Master of Arts Degree in Infant/Toddler Early Childhood Special Education
S. Mary Ann, Cashin, M.S., Chairperson, Child Study
Katherine L. Granelli, Ed.D., Director
As the first degree of its kind on Long Island and offered only at SJC Long Island, this program is designed for those interested in obtaining a Master of Arts Degree in Infant/Toddler Early Childhood Special Education and leads to initial or professional certification in Early Childhood Special Education and/or initial or professional certification in Early Childhood. This part-time program is suitable for students and teachers who either have basic certifications in Early Childhood, Early Childhood Special Education, Childhood Education and/or Childhood Special Education, or for students who wish to earn certification in Early Childhood, Early Childhood Special Education, Childhood Education who work or plan to work with infants, toddlers, and children in the early childhood stages of development, and who may have special developmental delays. The courses offered are appropriate for students and teachers who wish to acquire or continue their expertise in teaching by acquiring knowledge and developing competencies working with infants, toddlers, and young children, and their families. The program emphasizes the interrelated development of knowledge, understanding, sensitivity, and skills resulting in more effective and significant teaching and learning.
The graduate program consists of 36 credits. Some courses are three credits and some are four. Students must complete the 36 credits, which include one semester or summer session in a practicum placement and a Master’s Thesis. To successfully complete the program, students must maintain a B average.
Mission and Goals
The mission of the Infant/Toddler/Early Childhood Special Education graduate program at St. Joseph’s College is to produce early childhood educators who are exceptionally skilled at enhancing the cognitive, physical, and social development of young children aged birth through second grade with a wide range of special needs. Our graduate students become skilled at developing and implementing curricula that are grounded in current research and follow the standards of NYS and professional organizations (CEC-DEC, NAEYC). Through a cross-disciplinary sequence of courses built around collaboration with families and other professionals, graduates are prepared to work in a variety of educational environments (homes, schools, and other community settings).
The graduate student will use knowledge of developmentally appropriate practices and individual differences to create instructional and therapeutic opportunities that are adapted to diverse learners.
The graduate student will use systematic formal and informal assessment approaches to provide information on children’s acquisition of skills and to create appropriate learning opportunities.
The graduate student will become familiar with facilities, equipment, and materials that create accessible learning environments.
The graduate student will develop the interpersonal skills and cultural awareness needed to engage in productive partnerships with families, communities, and other professionals.
The graduate student will bring knowledgeable, reflective, and critical perspectives to his/her work and integrate knowledge from a variety of sources in order to make informed decisions about supports and services.
Students entering the program with NYSED initial teaching certification and students entering the program without NYSED initial teaching certification who only want the degree but not the NYSED teaching certification will take the following courses:
Students entering the program without NYSED initial teaching certification but who ARE seeking NYSED initial teaching certification by completing the program will take the following course sequence instead: CS 555 , CS 571 , CS 576 and CS 581 . The difference in course work involves the required number of fieldwork and students teaching hours.
Core Curriculum - 27 Credits
Specialized Courses - 6 Credits
Completion of a Master’s Thesis Credits Total 36
All applicants for admission to the Master of Arts in Infant/Toddler Early Childhood Special Education will possess a baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution of higher education with an undergraduate grade point average of 3.0.
Candidates must submit:
- A graduate application accompanied by a non-refundable fee of $25.00.
- Complete and official transcripts of all collegiate work.
- Two completed Letter of Recommendation forms. Each recommendation should be from an academic source, preferably a teacher or academic official who is familiar with the applicant’s academic history and achievement. If the applicant has been out of school for several years, recommendations can be from an employer or supervisor.
- A current resume.
- Copies of all teaching certificates.
- A completed medical form. New York State Public Health Law requires all students who were born after January 1, 1957 to be immunized against measles, mumps, and rubella. Candidates will be required to submit proof of a recent physical examination including a Diphtheria-Tetanus booster and a Tuberculin Skin test.
- A completed Meningococcal Meningitis vaccination response form as required by New York Public Health Law.
- Applicants will be contacted by the Admissions Office to arrange for an interview with the program director after all relevant documents have been submitted.
- At the time of the interview, a writing sample, the topic of which is the applicant’s immediate objectives and future plans in relation to graduate study in the chosen field (minimum 250 words), will be completed.
Transfer of Prior Coursework
Matriculated students in the Graduate Program may apply to the Program Director for acceptance of up to six (6) graduate credits, with grades of B or better, from other accredited graduate programs. Acceptance will be dependent upon appropriateness of the courses to the student’s program of study.