Who is this degree for?

Increasingly, all early childhood teachers need to be able to educate students with varying learning abilities, developmental delays, and/or disabilities. Not only are special education teachers in high demand, but growing numbers of these learners are entering inclusive early childhood classrooms.

Erikson’s specialization in early childhood special education prepares teachers to meet the needs of these students.

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Early Childhood Special Education Letter of Approval

By completing the requirements of this specialization, candidates will also be eligible to receive a letter of approval from the Illinois State Board of Education to teach young children (birth through age five) with special needs.

Early childhood teachers, including Erikson alumni, who already hold a teaching certificate can earn the Early Childhood Special Education letter of approval by completing only the specialization courses. For more information on applying, contact Maggie Murphy at [email protected]. (Students taking only the four courses are not eligible for federal Title IV financial aid.)


To complete the specialization and earn the letter of approval, you will take four courses in addition to the core curriculum for the teacher licensure program. Each course includes a minimum of 15 hours of field experience working with children with special needs and their families.

For a full description of the teacher preparation program requirements, see M.S. in Early Childhood Education Leading to Teaching License

Course Work

Sample course schedules

Prerequisite Courses:

Core Courses: