2021-2022 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog 
    Jun 24, 2024  
2021-2022 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Early Childhood Special Education, B.S.

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The BS in Early Childhood degree is an educational program offered by the Department of Elementary and Special Education. The Early Childhood Special Education degree at Fontbonne combines theories and techniques from Education, Early Childhood Education and Special Education fields to provide our students with a specialized degree to enable them to work affectively with young children and families birth to 3rd grade special education.

Program Approval

Students must apply for program approval during the second semester of their sophomore year, upon completing 45 hours. Transfer students apply for program approval in their second semester at Fontbonne University. Program approval is based upon the following criteria:

  • Completion of EDU 269   without conditions (or a transferred course equivalent);
  • Qualifying scores on the Missouri General Education Assessment;
  • Satisfactory completion of the program’s approved dispositional assessment
  • Successful performance of the essential functions of a major in the Education/Special Education Department
  • A cumulative, blended GPA of 3.00* for all professional coursework from all colleges/universities attended;
  • A cumulative, blended GPA of 2.75* from all colleges/universities attended;
  • Transfer students who have completed Introduction to Classroom Teaching (or equivalent) at another institution must complete a required zero-hour course: EDU 301 Teacher Education at Fontbonne University  

*Content/professional courses must be graded courses; pass/fail grades are not accepted 

Program Approval with Conditions

This designation is available on a one-time only, one-semester basis, and indicates that the student is deficient in one or more of the above categories. The student may continue to major in a certification program with conditions once, for one semester only. Students who do not eradicate all deficiencies will not be allowed to continue in a certification program, will not be admitted into the teacher certification, and therefore, will not be allowed to student teach. 

Rejection for Program Approval

Students who show little or no capability to successfully complete requirements for a certification program in the department will be rejected for program approval, will not be allowed to enroll for additional education coursework in that major, and will be referred for career counseling pursuant to a change of major. A General Studies major with an emphasis in education (which does not lead to certification), could be an option for such students.

General Education Requirements

General education requirements are presenting in the undergraduate academic information section in this catalog.  A course that meets a general education requirement may also meet a course requirement in the major or a course requirement in another discipline. 

While students must complete a full general education sequence, the following specific general education courses must be taken to meet the requirements for this major:

Graduation Requirement

Student must complete one course in religion, REL 225 - World Religions  is highly recommended.

Learning Outcomes

Graduates of the program will be able to: 

  • Analyze and intervene via strategies and procedures to engage unique behaviors, standards, and achievement of the individual needs of an early childhood student aged birth to third grade.
  • Design, implement and evaluate student data and Early Childhood Education curriculum standards to find solutions to meet a given set of requirements for individual needs of an early childhood special education student. 
  • Communicate effectively in a variety of professional contexts. 
  • Recognize professional responsibilities and make informed judgements based on legal and ethical principles. 
  • Function effectively as a member or leader of a team engaged in activities appropriate to the application of Early Childhood Special Education. 
  • Apply educational concepts and models to manage and analyze student data sets, to support decision-making and to produce solutions to real-world problems concerning the early childhood special education student and families.


See DESE Matrix and advising sheet attached with program course scope and sequence.  Students who get a special education degree have certification to teach special education in grades K-12, students who get an Early Childhood degree have certification to teach Birth to grade three, and students who will enroll in ECESPED will be certified to teach Birth through grade third grade special education.  This is a specialty in working with younger students with special needs.

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