Early Childhood Special Education

CAD + SPED (Early Childhood Special Education)

Graduates of this integrated program will be able will be able to complete their BA in Child and Adolescent Development (Early Care and Education), MA in Special Education, and preliminary credential in Early Childhood Special Education in 5 years (including summer).

The Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) teaching credential is committed to preparing individuals to lead and collaborate as educators in a variety of early childhood settings that include young children with disabilities from birth through kindergarten, and their families.


  • Getting the most out of your time: Candidates save at least one semester in time/tuition and can take up to 15 graduate units at the undergraduate rate (up to 12 units can be double counted towards the bachelor’s and master’s degrees).
  • Program curriculum builds in test waivers for Basic Skills Requirement (e.g., CBEST tests).
  • Advising: Every student is assigned a ECSE faculty advisor.
  • Experiences: Coursework, field experiences/ student teaching, and other related activities within the credential program have a foundation on inclusion and equity-centered practices, emphasizing service delivery that is asset-based, culturally-responsive, and interdisciplinary.
  • Careers: Students are ready for special education career immediately upon graduation. Graduates of our program work as early interventionists (birth to age 3), educators within preschool, TK, and kindergarten classrooms, and more!

Early Childhood Roadmap

Students should apply for the SF State Scholars program after they have completed 60 units (typically after their sophomore year and during their junior year). During their senior year, students will be taking a combination of undergraduate and graduate level coursework.

Example Roadmap

Video - Information Session

Watch a recorded information session about this program (video recorded on March 13, 2023):