Elementary School teacher with students

Teaching Children with Disabilities (B-2), Master of Science in Education

The Masters in Early Childhood Special Education ( B – Grade 2) is intended for field/career changers to foster the development of skills, attitudes and knowledge needed to teach diverse populations of young children (birth to grade 2) across the full range of abilities.

The Masters in Early Childhood Special Education ( B – Grade 2) is intended for field/career changers to foster the development of skills, attitudes and knowledge needed to teach diverse populations of young children (birth to grade 2) across the full range of abilities. They are structured to prepare teachers to support the learning and development of students in inclusive general education K – 2 grade, early intervention ( B – pre K), self-contained special education settings. These objectives are achieved by integrating knowledge of the importance of developmentally appropriate practices and play-based activities with an understanding of developmental delays and related disabilities. Specifically; the programs promote teacher knowledge and skills in:

  • Providing developmentally appropriate environments for all children
  • Addressing the needs of children with developmental delays and specific developmental disabilities
  • Understanding different models of service delivery
  • Selecting, using and understanding methods of developmental assessment
  • Developing, modifying and implementing curriculum
  • Aligning curriculum goals with appropriate state and national standards
  • Working with interdisciplinary teams and culturally diverse families
  • Using assistive and other technologies to enhance children’s learning and communicative skills
  • Providing advocacy for children and their families in the framework of current legislation
Degree Type
Area of Interest
Associated Colleges or Schools
Program Location
  • Queens Campus
Required Credit Hours


  • Application
  • Nonrefundable application fee of $75
  • Statement of goals
  • Satisfactory Grade Point Average (3.0-3.5 depending on program)
  • Official transcripts showing conferral of bachelor’s degree and initial certification

*If you are an international student, you must submit TOEFL or IELTS.

Please view the School of Education Graduate Admission Application Requirements for detailed admission information.

Queens Campus
Graduate Admissions
[email protected]


  • EDU 3210: Research & Practice of Teaching Writing/English Language Arts in General & Inclusive Education, B-6
  • EDU 7122: Programs in Early Childhood Education: Play, Social Learning, and Early Childhood Environments (20 Hrs. Fieldwork)     
  • EDU 7123: Creative Arts in Linguistically/Culturally Diverse and Inclusive Early Childhood (15 Hrs. Fieldwork)
  • EDU 7126: Observing and Recording the Behavior of Young Children  (15 Hrs. Fieldwork)
  • EDU 7127: School, Family and Community Partnerships
  • EDU 7128: Integrated Curriculum in Early Childhood Settings (15 Hrs. Fieldwork)
  • EDU 7129: Mathematics and Science in Early Childhood
  • EDU 7114: Early Childhood Education Associate Teaching (Student Teaching)

Must be taken in your second to last semester and certification. New York State Required Examinations must be passed prior to enrollment in Student Teaching: EAS, CST-Multi Subject. edTPA is done during this semester. ** ADVISOR CONSULTATION REQUIRED**

  • EDU 9716: Curriculum and Instruction Design for Teaching Literacy to Individuals with Exceptionalities: Childhood (20 Hrs. Fieldwork)    
  • EDU 9719: Principles of Applied Behavior Analysis and Positive Behavior Supports, K-12 (15 Hrs. Fieldwork)
  • EDU 9733: Educational Assessment of Young Children with Exceptionalities (prerequisites EDU 7126 and EDU 9737) (20 Hrs. Fieldwork)
  • EDU 9734: Curriculum Modifications for Teaching Students with Disabilities in Diverse Early Childhood Settings (15 Hrs. Fieldwork)
  • EDU 9736: Early Intervention and Provision of Services for Preschoolers with Special Needs (prerequisites EDU 7126 and EDU 9737) (15 Hrs. Fieldwork)
  • EDU 9737: Early Childhood Special Education (15 Hrs. Fieldwork)
  • EDU 9738: Research on Issues in Early Childhood Special Education (10 Hrs. Fieldwork)
  • EDU 9739: Practicum in Special Education Early Childhood (150 Hrs.)
    Must be taken in your final Semester. Must have completed EDU 7114, all Special Education Coursework and CST- Students with Disabilities


*SJU Comprehensive Exam must be passed during the final semester of classes.

Student Resources

Career and Education Opportunities

Program graduates will be able to assume such positions as:

  • Early childhood teachers in early intervention, family, and inclusion settings
  • Special education collaborative team teachers
  • Special education itinerant teachers
  • Special education teachers in self-contained settings
  • Providers of one-on-one home-based early intervention services

Graduates of this Master’s Programs will qualify for New York State certification in teaching students with disabilities (B-2 Gr), provided all state-mandated external tests, training modules and teaching experiences are completed.


