Western Washington University · Bellingham, Washington
Early Childhood Special Education P-3, BAEd
What is the study of Early Childhood Special Education P-3?
Special Educators need to have extensive knowledge in four areas: they need to know about students and how they learn; they need to know about effective instruction; they need to know about the content of the lessons they will teach; and, they need to know about the context (social, legal, and political) in which they will work. Therefore, training to become a Special Educator will include work in each of these areas. The program includes coursework and extensive supervised practicum experiences in the public schools. The program is rigorous and the expectations are high. However, the rewards are also high. This program will prepare you to be an excellent teacher in whatever position you eventually choose. Our graduates are actively recruited by school districts to work in a variety of rewarding special education settings.
This plan of study is designed to prepare personnel to work with children from birth through eight years who have been identified as at-risk for developmental delay and disability and with their families. The major combines studies in Early Childhood and Special Education and leads to recommendation for a Washington State teaching certificate with endorsement in Early Childhood Special Education, Preschool through Grade 3 (P-3). Students may choose to complete additional coursework required to add the P-12 Special Education endorsement or the Early Childhood Education (P-3) endorsement.
Why Should I Consider this Major?
A considerable amount of research has documented the efficacy of early intervention in facilitating child development and minimizing the impact of disability. Thus, Early Childhood Special Educators are in a unique position to promote significant and positive change in the lives of young children as well as their families. Individuals who complete this major may choose from a variety of vocational options. Many pursue preschool teaching positions, and others work for a variety of agencies providing direct support to families, infants, and young children. Of course the instructional skills gained by majors are sound instructional practices that are useful with children with or without disabilities. If you enjoy working with young children
and their families in a collaborative manner to enhance child development, then consider this major.
- Special Education Pre-School Teacher
- Early Interventionist
- Inclusive Classroom Teacher
- Family Resource Coordinator
- Behavior Interventions Specialist