Early Childhood Education, B.A.

This program is designed for undergraduate students at the University of South Carolina who are interested in a career as an early childhood teacher, serving children birth through age 8.  Students who successfully complete the degree and licensure requirements and have a positive recommendation by the faculty will be recommended for teacher certification for prekindergarten through grade 3.

Learning Outcomes

  1. Students who graduate with a B.A. in Early Childhood Education should be able to …
  2. Effectively measure candidate performance and program effectiveness using methods that align with the Specialized Professional Association (SPA) or College of Education standards. 


Admission to the Professional Program

All University teacher education students must apply and be admitted to Professional Program/Internship at mid-point(s) in their programs prior to final internship (i.e.student teaching). Requirements for admission vary by program, but for undergraduate students include 60 credit hours with a minimum overall GPA of 2.75, successful completion of a state-approved basic skills examination, and courses as specified by program area.

Students should contact their program area or the College of Education Office of Student Affairs for specific requirements and application deadlines.

Degree Requirements (122 hours)

See College of Education for certification requirements and other academic opportunities.

Program of Study

Requirements Credit Hours
1. Carolina Core 31-43
2. College Requirements 0
3. Program Requirements 15-21
4. Major Requirements 70

Founding Documents Requirement

All undergraduate students must take a 3-credit course or its equivalent with a passing grade in the subject areas of History, Political Science, or African American Studies that covers the founding documents including the United State Constitution, the Declaration of Independence, the Emancipation Proclamation and one or more documents that are foundational to the African American Freedom struggle, and a minimum of five essays from the Federalist papers.  This course may count as a requirement in any part of the program of study including the Carolina Core, the major, minor or cognate, or as a general elective.  Courses that meet this requirement are listed here.

1. Carolina Core Requirements (31-43 hours)

CMW – Effective, Engaged, and Persuasive Communication: Written (6 hours)

Must be passed with a grade of C or higher​.

ARP – Analytical Reasoning and Problem Solving (6-8 hours) 

SCI – Scientific Literacy (7-8 hours)

Life Science from the following (3-4 hours):

Physical Science/Earth Science from the following (3-4 hours):

GFL – Global Citizenship and Multicultural Understanding: Foreign Language  (0-6 hours)

Complete the Carolina Core approved courses in Foreign Language (GFL) or by achieving a score of 2 or better on a USC foreign language placement test.

GHS – ​Global Citizenship and Multicultural Understanding: Historical Thinking (3 hours) 

GSS – Global Citizenship and Multicultural Understanding: Social Sciences (3 hours) 

AIU – Aesthetic and Interpretive Understanding (3 hours)

CMS – Effective, Engaged, and Persuasive Communication: Spoken Component1 (0-3 hours)

INF – Information Literacy1 (0-3 hours)

VSR – Values, Ethics, and Social Responsibility1 (0-3 hours)


Carolina Core Stand Alone or Overlay Eligible Requirements — Overlay-approved courses offer students the option of meeting two Carolina Core components in a single course. A maximum of two overlays is allowed. The total Carolina Core credit hours must add up to a minimum of 31 hours. Some programs may have a higher number of minimum Carolina Core hours due to specified requirements.

2. College Requirements (0 hours)

No college-required courses for this program.

3. Program Requirements (15-21 hours)

Supporting Courses (15 hours)

The following courses must be passed with a grade of C or higher 

Course Title Credits
Select one of the following:3
Children’s Literature
Children’s Literature
Picture Books
EDTE 500Mathematics Knowledge for Teaching I: PK-8 3
or MATH 221 Basic Concepts of Elementary Mathematics I
EDTE 501Mathematics Knowledge for Teaching II: PK-83
or MATH 222 Basic Concepts of Elementary Mathematics II
PEDU 575Physical Education for the Classroom Teacher3
Select one of the following:3
Art for Elementary Schools
Art of Children
Interdisciplinary Relationships in the Arts
Integrating Music into PreK & Elementary Classrooms
Drama in Education
Total Credit Hours15

Minor (0-18 hours) optional

A student may choose to complete a minor consisting of 18 credit hours of prescribed courses. The minor is intended to develop a coherent basic preparation in a second area of study. Courses applied toward general education requirements cannot be counted toward the minor. No course may satisfy both major and minor requirements. All minor courses must be passed with a grade of C or better.

Electives (0-6 hours) 

The number of elective hours required depends upon the number of hours used to fulfill other degree requirements.  Minimum degree requirements must equal 122 hours.

4. Major Requirements (70 hours)

A minimum grade of C is required in all major courses.

Education Core (14 hours)

Course Title Credits
EDTE 201Issues and Trends in Teaching and Learning3
EDFI 300Schools in Communities3
EDPY 401Learners and the Diversity of Learning3
EDRM 423Introduction to Classroom Assessment2
One course selected from:3
Introduction to Exceptional Children
Introduction to Early Childhood Special Education 1
Total Credit Hours14

By special permission of early childhood faculty, see advisor.

Early Childhood Core (42 hours)

Course Title Credits
EDEC 250Play and Early Learning3
EDEC 336Culturally Relevant Pedagogy in Early Childhood Classrooms3
EDEC 335African and African Diaspora Literacies in the Early Childhood Classroom3
EDEC 340The Young Child: Development, Care and Education (Birth to 3 years)3
EDEC 342The Young Child: Development, Care and Education (3-8 years)3
EDEC 344Supporting Linguistic Pluralism Across Content Areas3
Select one course selected from:3
Community of Learners and Classroom Management in Early Childhood
Social/Emotional Development and Guidance for Young Children with Developmental Delays 1
EDEC 441Teaching Mathematics in Early Childhood3
EDEC 442Teaching Science in Early Childhood Education3
EDEC 444Teaching Social Studies to Early Childhood Education3
EDEC 491Seminar on Teaching in Early Childhood3
One course selected from:3
EDEC 410Parent/Family Dynamics in Early Childhood Education3
Partnerships in Early Childhood Special Education 1
EDEC 345Teaching Reading in Early Childhood Education I3
EDEC 445Teaching Writing in Early Childhood Education3
Total Credit Hours45

By special permission of early childhood faculty, see advisor.

Practicum and Internship Experience (14 hours)

Course Title Credits
EDEC 340PThe Young Child: Development, Care and Education (Birth to 3 years) Practicum1
EDEC 443Internship in Integrated Curriculum in Early Childhood Education4
EDEC 492Internship in Curriculum, Assessment, Teaching, and Professional Roles9
Total Credit Hours14

Note: A grade of B or better in either EDEC 342P or EDEC 443 is required to meet the dispositions requirement for admission to Internship II. Students making below a grade of B in both these courses are not eligible to progress. An action plan is required for students who make a grade of C or C+ in either EDEC 342P or EDEC 443.

Major Map

A major map is a layout of required courses in a given program of study, including critical courses and suggested course sequences to ensure a clear path to graduation.

Major maps are only a suggested or recommended sequence of courses required in a program of study. Please contact your academic advisor for assistance in the application of specific coursework to a program of study and course selection and planning for upcoming semesters. 

Early Childhood Education, B.A.