The Early Childhood Education program faculty has identified decision points at which each candidate's performance is assessed. This is done to determine if appropriate knowledge, skills, and dispositions are evident in candidate performance. Assessments at these program gateways, along with ongoing continuous assessment of candidate performance in all courses, make it possible for the faculty to guide candidates to positive program outcomes. Positive faculty recommendations are required at each gateway for candidates to proceed toward program completion. The Student Progress Committee is responsible for all gateway assessments. These are the gateways for the Master of Arts in Early Childhood Education program:
- Program admission
- Candidacy (see below)
- Admission to field-based teaching laboratory experiences
- Admission to Student Teaching
- Approval for graduation and certification
In addition, faculty also monitor and evaluate student progress continually. The section, "Teacher Certification and Education," in the Governors State University catalog provides a general description of the standards used to evaluate student progress. A more detailed statement of the standards and processes followed by the Early Childhood Education faculty is available in the Graduate Early Childhood Education Student Handbook.
To continue in the program the student must be accepted as a candidate for the M.A. in Early Childhood Education degree after completing EDUC6100 and three other EDEC courses on the student’s approved study plan. Students pursuing Option I must have completed EDEC6641 and 6640. Students pursuing Option II must have completed at least one lab course. Students must submit to the Division of Education Graduate Advising Office an application for candidacy in the semester that they expect to have completed nine credit hours in graduate EDEC courses or 15 semester hours in the program by the following date: September 30 for fall semester, January 31 for spring semester, or May 31 for summer session.