May 24, 2024  
2011-2012 Graduate Studies Bulletin 
2011-2012 Graduate Studies Bulletin [ARCHIVED BULLETIN]

Special Education (Birth-Grade 2), M.S.Ed. in Inclusive Early Childhood

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Professor Schwartz, Graduate Program Director, (516) 463-5778.

For students with no formal course work or teaching experience in early childhood, or early childhood special education; 48-51 s.h. program. This inclusive early childhood special education program builds upon general education and all students must have the co-requisite preparation in early childhood education so as to gain the necessary knowledge, skills, and values to implement effective inclusive practice guided by developmentally and individually appropriate curriculum. Child development, both typical and atypical, formal and informal assessment,  research-based methodologies and instruction and collaboration among stakeholders are the major foci of the program. The program reflects a field-integrated approach that consists of a minimum of 120 clock hours of field work prior to student teaching. Field experiences are linked to each of the courses that comprise the professional core and include participant observation and field-related projects at a variety of early childhood settings including high-needs school districts. Students attend parent and professional meetings, as well as work individually with students with disabilities. Implementation of effective inclusive practice which provides young children and their families full and successful access to educational and other support services will be emphasized.

This dual graduate pre-service program leads toward the New York state initial  certification to teach early childhood (Birth-Grade 2), and the New York state initial/professional certificate to teach special education at the early childhood developmental level (Birth-Grade 2). Students can matriculate and complete additional requirements in order to receive the New York State Annotation to Teach Students With Severe or Multiple Disabilities. Hofstra’s master of science teacher education program in Inclusive early childhood special education conforms to the standards and guidelines of the National Association for the Education of Young Children and the Division for Early Childhood of the Council for Exceptional Children.

Admission Requirements

  1. A completed application form to the master’s program.
  2. A bachelor’s degree with a minimum grade point average of 3.0.
  3. Three letters of recommendation addressing the applicant’s potential to succeed in the teaching of students with disabilities.
  4. A written personal statement of professional intent.
  5. Interview with a faculty member in Special Education.

The department understands that any single criterion may not reliably predict a candidate’s potential for success in a graduate program. Consequently, candidates are welcome to apply if they do not meet one of the criteria but feel that other aspects of their experience may compensate.

Program Requirements - Total Semester Hours: 48 to 51

A maximum of 12 s.h. of graduate course work leading to the M.S. in Education in Inclusive Early Childhood Special Education degree may be completed prior to matriculation in the program.

Student must maintain a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 in order to remain in the program. Courses in which students receive grades below C- confer no credit toward the graduate degree but are included in determining grade point average.

Phase I - Semester Hours: 3

Select one from the following:

Reflective Practice - Semester Hours: 6-9

Field Experience Before Student Teaching

Participation/observation field experiences, which correspond to the developmental level of the certificate holder, are required in each of the following courses:

Student Teaching

Students will qualify for admission to Student Teaching, SPED 219G-219S, when they have satisfied the following requirements:

  1. Successful completion of 36 s.h. of core course work, including all courses in phases I and II
  2. A grade point average of 3.0 or higher in overall graduate course work.

Admission by permission of the graduate program director and application to the Office of Field Placement and the department of counseling, research, special education, and rehabilitation, due on May 1 for the succeeding spring semester and February 15 for the succeeding fall semester. Application forms are available in Hagedorn Hall, Room 118.

Graduation Requirements

  1. Completion of 48-51 semester hours with no fewer than 42 s.h. in residence.
  2. A minimum GPA of 3.0 in overall graduate course work and all special education core courses. 
  3. Passing grade on the comprehensive examination. 
  4. All course work taken in satisfaction of the degree requirements must have been completed within a five-year period.
  5. Completion of General Education Core.

Teacher Certification Requirements

Upon the successful completion of a Hofstra state-approved teacher education program, students are eligible for the University’s recommendation for New York state certification. A request for recommendation must be submitted to the Office of Certification and Educational Support Services the semester in which the student is graduating. Students who apply directly to New York state for certification are responsible for learning about and satisfying the certification requirements set by the state. It should be noted that such requirements may differ from those in Hofstra’s registered programs.

All prospective early childhood (Birth-Grade 2), elementary (Grades 1-6) and secondary (Grades 7-12), special subject teachers and educational leaders are required to pass the New York State Teachers Certification Examinations (NYSTCE) administered by Pearson Education, for state certification requirements. Students should consult with the Office of Certification and Educational Support Services regarding the appropriate examinations for their area of study. Beginning in May 2013 graduating students will be required to pass new Performance Assessments and revised Content Specialty Tests.

It is strongly recommended that students complete the Liberal Arts and Sciences Test (LAST) prior to student teaching, and the Assessment of Teaching Skills Written (ATS-W) and the Content Specialty Test (CST) during student teaching. Students not receiving passing scores on these examinations will not be eligible for certification.

In addition to fulfilling the required courses of study, the Commissioner’s Regulations mandate that all prospective teachers, pupil personnel and education leaders receive instructions regarding:
    1.     Identification of Child Abuse and Maltreatment.
    2.     Fire and Arson Prevention.
    3.     School Violence Prevention and Intervention.
    4.     Prevention of Alcohol, Tobacco and Drug Abuse.
    5.     Highway and School Safety/Prevention of Child Abduction.

New York state legislation also requires all persons seeking certification as special education teachers or school administrators working in special education to have training in the area of children with autism. All of these requirements must be completed before the conferral of the degree and recommendation for certification.


*For students seeking New York State Annotation to Teach Students with Severe or Multiple Disabilities. Students must be matriculated in this program.

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