Early Childhood Education Program

The early childhood education program prepares candidates to teach children from birth through Grade 3. Completion of the program leads to a bachelor of science degree and prepares candidates to pursue a Professional Educator License with an endorsement in Early Childhood Education (Birth-grade 3) in the State of Illinois. The program consists of general education, area of concentration, and professional education courses that address requirements for graduation and the State of Illinois' requirements for licensure.

The School of Education at Saint Xavier University has been approved by the Illinois State Board of Education to offer coursework for an early childhood-special education letter of approval under the following conditions:

  1. An early childhood-special education letter of approval can be issued only to an individual holding a professional educator license with an early childhood education endorsement or a special preschool-age 21 certificate with an LBS I endorsement. This approval allows these individuals to teach early childhood special education for children up to the age of six.
  2. The following courses have been approved by the Illinois State Board of Education for satisfying the four required areas of coursework for an early childhood special education approval:
    • EDU 361 OR EDGIP 461: Methods of Teaching Young Children with Disabilties (3)
    • EDU 328 OR EDGEC 432: Developmental Assesment of Young Children (3)
    • CSDI 305 OR EDGSP 523: Development of Language in the Young Child (3)
    • EDU 327 OR EDGEC 427: Child, Family and Community Relationships (3)

Candidates have the option of earning an ESL endorsement. The following courses are required for an ESL endorsement (18 credit hours):

The State of Illinoisrequires that ESL and/or bilingual clinical experience equal 100 clock hours. The State of Illinois issues a letter of approval for ESL upon successful completion of this program. No Additional testing is required for ESL approval. Early Childhood teachers, who already hold a Professional Educator License can earn the ESL endorsement by completing the specialization courses along with the requisite field experiences.

General Education Courses

  1. Two (6) writing/communication skills courses, to include one (3) in written communication, one (3) in oral communication.
  2. Two (6) mathematics courses above the intermediate algebra level. 
  3. Three (9) natural sciences courses, to include one life/biological science course, one physical sciences course, and one course with a laboratory component.
  4. One (3) additional elective in either mathematics or science.
  5. Five (15) history/social science courses, to include one (3) in U.S. history, one (3) in U.S. government, one (3) in geography, one (3) additional elective in history and one (3) elective in any social science.
  6. Three (9) literature and fine arts courses.
  7. One (2) health and physical development course.
  8. Philosophy 150 and one (3) elective in philosophy.
  9. Two (6) religious studies courses.
  10. Additional study in an approved area of concentration. This consists of (18) hours of study, (9) of which must be taken at the 200 level or higher at a 4-year institution. Approved single discipline areas are: art, biology, computer science, English, history, mathematics, music, political science, psychology, sociology, Spanish, and ESL/bilingual. Interdisciplinary concentrations include: math/computer science, humanities, social science, language arts and general science. In keeping with new requirements for early childhood teachers, candidates are strongly recommended to choose ESL as their area of concentration and complete coursework leading to an ESL endorsement.
  11. University General Education requirements in Diversity Studies, Global Studies and Interdisciplinary Studies may be satisfied by other courses in general education, the area of concentration and professional education.

Required Professional Education Courses

Choose one of the following from:

 The rest of the courses are required:

* Enrollment requires admission to the School of Education

Requirements for Degree

Candidates in the early childhood program major in education and must complete a minimum of 40 credit hours in education, a minimum of 18 credit hours in an approved area of concentration, the University core requirements, and additional licensure requirements. CLEP credit cannot be used to fulfill upper-level area of concentration or professional education requirements