Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Education

An individual interested in undergraduate early childhood preparation may obtain a Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Education to work with children from the ages of birth to age 8. Individuals with baccalaureate degrees should refer to the Early Childhood Post Baccalaureate Certificate Program for more information.

The Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood is a professional degree. Unique features of the program include a foundation in liberal studies with coursework in child development and families. Candidates will engage in field experiences throughout their coursework to directly apply teaching and learning principles. In addition, candidates will engage in an internship in early childhood settings. Admission to the program occurs in two stages and admission to the internship requires academic achievement, written and oral communication skills, and community involvement. For more information see School of Education Field Placements.

Admission Requirements

Satisfy the Application and Admission Requirements for Baccalaureate Programs.

Admission to the College of Arts and Sciences School of Education, Department of Teaching and Learning: Early Childhood Education Major

Admission to the Department of Teaching and Learning: Early Childhood Education major is required for most upper-division coursework in Early Childhood Education. In order to be admitted to the Department of Teaching and Learning: Early Childhood Education major, applicants must:

  1. Complete the application to the Department of Teaching and Learning: Early Childhood Education major. Please call an advisor from the School of Education Student Services office at (907) 786-4401 for an advising appointment.
  2. Complete Tier 1: Basic College-Level Skills General Education Requirements (transfer credits may be used).
  3. Complete a minimum of 9 lower-division credits from the Early Childhood Education major requirements with a minimum grade of C.
  4. Have a cumulative GPA of 3.00.
  5. Successfully complete the Praxis I: Core Pre-Professional Skills Test. Contact the School of Education Student Services office for current passing scores.
  6. Submit a successful background check with the Alaska Background Check System (ABCS). Please visit School of Education Field Experience website for detailed information. 

Admission to the University as an Early Childhood Education major does not guarantee admission to the Department of Teaching and Learning: Early Childhood Education program.

Admission to Early Childhood Education Advanced Practicum

1. Meet all the requirements for and be admitted to the Department of Teaching and Learning: Early Childhood Education major.

2. Submit an application form for admission to Advanced Practicum. Contact the School of Education Student Services office for fall and spring application deadlines at (907) 786-4401.

3. Apply for Student Teaching Authorization Certificate. This application includes fingerprinting and a criminal background check. Fee required. Contact School of Education Student Services Office for more information.

Admission to Early Childhood Education Internship (Student Teaching Experience)

1. Submit an application form for admission to Early Childhood Education Internship. Contact the School of Education Student Services office for fall and spring application deadlines at (907) 786-4401.

2. Interview upon request.

3. Demonstrate general content knowledge with a passing score on Praxis II: Elementary Education: Content Knowledge (5018) or Praxis II: Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment (5017).  Note: when taking the exam, please check UAA as a receiving institution.

4. A current Student Teaching Authorization Certificate is required for admission to internship (finger printing and criminal background check process).

5. Complete school district specific application for internship placement. See School of Education Student Services Office for more information.

Notes: Admission to the Department of Teaching and Learning: Early Childhood Education major does not guarantee admission to the internship. Partnership organizations, early care and education centers and other school settings have the right to refuse or limit field experience placements for university students.

Additional Information

  • All Early Childhood Education courses must be completed with a minimum grade of C. Upon successful completion of the Early Childhood Education licensure program, a teacher candidate will obtain an Institutional Recommendation from the School of Education to the State of Alaska for teacher certification.
  • Internship is a full-time placement (not credit hours) in a public-school setting. Interns are expected to be present in schools the same hours as school district teachers. Internship is only offered during fall and spring semesters. Reference Internship Handbook for more detailed information.
  • 10-30 hours of field experience are required for most Early Childhood major courses.
  • Internship(s) must be completed successfully and all early childhood major requirements, the Alaska studies requirement, MATH A211, MATH A212, and foundation requirements in child development and social relationships and inclusive environments must be completed with a minimum grade of C in order to obtain an institutional recommendation for teacher certification.

Graduation Requirements

Foundation Requirements

Complete the following foundation courses. The courses are selected to provide future early childhood educators with the skills and background knowledge in the various subjects they will be expected to teach. The selection is based on national and state standards for content preparation. Some of the foundation courses may also be used to meet General Education Requirements.

