Early Childhood Education Associate's Degree - Special Needs Specialization

View courses and cost per credit for our Early Childhood Education Associate's degree with a Special Needs specialization. Courses, course names, and cost per credit may vary by location. Download your state specific catalog for more information.

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Course listings are subject to change. Please see our course catalog and/or addendum for most current listings.


Special Needs Associate's Degree Course List

Child with Special Needs Specialization (students will complete these additional courses)

Advocating for Children with Special Needs

Students will explore current trends, resources and advocacy on behalf of young children with special needs. They will examine their role in supporting and advocating for young children with special needs and their families.

Prerequisites: Foundations of Child Development; Early Childhood Education Curriculum and Instruction; Health, Safety, and Nutrition/CDA Application

Course ID: EC250
Credits: 4

The Inclusive Classroom

Students will learn strategies for promoting and supporting an inclusive classroom. They will analyze environmental restrictions and explore how to support young children with special needs in the early childhood setting.

Prerequisites: Foundations of Child Development; Early Childhood Education Curriculum and Instruction; Health, Safety, and Nutrition/CDA Application

Course ID: EC251
Credits: 4

The Exceptional Child

This course is designed to explore the benefits of inclusion in the early childhood setting. Students will develop an understanding of exceptional development. Students will identify the parties relevant to exceptional development and their roles as resources in support of the child and their families.

Prerequisites: Foundations of Child Development; Early Childhood Education Curriculum and Instruction; Health, Safety, and Nutrition/CDA Application

Course ID: EC252
Credits: 4

Curriculum and Instruction for Children with Special Needs

Students will explore how to adapt developmentally appropriate curriculum to support the development of children with special needs. They will learn strategies for effective partnering with other professionals and parents to ensure the achievement of developmental goals.

Prerequisites: Foundations of Child Development; Early Childhood Education Curriculum and Instruction; Health, Safety, and Nutrition/CDA Application

Course ID: EC253
Credits: 4

Major and Core Courses

Career Development

This course is designed to study the personal and professional characteristics necessary for obtaining and maintaining suitable employment. The student will assemble a complete job-seeking portfolio including his/her resume and references, letters of application and appreciation, documentation of work and educational history, and demonstration of skills through examples of student work. The course includes an in-depth study of self-marketing approaches, job interviewing techniques and professionalism as well as participation in a mock interview.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: E242
Credits: 2

Foundations of Child Development

This course will explore characteristics of children at different ages, children's developmental needs, and the foundation of early childhood education. Students will learn the fundamentals of developmentally appropriate practice as it relates to child development, individual needs, building self-esteem in children, and using interpersonal skills and communication within the classroom and center. Students will study the function of the family, and the cultural, social, class, and ethnic variations in the family as a social system.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: EC100
Credits: 4

Early Childhood Education Curriculum and Instruction

This course promotes the development of young children in the academic, social, and emotional domains. It examines developmentally appropriate methods for writing and assessing behavioral objectives, lesson plans, and activity goals. Various curriculum models will be reviewed. Strategies to enhance parent and family involvement will be emphasized.

Prerequisite: Foundations of Child Development

Course ID: EC110
Credits: 4

Health, Safety, and Nutrition/CDA Application

This course examines the role of early childhood professionals working in the field via the policies and procedures governed by the state. Students will learn guidelines for establishing safe environments. They will also learn strategies for implementing health policies, controlling disease, establishing proper nutrition, and responding to children's special health concerns. Students will carry out a 2-hour field observation in the field of education.

Prerequisite: Foundations of Child Development

Course ID: EC121
Credits: 4

Observation and Assessment in Early Childhood Education

Students will explore effective strategies for observation and assessment in early childhood education. They will understand the observation, assessment, and planning cycle and its impact on promoting children's development.

Prerequisites: Foundations of Child Development; Early Childhood Education Curriculum and Instruction; Health, Safety, and Nutrition/CDA Application

Course ID: EC200
Credits: 4

Choose either Track I ** or Track II

Track I ** (residential students)

Knowledge: Externship I

Under externship supervision, the student will observe and implement developmentally appropriate practices while interacting with children and adults.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: EC180
Credits: 6

Application: Externship II

Students continue their externship experience in an early childhood setting. The focus is on developmentally appropriate practices and leadership.

Prerequisite: Knowledge: Externship I

Course ID: EC181
Credits: 6

Reflection: Externship III

Students will complete their externship experience in an early childhood setting. The focus is on developmentally appropriate practices and leadership.

