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Early Childhood Education - MAT

The Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Early Childhood Education prepares individuals with or without prior teacher preparation to work with young children from birth through kindergarten. It leads to teacher certification and a master's degree. No prior teaching experience is required to enroll in the program, and once admitted into the program you may be employed as a fully qualified teacher in Kentucky schools as you work on completing your degree. 

New PEEAK Scholarship Funding

MSU is proud to announce the availability of grant scholarships for students in the IECE MAT program. Preparing Early Educators in Appalachian Kentucky (PEEAK) is funded by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services and is a five year personnel preparation grant running 2015-2019. The purpose of the grant is to prepare highly qualified early childhood special educators and early interventionists to serve in high need areas, such as the Morehead service region.
PEEAK Application

Program Requirements

You must meet MSU's general admission requirements. If you have questions about Interdisciplinary Early Childhood Education MAT program requirements, contact Elizabeth McLaren.

Complete the application packet below:

Program admission requirements are based on state requirements for entrance to a teacher education/alternative track programs, as well as common elements for MSU teacher education programs. Applicants must meet the following admission criteria. (Students cannot be conditionally admitted to this program or admitted as unclassified.) To meet certification regulations, IECE MAT students must, depending on their employment and certification status, satisfy the practicum requirement in one of two ways:

  • Option 1 ( for students employed as the lead teacher in a public preschool or Head Start classroom with temporary provisional certification - Option 6 under state regulations ): Complete a minimum of four credit hours of  EDEC 600  (enrolled for one credit each semester). Under Option 1, students will complete the program with a minimum of 43 credit hours.
  • Option 2 ( for students NOT currently employed as a lead teacher - Traditional under state regulations ): Complete six credit hours of  EDUC 650  during final semester. Under Option 2, students will complete the program with a minimum of 45 credit hours.
  1. Official transcript from an accredited institution verifying a baccalaureate degree with a GPA of at least 2.75 on a 4.0 scale; or a GPA of 3.0 on a four point scale on the last 30-hours of coursework taken at either the graduate or undergraduate level.
  2. Successful completion of the following PRAXIS pre-professional skills assessments:
  • Praxis Core Academic Skills for Educators (CASE): Reading (5712) - 156;
  • Praxis Core Academic Skills for Educators (CASE): Writing (5722) - 162; and
  • Praxis Core Academic Skills for Educators (CASE): Mathematics (5732) - 150,  OR
Successful completion of the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) with the following corresponding scores: 
  • Verbal with a minimum score of 150,
  • Quantitative with a minimum score of 143, and
  • Analytical Writing with a minimum score of 4.0.

        3. Completion of and successful evaluation by program faculty of an admission interview demonstrating 1) effective communication, 2) creativity, 3) critical thinking, 4) ability to effectively collaborate with others, and 5) an understanding of the professional dispositions required of teachers.
        4. A signed statement that the applicant has read and understands the Professional Code of Ethics for Kentucky School Certified Personnel and Kentucky's fitness and character requirements for teachers.
        5. Submission of a graduate application form.
        6. Submission of a national and state criminal history background check by the Kentucky State Police and the Federal Bureau of Investigation that meets the requirements of Kentucky House Bill 204.
        7.  Proof of CAN (Child Abuse and Neglect) Central Registry Check from the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services.

Once a candidate is admitted to the MAT program, he/she must begin taking classes within 90-days and are immediately eligible to be employed as a highly qualified teacher with temporary provisional certification. At time of admission to the program, candidates will be eligible to be employed with temporary provisional certification. In order to begin the KTIP year, candidates must pass the IECE PRAXIS. Candidates must complete the IECE certification program and KTIP within three years of initial hire with temporary provisional certification. If candidates fail to complete the program and KTIP, they will no longer be highly qualified for IECE. 

Curriculum maps:

For a complete list of program requirements and additional course information, visit the graduate catalog website. 

Career Opportunities

IECE certification will qualify you to serve as one of the following in Kentucky:

  • Developmental Interventionist (DI) with First Steps, Kentucky’s early intervention system for infants and toddlers with disabilities/delays 
  • Preschool teacher in the public school system 
  • Kindergarten teacher in the public school system 

MSU's Career Services offers career planning, interview and resume preparation assistance and services to help you find a job after you graduate.

  • Morehead (Residential Campus)
    150 University Blvd., Morehead, KY 40351
  • MSU at Ashland
    1400 College Drive, Ashland, KY 41101
  • MSU at Mt. Sterling
    3400 Indian Mound Drive, Mt. Sterling, KY 40353
  • MSU at Prestonsburg
    6 Bert Combs Drive, Prestonsburg, KY 41653
  • MSU at West Liberty
    155 University Drive, West Liberty, KY 41472
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