Best Online Master’s Degrees in Early Childhood Education

Resources, Program Options & Curricula for Online ECE Master’s Students

An online master’s degree in early childhood education allows students to dive deeper into the theory and practice of teaching young children. This higher education program is for certified early childhood teachers who want to expand their knowledge and advance their careers, or for students who have earned bachelor’s degrees in another field and want to guide young children into the American school system. Read on to see more of what a master’s degree in early childhood education can mean for future educators.

2017 Degree Leaderboard: Online Master’s in Early Childhood Education

Tuition costs, financial aid options, student sizes and graduate services are just a few of the factors that determine the strength of an online early education master’s program. Use these rankings to see the top early childhood education programs in the U.S.

RankSchool Title Net Price Financial Aid Total Programs Student-Teacher ratioGrad RateRanking ScoreSchool DescriptionAdditional Benefits: Placement Services Counseling Services Credit for Experience
1Concordia University-Nebraska Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
100%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
63%
Ranking SCORE 98.93
Read more

Students in Concordia University-Nebraska Master of Education in Early Childhood Education program generally have a background working with children, whether that experience is at the preschool or elementary levels. The curriculum aligns with standards set by the National Association for the Education of Young Children. A minimum of 36 hours are required to be awarded the master's degree. Training offers guidelines, methods and study that assist adults in teaching children between the ages of birth and eight years. Current research approaches and tools are covered. An essay, resume, transcripts and an application are needed to start taking classes.

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceNo
2Southwestern College Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
95%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
51%
Ranking SCORE 98.71
Read more

Traditional and special education for students at elementary through secondary levels is acquired within Southwestern College's Master of Education Curriculum and Instruction. Professional educators and school administrators learn how to develop and enhance their leadership, research and teaching assessment abilities. The Master of Education in Special Education is another graduate teaching degree awarded at Southwestern College. In the special education track, there's the option to major in a high incidence or a low incidence concentration. Each degrees takes about 36 hours to earn. An online option is available for all of the college's master's in education programs.

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesNo Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceYes
3University of Alabama at Birmingham Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
66%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
48%
Ranking SCORE 98.71
Read more

The University of Alabama at Birmingham's Master of Education degrees offer adults the abilities, skills and background learning to work public or private schools as preschool or elementary teachers. Assessments and theories that students learn about cover developmental reading, classroom management techniques and the development of a child. Minimum credits needed to graduate range from 31 to 58 hours. The combined early childhood and elementary education degree takes the longest to complete. Students can graduate from a standalone early childhood or elementary education program after they take 31 to 34 credits.

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceYes
4Jacksonville State University Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
56%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
29%
Ranking SCORE 97.16
Read more

Courses in Jacksonville State University's Master of Science in Education in Early Childhood Education are developed and taught through the College of Education and Professional Studies. Clinical experiences are a part of the program. Workshops, dispositions and training in technology, math and science balance the traditional lecture, reading and writing components of the instruction. The master's degree is intended for adults who already have a teacher's certification. Elementary education, reading specialist, early childhood special education and early childhood education are specific areas that the degree is conferred in.

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceYes
5Concordia University-Chicago Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
100%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
49%
Ranking SCORE 96.93
Read more

The chance to get an education near Chicago, one of America's major cities, is available to adults majoring in the Master of Education in Early Childhood Education or the Master of Education in Early Childhood Special Education at Concordia University-Chicago. Accelerated and traditional tracks are available. The approximately 30 credit programs prepare adults to work with students between kindergarten and 21 years of age. In addition to completing about 30 credits, students need a professional educator license and an early childhood certificate to graduate. Focal areas in the programs are research, language development and teaching assessments. The university accepts transfer credits from other accredited education programs.

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceYes
6Harding University Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
91%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
61%
Ranking SCORE 96.60
Read more

Harding University's Cannon-Clary College of Education offers advanced training programs that support and deepen learning for educators. Instructors who teach classes in the university's master's level education degree programs have practical elementary and secondary classroom teaching experience. In person classes are taught at the school's professional centers located in North Little Rock and Rogers, Arkansas and in Memphis, Tennessee. Education degrees awarded at Harding University include the Master of Education in Advanced Studies in Teaching and Learning, Master of Education in Special Education K-12 and the Master of Science in Education. Graduate level licenses are also awarded.

