Early Childhood Special Education, B.A.

Degree + Professional Educator License + Endorsements

Provide an array of services in educational settings by obtaining three endorsements with one program.

The Early Childhood Special Education program at Lewis University grants students the tools and knowledge to make a positive difference in the lives of young children and their families, regardless of ability, income level or cultural and linguistic backgrounds. Additionally, Lewis is partnered with more than 60 school districts, seven counties and 130 schools in the Chicago area, allowing students to become exposed to a variety of cultures and communities during their field experience hours. Most importantly, since students can acquire three highly-sought endorsements with one program, they will be highly competitive in the job market upon graduation.










Three Endorsements through One Program

Lewis University’s program is one of the only early childhood degree programs in Illinois to offer all three endorsements within one major:
  • Early Childhood Education – Regular education classrooms, birth through 3rd grade.
  • Early Childhood Special Education – Special education classrooms, birth through 3rd grade.
  • English as a Second Language – Classrooms with students learning English as a second language, Pre-K through grade 12.

These endorsements are quickly becoming the required qualifications for teachers of preschool and primary children in the state of Illinois. Many schools and districts seek candidates with these three endorsements for teaching positions at lower grade levels.

Early Childhood Education Subsequent Teaching Endorsement – Birth-Grade 3 (18 credit hours)

Once you hold a Professional Educator License (PEL) or Educator License with Stipulations endorsed in a teaching field, you can add additional content area endorsements. These endorsements can be added at any grade level even if the underlying teaching endorsement on the PEL is a different grade range. The PEL serves as a foundation to which any teaching endorsement can be added after applicable coursework and testing are completed.

Lewis University offers the following subsequent teaching endorsement in Early Childhood Education:

ECED 31000/51000 Foundations of Early Childhood Education
ECED 31500/51500 Child Growth & Development
ECED 32000/52000 Child, Family, Culture and Community
ECED 32500/52500 Curriculum, Organization & Methods of Creative Arts & Literacy
ECED 35600/55600 Math, Science & Social Studies P-3
ECED 36000/54600 History/Philosophy of Early Childhood Education

Pass the Early Childhood Education content test (206)

2+2 Program Option

Through a unique partnership with Joliet Junior College (JJC), students may attend JJC for the first two years of the program and complete the final two years at Lewis University's main campus in Romeoville. Upon completion of the program, students receive a Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Special Education degree from Lewis University.

The Early Childhood Special Education with ESL Endorsement program is fully approved by the State Educator Preparation and Licensure Board and the Illinois State Board of Education.

Scholarship Options

Visit the Financial Aid for Educational Studies page for more information on education scholarships.

Sample Courses:

  • Foundations of Early Childhood Education
  • Child, Family, Culture and Community
  • Beginning Linguistics and Development of Speech and Language in Early Childhood
  • Collaboration and Adaptations for Special Needs in General Education Settings
  • Assessment and Intervention for Classroom Teachers
  • Exceptional Learners in Inclusive Communities

Career Areas:

  • Public School Teacher in Regular or Special Education – Pre-Kindergarten, Kindergarten and Grades 1-3
  • Child Care Center Director
  • Head Start Personnel
  • Social Services Agencies
  • Home Visitation/Parent Education Programs

On Campus Opportunities

  • Teachers of Tomorrow
  • Best Buddies Illinois

Admission Requirements

  • Cumulative GPA of 2.75
  • Completion of an introductory-level methods course

Please refer to the Office of Admission for application requirements and specific next steps.


Related Programs

For more information contact the Office of Admission at admission@lewisu.edu or call (815)836-5250.