Admission Requirements & Deadlines

  • A baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university**.
  • A minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.00 is required for full admission and 2.75 for conditional admission to the program. All GPA calculations are based on the last 60 units of undergraduate and post-baccalaureate study.
  • A current résumé to be submitted with the application for admission as well as all post-secondary transcripts.
  • Experience/background in the field with young children and families.
  • Two professional narrative letters of recommendation (Email addresses of recommenders must be entered on application)
  • A brief (two-page) admission essay discussing the applicant's experiences working with young children and families, and rationale for earning a master's degree related to professional goals and career aspirations.

One or more of the following:

  • An undergraduate degree or graduate course work in Early Childhood Education, child development, family studies or a related field OR
  • Teacher certification in early childhood education OR
  • Teacher certification in elementary education plus 6 units in early childhood education OR
  • A minimum of three years of professional experience in an early childhood program or related setting serving young children from birth to age 8 OR
  • Undergraduate courses in the following areas: educational psychology or psychology of learning, child growth and development, curriculum and methods in early childhood education

Exceptional candidates who do not meet the specific experience/background criteria above may be considered for admission if they intend to work in settings with children from birth through age 8. In these instances, an interview with the program director is required.

NOTE: The M.Ed. in Early Childhood Education is an advanced program and does not lead to initial teacher certification in early childhood education. Individuals interested in post-baccalaureate initial certification should apply for the M. Ed. Certification Option. 

Non-immigrant international students: See additional admission information in International Graduate Admissions.

**See Exceptions to Policy in Graduate Admissions.

M.Ed. Certification Option

The program offers a certification option for Early Childhood Education graduate students who already have a background in the field of early childhood education, in addition to increased professional development at the graduate level. The M.Ed. in Early Childhood Education is recommended for graduate students with undergraduate degrees or significant experience in early childhood education, child development, or child and family studies, or who are practicing professionals working with young children and families. The M.Ed. Certification Option consists of the seven required courses and four elective courses that are geared toward certification, as well as additional units in specific areas to meet certification requirements. These additional units will be determined based on prior course work, and will likely include courses in the teaching of reading and internship. The M.Ed. Certification Option will likely require more than the 33 units for the basic M.Ed.

In addition to the admissions requirements above, applicants for the M.Ed. Certification Option must also provide qualifying scores on the Praxis CORE exam (as determined by MSDE) or other approved testing alternative (qualifying SAT, ACT, or GRE scores).