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceNo
7Northern Arizona University Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
66%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
49%
Ranking SCORE 96.48
Read more

Three areas of emphasis are offered through Northern Arizona University's Master of Education in Early Childhood Education degree. Students can choose to pursue courses that have an emphasis in early childhood teacher, early childhood leadership or early childhood national board preparation. Each program aims to strengthen teacher skills at the preschool and elementary levels. It takes about two years to finish the approximately 31 credit hour program. Online and on campus learning options are open. Students with a bachelor's degree need at least a 3.0 GPA, transcripts, a teaching certificate and a completed application to be eligible to pursue the degree.

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceNo
8Northwestern State University of Louisiana Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
48%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
36%
Ranking SCORE 95.82
Read more

Teachers who are currently certified could meet the eligibility requirements for the Master of Education in Early Childhood Education degree at Northwestern State University of Louisiana. The main campus where classes are taught is in Natchitoches, Louisiana. Online courses are delivered through the university's global campus. A practicum, a thesis and classroom training make up the degree program. Curriculum development, childhood learning design, relationships with children, families and communities and advanced child development are types of classes that instructors offer advanced learning in. The university operates on admissions deadlines.

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceYes
9Champlain College Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
94%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
64%
Ranking SCORE 95.72
Read more

Current teachers aiming to continue their learning could apply for a Master of Education in Early Childhood Education degree from Champlain College. It's possible to earn the degree completely online. Students can continue to work while they take classes. Emphasis can be selected in special education, early childhood education teaching or early childhood education administration. Included in the course list are classes like early childhood and play, child, family and community, behavior analysis and intervention and administration of early childhood programs. A five day residency is offered in May and January. The residency takes place in Burlington, Vermont.

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceYes
10Emporia State University Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
76%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
42%
Ranking SCORE 95.69
Read more

The Master of Education in Early Childhood Education degree program at Emporia State University prepares adults to teach students who attend nursery school, preschool or elementary school. Students can major in special education or regular education tracks. Among the program outcomes is the opportunity to take and pass the Kansas Early Childhood Unified license for the birth to eight years old range. Campus visits for graduate students are accepted online. A bachelor's teaching degree or a similar bachelor's degree and a 3.0 or higher GPA are required to get into the program.

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceNo
11Concordia University-Saint Paul Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
85%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
47%
Ranking SCORE 95.45
Read more

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceYes
12University of the Southwest Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
98%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
22%
Ranking SCORE 95.30
Read more

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesNo Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceNo
13Western Kentucky University Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
37%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
50%
Ranking SCORE 95.22
Read more

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceNo
14University of South Alabama Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
59%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
37%
Ranking SCORE 95.01
Read more

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceNo
15Stephen F Austin State University Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
52%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
44%
Ranking SCORE 94.97
Read more

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceYes
16University of Northern Iowa Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
59%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
66%
Ranking SCORE 94.89
Read more

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceNo
17University of West Alabama Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
47%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
27%
Ranking SCORE 94.87
Read more

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceNo
18Albany State University Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
11%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
39%
Ranking SCORE 94.83
Read more

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceYes
19Mercy College Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
88%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
34%
Ranking SCORE 94.71
Read more

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceYes
20University of Dayton Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
95%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
78%
Ranking SCORE 94.62
Read more

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceNo
21East Carolina University Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
50%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
58%
Ranking SCORE 94.40
Read more

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceNo
22University of Colorado Denver Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
48%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
45%
Ranking SCORE 93.98
Read more

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceNo
23Texas A & M University-Commerce Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
52%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
36%
Ranking SCORE 93.82
Read more

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesNo Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceYes
24West Chester University of Pennsylvania Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
13%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
69%
Ranking SCORE 92.38
Read more

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceYes
25University of North Dakota Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
30%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
52%
Ranking SCORE 91.98
Read more

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceNo
26University of South Carolina-Upstate Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
17%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
38%
Ranking SCORE 91.63
Read more

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceNo
27Southern New Hampshire University Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
71%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
59%
Ranking SCORE 89.14
Read more

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesYes Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceYes
28Georgia Southern University Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
8%
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
50%
Ranking SCORE 88.81
Read more

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesNo Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceYes
29Pacific Oaks College Net
Price
FINANCIAL
AID %
N/A
TOTAL
PROGRAMS
1
STUDENT-TEACHER
RATIO
GRAD
RATE
N/A
Ranking SCORE 86.73
Read more

Additional Benefits: Placement ServicesNo Counseling ServicesYes Credit for ExperienceYes

Find the Right Online Master’s Degrees in ECE for You

This tool can be used to help decide which online master’s in early childhood education programs to apply to. First, explore a range of online programs narrowed down by school name, school type and tuition. Then, sort the results to see a side-by-side comparison of their student populations, acceptance rates, cost and number of programs.

