- Course Delivery
- Fully Online
- Total Credits
- In-State Tuition Per Credit
- Out of State Tuition Per Credit
Earn your degree from the University of Nebraska at Kearney
Get the same diploma as on campus students
The online Early Childhood Inclusive, Initial Certification is a convenient, high-quality program for individuals who are interested in working with the very youngest population. This program leads to a certification in Early Childhood Inclusive.
Students choose this program to:
- Gain knowledge from faculty expertise in research and teaching children 0-8.
- Preparation to teach children 0-5 in special education settings and ages 0-8 in regular education settings.
- Acquire a knowledge base, applicable skills, competencies and appropriate practicum experiences.
- Benefit from the flexible format of online courses that allow students to complete coursework according to their schedule on the traditional semester basis.
- Age 3-Grade 3
The program is designed for in-service teachers, assistants in preschools, staff in HeadStart programs and other non-traditional students who are unable to attend regular face-to-face classes at a university.
Certification Information: The program is offered in lieu of the traditional Early Childhood Inclusive, BS degree. This means students will not receive a second bachelors degree, but a certification in Early Childhood Inclusive. Students pursuing certification in other states must check with their State Department of Education for certification requirements.
Career Outlook: The online Early Childhood Inclusive, Initial Certification program is designed for in-service teachers, assistants in preschools, staff in HeadStart programs and other careers.
- Elementary School Teacher
- Preschool Teacher
- Daycare Teacher
- In-service Teachers
- Preschool Assistant
- Head Start Staff
Dawn Mollenkopf earned her doctorate in Special Education Policy Integration with an emphasis in Early Childhood Education. She directs the Early Childhood Unified (ECU) program and has worked with five different Federal U.S. Department of Education grants to help early childhood teachers and young children. Mollenkopf is passionate about teaching the next generation of leaders in education.
To be accepted to this program, you must have:
A bachelor's degree
Bachelor's degree in any non-teaching discipline.
Official transcripts from all previous schools
To apply to this program:
- Complete and submit the online application for admissions .
- Pay the $45 non-refundable application fee.
Rolling admissions. Application review will begin upon receipt of all required application materials.
Students choose one of the following specializations:
- Age 3-Grade 3
Coursework for Specialization in Birth-Kindergarten:
- FAMS 302: Parent Education
- TE 336: Methods for Preschool and Kindergarten Classrooms
- TE 338: Infant and Toddler Mental Health
- TE 339: Infant and Toddler Curriculum
- TE 347: Literacy Methods 0-3
Coursework for Specialization Age 3-Grade 3:
- MATH 330: Math for Elementary Teachers II
- TE 312: Math Methods II
- TE 313: Field Experience: Math
- TE 335: Inclusive Methods K-3
- TE 335L: Field Experience: Inclusive Methods K-3
- TE 336: Methods for Preschool and Kindergarten Classrooms
|College Algebra OR Concepts in Mathematics & Statistics||3|
Course Number: MATH 102 OR 104
MATH 104: An algebra course designed specifically for students going into elementary education. Many of the topics are similar to topics found in a traditional college algebra course. However, topics from the areas of probability and statistics have been included to give the prospective elementary teacher the necessary background to meet state and national curriculum standards for elementary mathematics. MATH 102:A college level algebra course which includes a study of linear equations and inequalities, relations and functions, graphing of linear and quadratic functions, polynomial and rational functions, logarithmic and exponential functions, systems of equations, matrices, sequences and series and other selected topics all of which are necessary for the study of calculus.
|Math for Elementary Teachers I||3|
Course Number: MATH 230
In this course, preservice teachers develop knowledge of mathematics important for the effective teaching of PK-6 students. The mathematical topics investigated in the course include problem solving, the number system, alternate base systems, operations with whole numbers and integers, introductory number theory concepts and data analysis. In all of these topics, preservice teachers learn to develop appropriate mathematical explanations, understand student reasoning about mathematics and communicate mathematical reasoning.
|Music & Movement for Early Childhood Teachers||3|
Course Number: MUS 404
This Early Childhood music and movement course is for anyone interested in teaching in early childhood education, from birth through age 8. Basic understanding, musical skills, movement activities, methods and materials for the early childhood teacher will be explored.
|Nutrition, Health & Safety for Young Children||3|
Course Number: PE 247
This course is designed to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of the nutrition, health and safety needs of young children from birth to eight years of age. This course will prepare students to address the well-being of diverse young children and their families in a variety of early childhood settings, including family childcare, childcare centers, preschools and early elementary school settings.
|Teaching in a Democratic Society||3|
Course Number: TE 100
The first course for all teacher education majors. The key course themes are democracy, diversity, and technology. Current educational issues will be explored. The course includes a field experience in K-12 school sites and, also, includes a community service learning component. Concurrent enrollment in a matched section of PSCI 110 is encouraged.