Prerequisite: Application: Externship II

Course ID: EC182
Credits: 6

Track II (online students)

Teacher Reflection I: Early Childhood Education as a Profession

This course is an introduction to the field of early childhood development as a profession and examines historical influences on the field. The identification of early childhood educator's personal attributes, knowledge, skills, and professional codes of conduct are included.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: EC183
Credits: 6

Teacher Reflection II: Morality and Ethics in Early Childhood Education

This course will provide an examination of morality and ethics in early childhood development. Topics include childhood ethics, ideals, and principles. Professional values and teaching styles will be explored.

Prerequisite: Teacher Reflection I: Early Childhood Education as a Profession

Course ID: EC184
Credits: 6

Teacher Reflection III: The Intentional Teacher

Students will learn about intentionality in teaching and selecting best practices for young children's learning and development. Both child-guided and adult-guided methods will be examined in the areas of language and literacy, mathematics and scientific inquiry, social skills and understandings, physical movement and visual arts.

Prerequisite: Teacher Reflection II: Morality and Ethics in Early Childhood Education

Course ID: EC185
Credits: 6

General Education Courses

English Composition (Required course)

English Composition

This course is designed to guide students in understanding the writing process and developing their ability to write and express ideas in an organized, unified, and coherent manner. Students will produce college-level writing that reflects awareness of rhetorical strategies, writing purpose, student voice, and appropriate grammar, punctuation, and usage skills. Through reading, writing, discussion, research, and collaboration, students will practice effective writing and apply course concepts.

Prerequisite: Passing grade in Foundation coursework or placement determined by Rasmussen College entrance placement exam score

Course ID: G124
Credits: 4

Communication (Select 1 course)

English Composition 2

This course builds on students' understanding of the writing process through an exploration of various writing strategies and research. Students will analyze readings and apply critical reading and writing skills. This course will develop argumentative writing and application of research.

Prerequisite: English Composition

Course ID: G126A
Credits: 4

Introduction to Communication

The course will introduce students to basic models and theories of the communication process. Students will learn about a variety of elements involved in communication. They will also explore how factors such as race, ethnicity, age, socioeconomic status, and gender influence communication. Students will focus on developing an awareness of the effects of various types of communication on themselves and others. They will also develop practical skills for improving their ability to communicate in personal, social and professional contexts. Specific topics will include perception, self-concept, verbal and nonverbal communication, effective listening and communicating in culturally diverse settings.

Prerequisite: Passing grade in Foundation coursework or placement determined by Rasmussen College entrance placement exam score

Course ID: G141
Credits: 4

Oral Communication

This course will present students with a broad understanding of communication in a variety of contexts. Students will learn the processes and strategies of oral communication by exploring speech anxiety, audience analysis, and organizational speech patterns. Students will research, use supporting materials, and use effective language to develop and present a narrative, informative and persuasive speech.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: G227
Credits: 4

Humanities (Select 2 courses)

Humanities

This course investigates human creative achievement. It is designed to increase the student's understanding and appreciation of cultural literacy and the pursuit of humanitarian goals. Representative disciplines may include art, music, literature, architecture, drama, and philosophy.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: G125
Credits: 4

Film Appreciation

Students will study different elements, forms, techniques and styles of film and will learn a critical approach to film and the motion picture industry. Students will critique films and filmmakers through various approaches and assessments that demonstrate analysis, interpretation, and evaluation skills as well as fostering a deeper appreciation and understanding of film as an art form.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: G145
Credits: 4

Art Appreciation

Students will examine the historical, social, and technological factors that contribute to understanding the function and meaning of art in this course. Using a global and thematic approach, students will be introduced to the basic elements of art, while learning about a full range of media used to make art, and the fundamental concepts of art criticism. Western and non-Western art is represented, with a strong emphasis on a global perspective in relation to culture, communication, politics, and economics.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: G147
Credits: 4

Creative Writing

This course will develop the student's talents in creative writing. Various forms of writing will be studied, such as short stories, novels, poems, plays and non-fiction. Works by students and others will be critiqued. Students will also develop editorial skills so that each writer may revise and improve his/her work. Students will compose a minimum of 6000 words over the course of the program.

Prerequisite: Passing grade in Foundation coursework or placement determined by Rasmussen College entrance placement exam score

Course ID: G201
Credits: 4

Introduction to Critical Thinking

A study of the rules of valid judging and reasoning, both inductive and deductive, in a traditional, language-centered context rather than a symbolic context. Logical analysis of both formal and informal fallacies and of the consistency and logical consequences of a given set of statements. Logical analysis is applied to concrete problems dealing with our knowledge of reality.