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Acceptance Rate Student Population School Type Online Early Childhood Education Programs

Explore the Online ECE Master’s Degree Timeline

Students accepted to a master’s in early childhood education program learn child psychology, lesson planning and how to navigate shifting American school system standards. Most programs have students choose a specialization within early childhood education for the two-year program. Students may even have to work with a class of children before graduating as part of their program requirements.

Admission Process

Online master’s programs in early childhood education ask students for a great deal of commitment, preparing them to work with children or to design programs and deal with administrative business. The admissions process for a master’s degree is rigorous, and there are specific requirements for accepted students to meet, including the following.

Bachelor’s degree in ECE or related field

Because this is a graduate-level degree program, applicants must first complete a bachelor’s degree. Candidates with undergraduate degrees in in early childhood education or a closely related field, such as psychology, child development, education or sociology, are best fit for this master’s program.

Transcripts and GPA standards

Programs ask for official transcripts from all higher learning institutions that an applicant has attended. These transcripts must reflect a GPA above a certain range on the 4.0 scale, generally 2.3 or higher.

GRE and/or MAT scores

Some programs ask applicants to take the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) and/or the Miller Analogy Test (MAT) and submit their scores. These tests show how prepared an applicant is for graduate degree studies.

Teaching credential

Some online early childhood education programs require students to complete a practicum in an early learning classroom, meaning that students may have to have a state teaching credential before entering the program.

Year 1 Milestones
Classroom management and classroom environment

Online master’s degree students learn to keep control of a classroom, manage difficult children or those who need extra help, and create a learning environment that welcomes all children and their families.

Curriculum planning for young students

Structuring learning and playtime for young children makes up a large part of an early childhood teacher’s duties. Students in online early childhood learning degree programs learn to organize instruction in ways that suit a range of learning styles.

Child psychology

Early childhood master’s degree programs teach students the different stages in child development, particularly mental and emotional milestones. Students in some programs may choose to specialize in child psychology and become school psychologists.

Practicum classroom work

Because a master’s in early childhood education prepares students to work with children in the classroom, online programs may require students to spend time there as well. This could be a set number of hours per semester or an extended placement at a particular point in the program.

Year 2 Milestones
Relationship-building strategies

Early childhood master’s programs teach educators to incorporate parents and other members of a child’s community in the process of learning, thereby spurring childhood development outside of the classroom.

Instruction and leadership progress

As master’s degree program students grow in their confidence working with young children and fellow educators, they should become able to control a classroom, direct learning, and encourage individual students and whole classes.

Early childhood education specializations

After completing the standard required coursework that addresses all aspects of early childhood education, students in a master’s degree program can narrow their focus to particular areas of early childhood education, such as learning theories, special education or supervisory roles.

Graduation Requirements

Graduating from an online early childhood master’s degree program can lead students directly into teaching positions in preschools or day care centers, administrative roles, or careers as counselors, program directors or school psychologists.

Course and credit requirements

Although some online master’s programs accept current early childhood educators who want to earn additional endorsements without completing a full graduate program, all other students must complete the program’s credit hour requirements for graduation. Required courses vary by institution but likely include instruction on teaching math, building literacy and developing curricula.

Participation in group projects

Because students in an online master’s in early childhood education programs are not learning in a classroom, professors may have them demonstrate their commitment to the program by grading the quality of their contributions to discussions. Group assignments are commonplace, and students may be asked to, for instance, role-play a parent-teacher meeting or put together a presentation outlining applicable pedagogies for early learners.

Classroom experience

Educators benefit from seeing other teachers at work and incorporating new methods into their instructional style. For this reason, many online programs include observational visits to pre-K, kindergarten and early primary classrooms, which are then followed up by classroom-based student teaching.

