Education—Early Childhood

Program Description

A BSC degree in Early Childhood Education offers the reward of making a permanent difference in the lives of thousands of children. This specialty prepares students for administration and teaching positions in childcare, preschool, Head Start and after school programs. BSC offers coursework for transfer to an early childhood education program at a four-year institution. Students concentrate on general education classes the first year. Courses in children’s literature, math for elementary teachers, health/wellness and music and arts activities are added sophomore year.

Students should review state testing requirements to become a licensed educator in states where they want to teach. Those planning a career as a professional educator in North Dakota are prepared for initial licensure testing requirements in conjunction with EDUC 250. The first level of North Dakota’s two-level Praxis exam, the Praxis I (PPST) exam, should be completed during sophomore year.

Preparation

Early childhood educators typically work with children 6 weeks to 6 years of age and generally enjoy small children. Some designed four-year programs offer teacher licensure opportunities up to second grade. Individuals considering this field should be creative, energetic, dependable, resourceful, and patient, possess good communication skills, and enjoy being directly involved in the educational and emotional development of children. Suggested high school classes include basic academics such as English, mathematics, science and technology. Participation in arts activities is beneficial.

Program Requirements

Students who complete the suggested curriculum earn an Associate in Arts and/or an Associate in Science.

Bismarck State College continues to collaborate with North Dakota postsecondary institutions to coordinate up-to-date articulation agreements directing students to the best pathways of degree completion. While BSC does not have a four-year degree program in education, we do offer a series of classes to assist students to meet the requirements necessary to apply to enter a four-year education program. Most bachelor degree granting teachers’ education programs have degree plans uniquely established within their own accreditation. As such, it is extremely important for prospective education students to work with their BSC advisor to more fully understand these unique requirements and how best they may be completed through their enrollment at BSC.

Before meeting with your advisor, students should perform the following tasks:

  1. Decide which school they plan to transfer to pursue their four-year education degree?
  2. Contact the transfer school and inquire about the application procedures for the program.
  3. Obtain a specific list of the requirements for program entry including which courses will be required for entry into the program, the GPA requirements for program entry, and which courses will transfer into the schools program.
  4. After gathering this information, students should schedule a meeting with their assigned advisor, bring their obtained information, and together a plan will be put together for completion and preparation for transfer.

Career Opportunities

Degrees in early childhood education can be specialized to individual interests. Most opt for teaching, but opportunities are available as a childcare professional in a day care facility, a business owner with a focus on early childhood development, child development researcher, and child development professor at a college or university.

Career Possibilities: Preschool or elementary teacher, child care administrator/director, family services worker, nutritionist, human resources specialist, social services coordinator, home visitor, parent educator, resource specialist, licensing analyst, disabilities specialist, nanny, playground aide, coach.

Contact

Kimberly Gutierrez • LEA Hall 201B
701-224-5521

Kimberly.Gutierrez@bismarckstate.edu