Infant and Family Development and Early Intervention Master’s Degree Programs

Now more than ever, our nation is focusing its attention on the importance of a child’s earliest years. For over 100 years, Bank Street has been a leader in advancing developmentally meaningful experiences and environments for the care and education of infants and toddlers within the context of their family and society, providing the kind of preparation that enables them to thrive throughout their lives. 

Our master’s degree and certification programs prepare educators to work with children in their youngest years. Your coursework will ground you in a deep study of prenatal and child development and early intervention. Through inquiry, observation, research, and hands-on opportunities, you’ll learn how to engage infants, toddlers, and their families through play, social interaction, and sensory experiences that lay the foundation for further learning and development. You’ll also understand how to evaluate learning difficulties, including screening and assessment for developmental differences like autism spectrum disorder, speech and language delays, and challenges with sensory integration, which will develop your capacity to help young children in the early intervention system to reach important milestones.

Infants and toddlers need access to experiences that effectively support their long-term cognitive, social, and emotional development within the context of their families, starting with educators like you. Whether you’re looking to enter the field or advance your career, as a Bank Street-trained educator and early interventionist, you’ll get the certification you need to make an impact in a variety of settings like nursery schools, child care centers, Early Head Start programs, and therapeutic settings. Our graduates also direct, own, or consult for early childhood programs and/or become licensed social workers.

Join our collaborative and supportive community of infant and toddler specialists to earn your master’s degree and/or expand your credentials.

What Program Is Right for You?

Bank Street offers four programs that will teach you how to provide high-quality early learning experiences for infants and toddlers and their families.

Caregiver holding toddler

Infant and Family Development and Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special and General Education (MSEd)

  • For applicants seeking a dual general and special education master’s degree and certification to work with birth to grade 2
  • Content and fieldwork include developmental assessment and support of babies and toddlers, including those with developmental variations, as well as strategies for working with families
  • Leads to educator and leadership roles in nursery schools, child care centers, and Early Head Start and Early Intervention programs, among others

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Caregiver reading with young children

Infant and Family Development and Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education (MSEd)

  • For applicants who have a master’s degree/certification in early childhood education and who are interested in learning how to support the social, emotional, and cognitive growth of children with developmental variations
  • Leads to educator and leadership roles in nursery schools, child care centers, and Early Head Start and Early Intervention programs, among others

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Teacher playing with toddler at sandbox

Infant and Family Development and Early Intervention/Dual Degree with Hunter College School of Social Work (MSEd)

  • For applicants seeking a dual master’s degree in social work with a specialization in early development
  • Two supervised fieldwork experiences – one in a group setting for young children and the other in a social work setting
  • Leads to eligibility for licensure as a social worker for positions such as Early Intervention or Early Head Start specialists, child/parent psychotherapists, foster care case worker, among others

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Teacher holding infant

Infant and Family Development and Early Intervention (Non-Certification)

  • For applicants seeking advanced skills working with infants, toddlers, and families, designing programs, and assessing development
  • Flexible fieldwork in paid positions or as a student teacher
  • Leads to teaching, leadership, and consultancy positions in nursery schools, child care centers, and Early Head Start programs

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Our Approach

  • We’re for educators who want to spend every day face to face with the future.

    Bank Street holds a unique and highly regarded place in the world of education. We were trailblazers when we were founded in 1916—and our ideas, which were once radical, are widely practiced and accepted today. If you want to shape the future of education, this is where you start.
    Teacher smiling while two kids work
  • We’re for democracy and equity.

    Our commitment to democracy and social justice is at the heart of our innovative pedagogy and desire to help all learners, both children and adults, actively make sense of the world. Equity and equality are always in a Bank Street educator’s mind—we meet students “where they are” in their learning with strengths-based activities and socially, emotionally, and culturally appropriate support.
    Teacher and two students smiling
  • We're for sharing good ideas.

    For a small institution, our reach is broad. Our mix of graduate and continuing education coursework, research programs, and professional partnerships with school districts across the country aims to expand and improve educational opportunities for all students.
    Child smiles while painting with teacher

Financial Aid

At Bank Street, we believe education is an investment that will change your life—and the lives of the students you’ll work with. We’ll help you make it possible.

Every year, Bank Street’s Office of Financial Aid administers over $8.5 million in financial aid to students.  More than 50 percent of our students receive financial aid. Your individual financial status from the prior year is a key factor in determining your award. We encourage you to go through the financial aid process to find out what we can offer.

  • Do I qualify for financial aid based on my income?

    Your individual financial status from the prior year is a key factor in determining your award. Incoming students who earn up to $80,000 a year (or significantly more for students with families) are likely to qualify for a need-based scholarship at Bank Street. Our scholarship program makes the cost of attending Bank Street Graduate School of Education competitive with most other private schools in the New York region.

  • When should I apply for financial aid?

    You can apply for financial aid at the same time you complete your admission application. Filling out the FAFSA as early as possible is an important step for financial aid. Federal student aid, including scholarships, can significantly reduce your financial obligation without adding to student debt.

  • What types of scholarship opportunities are available for me?

    Our financial aid advisors would be happy to tell you more about the process and our many scholarship opportunities for new and continuing students, including external scholarships and program-based, diversity-oriented, public school-focused, and career changer scholarships, among others.

Why Bank Street?

Supporting Our Youngest Children

Bank Street understands that a child’s earliest years are among the most important in their lives. Here, you’ll learn what it takes to help young children build a strong foundation early on for continued success and happiness in school and life.

Advancing the Profession

Bank Street’s many early education initiatives are at the forefront of nationwide efforts to advance the child care profession. Graduates of our early education programs are well-positioned to lead and help increase high-quality, developmentally appropriate learning for our youngest population.

Prepared for the Long Run

In a field that experiences high turnover rates due to underprepared teachers, Bank Street is proud that 87% of its graduates remain in the field of education and 87% feel more confident in their subject area than comparison teachers.

Teacher working with toddler on floor

The Infancy Institute

An annual conference for current and aspiring infant/toddler specialists
Each year, Bank Street’s Infancy Institute welcomes hundreds of infant/toddler specialists to explore cutting-edge developments in research, relationship-based practice, and family-centered care. The conference has educated thousands of professionals for over three decades by setting them up with the tools to thrive in the many settings where they work with our youngest children.An annual conference for current and aspiring infant/toddler specialists
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Genevieve Blau, GSE '20, in Infant and Family Development and Education
Alumni Voices
I wanted to study an emotionally responsive, progressive form of education that took the whole child into account. I spoke to a number of people who had gone through various programs in New York City, and found that Bank Street was the most highly rated.
Genevieve Blau
GSE '20