What You Should Know About This Degree
A master’s degree in early childhood education provides a higher-level, more intensive, and specialized preparation for those seeking a career in this field. This professional degree differs from a degree in teaching because it also prepares individuals for leadership, policy, and administration positions in early childhood education. Teaching degrees, on the other hand, are typically available for specific in-classroom teaching for middle school levels and up.
While any accredited school on this list is going to offer a valuable program, potential students may benefit from those with a specialized NCATE certification that holds schools to more rigorous standards set by the education community.
The job outlook for early childhood education teachers is positive, and this growth rate is in line with the national average for all careers. Teachers can work in specialized subject areas or in special education with students with learning disabilities or other conditions.
After obtaining their master’s degree, graduates who wish to teach must obtain a license or certification from their state and pass the relevant teacher certification exams. It’s important to also research the certification program in your state because each has different requirements.
Here are a couple of questions to ask when researching master’s in early childhood education degree programs:
- Am I eligible for this program? To qualify for a master’s degree, you must have a bachelor’s degree, typically from a four-year university. Specific programs have varying eligibility requirements, such as a minimum GPA or GRE score. Learn each program’s requirements before applying to ensure your best chance of admission.
- How long does it take to complete this online degree? Most of these programs require students to complete at least 30 credits, which is considered a two-year program. Some, however, allow students to earn their degree by studying part-time at their own pace and over a much longer length of time.
Before applying, make sure you’re aware of each program’s requirements, application deadlines, and other criteria. To find this information, visit the school’s website or contact its admissions department.
Financial assistance for graduate school might be available in the form of state or federal aid, scholarships, grants, or assistantships. Some students may also be able to transfer some credits to the program, which would lower the cost.