Licensing for early childhood ed

Some states require professionals to get additional licenses or certifications to teach or work with children. Online programs prepare their graduates for these exams with general course material, and some even run prep courses in addition to their core courses. Early childhood education students should discuss potential licenses with their program advisor so they can tailor their specializations to be relevant for these state exams.

Career Paths for Online Master’s in Early Childhood Education Graduates

Because of the higher intensity of the coursework combined with the ability to specialize within the field, graduates from an online master’s in early childhood education program have several career options. The most obvious career is teaching in a preschool, but the master’s degree opens up opportunities to administer programs, work in scientific roles or be an advocate for children. Below are a few jobs open to graduate degree holders that can inspire young children to learn and grow.

Browse Master’s in Early Childhood Education Careers
Preschool & Childcare Center Directors

Directors work in preschools and daycares, supervising staff members and managing all aspects of the child care programs. They design curricula, prepare budgets and ensure program excellence in addition to overseeing daily activities. They serve as the main point of communication between families and early childhood teachers.

Mean Annual Wage

$45,670

Growth Potential

7%

Special Education Teacher – Preschool

These instructors work with children who have mental, emotional, physical and/or learning disabilities. They adapt lessons for these children, teaching communication techniques and life skills at a level that is comprehensible and manageable. They may also teach general education lessons such as reading, writing and math in a one-on-one setting to give students more personalized attention.

Mean Annual Wage

$53,990

Growth Potential

9%

Grant Writer

Grant writers research, write and submit proposals for funding on behalf of child care centers, seeking funding from governments and private foundations. Grant writers may work for one institution or they may be hired on a freelance basis.

Mean Annual Wage

$60,250

Growth Potential

3%

Sociologist

Professionals in the field of sociology study behaviors within larger social structures, including what forces exert social influence, how groups form and why, and how a particular law may affect a specific section of the population. Sociologists typically work with research organizations, colleges and state and local governments.

Mean Annual Wage

$73,760

Growth Potential

-1%

Core Skills & Principles Learned in an Online Master’s in Early Childhood Education

Master’s in Early Childhood Education

  • Communication with young children

    The ability to clearly communicate information to children who are at various stages of development and have different learning styles is a key skill for early childhood educators to cultivate throughout their online master’s degree program and their careers. They will also have to speak with parents, discussing learning objectives and individual children’s progress as well as strategies to improve or reinforce lessons.

  • Understanding school systems

    Master’s program graduates must know the current context of schools, education, teaching theories and learning to be able to design standards-based lesson plans or administrative practices. Graduates will be able to put together a curriculum that not only meets governmental standards but also helps students to easily transition into primary classrooms.

  • Ability to work with a diverse student body

    Given the proliferation of child care centers, professionals in early childhood education can increase their chances of employment by being able to work with students, families and fellow teachers who come from diverse backgrounds. Early childhood educators, for instance, may find opportunities in Head Start and Early Head Start programs, which cater to children from lower socioeconomic standings. There are also many programs tailored to students who come from homes where English is not spoken. A master’s degree program exposes educators to the skills they need to work in diverse classrooms.

  • Appetite for continuing education

    A master’s degree is just one part of a professional’s continuing education plan. Government standards, teaching resources and technologies are constantly evolving. Educators must stay up to date as well as strengthen areas they did not fully cover in their master’s program. Examples of continuing education courses for early childhood educators include learning how to build a classroom portfolio, assessing toddlers’ mental health and creating behavior management plans.

2016 Degree Leaderboard: Online Master’s in Early Childhood Education

Score Tuition & Fees Financial Aid % Total Programs Student-teacher Ratio Grad Rate
Score Tuition & Fees Financial Aid % Total Programs Student-teacher Ratio Grad Rate
1 Marshall University 99.70 73% 2 19:1 44%

The master of arts in education with an emphasis on early childhood education program has two options, both of which are 36-hour courses of study. The first is for licensed PK-K teachers pursuing an advanced degree. The other course adds a PK-K endorsement to licensed elementary educators. Although the program does not lead to initial licensure, it can lead to license renewal, pay increases, added endorsements or promotion. Students will complete their coursework through the Blackboard 9.1 learning management system. MUOnline students will have access to academic advisement, the writing center, library services, the IT desk and career services.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth3
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate77%
Read More Read Less
2 Chaminade University of Honolulu 99.60 84% 3 11:1 36%

