Childhood Education (Grades 1-6)

Chair (fall): Michele Marable, PhD
Chair (spring): Barbara Burns, PhD
Degree: Master of Science in Education

Please note that we are phasing out this program and will not accept new students after fall 2017.
Students interested in Childhood Education may pursue either Special Education (Childhood) or TESOL.

Program Details

The program in childhood education leads to certification as a general classroom teacher of Grades 1-6. Candidates must provide evidence of successful completion of six hours of college level credit in each of the following:

  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Foreign Language
  • Natural Science
  • Social Studies

Canisius has developed a new, clinically-rich Childhood education program designed to provide you with the practical experience and knowledge you need to open the door to a new career in education.
This program prepares career changers and college graduates to become teachers who make a difference in the lives of children.  Our innovative curriculum immerses aspiring teachers in the classroom and integrates theory, practice, and content into daily teaching and learning.

With our clinically-rich practicums, you will gain real world experience through field placements and student teaching in diverse educational settings.  This in-depth training will provide you with the professional background to build your resume and allow you to enter your first classroom with confidence.
Prepare to succeed.  The new curriculum is fully aligned with the New York State (NYS) standards for teacher preparation and will prepare you for the new NYS certification tests and edTPA assessments.  Our focus is to provide you with the best possible teacher preparation to enable you to meet all certification requirements and become a transformational teacher.

As a graduate of this program, you will have the opportunity to earn your initial teaching certification as you earn your master’s degree, allowing you to teach in New York State.  Canadian students will be certified in New York and then eligible for certification in Ontario.  Our graduates become part of a lifelong Canisius community of educators that make a meaningful difference in the lives of all students.

Classes begin in the Fall and Spring semesters.


More information can be found at the program website


Required Courses for Master’s Degree in Childhood Education Grades 1-6

EDU 505Foundations of Education3
EDCH 502Emergent Literacy3
EDCH 509Literacy and the Arts in the Elementary Classroom (30 hours of classroom participation)3
EDCH 540Childhood Learning and Development3
EDCH 515Assessment for Instruction 13
or EDU 556 Assessment for Instructional Decision Making
EDU 628Teaching Math & Science: Supporting STEM Education3
EDCH 546Elementary Social Studies Instruction 23
or EDU 572 Teaching Social Studies Integrating English Language Arts
EDU 570Pre-Student Teaching3
EDCH 593Student Teaching: Childhood9
EDU 598Student Teaching Seminar0
EDU 595Child Abuse Workshop0
EDU 596Prevention of School Violence Workshop 0
EDU 597Dignity for All Students Workshop0
SPE 541Inclusive Strategies3
EDU 615Research Methods3
Total Credits39

 After fall 2017, EDCH 515 will be replaced by EDU 556.


 Beginning fall 2018, EDCH 546 will be replaced by EDU 572.

New York State Teachers Certification Exams (NYSTCE)

Certification examination requirements can be found here:

Note: fingerprinting is also required.

Early Childhood

Candidates wishing to obtain an extension to teach birth to grade 2 must add an early childhood extension.

Middle Childhood

Candidates wishing to obtain an extension to teach grades 5-6 (thus enabling candidates to teach middle childhood grades 5-9 as well as adolescence grades 7-12) must add a middle childhood extension.

Learning Goals & Objectives

Learning Goal 1 (KNOWLEDGE – Observed in Writing)

Candidates in the Teacher Education programs will demonstrate content knowledge, pedagogical, and professional knowledge necessary for successful performance in their field.

Teacher candidates will:
  • Acquire knowledge of each student, and demonstrate knowledge of student development and learning to promote achievement for all students.
  • Know the content they are responsible for teaching, and the pedagogical content knowledge to plan instruction that ensures growth and achievement for all students.

Learning Goal 2 (KNOWLEDGE – Observed Skills and Dispositions)

Candidates in the Teacher Education programs will demonstrate professional skills and dispositions necessary for successful performance in their field. 

Teacher candidates will:
  • Demonstrate professional dispositions and implement instruction that engages and challenges all students to meet or exceed the learning standards.

Learning Goal 3 (SERVICE)

Candidates in the Teacher Education programs will demonstrate willingness to use their skills to benefit and serve society. Within the contexts of their work, candidates promote authentic learning, social and emotional development, and a commitment to social justice in environments that foster respect for diversity and the dignity of all.

Teacher candidates will:
  • Work with all students to create a dynamic learning environment that supports achievement and growth.
  • Use multiple measures to assess and document student growth, evaluate instructional effectiveness, and modify instruction for diverse learners.


Candidates will demonstrate self-reflection as a habit of mind, continuously assessing and refining their professional practice as they construct a rich repertoire of research-based knowledge, skills, and attitudes for effective performance ensuring that all students and/or clients have optimal opportunities to learn and grow.

Teacher candidates will:
  • Set informed goals and strive for continuous professional growth.

Learning Goal 5 (LEADERSHIP)

Candidates will become adept at applying their acquired knowledge in the process of evaluating their own professional performance and decision-making with respect to its impact on students and/or clients, organizations, and the wider community. 

