Navajo Technical University Awards First B.A. in Early Childhood EducationFeb 21st, 2016 | By tcj | Category: 27-3: The Trials of Teacher Education, Tribal College News
Navajo Technical University (NTU) recently launched a baccalaureate-level, competency-based program in early childhood multicultural education. The program is articulated and aligned in both Arizona and New Mexico, adhering to the National Association of Education for the Young Child standards. Students work intensely and progressively to prepare for their early childhood licensure so that they can work with infants to 8-year-old children, their families, and the community. Navajo language, culture, and philosophy are integrated in the curriculum.
Many students start their careers taking child development associate courses, which leads to a credential awarded by the National Council for Early Childhood Professionals. Completion of 12 credit hours of early childhood education courses count towards an associate’s degree. The Office of Child Development and NTU award a certificate of completion to graduating students. Dual credit is provided to outstanding high school juniors and seniors who are able take general education courses in the associate’s degree program.
Early childhood education students have competed in SkillsUSA events and have placed among the top 10 at the national level. They have also attended workshops and conferences pertaining to early childhood professional practice. Some students have completed two weeks of the NASA Pre-Service Teacher Internship. NTU graduated its first six early childhood Bachelor of Science students this past December, and anticipates more graduates this year.
Through classroom and field observations, students in the early childhood multicultural education program at NTU develop knowledge and skills on how to interact with children using researchbased, developmentally appropriate practices. Moreover, they learn to work beyond the classroom to advocate for children.