College of Education > Academics > Teacher Education, Kinesiology and Educational Studies > Graduate Programs > Early Childhood Education (MA/MEd)

Early Childhood Education (MA/MEd)
Early Childhood Education (MA/MEd)
Faculty member in front of the class discussing a PowerPoint slide.

Create a strong foundation for young learners

Earn your Early Childhood Education MA/MEd online, and you’ll learn creative ways to offer safe, nurturing and stimulating play environments that help young children learn and grow. Early childhood educators teach in urban and suburban preschools, public and private elementary schools, child development centers, daycare centers and Head Start programs. They also work as educational consultants and home daycare providers.

You have the option to pursue an initial Illinois Teaching License (PEL) with an Early Childhood Education (birth–grade 2) endorsement and an Early Childhood Special Education approval. If you are already a licensed teacher, you can add an Early Childhood Education (birth–grade 2) endorsement and Early Childhood Special Education approval to your PEL. You’ll also be qualified for the ECE Gateway credential.

Our online classes feature best practice online design and offer opportunities for synchronous and asynchronous participation and supervision, as well as synchronous meetings with the faculty. The program can be completed in two years.

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Connected to Chicago

You’ll have the opportunity to practice teaching in elementary school classrooms around the city, as well as serve as an educational advocate for communities and families.

Application Deadlines

Applications are reviewed on a continuous basis. Priority deadlines for scholarships are as follows:

  • Fall: August 15
  • Winter: December 1
  • Spring: March 1
  • Summer: May 1

Admission Requirements

Submit an online application, official transcripts, letters of recommendation, résumé and a personal statement.

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Required Courses

You’ll complete 14 required courses, field experiences, a student teaching internship and content area coursework. MA students will complete an additional course and thesis.

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of Early Childhood Education graduates were employed, continuing their education or pursuing other goals within six months of graduation.

Learn from leaders in the early childhood education industry

In the Early Childhood Education master’s program, you’ll study with respected experts like Professor Mojdeh Bayat, whose Resilience-based Interaction Model (RIM) is shifting the field’s practices and perspectives on shaping young children’s behavior to insure their future learning success. You’ll work alongside Associate Professor Marie Ann Donovan, whose statewide advocacy for early childhood professionals is improving public understanding and support for quality preparation programs and their graduates.

"While I gained a wealth of knowledge about the world and best practices in early childhood education at DePaul, more importantly, I developed a strong work ethic, a commitment to social justice and a strengths-based perspective. I think those attributes helped set me apart from other candidates."

Lauren (MEd '15)

Lead Teacher, Head Start Program, Erie Neighborhood House
Lauren, Early Childhood Education MEd alumna  

Alumni Network

Your degree will connect you with a robust community. You’ll benefit from a strong network of nearly 17,500 College of Education alumni. Graduates go on to follow many career paths as elementary teachers, tutors or daycare managers at Bright Horizons.


Graduate school is an investment in your future. Learn more about scholarship opportunities available to you.

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Contact Information

For more information about applying, contact The Office of Graduate Admissions for DePaul’s College of Education at (773) 325-4405 or

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We’ll send you information about the degree, admission requirements and upcoming info sessions. Let’s get started.

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