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Academic Programs

Dual Language / Bilingual Early Childhood Special Education


  • Program Overview

    The Dual Language Bilingual Early Childhood Special Education program prepares candidates to enrich the education of emergent bilingual children in specialized settings.

    You will discover creative ways to help young emergent bilingual children learn and grow in early childhood general education settings. As a student in this program, you will have the flexibility to work in a range of settings and engage with children from diverse racial/ethnic, socioeconomic, and linguistic backgrounds, including children with a variety of social, emotional, behavioral, physical, and cognitive variations. You will:

    • Learn to carefully observe children and use that knowledge to guide and inform your teaching.
    • Gain an understanding that learning develops through play, social interaction, and sensory experiences.
    • Construct developmentally responsive learning experiences that encourage all learners to follow their curiosities.
    • Develop a rich teaching repertoire to understand the intellectual, linguistic and emotional needs of students in dual language/transitional bilingual education settings.
    • Create accessible curricula so all learners can explore literacy, literature, mathematics, science, arts, and social studies content.
    • Develop a strong social justice focus in order to advocate for and with children and families.
    • Plan for dynamic and collaborative partnerships with families and school professionals.
    • Engage in critical explorations of yourself, others, and the wider world.

    This program culminates in a Master of Science in Education or, for those with a prior master’s degree in education, a Master of Education and requires 39 credits.

    Two graduate students talking in the lobby

  • Admissions Requirements

    In addition to the main admissions criteria, there are additional requirements needed to apply for this program:

    • Applicants must be fluent in Spanish or Mandarin and have the aptitude to complete graduate level coursework in Spanish or Mandarin.
    • Applicants must already hold a valid New York State certification in General Education at the Early Childhood or Childhood level.
  • Coursework

  • Supervised Fieldwork/Advisement

    Supervised fieldwork/advisement lies at the heart of a Bank Street education. Through sustained experiences in the field, supervision from core faculty, and close collaboration with peers, our graduate students develop the ability to connect theory to practice and to reflect deeply on their own growth as educators.

    In this program, you will work in a classroom setting as a full-time head teacher or assistant or as a student teacher (3 days each week):

    • As a student teacher you will be placed in one bilingual special education setting (Spanish or Mandarin) within grades pre-K through 2.
    • As a working head or assistant teacher, you will use your own classroom as your fieldwork. If you are not working in a special education setting you will need to complete a summer supervised fieldwork/advisement during a July (Summer 2) term.

    Taken concurrently with coursework, supervised fieldwork is designed to foster the integration of theory and practice. You will:

    • Be supervised by your advisor, a core graduate faculty mentor and experienced teacher.
    • Participate in a weekly conference group of 5-7 students and your advisor.
    • Reflect on a lesson with your advisor once each month.
    • Meet individually with your advisor once each month.
    • Complete projects to help you take a deeper look at the setting and students you work with.
  • Career Opportunities

    Your degree will provide you with a range of career opportunities:

    • Teach in dual language or transitional bilingual education classrooms.
    • Teach in inclusive and self-contained special education classrooms as the bilingual special education teacher.
    • Work as an early-interventionist in social service or education-based agencies, as well as in hospitals or daycare settings.
    • Work one-on-one as a Special Education Itinerant Teacher (SEIT) in home of center-based programs.
  • Faculty

  • Certification

    Upon graduation, you will be eligible for New York State certification in Teaching Students with Disabilities, birth to grade 2, and the Bilingual Extension, provided you complete all other State certification requirements.