Jul 19, 2024  
2024-2025 Graduate Catalog 
2024-2025 Graduate Catalog

Early Childhood Education, M.A. (Initial Licensure Concentration)

General Program Information

Amy Malkus, Ph.D., Associate Professor
Graduate Coordinator

516 Warf-Pickel Hall
Box 70548
(410) 463-0841
e-mail: malkus@etsu.edu

Pamela Evanshen, Ed.D., Professor, Department Chair
209 Warf-Pickel Hall
Box 70548
(423) 439-7695
email: evanshep@etsu.edu

Faculty: Julia Atiles, Jane Broderick; Pamela Evanshen; Ruth Facun-Granadozo; Alissa Lange; Amy Malkus, Kathryn Sharp.

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.

Admission Requirements

Each applicant to the graduate program in early childhood education must:

  1. Complete all the requirements for admission to the Graduate School.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.


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 and complete all other requirements for admission to teacher education including submission of a criminal background check.


Admission Standards:

Applicants who meet the following criteria may be admitted unconditionally. Those who do not meet the criteria may be admitted conditionally with provisions with deficiencies to be met as stipulated by the program faculty and approved by the Associate Dean of Educator Preparation.

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 and be recommended by an Admissions Board, and complete all other requirements for admission to teacher education.

Early Childhood Education, M.A. Degree Requirements: 48 credits

Core Requirements 15 credits
Concentration 24 credits
Residency 9 credits
TOTAL 48 credits

Residency: 9 credits

The residency experiences will be designed to ensure that the graduate student has supervised experiences in PreK-3rd grade.