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The concentration in early childhood, offered in partnership with the Curry School of Education and Human Development, includes 18 credits comprised of six required courses. The concentration is designed to provide new educational and employment opportunities for adult learners seeking to complete their undergraduate degree with a liberal arts education and a professional focus in early childhood. Courses develop students’ foundational knowledge and skills in early childhood.

Students in the early childhood concentration are also required to take two ISLS courses and two 4000-level ISIN Special Topics in the Conduct of Inquiry (one in Humanities, and one in Social Sciences) courses.

Required Early Childhood Courses

  • Foundations of Early Childhood Development & Education
  • Understanding & Supporting Self-Regulation in Early Childhood
  • Poverty in Early Childhood in the United States
  • Early Language Development Theory, Science & Practice
  • Mathematics in Early Childhood: Understanding, Assessing & Supporting Development
  • Interaction with Intention: Working with Young Children

Students in the early childhood concentration are also required to take 24 credits of degree electives outside of early childhood courses. These vary by semester and may include courses in disciplines such as anthropology, art, art history, architectural history, classics, drama, economics, history, literature, music, philosophy, politics, religion, and sociology.

Frequently Asked Questions

What will a concentration in early childhood prepare me to do? 
The early childhood concentration will prepare you to fill a variety of in-demand roles in childcare, pre-school, education administration, and child, family, and school services.  Other options might include careers in research, counseling, or child psychology. Some of these career paths may require education beyond a bachelor’s degree. For those interested in teaching, the concentration will provide excellent preparation for post-graduate programs that provide teacher licensure.

Will the early childhood concentration provide me with a Virginia teaching license?
No. The early childhood concentration does not provide a Virginia teaching license. It does prepare you to advance to a master of teaching program – such as the University of Virginia Curry School’s nationally-recognized Post-Graduate Master of Teaching (PGMT) – or pursue various alternative routes to teacher licensure in Virginia or elsewhere. Careful advising throughout BIS will support you to ensure that you have the coursework needed to pursue these options.

Can I get a job teaching without a Virginia teaching license?
Private schools may hire teachers without a license, and preschool teachers (working outside the public school system) typically do not need a license.

Can I complete this concentration online?
Yes. The Curry School of Education will hold all of the required early childhood courses online, using the Canvas learning management system. All of the early childhood courses will use asynchronous delivery, meaning that students do not need to log in to course activities or materials at a set time of day but can complete work for the classes whenever is convenient for them. Early childhood students will be earning a Bachelor of Interdisciplinary Studies degree (BIS), which has several other required core and elective courses. These classes are also available online but through CANVAS, another learning management system. Most BIS core and elective courses are held synchronously, meaning that students will need to log in to the learning management system at a set time each week.  

Do I need to take the early childhood courses in any set order?
All students in the concentration must take “Foundations of Early Childhood Development & Education” first. “Interaction with Intention: Working with Young Children” comes at the end of the program. Students must either have completed other concentration requirements before enrolling in the class or be enrolled in both “Interaction with Intention” and any additional concentration courses they need to complete. Beyond these requirements, students may take concentration courses in any order. 

 

* The information contained on this website is for informational purposes only. The Undergraduate Record and Graduate Record represent the official repository for academic program requirements.

Faculty Spotlight

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I want my students to realize that good writing just doesn’t happen. You have to work at it.
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Charlotte Matthews

BACHELOR OF INTERDISCIPLINARY STUDIES

Charlotte Matthews is a well-regarded poet with three full-length poetry collections to her name. Also an associate professor in the BIS program, she delivers rigorous instruction in writing and revision while encouraging students to develop their own voice. In 2018, Charlotte received the Adelle F. Robertson Award, the school’s highest honor, for sustained excellence in providing new knowledge, instruction, and public service to the people, organizations, and institutions served by the University.

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It is extremely energizing to teach adult students, especially the highly motivated students in our program.
A photograph of Stephen Levine

Stephen Levine

BACHELOR OF INTERDISCIPLINARY STUDIES

Stephen is an associate professor in BIS, and also serves as the program director. He has been teaching courses on U.S. cultural history since 2006, and, in addition to his work as an instructor, strives to increase access and flexibility at UVA to help adult learners reach their academic goals. Under his leadership, students are now able to complete the BIS degree entirely online.

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Student Spotlight

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It was very important to me to set an example for my three children. And earning my degree was a source of personal satisfaction.
A photograph of Marisela Perez

Marisela Perez

BACHELOR OF INTERDISCIPLINARY STUDIES

As a part-time student and working mother of three, Marisela took advantage of flexible learning opportunities and employer reimbursement to earn her bachelor’s from SCPS. After completing her associate’s degree at a local community college, she enrolled in the BIS program part-time. She completed her degree online after relocating from Charlottesville to California, and now works as an accounting manager for Tri-Dim, who sponsored her SCPS studies.

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I'm in a managerial position now. An SCPS degree provided the foundation for advancing in my career.
A photograph of Clifton Jones

Clifton Jones

BACHELOR OF INTERDISCIPLINARY STUDIES

When Clifton began his academic career at UVA, it was as a biomedical engineering student in the rigorous Engineering School. Three years in, however, he realized that this field was not for him. He left Charlottesville to enter the workforce, and started applying his talents at a youth arts organization in Washington, DC. Now returning to UVA as a BIS student, Clifton is completing his undergraduate degree in his true area of interest, and is collecting skills that will help him advance his creative career.

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At orientation, everyone was kind and supportive, and they make you feel welcomed as a UVA student. You get all the services you would expect from a university like this. It is amazing.
A photograph of Jesús Pino

Jesús Pino

BACHELOR OF INTERDISCIPLINARY STUDIES

Jesús came to SCPS by way of his home city of Córdoba, where he developed a passion for photography as the co-founder of a bimonthly arts and culture magazine. When he relocated to the United States for his wife’s job, he decided to advance his photography and advertising career with an undergraduate degree. Now a bachelor’s student at BIS, he’s making connections, developing expertise, and gaining experience in pursuit of his dream job.

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