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Early Childhood Education and Exceptional Needs

If you have thought about working with young children, young children with special needs or even directing educational child care programs, then the early childhood education and exceptional needs major is for you.

ECEEN students develop skills for working with typically developing children as well as children with exceptional needs and their families. Students are prepared to work with children from birth through 3rd grade.

Students complete a program that prepares them to apply for teacher licensure in Indiana as Early Childhood Generalist and Exceptional Needs through grade 3. Through their degree and licensure program, students are prepared to work in early intervention programs, pre-kindergarten classrooms in schools and community programs, and early childhood regular and special education classrooms in public or private schools, kindergarten through 3rd grade.

Students receive hands-on experience at the Ben and Maxine Miller Child Development Laboratory School, in community schools and other early childhood programs as well as completing a semester as a student teacher in an early childhood program in a child development center, public or private school.

Experiential Learning

Several ECEEN courses include practicum components that give students opportunities to develop their skills for working with infants and young children. In their senior year, ECEEN students complete a semester of full-time student teaching that includes children who are typically developing and children with special learning needs.

Potential Career Options

Upon graduation, an ECEEN student is qualified for teacher certification as an Early Childhood Teacher or Special Education Teacher (Preschool through grade 3) meaning they are prepared and eligible to work with children with and without special learning needs.

Positions include:

  • Early Intervention provider or administrator
  • Public and private school early childhood or early childhood special education classrooms (prekindergarten through grade 3)
  • Child care center teacher or administrator
  • Head Start or Early Head Start teacher or administrator
  • Family support specialist
  • Child Care Training Specialist
  • Special needs service coordinator

Potential Graduate School Options

Sample Degree Requirements & Plan of Study