Math for Educators II

5

Note: Students transferring coursework from other institutions or applying coursework previously completed at NLU may use other coursework in mathematics content for teachers substantially equivalent to the NLU's course at the discretion of the program. 

Physical and Life Sciences - 10 QH

SCI 101Physical Science

5

SCI 102Survey of Biological Science with Lab

5

SCI 101 Note: Students transferring coursework from other institutions or applying coursework previously completed at NLU may use coursework in Physical Science, General Chemistry, Chemistry and Society, General Physics, Physics and Society, or Earth Science, which covers at least four areas of physical science. 

SCI 102 Note: Students transferring coursework from other institutions or applying coursework previously completed at NLU may use other coursework in general biology or other life science.

Social Sciences- 15 QH

HIS 102Introduction to Political Science

5

HIS 103History Across the Globe

5

HIS 212Think Global: Movements in US History and its Impact on Society and School

3 TO 5

Notes: Students transferring coursework from other institutions or applying coursework previously completed at NLU may use other coursework in Politics or Government and coursework in U.S. History to fulfill the licensure program requirements.

Behavioral Science- 5 QH

PSY 101Introduction to Psychology

5

Note: Students transferring credit from other institutions or applying coursework previously completed at NLU may use coursework in general psychology substantially equivalent to the NLU's course at the discretion of the program. 

Undergraduate Education Concentration - 20 QH

EAL 300Educational Foundations for Learning English as an Additional Language

5

EDU 200Applied Educational Psychology

5

EDU 210Educational Philosophy- A Historical Account

5

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

5

Early Childhood Education Major- 60 QH

ECE 200Early Childhood Learning, Growth & Development

5

ECE 324Integrated Preprimary Methodology in Early Childhood Education

5

ECE 334Early Language and Literacy Development

5

ECE 470Early Childhood Education: Student Teaching

10 TO 14

EDU 300Teacher Education Practicum I

5

EDU 350Teacher Preparation Curriculum and Assessment

5

EDU 400Teacher Education Practicum II

5

EDU 410Teacher Education Practicum III

5

EDU 479Literacy Methods II

4

EDU 480Methods of Teaching Mathematics

5

EDU 481Methods of Teaching Science

3

EDU 482Methods of Teaching Social Studies

3

Note: ECE 470 must be taken for 10 QH. Application to participate in ECE 470 must be made two quarters prior to the quarter of the student teaching experience. 

ESL/Bilingual Minor - 30 QH

EAL 305Methods and Materials for Teaching English as a Second Language

5

EAL 306Methods and Materials for Teaching Bilingual Education

5

EAL 310Assessing Students Learning English as an Additional Language

5

EAL 312Linguistic Considerations for Learning to Read in a New Language

5

EAL 331Cross Cultural Studies for Working with English Language Learners

5

EDU 290Professionalism and Ethical Engagement with Children, Families and the Community

5

Early Childhood Special Education Minor - 30 QH

EDU 290Professionalism and Ethical Engagement with Children, Families and the Community

5

SPE 330Assistive and Instructional Technology

5

SPE 432Methods of Teaching Young Children with Special Needs

5

SPE 433Screening & Assessment of Young Children with Special Needs

5

SPE 434Teaming, Collaborating, Communicating: Resources for Families in Special Education Settings

5

SPE 435Autism-Spectrum Disorders and Characteristics of Children With Disabilities

5

 

Early Childhood Education Student Teaching Enrollment Requirements

Admission to and continuance in student teaching are contingent on the following actions.

Candidates must:

  • Be accepted into the Undergraduate College of Education
  • File, by the designated deadline, the application form for student teaching
  • Submit to their advisor a report of a TB test taken within 90 days of the student teaching placement, results of criminal background check and acknowledgement of Mandated Reporter status form
  • Pass the Early Childhood Content Test (206) prior to Practicum III (a linked placement with student teaching)
  • Complete all of their licensure courses except for ECE 470 (Student Teaching)
  • Pass all methods courses at National Louis University with an average grade of C or better
  • Participate in program assessment
  • Provide evidence (through professional disposition assessment) of emotional stability, adequate personality adjustment, competency, timeliness and responsibility for work in the field of education 

For more information about this program, visit  http://www.nl.edu/academics/educationbachelors/baearlychildhoodeducation/