Prerequisite: English Composition

Course ID: G224
Credits: 4

Introduction to Literature

This course offers an introduction to the most common literary genres: fiction, poetry, drama, and literary non-fiction. Students will study the basic elements of each genre, learn how to compare genres, become familiar with sample texts that illustrate the particularities of each genre, and practice the skills of analyzing and writing about literary texts. Reading and analysis of texts will include a variety of literary forms and periods. Students will engage in approaches to determine literary meaning, form, and value.

Prerequisite: none [English Composition recommended]

Course ID: G230
Credits: 4

Conversational Spanish

This course focuses on common words and phrases students need to develop a working vocabulary which will enable them to communicate with Spanish-speaking individuals in their personal and professional lives. Although oral communication is stressed, included is an overview of Spanish grammar, phonetic pronunciation and Hispanic culture.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: G238
Credits: 4

Math/Natural Sciences (Select 2 courses)

Structure and Function of the Human Body

This course provides a working knowledge of the structure and function of the human body. A general introduction to cells and tissues is followed by study of the anatomy and physiology of the skeletal and muscular systems. The student is introduced to the nervous, cardiovascular, respiratory, digestive, urinary, reproductive, and endocrine systems.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: G150
Credits: 4

Scientific Literacy

In this course students will explore the role that science plays in the world. Students will survey different natural sciences such as: biology, health sciences, chemistry, physics, astronomy, and geology; as well as analyze specific case studies from these fields. Throughout the course students will develop their scientific reasoning skills. They will learn about the scientific method as well as how to detect common fallacies and misuses of science.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: G152
Credits: 4

General Education Mathematics

This course introduces students to topics from modern mathematics that are relevant to everyday life and not typically covered in the standard college math sequence. Students will be exposed to a variety of mathematical tools from diverse branches of mathematics. They will utilize these tools to solve interesting real-world problems. Topics may include, but are not limited to, game theory, graph theory, the mathematics of growth, applications of geometry, probability, and statistics.

Prerequisite: Passing grade in Foundation coursework or placement determined by Rasmussen College entrance placement exam score

Course ID: G180
Credits: 4

Introduction to Human Biology

Students will explore fundamental concepts of human biology. They will examine cell structure and function, body systems, and biochemistry. They will also learn basic concepts of genetics and evolution. Students will explore the relationship of human populations and the ecosystem. Students will complete laboratory exercise coordinated with course content.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: G215
Credits: 4

College Algebra

This course provides students with the skills to achieve mastery of algebraic terminology and applications including, but not limited to, real number operations, variables, polynomials, integer exponents, graphs, factoring, quadratic equations, and word problems.

Prerequisite: Passing grade in Foundation coursework or placement determined by Rasmussen College entrance placement exam score

Course ID: G233
Credits: 4

Introduction to Astronomy

Examines astronomical phenomena and concepts, including the solar system, stars and galaxies, planetary motions, atoms and radiation, and the origin and evolution of the universe.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: G239
Credits: 4

Introduction to Geology

Examines basic geologic principles from a physical or historical perspective. Includes such topics as the formation of rocks and minerals; internal and external processes modifying the earth's surface and phenomena; and the evolutionary history of the earth, including its life forms, oceans and atmosphere.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: G245
Credits: 4

Social Sciences (Select 2 courses)

Introduction to Sociology

This course introduces students to basic sociology terms and concepts. Students will understand how to apply sociological concepts and theories and analyze the structure and relationships of social institutions and the process of social change. Students will explore a variety of topics of sociological interest, including socialization, social inequality, social movements, and the impact of technology and social change on society.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: G142
Credits: 4

Human Geography

This course will introduce students to the systematic study of patterns and processes that have shaped human understanding, use, and alteration of Earth's surface. Students will employ spatial concepts and landscape analysis to examine human social organization and its environmental consequences.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: G146
Credits: 4

General Psychology

This course will provide students with a general understanding of basic methodologies, concepts, theories, and practices in contemporary psychology. Areas of investigation may include the goals and research methodologies of psychology, the science of the brain, theories of human development and intelligence, concepts of motivation and emotions, the science of sensation and perceptions, and the current practices pertaining to psychological disorders, therapies, and treatments.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: G148
Credits: 4

Technology and Society

Students will examine the relationships, benefits, historical significance, and effects technology has on society. This course will investigate the local, national and global impact of technology on both individual and global cultures. This course introduces students to basic diversity and technology terms and concepts. Students will examine the influences that emerging technologies have on diversity awareness, the digital divide, and intercultural knowledge.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: G149
Credits: 4