Social Sciences GER:6
Cultural Diversity and Community Service Learning
Cultural Foundations of Human Behavior
In addition, select one of the following:
The Rise of Civilization
Local Places/Global Regions: An Introduction to Geography
Honors Seminar in Social Science
Introduction to American Government
Introduction to Political Science
Nutrition (select one of the following):3
Child Nutrition
Nutrition Through the Life Cycle
Survey of Alaska Native Nutrition
Humanities GER (select one of the following):3
History of the United States I
History of the United States II
Major Themes in US History
Child Development (select one of the following):3
Human Development and Learning
Lifespan Development
Child and Adolescent Development
Quantitative Skills GER (select one of the following):3
College Algebra for Managerial and Social Sciences
College Algebra for Calculus
Elementary Statistics
Social Relationships and Inclusive Environments (select two of the following):5-6
Introduction to Civic Engagement
Special Children from Birth through Five
Teaching Social Studies in Elementary Schools
Inclusive Classrooms for All Children
Foundations of Communication Disorders
Human Behavior in the Social Environment
Introduction to Child Welfare
Trauma in Childhood
Alaska Studies (select one of the following):3
Alaska Native Cultures
Issues in Alaska Native Education, K-12
Implementing Alaska Native Values into the Classroom or Work Place
History of Alaska
Quantitative Reasoning:6
Mathematics for Elementary School Teachers I
Mathematics for Elementary School Teachers II
Total Credits32-33

Major Requirements

Field experience in early childhood programs may be required as part of core courses.

Core Courses
EDEC A105Introduction to the Field of Early Childhood Education3
EDEC A106Creativity and the Arts in Early Childhood3
EDEC A206Integrated Curriculum for Young Children3
EDEC A210Guiding Young Children3
EDEC A242Family and Community Partnerships3
EDEC A303Young Children in Inclusive Settings3
EDEC A408Children's Literature: Early Childhood Years3
EDFN A300Philosophical and Social Context of American Education3
or EDFN A304 Comparative Education
EDFN A301Foundations of Literacy and Language Development3
EDFN A302Foundations of Educational Technology3
PEP A345Incorporating Health and Physical Activity into the Pre-K - 6 Classroom2
Select two of the following courses:6
Infant and Toddler Development
A Developmental Approach to Assessment in Early Childhood Education
Action Research Using Observation and Documentation
Methdology Requirements
EDEC A403Mathematics and Science in Early Childhood3
EDEC A404Literacy for Young Children3
Internship and Seminar Requirements
EDEC A492EEarly Childhood Advanced Practicum Seminar1
EDEC A492IEarly Childhood Internship Seminar1
EDEC A495EEarly Childhood Advanced Practicum3
EDEC A495IEarly Childhood Internship9
Electives12
Total Credits70

A minimum of 120 credits is required for the degree, of which 42 must be upper-division.

Institutional Recommendation Pre-K-3 Teacher Certification

Candidates who complete an internship (Student Teaching Experience) in the primary grades (pre-K-3rd grade) may apply for teacher certification, pre-K-3rd grade. Following are the requirements for an institutional recommendation for teacher certification, pre-K-3rd grade from the Alaska Department of Education:

  1. Major Requirements completed with a minimum grade of C.
  2. Alaska studies requirement, MATH A211, MATH A212, and foundation requirements in child development and social relationships and inclusive environments completed with a minimum grade of C.
  3. Cumulative GPA of 2.75.
  4. Cumulative GPA of 3.00 in all major requirements.
  5. Passing scores on the Praxis I Core Pre-Professional Skills Test and Praxis II (5017 or 5018) exams. 
  6. Internships (Student Teaching Experience) satisfactorily completed.
  7. Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Education degree conferred.

Program Student Learning Outcomes

Student outcomes for the four early childhood programs are based on the Standards for Alaska’s Teachers located at www.eed.state.ak.us/standards. Outcomes are also based on the professional preparation standards of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) found at www.naeyc.org. Students will demonstrate the following outcomes:

  • Create a healthy, respectful, supportive and challenging learning environment based on knowledge of child development.
  • Create respectful, reciprocal relationships that support and empower families, and involve all families in their children’s development and learning.
  • Use systematic observations, documentation and other effective assessment strategies in a responsible way, in partnership with families and other professionals, to positively influence children’s development and learning.
  • Design effective approaches to teaching and learning, implement and evaluate experiences that promote positive development and learning for all children.
  • Incorporate knowledge of content areas to create appropriate experiences for young children.
  • Use ethical guidelines and other professional standards related to early childhood practice.
  • Demonstrate knowledgeable, reflective and critical perspectives on professional practice, making informed decisions that integrate knowledge from a variety of sources.

The expected mastery of student outcomes differs in accordance with program level. Students who complete the Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Education will demonstrate advanced integrated knowledge and skills in preparation for careers in teaching primary grades (K-3) as well as in infant, toddler and preschool educational programs.