Education Specialist: Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) Teacher Credential Program


Program Overview


The Education Specialist: ECSE teaching credential is a stand-alone teaching credential authorizing educational services to infants, toddlers, and preschool age children with disabilities and their families. The ECSE teaching credential is issued by the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing, with issuance based on successful completion of a Commission-approved ECSE training program.  Sac State’s commissioned-approved ECSE program is offered in the Teaching Credentials branch of the College of Education.

Candidates holding the ECSE Specialist credential may provide direct and/or indirect services in home-based programs, center-based settings (e.g., HeadStart) and school-based settings (Pre-K). Services for infants and toddlers are traditionally home-based or community settings, with a family service orientation. Pre-K services generally include direct intervention with young children in school-based programs.

For more information about the Education Specialist: Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) Credential, visit the Commission on Teacher Credentialing page. 

Bilingual Authorization: For those with fluency and literacy skills in Spanish or Hmong, you may wish to add a bilingual authorization to your preliminary credential. Visit the Commission on Teacher Credentialing page for more information about the bilingual authorization AND speak to one of our program advisors (Ashley Ciraulo-Stuart: (916) 278-5728 or Karina Figueroa-Ramirez: (916) 278-4324) about this option in our credential programs.

Learning Outcomes

The education specialist programs are governed by a set of Commission on Teacher Credentialing Program Standards. Our education specialist programs align with our department’s vision and mission while also seeking to prepare candidates able to:

  • demonstrate respect and support for the diversity and dignity of all persons, regardless of age, race, ethnicity, language, socioeconomic status, religion, gender, national origin, abilities, family composition, and sexual orientation
  • facilitate collaboration among general educators, special educators, families, related services personnel, and community agencies to educate students in inclusive settings
  • utilize innovative and evidence-based practices for assessment and evaluation, program planning, curriculum, educational interventions, positive behavioral supports and transition aimed at the development of life-long learners
  • demonstrate the core values of student advocacy, teacher advocacy, cultural competence, and family-centered, transdisciplinary collaboration
  • be effective agents of systems change and promoters of social justice in their schools, programs, communities, and professional disciplines
  • facilitate the development of self-determination and self-advocacy in all students and their families with the goal of achieving meaningful life outcomes
  • demonstrate a high standard of ethics in all of their professional activities

Program Options

  • full and part time course options
  • opportunities for internships
  • for current Education Specialists, ability to add on ECSE certificate

Career Options

With an Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) Teaching Credential, you can find employment as a:

  • Early Intervention Specialist (Infants & Toddlers)
  • Preschool (Pre-K) Special Education Teacher
  • Private School Teacher
  • Education Consultant/Provider
  • Evaluator

Program Requirements

Units required by program: 38-48 units 

Minimum required for BA: 120

Course Sequence

Courses Required

Sample Semester Schedule (Coming Soon)


  1. CHDV 30 (Human Development) or equivalent
  2. EDUC 100A/B Educating Students with Disabilities in Inclusive Settings (or equivalent)
  3. EDUC 170 Bilingual Education: Introduction to Educating English Learners (or equivalent)
  4. 45 hours documented field experience with young children
  5. Coursework in child development or related field

Program Resources

Catalog with detailed program requirements (updated information coming soon)

Learn how to apply. 

Summer courses are offered through the College of Continuing Education (CCE). Go to the CCE website for information on registering and paying for pre-requisite courses in the summer.

 Cost (Spring 2018)

Tuition, Fees & other costs:

  • Full-time (>6.1 units): $4,061/semester
  • Part-time (<6 units): $2,663/semester
  • Books & TaskStream account: varies
  • Bursar's Office  

Additional Information

This program is a distance-learning program with courses offered in the following formats: online, hybrid, local/remote. As such, you will need access to appropriate technology in order to engage online and complete coursework.

Cindy Collado, ECSE Program Coordinator
Email:, Phone: (916) 278-4616 | Office: Eureka Hall 322
Ashley Ciraulo-Stuart, Credential Program Advisor
Email:, Phone: (916) 278-5728 | Office: Eureka Hall 432

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