Students who graduate with a master of education in child development will be prepared for careers in a variety of settings with infants, young children and their families. All graduate programs are structured on an accelerated, 10-week format over four terms per year, which enables students to complete their degrees more quickly. Students who choose can opt for hybrid study, which blends some on-campus learning with online distance learning. Canvas is the official learning management system, and online students have the same access to advising, counseling, tutoring and other student services as traditional, on-campus students.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth3
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate86%
Read More Read Less
3 Southwestern Oklahoma State University 99.54 75% 2 18:1 35%

The master of education with a focus on early childhood education degree plan is designed for students who hold a teaching certificate, or who have already completed an approved program of study. The school is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (North Central Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools). Students will conduct coursework and receive and submit assignments through the Canvas learning management system, which they will also use to communicate with faculty and classmates. Online students will have access to tutoring, academic and registration advisement, counseling and library services.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs2
  • Acceptance Rate85%
Read More Read Less
4 Albany State University 99.53 8% 1 16:1 39%

Students can earn T-5 certification for work in preK-5 through the master of education, early childhood education degree. Albany State's Online Learning website, Virtual Front Door for RamNet, contains all the tools, support and information that distance learners will need for the program. The website has been recently redesigned, as has the site's information architecture and metadata, making the site more user friendly and functional. On-site search and social sharing has also been improved. Online students will receive enrollment and academic advisement, and will have access to counseling, library services, tutoring and technical support.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth1
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate47%
Read More Read Less
5 Liberty University 99.38 84% 1 18:1 46%

Liberty University, the largest private provider of online university instruction in the country, offers a 36-credit hour master of education, teaching and learning childhood education degree program. Although the online format challenges students, it is also flexible enough to accommodate their diverse schedules. The Department of Education will have to verify licensure, and students will have to verify additional licensure in their state or origin. Students can transfer up to six credits from an accredited institution. In adherence with the school's spiritual philosophy, all curriculae in the education department is interwoven with Christian philosophy and scriptural principles.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth3
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate22%
Read More Read Less
6 Northwestern State University of Louisiana 99.34 76% 2 20:1 36%

Nationally ranked and recognized by more than two dozen journals and college guides, Northwestern State University is a military-friendly institution with an online program designed to accommodate students with unpredictable schedules. The master of arts in teaching, early childhood education will give graduates all the required standards of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). There is also a 39-semester PK-3 track. Students can gain experience and earn credit through a prior learning assessment program. Eight-week fast-track courses enables students to take just one or two courses at a time.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs2
  • Acceptance Rate73%
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7 University of Central Missouri 99.22 7% 1 18:1 49%

At UCM, the faculty who teach online courses are the same instructors who teach at the physical campus. The master of education in early childhood and elementary education degree program is based on National Board standards. UCM faculty and staff are trained on the Quality Matters qualification, a nationwide benchmark for online course design. UCM also participates in National Distance Learning Week. Student services include advising and major exploration, technology support, admissions support, the Student Success Center, the Writing Center and an Office of Military and Veterans Services. All online programs use the Blackboard learning management system.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate78%
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8 Metropolitan College of New York 99.11 94% 1 11:1 22%

The initial teacher certification master of science in education: dual childhood 1-6/special education program follows an accelerated, 12-month format. The school's unique Purpose-Centered System of Education is a cohort model based on peer learning that is aligned with New York State Teaching Standards. Each online student will receive their own laptop computer. Students — who include uncertified educators, recent graduates and those changing careers — are expected to complete the program in 12 consecutive months. Since the program culminates in fieldwork, New York state's Personal Eligibility Tracking System (PETS) requires fingerprint clearance.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth1
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate53%
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9 Mercer University 99.07 89% 1 13:1 63%

The MEd of early childhood education is a 30-semester hour program that starts three times a year. Fall registration starts in August, Spring starts in January and Summer begins in May. Although the program, which is delivered in eight-week sessions, is offered completely online, students can choose to schedule face-to-face meetings with their instructors. Students who are already Level 4 certified in early childhood can choose to upgrade to a master's Level 5 by the Georgia Professional Standards Committee once they complete the program. Students have access to tutoring, advisement services and special programs, including a writing program and an honors program.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate67%
Read More Read Less
10 Stephen F Austin State University 99.01 66% 2 20:1 44%