|Typical & Atypical Growth & Development||3|
Course Number: TE 204
This course is one of the two required classes for Level II education majors. Students will become aware of human development and exceptionalities as related to five specific categories: physical development, emotional/behavioral development, social development, language development and cognitive development. As students explore these five categories, they will also be made aware of how disabilities may alter the development of an individual. Early childhood, middle childhood, early adolescence and late adolescence are the four major age groups explored within the development and exceptionalities areas. Students will also be made aware of the concepts of diversity, democracy and technology in a classroom. As students progress through the semester, they will be asked to observe individual students in a K-12 partner school setting. The field experiences embedded in the structure of the semester will allow students to make the connection between course content and theory and the relevance of development in a classroom setting. Subsequently, a case study will be compiled by each student using the data collected and analyzed from the field observations. Assessment of dispositions and the case study completed in this course are required common assessments in the Teacher Education program
|Instructional Technology & The Preservice Teacher||3|
Course Number: TE 206
This course will introduce preservice teachers to a variety of technologies and strategies for their use in the instructional process to accommodate diverse students. Preservice teachers will comprehend and model ethical and democratic principles of instructional technology integration in their classrooms. One course requirement is a P-12 school-based project.
|Math Methods I||3|
Course Number: TE 311
This course focuses on the teaching of mathematics in an elementary classroom setting. The philosophy of teaching mathematics, as advocated by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics will be introduced. The teaching methodology will center on the mathematical content strands of number/operation and algebra as well as the process strands of problem solving, making connections and reasoning.
|Field Experince: Math||3|
Course Number: TE 313
The course is designed to provide practical application of effective mathematics instructional skills and assessment techniques. Students will be placed in one or more elementary classroom settings for a total of fifty (50) clock hours. Students will develop and implement math activities, lessons plans and assessment procedures with individual students, small groups and the entire class.
|Phonics and Word Study||3|
Course Number: TE 314
This course is designed to teach phonics/word study skill instruction in inclusive K-6 classrooms. The course will emphasize phonemic awareness, phonics, sight word recognition and spelling in a balanced literacy program.
Course Number: TE 315
This course emphasizes the assessment of literacy in grades kindergarten through three. The teacher candidate will learn how to administer and interpret assessments of reading and writing ability.
|Primary Grades Literacy||3|
Course Number: TE 316
This course focuses on the teaching of literacy in the primary grades (K-3). The course will emphasize a balanced literacy perspective for the development of reading and writing abilities by primary age children in the inclusive primary grades classroom.
|Field Experience: Literacy||3|
Course Number: TE 317
The course is designed to provide practical application of effective primary literacy instructional skills and assessment techniques. Students will be placed in one or more elementary (Kindergarten to Grade 3) classroom settings for a total of fifty (50) clock hours. Students will develop and implement primary literacy lessons plans and assessment procedures.
|Management/Assessment in Preschool/Elementary Classrooms||3|
Course Number: TE 318
This course is designed to prepare students for the challenges of effectively managing the classroom and assessing student progress. The course emphasizes: planning, preparing, establishing routines, monitoring and managing student behavior, aligning standards-based assessments, determining assessment alternatives and interpreting assessment results.
|Foundations of Early Childhood Education||3|
Course Number: TE 341
The focus of this introductory course is on historical and philosophical developments in the care and education of children with typical and atypical development, birth through age eight. Legal basis of services for young children and current social issues and legislation are studied. Students are introduced to the range of children served and developmentally appropriate practices for each of the age groups: infants and toddlers, preschoolers, kindergarteners and primary grade children.
|Literacy Methods for Preschool Teacher||3|
Course Number: TE 342
The focus of this course is on preparing teachers to create effective beginning literacy programs for young children. Primary focus will be on preschool aged children with attention to both typical, atypical and second language development. Students will (1) understand child development in relation to oral and written language, (2) be able to assess young children's language skills, (3) know how to create literacy-rich environments, (4) learn important teaching strategies to effectively promote early language skills and (5) address the language needs of a diverse range of learners, including those with disabilities and Dual Language Learners.
|Methods of Inclusion Education; Ages 3-5||3|
Course Number: TE 343
This course is designed to provide students with the experiential knowledge and practical skills necessary to select, evaluate, develop, adapt and implement developmentally appropriate inclusive instructional strategies for infants and toddlers birth through age three across developmental domain areas. Students will focus on arranging inclusive environments, monitoring children's progress, working with IFSP's, and embedding inclusive teaching strategies within the context of developmentally appropriate curriculum materials to maximize healthy development and learning for infants and toddlers with and without disabilities.
|Field Experience: Birth to Age 3||3|
Course Number: TE 343L
This course is designed to provide practical application of integrated, inclusive instructional strategies and assessment procedures for all young children birth through age three. Student will be placed in early childhood teaching environments with children birth through age three including children with disabilities. The experiences shall consist of 30 clock hours with 20% of the hours (6 hours) in settings with children with a range of disabilities.
|Methods of Inclusive Education; Ages 3-5||3|
Course Number: TE 344
This course is designed to provide students with the experiential knowledge and practical skills necessary to select, evaluate, develop, adapt and implement developmentally appropriate inclusive curricular materials and instructional strategies for children ages 3 to 5. Students will focus on arranging inclusive environments, monitoring children's progress, working with IEPs and embedding inclusive teaching strategies within the context of developmentally appropriate curriculum materials to maximize healthy development and learning for children ages 3 to 5 with and without disabilities, including those who are gifted or who are English Language Learners.
