Early Childhood Education

CUW’s Early Childhood Education program emphasizes child development, play theory, faith development, emergent literacy, childrens literature, early social-emotional growth, and developmentally-appropriate curriculum planning. 

Why Study Early Childhood Education at CUW?

Our program offers you the opportunity to:

  • Work closely with young children in a variety of field experiences.
  • Receive a strong liberal arts education in a Christian setting.
  • Select from a variety of minors and concentrations, including two licensable minors: adaptive education and English as a Second Language (ESL).
  • Pursue dual certification in Special Education.
  • Collaborate with peers in academic, professional, and service projects.
  • Seek employment in profit and non-profit centers or schools that serve children birth to 3rd grade.

Program Facts

  • Years to complete: 4 – 41/2

Program Overview

The Early Childhood Education program offers you plenty of opportunities to build your classroom skills. You’ll also collaborate with fellow early childhood students on academic and service projects.

What You’ll Learn in CUW’s Early Childhood Education Program

Our program emphasizes:

  • Child development
  • Language development and emergent literacy
  • Children’s literature
  • Play theory
  • Developmentally appropriate Curriculum planning
  • Faith development
  • Hands-on field experiences
  • Early social-emotional growth

Career Choices

With a degree in Early Childhood you can find meaningful work in:

  • Elementary Schools- Private and Public, Pre-K – 3rd grade
  • Profit and Non-Profit Centers
  • Head Start Programs
  • Family Childcare Centers
  • After School Programs
  • Outdoor Settings: Camps or Nature Preschools


You can choose an Early Childhood concentration in:

  • Administration
  • Language Arts/Communications
  • Family Studies
  • Creative Arts


Early Childhood majors select a minor from a broad range of possibilities from Adaptive Education to Speech Communication. See our course catalog for a complete list of available minors.

Both the Adaptive Education and English as a Second Language minors are licensable at the Early Childhood level.


Graduates of the program will be state certified to teach from birth to age eight. Early Childhood Education majors can also pursue dual certification in regular and special education.


Early Childhood students take the liberal arts core, developmental classes, and courses in methods and techniques designed for early childhood students focused on math, science, language and literacy, social skills development, working with families, music, art, and health and wellness for the early childhood age group.  See our course catalog for details.

Important Things You Should Know

  • GPA is a major factor in being licensed by the state:  students must have a GPA of 2.75 to student teach and be eligible to be licensed.
  • To receive upper division status, you must have a GPA of 2.5, have completed and passed all clinical field work experiences, have passed the Core test, have successfully completed two portfolio presentations, and had a background check.
  • To student teach, you must have a GPA of 2.75, have completed all upper division field work experiences, have passed the Praxis 2 and the Wisconsin Foundations of Reading exam, have successfully completed the portfolio 3 interview, be certified in pediatric CPR and first aid, and had a background check.
  • Student Teaching in early childhood consists of three different placements. Two placements will last 6 weeks, with an additional placement of 9 weeks in which students will complete the edTPA requirement. For Lutheran education students, at least two of the placements will be at a Lutheran school.
  • Upon successful completion of the Early Childhood program, students are eligible to apply for the Wisconsin teacher’s license for early childhood (70-777). The program assumes no responsibility for the success of its students in obtaining professional certification or other types of professional licensure. 


Our program is approved by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, 1-800-441-4563, www.dpi.state.wi.us

High School Prep Courses

  • English
  • Math
  • Social studies
  • Science
  • Writing


Amy Lindgren
Early Childhood Department Chair

Jennifer Becker
Graduate Early Childhood Director