Stephen F. Austin State University offers a M.Ed. in Early Childhood Education degree entirely online. The M.Ed. is a 36 credit program with classes offered in half-term formats conducted in fall and spring semesters. All instructors are certified for online teaching by the Stephen F. Austin State University Office of Instructional Technology (OIT). Texas is midway on a federally funded program to expand ECE in the state through colleges and universities, Regional Education Service Centers, the Texas Early Learning Council, and Head Start. Located in Nacogdoches, Texas, Stephen F. Austin State University serves 13,000 students on campus and through online degree programs.

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs2
  • Acceptance Rate59%
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11 California University of Pennsylvania 98.97 61% 2 22:1 54%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth3
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate90%
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12 Troy University 98.93 61% 1 15:1 35%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate44%
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13 University of Alabama at Birmingham 98.90 56% 2 18:1 48%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs2
  • Acceptance Rate86%
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14 Concordia University-Chicago 98.90 9% 2 17:1 49%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate54%
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15 Champlain College 98.88 79% 1 14:1 64%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate64%
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16 Concordia University-Saint Paul 98.70 66% 1 15:1 47%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate53%
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17 Jacksonville State University 98.63 65% 2 19:1 29%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate83%
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18 Mercy College 98.59 69% 2 19:1 34%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs2
  • Acceptance Rate72%
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19 New York Institute of Technology 98.57 79% 1 14:1 46%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth1
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate64%
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20 West Chester University of Pennsylvania 98.51 41% 1 18:1 69%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate53%
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21 Southeastern University 98.47 76% 1 18:1 40%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth1
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate44%
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22 Old Dominion University 98.43 54% 2 20:1 49%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate82%
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23 LeTourneau University 98.38 68% 1 14:1 61%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth1
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate49%
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24 Brenau University 98.29 59% 1 11:1 45%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth1
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate76%
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25 Southern New Hampshire University 98.25 65% 2 28:1 59%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs2
  • Acceptance Rate84%
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26 Texas A & M University-Commerce 94.37 73% 2 18:1 36%

  • Placement ServicesNo
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate48%
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27 Nova Southeastern University 94.33 83% 2 16:1 42%

  • Placement ServicesNo
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth3
  • # Online Programs2
  • Acceptance Rate49%
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28 Georgia Southern University 94.16 66% 1 21:1 50%

  • Placement ServicesNo
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate63%
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29 Pacific Oaks College 93.67 74% 1 10:1 N/A

  • Placement ServicesNo
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth1
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance RateN/A
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30 Southwestern College 93.63 6% 1 8:1 51%

  • Placement ServicesNo
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceYes
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate88%
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31 Emporia State University 92.12 78% 1 18:1 42%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate76%
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32 Southern Arkansas University Main Campus 91.92 82% 1 16:1 35%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate71%
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33 Harding University 91.82 86% 2 16:1 61%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs2
  • Acceptance Rate99%
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34 Delta State University 91.79 74% 1 13:1 37%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
  • Program Breadth1
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate92%
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35 Western New Mexico University 91.78 65% 1 16:1 16%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance RateN/A
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36 Arkansas State University-Main Campus 91.72 76% 2 17:1 39%

  • Placement ServicesYes
  • Counseling ServicesYes
  • Credit for ExperienceNo
  • Program Breadth2
  • # Online Programs1
  • Acceptance Rate72%
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Additional Resources

Administrators, counselors and other professionals working in the field of early childhood education can find current policies and data via various organizations online. See the resources below for the latest research, lesson plans and government policies.

Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning

This organization, based at Vanderbilt University, provides research and resources to early childhood teachers, including plans and training modules for educators working with each age group and strategies for handling difficult children.

Fred Rogers Center

Begun in the memory of children’s television star Mr. Rogers, this center has teaching resources on how to incorporate media into learning strategies and encourage simple interactions with children.

National Association for the Education of Young Children

NAEYC is a professional membership organization that publishes work on early childhood policy, best practices and research to help teachers advance their educations and careers.

U. S. Department of Education

Almost all current government policies and educational resources relating to early childhood and preschool are on this website, which also has an archive of informational resources.