Public awareness of the importance of early childhood education is growing, and there has been a call at the state and national level to increase funding for early childhood. Students who choose the Bachelor of Science degree in Child Development (BS) - Birth through Kindergarten (licensure) at Appalachian State University will receive a North Carolina Birth through Kindergarten (BK) teacher licensure. This licensure is a dual certification in both regular and special education.
The major focuses on children ages birth to five years and their families. Graduates can work in a North Carolina public school pre-K or kindergarten. Licensure professionals also can work in non-school settings and agencies with children and families, creating supportive environments for children and families that will assist professionals who work directly with families and family service agencies.
Five required field experiences develop students’ professional skills so they are ready for the workplace.
Employment: Both at the state and national level, there has been a call to increase funding for early childhood. Graduates can work in a North Carolina public school pre-K or kindergarten. Graduates of this program can also find jobs in non-school settings such as Early Intervention agencies, summer camps, early care and education centers (teacher or director), teen pregnancy programs, or with organizations such as Child Life Council, March of Dimes, Make a Wish Foundation and Cooperative Extension.
Graduate School: Complementary graduate programs include:
- Birth through Kindergarten
- Early Intervention
- Speech-Language Pathology: Master of Science (MS)
- Professional School Counseling: Master of Arts (MA)
- Occupational Therapy
- Physical Therapy
- Reading Education: Master of Arts (MA)
- Special Education: Master of Arts (MA)
This is a program that can lead to licensure or certification. Appalachian State University cannot confirm whether this program will meet the requirements for professional licensure in other states or territories.
If this applies to you, check the U.S. Department of Education for information on licensure requirements and licensing agencies in other states. Or, you may address questions to State Authorization at Appalachian at firstname.lastname@example.org or 828-262-7559.
A minor is not required for this degree.
Engagement Outside the Classroom
Child Advocacy Club – a child development advocacy organization working to educate and advocate for the rights of the children and families in our community. Service projects include escorting children in the homecoming parade, hosting diaper drives and book drives, building a children’s library at the area homeless shelter, supporting March of Dimes and more.
Early Childhood Care and Education Leaders Club (ECCEL) – a club promoting the field of early childhood education, developing student leadership and advocacy skills, and connecting current students with mentors and alumni while raising awareness of the need for highly trained professionals in early education.
Appalachian is committed to introducing students to different cultures and teaching them how to live and interact in a global society.
This program includes opportunities for study abroad. Students have studied in Australia, Africa and Costa Rica.
Admission to Appalachian’s Teacher Education Program is required.
- This degree includes five field experiences: an infant/toddler practicum of 150 hours, a preschool practicum of 150 hours, a kindergarten practicum of 60 hours, a student teaching assignment for 10 weeks, and an agency internship for 5 weeks.
- Students also gain experience on campus at the Lucy Brock Child Development Laboratory Program (LBCDLP), a Reggio-inspired child development program with an emergent curriculum.
- The program’s innovation includes a partnership with LBCDLS and Watauga County Public Schools with a N.C. pre-K classrooms in Parkway, Cove Creek, and Blowing Rock elementary schools. This provides opportunities for supervised field placements.
- Appalachian has been training quality educators for more than 100 years and is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).
Method of Delivery
On campus and online
- Teaching in the public schools (PreK or Kindergarten)
- Child Care Resource and Referral
- Child Life Council
- Director or owner of early care and education center(s)
- Early Intervention agencies
- Cooperative Extension
- Non-profit: such as Make A Wish, March of Dimes
- Smart Start Partnership
- Summer camp director
- Teaching in early care and education
- Teaching in Smart Start
- Working with teen mothers
Program Director of Birth – Kindergarten
Lucy Brock Child Development Laboratory Program Director