Early Childhood

Early Childhood/PreK-4 Education

The Early Childhood Education program will prepare you to be certified to teach children from birth to age nine (PreK-4th Grade). Throughout the program you will have hands-on interaction with young children, putting research and theory into practice.  

What You'll Study

Early Childhood Education

Your courses will provide a strong foundation of basic child development theory and will combine real-world experience with the study of education methods taught by former classroom teachers. You will begin active classroom participation as early as your second semester. Classroom participation is a hallmark of LHU’s early childhood program. Topics covered include:

  • Language Development
  • Observing and Assessing
  • Developing Creative Expression
  • Assessment Methods



Accelerated BSED in PREK-4 to MED Alternative Education/Innovative Instruction
 Student Learning Outcomes

Accelerated BSED PreK-4 Education to MEd Alternative Education

Accelerated BSED in PREK-4 to MED Teaching and Learning Student Learning Outcomes

Accelerated BSED PreK-4 Education to MEd Teaching and Learning

Special Education Dual Certification

Certification in special education prepares you to teach persons with intellectual and physical disabilities. This includes individuals diagnosed with learning disabilities, intellectual disabilities, physical disabilities, brain injuries, and emotional or behavior disorders. Any early childhood, middle level, or secondary education major can choose to take courses leading to special education certification. The dual certification program meets the Pennsylvania State guidelines for certification in both areas. Topics covered include:

  • Foundations of Special Education
  • Positive Behavior Support
  • Literacy Skills for Students with Disabilities

Special Education/ PreK-4 ECE Student Learning Outcomes


Early Childhood Education Minor

This minor is currently open to majors in Special Education or Elementary Education and is intended to provide you with a second area of expertise, but does not lead to ECE Certification.


PreK- Grade 4 Post –Baccalaureate

The post-baccalaureate program allows individuals who already hold a bachelor’s degree to complete the requirements to earn teaching certification. Candidates will receive the same high quality, hands-on learning but will not need to seek a second degree.

Earn Your PreK-Grade 4 Teaching Certification in this Post-Bachelor’s Plan!

It’s never too late to become a teacher! If you earned your bachelor’s degree, have significant work with children, and have a proven track record of academic excellence, you should consider enrolling in our post-baccalaureate PreK-Grade 4 certificate program to earn the qualifications to start teaching in preprimary or primary classrooms. It is not necessary to complete a second degree to become certified. You may attend full or part time.

Many of our courses are offered online. Student Teaching must be done in the surrounding area to Lock Haven University and requires 12 weeks of full time attendance.

How Can I Apply to the Post Bac Plan at LHU?

All students seeking their initial (first) instructional (teaching) certificate must be admitted through the PreK-Grade 8 and Professional Studies Department. A GPA of 3.0 or greater is required. Potential students who do not have an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 may be receive conditional acceptance and take up to 12 sh to establish the required GPA.

  1. Applications must be made through the PreK-Grade 8 and Professional Studies Department as a post-baccalaureate certification student. Both undergraduate and graduate courses may be taken during this program. Students seeking additional coursework towards the M.Ed. must apply to the graduate program, no certification is issued with the M.Ed. program.
  2. When application has been completed, transcripts will be evaluated by faculty in the Early Childhood/PreK-Grade 4 Program. All evaluations are done on an individual basis. All students are given written statements listing requirements and they may discuss them with their advisor at any time.
  3. Education Candidates must maintain continuous and satisfactory progress. All post-baccalaureate certification students may proceed a part-time basis as fits their needs with the exception of the required student teaching experience.
  4. Once Relevant coursework is complete, and upon recommendation of the academic advisor, a candidate is eligible for student teaching. Working in cooperation with the Director of Student Teaching, the applicant will complete the application and interview process, including a portfolio presentation, prior to any student teaching placements are made.
  5. At the conclusion of student teaching and successful completion of the required PECT exams, the department will make a recommendation to the Certification Officer to recommend the issuance of the PA Instructional Certificate I in PreK-Grade 4.



Download the Prek-Grade 4 Post Baccalaureate Handbook

Have questions about teacher certification through the Post-Baccalaureate program?  Email any questions or your completed application, essay, and transcripts to Dr. Amy Long at ael01@lockhaven.edu

Child Development Associate Credential

Earn 9 college credits that can be applied toward the national Child Development Associate Credential.  All credits can also be applied toward the B.S. in Early Childhood Education.  Courses include:

  • Becoming a Teacher Leader
  • Child Development and Brain Building Science
  • Positive Behavior Supports for Young Children

Download the CDA CREDENTIAL Flyer (PDF)

Certificate in Curriculum and Assessment

Develop skills in curriculum design and assessment and earn 9 college credits.  All credits can be applied toward the B.S. in Early Childhood Education.  Courses include:

  • Observing and Assessing Young Children
  • Emerging Mathematics and Science
  • Beginning Literacy


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Program Highlights

  • Professional  Semester:  The PreK-Grade 4 program offers a block of classes that create the Professional Semester.  In this final semester prior to student teaching, teacher candidates will spend class time learning about methods for teaching math, science, social studies, and English/language arts.  In addition, candidates will spend more than 4 full weeks in the PreK-to Grade 4 classroom teaching children under the supervision of a faculty member and cooperating teacher.  This is experience is designed to build skills, knowledge, and dispositions that will be used during student teaching and ultimately land their first teaching job!
  • Student Teaching: Beginning in your freshman year you will participate in a variety of teaching situations, followed by a professional methods semester, and a student teaching semester. Over four years you will spend more than 80 hours in observation and classroom placements. The program includes 150 hours in classroom settings for pre-student teaching and two, seven- week student teaching experiences—one in a Pre K-1st grade self-contained classroom, and one in a grade 2-4 self-contained classroom. Your assignments will usually be within a 50-60 mile radius of LHU campus. You will also have the opportunity to student teach abroad at any of our partner universities around the world.
  • Scholarships: From honorariums to full-tuition waivers, scholarships exist to reward your hard work and dedication to the major. Find more information here.
  • Careers: Upon graduation and certification, you will be qualified to teach in elementary schools, pre-schools, and Head Start programs as well as to direct a day care center. Our graduates have a high success rate in finding employment in schools throughout Pennsylvania and across the country. The faculty’s strong relationships with communities and schools, along with LHU’s historic reputation in teacher education, allows for easy placement of LHU teacher candidates.
    • Certification: Completion of the B.S. in Early Childhood Education degree at LHU leads to your positive recommendation to the Pennsylvania Department of Education when you apply for certification. The Level I certificate qualifies you to teach Pre-Kindergarten through 4th Grade.
    • LHU’s degree program in Secondary Education General Science leads to Pennsylvania certification to teach students in grades 7-12. Our nationally accredited program offers an effective blend of science content, teacher training, and numerous field experiences.

  • Facilities:  The Department of Early Childhood Education at LHU is housed in the Robinson Learning Center on the 1st, 2nd, 6th, and 7th floors.  The department offers state of the art learning facilities on the 2nd floor which include: small classrooms designed for student interaction and teaching activities; and, e-support via smart boards, computing, and other teaching & learning tools. Faculty deliver courses in technology-enhanced classrooms with vast multimedia capabilities.  Students can access open computer labs and campus wireless network when using personally-owned devices.  Students can request technology resources from Stevenson Library, Media Services.

Featured Program Faculty



Want to Know More?

Department of Early Childhood Education

Todd Hoover, Ed.D.
McCormick Center for Human Services – 2216 (Bloomsburg campus)

Contact our Admissions Office

8:00am to 4:00pm Monday-Friday
(570) 484-2027

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