Early Childhood Education


If you love children and want a career that helps give them the best possible start in life, then early childhood education is right for you. During the period from birth through 3rd grade, a child goes through a rapid phase of growth and development. Those years are vital for increasing cognitive ability, social skills, self-esteem, and moral outlook.

The early childhood education degree at Concordia University, Nebraska is a stand-alone, inclusive program. With this degree, you will be able to teach and provide services to infants, toddlers, and children, including those with special developmental or learning needs. Concordia’s program teaches students the most current research and best practices to help young children grow, not only in academic areas, but physically, socially, aesthetically and spiritually as well.


Student to faculty ratio

Experience Concordia's Education Department

Early Childhood Education Sample Academic Outcomes



  • K-3rd Grade Teacher
  • Pre-Primary Teacher
  • Nanny
  • Family Services Worker
  • Parent Educator
  • Administrator

Student Teachers

  • Hephata Lutheran School
  • Shepherd of the Hills
  • Grace Lutheran School
  • Emmanuel Lutheran School
  • Fortenelle Elementary

Early Childhood Education Faculty

Student Teaching

Concordia’s student teaching program gives you the opportunity to gain real-world experience in classrooms.
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First Semester

Teach in schools around Seward and continue to take classes on campus while learning the skills necessary to become an innovative and effective teacher.

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Second Semester

Assume more teaching responsibility and complete your training nationally, giving you valuable experience to take into your own future classroom.

Become a Director of Christian Education

Share the Gospel and use your teaching ministry in a congregational setting!

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The Ministry of Teaching

If you are a confirmed member of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod and wish to serve as a rostered member of the teaching ministry, Concordia can help you obtain a Lutheran Teacher Diploma, which will make you eligible for a call in a Lutheran school.

If you would like to be able to teach in a Christian school that is not associated with the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, you may wish to receive a Christian Teacher Diploma, which will prepare you for your teaching ministry.

Field Experience

At Concordia you're offered the opportunity to gain valuable field experience in local schools, camps, and at the People’s City Mission in Lincoln. This exposure gives you a chance to practice your educational skills and also equips you to be ministers of the Gospel.


Concordia Association of Students in Education is a helpful, informative, and exciting organization for any aspiring teacher. In its monthly meetings, CASE provides opportunities for you to learn more about issues that may affect your future classrooms.

International Student Teaching
International Student Teaching

Opportunities are available for student teaching at Lutheran international or Christian schools in places like Hong Kong, Shanghai, Latin America, or Australia. Education students have also gained summer internship and practicum experience in Africa, Asia, eastern Europe, and Latin America.

Early Childhood Education Sample Course Schedule

Semester 1

  • Educ 101 Teaching as a Profession
    Introduces a broad picture of K–12 teaching as a career in Lutheran schools, other private schools and public schools. Students will be introduced to the teacher education program and guided in the process of application to the program. Participation in at least 10 hours of focused K–12 classroom observations required.
  • FYS First Year Seminar
  • Gen Ed 14 Credit Hours

Semester 2

  • EDPS 210 Educational Psychology and General Methods
    The essential conditions (factors) which facilitate learning and transfer; theories of learning, general and specific abilities, the importance of self-esteem, best practices in the evaluation of aptitude, achievement and other aspects of human development.
  • Educ 201 Introduction to Education
    An orientation to the field of education with an emphasis on the service role of the teacher. Historical, philosophical, and sociological foundations of American public and private education are explored. Current trends and issues are examined.
  • Psy 211 Child Development and Psychology
    An in-depth study of factors influencing the development and behavior of children from conception through adolescence.
  • Psy 212 Child Development and Psychology: Young Children
    An intense study of the preschool–age child in twelve key areas of development. Involves weekly observations of a preschool child in a childcare setting. Thirteen hours of field experience required.
  • Gen Ed 10 Credit Hours

Semester 3

  • Eng 391 Children’s Literature
    A study of literature for children from picture books to elementary-age works. Methods of presenting literature for enjoyment and enlargement of experiences.
  • Psy 324 Psychology of Exceptionality
    This is a survey course which attempts to develop an understanding and appreciation for students with special needs. Characteristics of those with learning disabilities, physical challenges, behavioral disabilities, developmental delays, hearing and vision impairment, and giftedness are studied.
  • Gen Ed 12 Credit Hours

Semester 4

  • Educ 330 Early Childhood Education Foundations and Programs
    An introduction to early childhood education, this course provides knowledge of the history, philosophy, and trends in this field. A variety of current models and programs will be explored, with class visits to several programs.
  • Educ 346 Instructional Technology
    Technology has changed the way we work and live in such a profound way that the ability to use it effectively has been widely recognized as a new literacy. Students are expected to use technology to create, innovate, critically think, problem solve, communicate, and collaborate. Teachers must possess the knowledge and skills necessary to lead students in using current technologies in a responsible and beneficial way. Most importantly, they must have a fundamental understanding of its importance in teaching and learning, thereby creating a willingness to learn and integrate the technologies of the future. This course will offer a practical and hands-on exploration of using technology in the K-12 classroom.
  • LTD/CTE/Public Ed 3 Credit Hours
  • Gen Ed 9 Credit Hours