In this program you will develop the ability of teachers, attitudes, and skills to identify and remediate learning and behavior disorders, ranging from mild to profound, regardless of etiology. This program will support your understanding of child development, its variation, intervention strategies, program planning, and assessment. You will learn to implement evidence-based strategies from current research in various early childhood educational settings. 

The program prepares graduates to:

  • Demonstrate knowledge of human developmental processes and variations
  • Engage all young children in play, learning, and interaction in meaningful ways
  • Collaborate effectively with parents, families, educators, and related service providers
  • Develop skills that facilitate the use of research and technology in the broader context of special and inclusive education for young learners
  • Use the basic principles and strategies of the science of applied behavior analysis with early learners who have disabilities
  • Use, interpret and analyze various forms of assessment (formal, informal, formative, summative) to gather detailed information, from multiple sources, about student learning
  • Create and implement educational programs for young children with disabilities  
  • Assess and evaluate the development and implementation of effective strategies for children with learning and behavior challenges in early childhood educational settings
  • Interpret and apply standards of professional and state organizations

The School of Education Experience

Our students complete 150 hours of supervised special education practicum in various settings including self-contained, inclusive, and mainstreamed classrooms. St. John’s program is unique in that it allows students to develop skills to teach exceptional students in schools, clinics, and early intervention settings. Students are exposed to instructors, current researchers, and leaders in the field of special education who have many years of experience and expertise working directly with children in diverse, multicultural, and high-needs urban and suburban school settings.  

Our students participate in many online learning opportunities that allow for current and effective use of online resources for research and practice in special education and preparation for careers in an increasingly global and digital world

Our graduates are successful and highly proficient teachers trained to meet the highest professional standards in special education set by the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC), through rigorous course work based on evidence-based practices, applied observation and practicum experiences, and engagement in student activities, including academic service learning. We are excited to welcome you to join this cadre of effective teachers and global citizens effecting change in the lives of children and youth through education and service.

Our students engage in several professional and networking events throughout their program developing their competencies to effectively communicate and interact with stakeholders in collaborative and inclusive ways. Please visit our CEC Student Chapter page at weebly.com to learn more about the exciting opportunities for professional preparation and student engagement that we offer to our students as part of their overall experience in our Special Education program.

Our full-time faculty is highly qualified with many years of experience working with individuals with disabilities, and their families, in diverse school and clinical settings, and is also actively engaged in research and professional service. Further, we have a strong supporting Adjunct faculty that brings unique practitioner inputs to our programs. Learn more about our faculty

Our courses are offered at Queens with ample online course offerings.  Online courses allow students to learn at their own pace and participate in interactive and creative online learning opportunities

Programs that offer multiple opportunities for engagement in professional activities, academic service learning, and global education consistent with the University’s Catholic and Vincentian mission. Our school’s mission of “Preparing teachers, counselors, and administrators as transformational leaders who honor the dignity of all people” guides our programs and informs our practice each day.

Programs in Special Education host a College Immersion Program for Youth and Young Adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities to increase inclusive opportunities in Higher Education:  Funded Grant Project with the Cooke Center for Learning and Development, New York City (2016- present)

School of Education Faculty

Faculty with extensive experience as school and community-based professionals are actively engaged in school-based research and service activities

Faculty regularly present at local, national, and international special education conferences

Faculty have published in highly regarded peer-reviewed education and special education journals including Review of Educational Research, Learning Disability Quarterly, Learning Disability Research & Practice, Behavior Modification, Preventing School Failure, Beyond Behavior, Intervention in School and Clinic, International Review of Research in MR, American Journal of Mental Retardation, Journal of Intellectual Disability Research, International Journal of Inclusive Education, and International Interdisciplinary Journal of Education

Program Contact

Ishita Khemka

Associate Professor

Sullivan Hall Queens Room 412


Federal Regulations require all higher education institutions offering an academic program designed to meet the educational requirements for a professional license or certification or advertised as such, to provide potential students with information about whether completion of that program would meet the educational requirements for licensure/certification in the state of the student’s location upon enrollment.

This program prepares students for licensure/certification in New York State. Students who plan to work in a state other than NY, must visit our Professional Licensure Disclosure Information page where we have indicated if this program meets or does not meet the educational requirements for specific states.

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