BS in Early Childhood Education

The Early Childhood Education program prepares students to teach preschool through second grade.

All students entering as freshmen in Fall 2018 and after will pursue coursework in the BU Hub, a general education program that is integrated into the entire undergraduate experience. BU Hub requirements can be satisfied through coursework in and beyond the major and, in some cases, through co-curricular activities. Students majoring in Early Childhood Education will ordinarily, through coursework taken in the Boston University Wheelock College of Education & Human Development, satisfy BU Hub requirements in Diversity, Civic Engagement, and Global Citizenship; Communication; and some elements of the Intellectual Toolkit, essential for early childhood educators working with other professionals and families. Additional requirements may be satisfied through required Arts and Sciences coursework, and it is important that students keep Hub requirements in mind when selecting these courses. Remaining BU Hub requirements will be satisfied by selecting from a wide range of available courses outside the major or, in some cases, co-curricular experiences.

BU students specializing in Early Childhood Education engage in a comprehensive course of study that includes a strong base in the arts and sciences, with coursework in the humanities, social sciences, and math and science, as well as in education, in general, and in Early Childhood Education.

A sequence of three field-based courses provides students with the opportunity to put course content into practice. This progression begins in our Early Childhood Learning Lab (ECLL), a demonstration preschool located in the School of Education, continues with a public-school placement in a local kindergarten, and culminates with a final student teaching placement in a local first or second grade public school classroom.

Students must be approved to proceed in the licensure course sequence. This approval is at the program faculty’s discretion and is based on performance in field-based courses and meeting GPA requirements.

The program of study for each student is carefully designed to enable the student to meet both the BU Hub capacities and the requirements that enable Boston University to recommend students to the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education for licensure as an Early Childhood Teacher of Students with and without Disabilities at the Initial level. Fulfillment of licensure requirements in the program can lead to licensure in states with which the Commonwealth of Massachusetts has reciprocity.

Early Childhood Program Requirements (Total Credits: 129)

BU Hub Requirements or Electives Outside the Major (28 cr)

Electives should be selected carefully, with an academic advisor, to meet BU Hub requirements not fulfilled though other required Subject Matter and Professional Studies Requirements.

Subject Matter Requirements (32 cr)

  • CAS MA 107 Mathematical Reasoning in the Elementary Grades: Number Systems (4 cr)
  • CAS PS 101 General Psychology (4 cr)
  • One CAS history course (4 cr)
  • Twenty credits in CAS social science courses, chosen from offerings in the departments of African American Studies, American & New England Studies, Anthropology, Archaeology, Earth & Environment, Economics, History, International Relations, Political Science, Psychology, Sociology, or Women’s, Gender & Sexuality Studies. Work with an adviser to select courses.

Professional Studies Requirements (69 cr)

  • SED ED 110 Introduction to Education (4 cr)
  • SED ED 111 Educational Technology (1 cr)
  • CAS SO 210 Confronting Persistent Social Inequalities in American Schools: Educational and Sociological Perspectives (2 cr)
  • CAS SO 211 Confronting Racial, Cultural, Gender, and Social Identities in Urban Classrooms: Educational and Sociological Perspectives (2 cr)
  • SED SE 250 Disability, Education, and Public Policy (4 cr)
  • SED ED 412 Social and Civic Context of Education (2 cr)
  • SED LS 560 Language Acquisition (4 cr)
  • SED LR 501 Teaching of Reading (4 cr)
  • SED EC 507 Role of Play in Early Childhood Education (4 cr)
  • SED TL 520 Teaching English Language Learners (4 cr)
  • SED EC 305 Child Development and Education (4 cr)
  • SED EC 350 Introduction to Early Childhood Education (4 cr)
  • SED EC 405 Curriculum and Fieldwork: Preschool (8 cr)
  • SED EC 453 Curriculum and Practicum: Kindergarten (8 cr)**
  • SED EC 553 Early Childhood Seminar and Practicum: Grades 1/2 (10 cr)**
  • SED EC 559 Classroom-Based Assessment of Young Children (4 cr)

*Advisor’s approval needed
**EC 453 and EC 553 are restricted to students following the licensure sequence. Students following the non-licensure sequence must enroll in EC 511 Field Experiences in Early Childhood in place of EC 453.

Early Childhood Learning Laboratory (ECLL)

The ECLL is a demonstration preschool that serves as a field placement for all early childhood majors and an observation site for teaching and research. Twenty-two children, ages 2.9–5, are in the program; a number of them have first languages other than English. There are microphones strategically placed in the classroom and digital recorders in the Observation Room so that classroom activities can be recorded and analyzed by Early Childhood faculty and student teachers. In addition, there is a resource center for preparing teaching materials that is available to all Early Childhood students. For more information, visit the website.

Pre-Practicum and Practicum Requirements

To enroll in the pre-practicum EC 405, students must:

  • Have a cumulative 2.0 GPA in all coursework
  • Earn a B– or higher in ED 100/101 and SE 250
  • Have a 2.5 GPA in ED 100, SE 250, EC 350, and EC 305
  • Complete a CORI/SORI and fingerprinting and receive approval

To enroll in the practicum EC 453, student must:

  • Have a cumulative 2.0 GPA in all coursework with no “I” (Incomplete) grades*
  • Earn a B– or higher in ED 110/111 and SE 250
  • Have a 2.5 GPA in ED 110/111, SE 250, EC 350, EC 305, and EC 405
  • Complete a CORI/SORI and fingerprinting and receive approval
  • Demonstrate professional behavior in person and in written communication—indicators will be provided to all students
  • Qualify to be on the licensure track. During EC 405, faculty evaluation will determine whether students qualify to be on the licensure track. As stated in the Wheelock Bulletin, “The faculty of the Wheelock College of Education & Human Development reserves the right to be selective in admitting students and in permitting them to continue in the professional programs and the final practicum experiences.”

To enroll in the practicum EC 553, students must:

  • Have a cumulative 2.0 GPA in all coursework with no “I” (Incomplete) grades
  • Earn a B– or higher in ED 110/111 and SE 250
  • Have a 2.5 GPA in ED 110/111, SE 250, EC 350, EC 305, EC 405, and EC 453
  • Complete a CORI/SORI and fingerprinting and receive approval
  • Demonstrate professional behavior in person and in written communication—indicators will be provided to all students
  • Qualify to proceed on the licensure track. During EC 453, faculty evaluation will determine whether students will continue on the licensure track.

Students may retake SED ED 110/111 and SED SE 250 up to one additional time to achieve a B– or higher.

Students may decide not to pursue licensure (e.g., for example, if they plan to teach internationally) or faculty members may determine that students do not qualify to be on or continue on the licensure track. When these situations occur, students will be on a “non-licensure track”—they take a different sequence of courses planned with their advisors. Being on the “non-licensure” track means that students will graduate from Boston University with a degree in Early Childhood Education and will not be endorsed for licensure.

*Students must complete all “Incompletes” one month prior to the end of the semester prior to student teaching. Note: Exceptions can be made for those with extenuating circumstances (e.g., sudden illness).