Semester 5

  • ASL 101 Beginning American Sign Language I
    This beginning course in American Sign Language (ASL) is designed for the person who has no experience in ASL. The course will focus on development of vocabulary and grammatical structures of ASL, receptive and expressive skill development, and the study of deaf culture.
  • Educ 331 Infants and Toddlers: Development, Curriculum and Teaching
    A study of appropriate infant and toddler programs (birth to age three), including an overview of development, quality routines, appropriate environments, materials and activities, and teaching/guidance techniques. This methods course will be required for all Early Childhood endorsement candidates.
  • Educ 424 Differentiated Instruction
    The course will prepare teacher candidates to meet the diverse needs of ALL students, including the culturally diverse, gifted, at-risk, second language learner, and those with special needs, in inclusive educational settings. It will provide pre-service teachers an overview of special education and the federal laws which govern the education of these students today. Attention will be focused on the process of identifying the individual needs of students and creating effective teaching techniques to address those needs, primarily through the use of differentiated instruction.
  • Educ 430 School, Community and Parent Involvement
    This course concentrates on the teacher’s role in building successful relationships between families, educators, schools and communities. Strategies for increasing respectful family–school partnerships that enhance children’s school success will be emphasized.
  • HHP 471 Adapted Physical Activity
    The course focuses on the theories, principles, and practices of working with individuals with special needs in physical education, recreation, and sport programs.
  • LTD/CTE/Public Ed 5 Credit Hours

Semester 6

  • Art 301 Methods of Art Education
    Prepares to teach art history, art criticism, art production, and aesthetics in the elementary classroom. Provides opportunity to identify, understand, and evaluate children’s art work. Explores two and three dimensional media and the production of an art curriculum.
  • Educ 315 Behavior Disorders and Intervention
    This course offers an overview of the behavioral and emotional disorders commonly found in special and general education classrooms. Principles of effective inclusive instruction, applied behavioral analysis, behavior management, functional assessment and intervention are taught.
  • Educ 316 Teaching Students with Moderate Disabilities
    This course examines the various approaches to working with and the characteristics of students with moderate disabilities, including mental retardation and autism. Specific topics addressed include characteristics, assessment, curriculum and adaptations, appropriate school placement, transition, and support into adulthood.
  • Edu 333 Primary Education and Literacy Development
    Designed to prepare the teacher of children ages six through eight for teaching the basic skills, organizing the primary curriculum, and selecting appropriate techniques and materials. Emphasis will be given to the development of literacy in young children.
  • Educ 425a English as a Second Language (ESL) Instruction, Curriculum, and Assessment (Part 1)
    This course introduces the student to the theory and practice of language learning and teaching through discussion and practice of various approaches, methods, and techniques for teaching English as a second language. The student will likewise learn principles of ESL curriculum selection, adaptation, evaluation, and development, and will explore options for the assessment of English language learner proficiency. Special attention is given to modification of content area lessons for English language learners, the growing multiethnic nature of the American classroom, and human relational dispositions and approaches to teaching effectively in a multiethnic classroom.
  • Theo 381 Christian Teacher’s Ministry
    The course applies Biblical and theological principles of vocation, ministry, and the two kingdoms to the teacher of the church and the priesthood of all believers. Study of Scripture, standard historical documents, and current practice in calling, placement, and congregational life focuses on the identity of the teaching minister in parochial education and the Christian teaching in public and private education.
  • LTD/CTE/Public Ed 3 Credit Hours

Semester 7

  • Educ 314 Assessment, Evaluation, and IEP
    This course will provide pre–service teachers with the knowledge of how to select, administer, score and interpret a standardized/norm referenced assessment for exceptional learners. The development of an IEP and the Administration of both formal and informal assessment tools will be covered. Using data gained in order to improve student achievement will be discussed.
  • Educ 317 Teaching Students with Learning Disabilities
    This course offers an overview of the curriculum and methods that have proven to be effective when teaching students with learning disabilities. Issues related to the academic and social characteristics of these students, as well as assessment procedures, related services and placement options will be discussed.
  • Educ 332 Early Childhood Education Curriculum and Methodology
    Students will learn developmentally appropriate content and various methods for guiding the growth of children in Christian environments which meet the unique needs of children ages three thorough five.
  • Educ 452 Early Childhood Program Organization and Management
    Organizing, planning, managing, and evaluating programs for young children. Day care and preprimary programs are the concerns of this course. Field trips to various agencies pertinent to families with young children, and experiences with families will be required.
  • Educ 461 Literacy Instruction, Assessment and Intervention (formerly Educ 361)
    Emphasizes 1) current theory, research, content, methodology, instructional materials, and classroom organization that relate to teaching the language arts (reading, writing, speaking, listening, viewing, and visually representing); 2) informal and formal assessment that determines reader strengths and needs for purposes of instruction and intervention. A field experience of 30 clock hours in elementary school literacy development is required.

Semester 8

  • Educ 380 Student Teaching in Pre-Kindergarten
    Students are assigned to teach at the prekindergarten level under the supervision of a classroom teacher and a university supervisor. Prerequisites: Full admission to teacher education and approval of the Director of Elementary Student Teaching
  • Educ 387b Student Teaching in Special Education
    See course description for Educ 387.