General Program Information
Graduate School Contact:
Fiona Goodyear; firstname.lastname@example.org; (423) 439-6148
Amy Malkus, Ph.D., Associate Professor
516 Warf-Pickel Hall
Pamela Evanshen, Ed.D., Professor, Department Chair
209 Warf-Pickel Hall
Faculty: Jane Broderick; Pamela Evanshen; Ruth Facun-Granadozo; Rebecca Isbell; Alissa Lange; Amy Malkus, Kathryn Sharp; Carol Trivette.
The Department of Early Childhood Education offers three Master of Arts degrees in early childhood education. These graduate programs provide specialized education preparation for those interested in young children’s development from birth to eight years of age and their families. They focus on promoting the optimal developmental environment for young children, birth to eight years of age. The Master of Arts in Early Childhood Education - Initial Licensure leads to licensure in PreK-3 in Tennessee. The Master of Arts in Early Childhood Education - Master Teacher and Researcher/Thesis programs train for leadership roles in early childhood education, teaching in quality programs for young children, administering programs, working with families, community services, research, and instruction at the community college level.
Each applicant to the graduate program in early childhood education must complete the following:
- Complete all the requirements for admission to the School of Graduate Studies.
- Present a minimum of a 3.0 undergraduate grade point average or complete a probationary period in which the student achieves a grade point average of 3.0 and no grade lower than a B in the first 9 credits of graduate credit.
- Be reviewed by the Early Childhood Admission committee. Those who do not have an undergraduate degree in early childhood education or a related field of study may be required to take selected undergraduate courses that will strengthen the applicant’s background in early childhood education.
- Additionally, candidates for the Initial Licensure Concentration must achieve a minimum test score on the GRE: 151 on Verbal Reasoning and 153 on Quantitative Reasoning.
You may request a waiver of the GRE requirement to the Graduate Coordinator and the School of Graduate Studies if you meet or exceed minimum score requirements on one of the following state mandated tests:
- ACT: 22 composite score, ACT 21 composite score will be considered; OR
- SAT: Reading 543 and Math 533; SAT combined score of 1020 will be considered; OR
- PRAXIS CORE: Reading 168 and Math, 162; PRAXIS CORE Reading 156 and Math 150 will be considered.
Graduate students seeking PreK-3 licensure must be admitted to the Teacher Education program. They must file a Declaration of Intent with the college’s Office of Student Services, be recommended by an Admissions Board, and complete all other requirements for admission to teacher education including submission of a criminal background check.
The Early Childhood Core
The core courses are required of all candidates for the M.A. degree in early childhood education. These courses are designed to provide a foundation of knowledge concerning the young child birth - eight years of age. The core includes the study of typically developing children (birth - eight), their unique learning abilities, history and philosophy of early childhood education, parental influence, designing environments, and research methods.
Concentrations and Electives
The concentration and electives are chosen with the approval of the student’s advisor and provide for the individualization of the student’s program. These specialized courses can follow the student’s individual needs and interests in a variety of areas including: working with infants and toddlers, working with parents, directing programs, designing effective curriculum for young children, teaching kindergarten and primary grades/licensure in PreK-3, and other areas that relate to young children.
Initial Licensure Concentration
This graduate program is designed for students seeking PreK-3 certification. The concentrated master’s degree in early childhood teaching includes 15 credits of professional core and 24 credits of early childhood courses that focus on language development, technology and media, creative arts, assessment, curriculum development, and parent involvement. It also includes courses in special education, science, and mathematics. This combination of courses must be taken to meet state competencies in early childhood for PreK-3 licensure. In addition, students will be required to complete Residency I and Residency II and seminars in PreK-3rd grade. The PRAXIS II requirements from the State of Tennessee must be complete before Residency II. Students completing this comprehensive program and supervised residency will be highly trained early childhood teachers.
Graduate students seeking PreK-3 licensure must be admitted to the Teacher Education program. They must file a Declaration of Intent with the college’s Office of Student Services, receive a passing score on the GRE, PRAXIS CORE, ACT, or SAT (See Admissions Requirements), be recommended by an Admissions Board, and complete all other requirements for admission to teacher education.