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Arizona State University ranked high for early childhood education studies
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Arizona State University ranked high for early childhood education studies

TEMPE, Ariz. — Arizona State University has been named one of the nation’s best schools for studying early childhood education.

In a list published by USA Today last week, ASU’s early education master’s and bachelor’s programs were cited as reasons why the school is ranked fifth in the country.

The bachelor’s program was praised for its hands-on approach, which places students in elementary classrooms to teach a class first-hand.

“(It) is not the model like they probably did when I was in school,” said Dr. Jeanne Wilcox, professor of early childhood education at ASU. “We use a co-teaching model with mentor teachers, where the mentor teachers and our senior-year clinical residents teach together for the entire year.”

ASU also operates under a “merged program,” for early education students, stressing a curriculum that teaches methods of educating diverse child populations. Undergraduate students learn about educating special needs and English-as-a-second-language students; graduates with a degree in early childhood education leave ASU with a structured English immersion (SEI) endorsement and are eligible for an early childhood special education certificate.

ASU’s Master of Education degree in early childhood education was another reason the school was ranked near the top in the nation. The program is offered entirely online, but it boasts clinical experiences and internships for students, as well.

On the list, ASU only trailed the University of Texas at Austin, Vanderbilt University, the University of Cincinnati and New York University, respectively.