The Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Education is a degree program for undergraduate students at U.S.C.B. who are seeking South Carolina teaching certification. Early childhood education majors benefit from engaging hands-on experiences, opportunities to integrate theory with teaching practice, and extensive field and clinical experiences in child care settings, Head Start centers, Montessori schools, and local public schools. This program provides students with a broad academic background and the professional knowledge, skills, and dispositions needed to work with young children, ages birth through eight.
The early childhood education program is a 123 semester-hour program. All students seeking to complete the B.A. in Early Childhood Education degree must be formally admitted into the Professional Program when they have completed a minimum of 46 semester hours, 30 of which must be completed at U.S.C.B., and met other requirements. The Pre-Professional and Professional Program sequence for early childhood education requires 67 hours of coursework focused on the development of pedagogical and content knowledge.
The curriculum focuses on instructional strategies, teaching methodologies, assessment techniques, theories of child growth and development, unique learning needs of exceptional students, and the impact of family and cultural diversity on early childhood. The program has embedded field, practica, and clinical experiences throughout the coursework. In addition, the early childhood curriculum aligns with the conceptual framework, the Constructivist Educator, and prepares U.S.C.B.'s graduates to work with young children of varied cultural, ethnic and economic backgrounds in the global community.
The Department of Education is nationally accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE). In August 2013, U.S.C.B.'s Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Education program received "National Recognition" by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), This recognition is also part of the NCATE accreditation requirements.
Admission to the Professional Program
Students who are seeking to complete the Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Education or the Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education must be formerly admitted to the Professional Program in the Department of Education. Formal admission occurs when students have completed between 46-55 hours of undergraduate study and have met all other requirements noted below. Transfer students with more than 56 undergraduate hours should apply during their first semester at U.S.C.B.
Students may apply for admission once they have:
- Attended an Education Orientation Session
- Maintained a cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) of at least 2.75* in all undergraduate coursework
- Completed all Pre-Professional courses with a minimum GPA of 3.0 and a “C” or better in each course
- Completed the following courses with grades of “C” or better in each course: English (ENGL B101 and ENGL B102), Speech Communications (COMM B140 or COMM B201) and Math (MATH B221 and MATH B222)
- Achieved passing scores on all three sections of the Praxis™ Core Academic Skills for Educators tests. Official scores must be submitted to and received by the Department of Education
- Completed a Criminal Background Check and Full Disclosure Statement from the State Law Enforcement Division (SLED)
- Completed 25-hours of Youth Experiences or the Teacher Cadet Program
- Successfully completed the Professional Program Admission Essay
- Received approval by the U.S.C.B. Professional Education Committee
Professional Program Applications should be completed and submitted by the following dates:
Fall - February 1, Spring - October 1