Teacher candidates will:
  • Demonstrate professional responsibility and engage relevant stakeholders to maximize impact on student growth, development, and learning.


EDCH 502 Emergent Literacy 3 Credits

This introductory course focuses on the importance of literacy and the teaching skills needed to become a proficient teacher of reading. Meeting the needs of diverse learners (diverse in interest, needs, ability, etc.) with appropriate materials, activities and instructional approaches will be an ongoing discussion woven through the course content. All language processes will be addressed with an appreciation that they are interrelated and support each other. Students will create materials for reading instruction that reflect knowledge of 'best practice' as concluded from research and described in course readings.

EDCH 509 Literacy and the Arts in the Elementary Classroom 3 Credits

Strategies for effective literacy instruction with diverse populations of students will be examined for efficacy. These strategies include research-based approaches with demonstrated success for use with students with disabilities, English Language Learners, Gifted and Talented students and any other students with identified special and/or unique educational needs. Students will examine the qualities that make a successful match with students' needs in the areas of reading, writing, speaking and listening, as well as how to incorporate differentiated instruction based on those needs in a classroom context. Multicultural literature and literature that deals with specific disabilities will be examined for applications in the curriculum. 30 hours of field experience are required.

EDCH 515 Assessment for Instruction 3 Credits

An in-depth study of formal and informal assessment strategies. Utilization of assessment for planning, evaluation and instructional program improvement to provide continuous intellectual, social, emotional and physical development of elementary-aged students will be studied. Candidates will become familiar with norm referenced, criterion-referenced and performance instruments.

EDCH 540 Childhood Learning and Development 3 Credits

The application to classroom practice of the principles of effective learning and the role of motivation and a consideration of motivation and self-worth will be studied. Candidates will critically review basic brain and nerve structure and function as it applies to learning and teaching. Attention will be directed toward the constructs of intelligence, creativity, meta-cognition, transfer of learning and learning styles. specific theories including those of Skinner, Piaget, Vygotsky and Covington will be analyzed and critiqued. Classroom management options will be considered.

EDCH 543 Elementary Mathematics Instruction 3 Credits

Methods and strategies for developing children's knowledge and skills in number systems, early geometry, arithmetical operations, fractions and decimals, probability and statistics will be examined. Candidates will develop proficiency in the use of instructional and informational technologies to support mathematics. Instruction will be aligned with Common Core Learning Standards. Assessment practices and research regarding mathematics knowledge and skill development will be integrated with teaching methodology.

EDCH 545 Elementary Science Instruction 3 Credits

Methods and strategies for developing children's knowledge and understanding of earth/space science, physical science and the life sciences will be addressed. Candidates will develop proficiency in the use of instructional and informational technologies and hands on activities to support science learning. Instruction will be aligned with the New York State Mathematics, Science and Technology Standards. Application of research in education and formative and summative assessment practices will be stressed.

EDCH 546 Elementary Social Studies Instruction 3 Credits

An in-depth consideration of ethnic, economic, and racial cultures found in elementary schools will share the focus of this course with instructional methods and strategies necessary for effective instruction in the areas of geography, history, anthropology and economics. Use of technology and New York State Learning Standards will be considered as they pertain to cultural diversity and social studies instruction. The role of family, peer and parental involvement in society and the culture of schooling will be studied.

EDCH 570 Seminar in Teaching and Assessment: Childhood 3 Credits

This course is intended to prepare students for the broader responsibilities required in student teaching. In childhood-level settings, grades 1-6, students will begin to plan and teach lessons, as well as continue to observe master teachers. They will prepare classroom materials, design long-range plans and examine site based parent involvement projects. On-campus meetings will provide opportunities for professional reflection with a team and workshop experiences on topics related to classroom management, increasing family involvement, teaching to higher standards and assessment. 70 hours of field experience required. This course is normally taken during the semester prior to student teaching.

EDCH 593 Student Teaching: Childhood 9 Credits

Requires two supervised teaching placements in schools appropriate to certification level and includes experience in high-needs schools or schools serving socio-economically disadvantaged students.

Prerequisite: required coursework and an overall QPA of 3.0. Some school districts may require tuberculosis or other health tests.

EDCH 594 Student Teaching Seminar 0 Credits

Student Teaching Seminar enhances the student teaching experience through opportunities to foster professional growth and guided reflection on planning, instruction and assessment of learning. The course provides a professional learning community to assist candidates in the transition to careers in teaching.

EDCH 599 Independent Study 3 Credits

Independent studies require an application and approval by the associate dean.

Prerequisite: permission of the instructor, department chair, & associate dean.

EDCH 615 Action Research in Education 3 Credits

The purpose of this course is to enable teacher candidates to develop an understanding of the action research process that will inform and transform their classroom practice. The focus of the course will encompass those skills necessary for examining one's own practice to make informed data driven decisions. Candidates will engage in an action research project related to an area of interest in their own teaching. They will examine the problem by critically analyzing current literature in the field to formulate a research question. The course develops skills and engage candidates all phases of the research process from project inception to the presentation of findings. In addition, students will learn how to critically analyze research studies, discuss ethical considerations in conducting research, and understand the importance of scientific research for educational policy and practice.