Early Childhood Education

The Early Childhood Education Certificate focuses on the analysis of the diverse needs, characteristics and multiple influences on the development of children, as appropriate to children ages 0-8. The program analyzes the content and pedagogical knowledge necessary for successful performance in field settings, assesses developmentally appropriate curriculum, methods and teaching practices and promotes the design of developmentally appropriate activities that adhere to industry standards.

Graduate Certificate in Early Childhood Education
12 Credits
Admission Requirements
  • A qualified student, who wishes to enter United States University to obtain a graduate certificate, without being enrolled in a degree program, may apply for graduate admission to Graduate Certificate Status. The College of Education requires a GPA of 2.5 for admission to Graduate Certificate Status and official transcripts must be submitted. Completing a Graduate Certificate Application is required. Credits acquired through this certificate may be transferred to the Master of Arts in Education at USU.  Certificates will be awarded upon the student’s application for the certificate once they have successfully completed the course requirements.
Program Requirement
  • Graduate students must maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average (Cumulative GPA) of at least 3.0 (on a standard 4.0 scale) at the end of each semester.
Completion Time

2 semesters/4 months*

*Dependent on course load


MAE 515 Literacy Instruction for Students with Mild Disabilities

The course focuses on language development and the relationship between language and reading acquisition for students with mild disabilities. Students will learn concepts central to typical and atypical language development; language achievements at different ages; concepts of emergent literacy, models of reading acquisition and skilled reading. Prerequisites: None

MAE 519 Classroom and Behavior Management in the Inclusive Classroom

This course focuses on children with special needs. It provides an overview of behavioral disturbances in the classroom. Medical, behavioral and socio-cultural interventions will be explored with an emphasis on creating positive classroom environments that enable students with learning and behavior problems to participate productively in the classroom learning community. Embracing a philosophy of inclusion, diversity is celebrated. It examines and applies an approach of differentiated learning to meet the strengths and needs of a wide range of children in the classroom. Prerequisites: None

MAE 521 Content Area Instruction for Students with Mild Disabilities

This course focuses on expanding the understanding of development and cognition in an academic and functional performance of students with disabilities, how these are similar to and different from all developing students, and how this understanding informs the teaching of students with disabilities in the primary and middle school environments. Another area of exploration is the ways in which these differences need to be addressed within a standard aligned system that demands high expectations of students with disabilities so that they have true access to the general education curriculum. This course will enhance the development of a range of instructional supports and use of validated practices in prospective teachers for inclusive settings, especially in content area subjects, but also the supporting skills of reading, written language and math, that are necessary for success in today’s classrooms. Prerequisites: None

MAE 523 Autism Spectrum Disorders: Characteristics and Educational Implications

This course is designed to prepare teachers to work in a variety of environments serving children and young adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) including the general education classroom, inclusive settings and specialized settings. Evidence-based practice, philosophical approaches, and specific intervention techniques are examined. These practices are considered within the continuum of services and collaborative models utilized in designing effective instructional environments for students with ASD. Attention is given to current and evolving research related to etiology, brain function, and early intervention as well as Applied Behavior Analysis, PECS and TEACHH practices. Prerequisites: None