College for Adults | School of Humanities, Arts and Sciences

Early Childhood Education

Get ready to change the lives of young children with a bachelor’s degree in early childhood education. This new option from St. Kate’s College for Adults — now fully approved by the State of Minnesota's Professional Educator Licensing and Standards Board — will enable you to meet requirements for a Minnesota license to teach children ages 0-8 and, if you choose, meet requirements for a Montessori teaching credential.

If you already have a Montessori teaching credential, see our early childhood education bachelor’s and licensure options for Montessori educators.

Program Details

  • Classes meet: Online (with one-week meetings on our St. Paul, MN campus each summer)
  • Field experience/student teaching: At schools in or near your community
  • Credits for the major: 50
  • Time to completion: 2-4 years

what can I do with a degree in early childhood education?

You’ll prepare to work in public and private schools as an early childhood educator. Growth in early childhood programs in Minnesota and elsewhere means credentialed educators are in demand.

Students completing this program will be eligible to apply to the Minnesota Department of Education for a credential to teach children from birth to eight years old. This license is a requirement for many early childhood positions in public schools, as well as private schools and other early learning centers. Students choosing to complete additional practicum requirements will also be eligible for an American Montessori Society (AMS) early childhood (ages 2-1/2 to 6) credential, qualifying them to work in a variety of Montessori education settings.

what will I study?

This program combines the convenience of online learning with hands-on experience and close relationships with students and faculty.

You may start in fall, spring or summer. You’ll proceed through a series of fully online courses and complete student teaching requirements at schools in or near your community. Each summer course is offered in a “hybrid” format, combining five weeks of online learning with a one-week, intensive face-to-face learning experience on our St. Paul, Minn. campus.Our program focuses on personal, cultural and institutional transformation. You’ll become a socially aware educator and learn about:

  • Anti-bias and anti-racist (ABAR) teaching strategies
  • Creating effective lesson plans
  • Classroom management and assessment
  • Infant, toddler, preschool and early elementary methods and materials
  • Understanding the needs of diverse and special learners
  • Grounding your teaching in the Montessori philosophy, with a focus on the whole child
  • Integrating ongoing renewal into your professional life

Field Experience and Student Teaching

Hands-on learning includes 100 hours of field experience throughout the program. You’ll also complete a final student teaching experience — a full-time immersion in teaching at a school in or near your community.

Students choosing to also meet requirements for the American Montessori Society early childhood credential will complete an additional practicum. This practicum will take place in the classroom of a supervising Montessori teacher, for three hours a day, five days a week for nine consecutive months.

Did you know?

Tuition and Financial Aid

  • Tuition (2018-19): $445/credit
  • Financial Aid: Most College for Adults students receive some form of financial aid. Find out more

Tuition rates are subject to change each June 1. Additional costs for the program will include fees for student services and technology, books, etc.

Scholarship opportunities for Montessori and early childhood educators include:

  • Jeri Grant Miller Scholarship. Each spring, this scholarship is awarded to two early childhood education students at St. Kate’s. The $500 awards may be used for any expenses related to your education at St. Kate’s.
  • Minnesota T.E.A.C.H. Scholarship. A scholarship for early childhood and school-age care professionals in Minnesota. While benefits vary, for most recipients T.E.A.C.H. covers the majority of tuition and textbook expenses, as well as travel stipends and paid release time. For details, see the Child Care Aware of Minnesota web site.

more information

Major Course Requirements

Major Course Requirements

Explore the required, supporting and recommended courses.

Core Curriculum

Core Curriculum

The path to a baccalaureate degree at St. Kate’s begins with a core curriculum that emphasizes intellectual inquiry and social teaching; challenging students to transformational leadership.



Our faculty are accomplished, experienced leaders and educators.