|Field Experiences: Ages 3-5||3|
Course Number: TE 344L
This course is designed to provide practical application of integrated, inclusive instructional strategies and assessment procedures for all young children ages three to five. Students will be placed in early childhood teaching environments with children age 3 through age five including children with disabilities. The experiences shall consist of 30 clock hours with 20% of the hours (6 hours) in settings with children with a range of disabilities.
|Early Childhood Program Administration||3|
Course Number: TE 346
This course is designed to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of the administrative aspects of early childhood programs. This course will prepare students to plan a facility, identify program goals, work with community resources, collaborate with schools and other early childhood programs, implement an early childhood program and evaluate program quality.
|Math, Science and Social Studies for Children 0-8||3|
Course Number: TE 348
This course is designed to provide students with the experiential knowledge and practical skills necessary to develop and implement developmentally appropriate curricular materials and instructional strategies in the areas of math, science and social studies for children 0-8. Students will develop an understanding of social concepts and mathematical and scientific processes in the context of child development and how to implement activities and experiences across subject areas and themes that engage children in the learning process and help them internalize foundational concepts. Students will develop the skills to prepare materials and activities that are culturally sensitive and address the needs of children with and without disabilities, including those who are gifted or who are English Language Learners.
|Supporting Young Children Through Family & Community Involvement||3|
Course Number: TE 349
This course is designed to help students acquire the critical skills they need to establish effective, productive relationships with the families of young children and members of the community. Students will utilize a wide array of realistic case studies and issues for discussion that sensitively address the increasing diversity of family structures in society. In addition, students will have a better understanding of parents and families and the resources available to them.
Course Number: TE 400
Student teaching is the capstone experience in the teacher education process and is the culminating course for all endorsement programs. During student teaching, teacher education students spend a minimum of 16 weeks in an approved PreK-12 school, to observe, participate and teach under the supervision of an experienced teacher.
|Inclusive Practices for Students with Exceptionalities in PreK-8 Classrooms||3|
Course Number: TE 411
The course addresses the instructional needs of students with exceptionalities and giftedness in integrated settings. Special education referral process, Rule 51, Rule 3, Section 504, analysis of instruction/environment and its impact on learning, assignment/assessment modification, behavioral issues and evaluation of student learning will be emphasized.
|Serving Young Children with Special Needs||3|
Course Number: TESE 333
The focus of this course is to provide a thorough overview of early intervention and early childhood special education, with special attention to medical and disability characteristics of young children with special developmental and learning needs and how these may be further impacted by cultural and at-risk factors. Students will become familiar with the IFSP and IEP process, including how to collaborate with other team members and work with families and understand Part C regulations under IDEIA.
|Assessment & Intervention||3|
Course Number: TESE 334
The focus of this course is to provide a thorough understanding of the assessment process, uses of assessment for screening, identification, planning for intervention and progress monitoring. Students will understand the types of assessments used, evaluate assessments to determine the best match for its purpose and incorporate child factors including disability and culture, to select and use appropriate assessments. Students will use assessment data to make meaningful decisions for intervention.
|Field Experience: Assessment & Intervention||3|
Course Number: TESE 334L
This course is designed to provide practical application of the assessment process for screening, identification, planning for intervention and progress monitoring. Students will work in early childhood settings with assigned children who have disabilities to administer appropriate assessments and use assessment data to make meaningful decisions for intervention. Students will monitor child progress and adjust interventions as needed to maximize development and learning. The experiences shall consist of 30 clock hours.
Cost for Nebraska Residents
Per Credit Hour
- Tuition: $309.00
- Fees: $56.25
- Total: $365.25
3 Credit Hours
- Tuition: $927.00
- Fees: $168.75
- Total: $1095.75
Cost for Out of State Residents
Per Credit Hour
- Tuition: $435.00
- Fees: $56.25
- Total: $491.25
3 Credit Hours
- Tuition: $1305.00
- Fees: $168.75
- Total: $1473.75
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Quality learning experience
The University of Nebraska has offered distance education courses for more than 100 years so you can expect a quality, rigorous experience. Online courses are often highly interactive with faculty and students communicating through e-mail, discussion forums and chat groups. You’ll have direct access to world-class faculty – researchers who are experts in their fields or practitioners with real-world experience. Also, you’ll be part of a community of learners and can benefit from the perspectives of students from across the globe.
Online learning gives you the flexibility and freedom to attend your classes wherever is convenient to you. You can save time and money by being able to continue to work and by avoiding relocation or travel costs. You will be required to complete assignments in a certain timeframe, but in most instances, you can log in and complete coursework during the time of day that works best for you. You aren’t tied to a specific class time.
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Online learners at the University of Nebraska have access to the same student services available to on-campus students. An academic adviser will guide you along your journey, library services are available to help you excel in your program and career services are available when you are ready to take your next step. These are just a few of the services in place to help you succeed.