Understanding Cultures

This course is a comparative study of societies and cultures around the world and the cultures within the United States, focusing on the effects of ethnicity and race on African Americans, Latino, Asian American and Native Americans living in the United States. Topics include family, marriage, power, religion, values, inequality, social organization, language, social stratification, economic processes, conflicts and cultural and social change over time. Examples will be drawn from Africa, South America, North America, Asia and the Pacific Islands.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: G200
Credits: 4

Macroeconomics

In this course, students will learn the fundamentals of macroeconomics, which deals with the economy as a whole. An overview of the American economy will be explored through a study of basic supply and demand analysis and a review of fiscal and monetary policy to phases of the business cycle. Unemployment, inflation, GDP, and policy decisions which affect the American economy at home and abroad will be covered.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: G203
Credits: 4

Microeconomics

Students will be introduced to the field of microeconomics in this course, including theories of production, determination of prices, and distribution of income in regulated and unregulated industries. Other topics may include industrial relations, monopolies, and comparative economic systems.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: G204
Credits: 4

American/U.S. National Government

This course presents the development and evolution of the American national government with emphasis on the structures and processes of our representative democracy, including its ties to culture, politics and policies, political parties, and state and local governments.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: G242
Credits: 4

United States History: 1900 to the Present

This course provides an overview of the history of the United States during the 20th century up until the present day. The political, social, and economic aspects of this time will be explored amid a variety of human cultures, values, and perspectives within the United States.

Prerequisite: none

Course ID: G270
Credits: 4

Students in the Child and Family Studies Specialization may not count Introduction to Sociology as a general education Social Science requirement.

Foundation Courses

Reading and Writing Strategies

This course develops students' reading and writing skills in preparation for college-level coursework. Through review of grammar, punctuation, and the writing process, students will enhance their ability to compose sentences, paragraphs, and short essays. The study of active reading strategies will provide students with the tools necessary for comprehending collegiate level texts.

Prerequisite: Placement determined by Rasmussen College entrance placement exam score

Course ID: B080
Credits: 4

Practical Math

Mathematics is learned through communication. In this course, students will learn to communicate how problems are solved and how solving problems can be applied in real-world settings. Students will have opportunities to learn multiple problem solving strategies. This course also provides practice and skill problems.

Prerequisite: Placement determined by Rasmussen College entrance placement exam score

Course ID: B087
Credits: 4

Total Associate's Degree Credits

General Education Credits: 32

Major and Core Credits: 59

Total AAS Degree Credits: 91*

* Credit totals do not include Foundation Courses. Students must either demonstrate mastery of the subject matter in Foundation Courses through a Rasmussen College entrance placement exam or by successful completion of Foundation Courses.

** Track I includes externship courses for residential students, which are not available to students in all states. Track II includes Teacher Reflection courses for online students. Please see the Early Childhood Education program page at rasmussen.edu or speak to a Program Manager for more details.

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Student Investment Disclosure

  • Outcome

    Our on-time completion and placement rates exceed the national averages of 22% and 74%, respectively. With our SUPPORT+ team members working one-on-one with you, including our student advisors and career services advisors, we help support your success. Contact a program manager to learn more about how you can become a Rasmussen College graduate.

    • On-time Completion Rate:

      The percent of graduates who complete the program in normal time (assumes students take 12 credits per quarter)

      44%
    • Rasmussen Placement Rate:

      Internal placement rate methodology can be found at Student Investment Disclosure main page

      98%
  • Loan and Financial Aid

    Our SUPPORT+ team will help you complete your financial aid application and review your financial aid award letter. Contact a financial services advisor to discuss your individual needs and goals.

    • Federal Student Loans:

      Median loan debt for completers from Federal Stafford Loan program (does not include Federal PLUS loans)

      $19,464
    • Private Loans:

      Median loan debt for completers from private educational loans

      $0
    • Institutional Loans:

      Median amount that completers owe to Rasmussen College upon graduation

      $0
  • Full-Time Tuition and Fees

    The tuition shown is the full tuition cost and does not reflect scholarships, grants, loans, or any credit transfers-all of which can lower your tuition cost. Contact a program manager to discuss your unique situation and tuition costs for your degree.

    • Tuition and Fees:

      Tuition & fees charged for completing the program in normal time

    • Course Resources:

      Total cost of course resources when completing the program in normal time

      $3,450
    • Room and Board:

      Total cost of room & board is not applicable at Rasmussen College

      $0
  • SOC Code

    Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) provides a representation of occupations for which graduates typically find employment

    Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) provides a representation of occupations for which graduates typically find employment