Early Care and Early Childhood Studies, BS (with Teacher Certification)

Are you interested in becoming a highly qualified and effective professional who works with young children from birth to age eight? Completing an Early Care and Early Childhood Studies degree program prepares you to successfully acquire the knowledge, skills, and dispositions required to pursue a rewarding career working with young children, their families, and the community to promote high-quality developmentally appropriate education and services to all young children. This program will qualify you to seek positions in both public and private schools. Common places of employment for those with a degree that specializes in early childhood education with teacher certification include: child development centers, preschools, kindergartens, elementary school settings, child protective services, and early childhood education coaches.

Mission Statement

To prepare highly skilled professionals to assume roles and positions in teaching, research, educational leadership, and human development to contribute to the educational achievement of all young children ages birth to 8 years in early childhood settings including classrooms.

Student Learning Objectives

  1. Teacher candidates will use their understanding of young children's characteristics and needs, and of multiple interacting influences on children's development and learning, to create environments that are healthy, respectful, supportive, and challenging for each child.
  2. Teacher candidates will plan and use a wide array of developmentally appropriate practices, instructional strategies, and tools to connect with children and families and positively influence each child's development and learning.

Intended Audience

The Early Care and Early Childhood Studies (ECED) with Teacher Certification program at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley prepares teacher candidates to earn a teaching certificate to work with young children ages 0 to 8. The ECED program also prepares candidates to assume the role of the general education teacher with specific understanding of the unique needs of diverse young children from birth to age eight. They are prepared in a community of learners, making sense of readings, observations, field experiences, and group projects, to link and apply knowledge of child development content and teaching strategies to match young children’s unique ways of learning.

All ECED courses are aligned to the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) Standards for Early Childhood Professional Preparation Programs and the new early childhood education certification exam.

Program Requirements

  • Students must apply for admission and be accepted to the College of education and P-16 Integration prior to enrolling in teacher certification courses;
  • Program interview is a pre-requisite before enrolling in cluster courses and admission to teacher preparation program;
  • Education floater courses must be taken before student teaching (SPED 4310 and EDSL 3310)
  • Students must pass certification exams before student teaching (EDCI 4637)
  • Field Experience is a program requirement;
  • Students are required 5 hours of community service and 5 hours of professional development per cluster/semester
  • All coursework on Degree Plan must be completed before graduation (120 Total Credit Hours)
Early Care and Early Childhood Studies (BS)
Bachelor of Science Degree Plan
Early Care and Early Childhood Studies (Teacher Certification)    
For students enrolled at UTRGV after Fall 2018

Students who enrolled at The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, after the Fall 2018 semester should follow the Bachelor of Science in Early Care & Early Childhood Studies with teacher certification roadmap.

Early Care and Early Childhood Studies (BS)
Bachelor of Science Roadmap
After Fall 2018
Early Care and Early Childhood Studies (Teacher Certification)  
For students enrolled at UTRGV before Fall 2018

Students who enrolled at The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, before the Fall 2018 semester following the Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies in EC-6 with Early Childhood Education specialization (teacher certification) degree plan should use the following roadmap.

EC-6 with Early Childhood Education specialization with teacher certification (BIS)
Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies Roadmap
Before Fall 2018
EC-6 with Early Childhood Education specialization (Teacher Certification)  

Opportunities for collaboration and growth

Students enrolled in the BS in Early Care & Early Childhood Studies with Teacher Certification program will have opportunities to participate in:

  • UTCARES: an early childhood education student organization that advocates for the well-being of young children in the community
  • Local and Regional conferences
  • Community service events
  • Collaboration with community partners such as Hidalgo County Head Start, UTRGV Child Development Center, and Early Childhood Education classrooms in our local public schools.

Professional Development and Community Hours

As part of the program, you will be required to fill out a Professional Development (PD) Record Sheet and a Community Service Record Sheet.

Criminal History Acknowledgement

Criminal Background Check
UTRGV students pursuing undergraduate degree plans that lead to State of Texas teacher certification must clear a criminal background check for program admission, field experiences, clinical teaching and certification.

As required by Texas HB1508, applicants need to be aware of the following.

  1. In order to receive certification in Texas, you must pass a criminal history background check.
  2. If you have been convicted of an offense that is considered not appropriate for an educator, you could be ineligible to earn this certification from the state of Texas.
  3. You have a right to request a preliminary criminal history evaluation letter from the Texas Education Agency prior to admission into this program. The Texas Education Agency currently charges a $50 fee for this criminal history evaluation.

For more information on Preliminary Criminal History Evaluation:

Contact Information

Please contact the program coordinator, if you have questions or need further information.

Program Coordinator: Dr. Irasema Salinas-Gonzalez, Associate Professor

Phone: (956) 665-7224

E-mail: irasema.gonzalez@utrgv.edu

Edinburg Campus: EEDUC 2.606