Jul 13, 2024  
2024-25 Western Washington University Catalog 
2024-25 Western Washington University Catalog

Early Childhood Special Education P-3 and Early Childhood Education P-3 (Dual Endorsement), BAE

Location(s): WWU - Bellingham

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Department of Education Leadership and Inclusive Teaching, Woodring College of Education

151-153 credits


\Inclusive Early Childhood Educators work as early childhood teachers, elementary classroom teachers, special education teachers, collaborative teaching specialists, and family advocates.

Inclusive Early Childhood Educators must acquire extensive knowledge in major teaching and learning areas. For example, they must understand typical and atypical human development, recognize the foundations and provisions of education and special education laws and legislation, and embrace and affirm the diversities within early childhood settings and the larger community.

Training to become an Inclusive Early Childhood Educators includes coursework and extensive supervised practicum experiences in the public schools. The program is rigorous, and the expectations are high. However, the rewards are also high. This program will prepare you to be an excellent teacher in whatever position you eventually choose. Our dual endorsement graduates are actively recruited by school districts to teach in a variety of early childhood and elementary settings as well as in special education positions.

Why Consider a Dual Endorsement in Early Childhood Special Education P-3 and Early Childhood Education P-3 Major?

Do you want to be a teacher? Do you want to be a teacher who can work with P-3 students, in a variety of settings, and who acquires multiple teaching skills? Our major allows prospective teachers to become experts in both Special Education and Early Childhood Education. Special Education is designed for students with disabilities who need individualized supports. These supports can often be delivered and instructed in inclusive setting, which is one reason we believe that Special Education and Early Childhood teacher preparation should be combined – The purpose of Inclusive Early Childhood Education!

A significant interpretation of Special Education is the application of effective, evidence-based, and individualized teaching that results students’ personal and academic growth.

It is our mission to prepare exceptional teachers and, while students with disabilities often require the services of Special Education teachers, we also believe that there are many other students who benefit from high quality instruction. Therefore, educators who are prepared to teach ALL students, including students with disabilities, tend to be the most effective and sought after teachers within districts. 

 Contact Information

Department Chair
Aaron Perzigian
Miller Hall 201E

Program Advisor
David Yang
Miller Hall 202A

Teacher Education Admission
Miller Hall 254F

 Sample Careers

Special Education Pre-School Teacher | Early Interventionist | Inclusive Classroom Teacher | Family Resource Coordinator | Behavior Interventions Specialist

 Major/Career Resources


How to Declare (Admission and Declaration Process)

Admission to Western Washington University and admission to the Department of Education Leadership and Inclusive Teaching are required before a student may begin taking courses in education. Requirements include:

  • completion of a minimum of 45 credits (see list of recommended GUR courses).
  • cumulative grade point average of 2.75 or higher for the last 45 credits.
  • completion of an English composition course, with grade of B- or higher.
  • Meet the basic skills requirement. This may be met by a) Taking the West-B exam, b) SAT  scores, c) ACT  scores. There is no minimum score requirement for admission. See the Woodring admissions website: wce.wwu.edu/admissions/basic-skills.

Enrollment restrictions apply in all teacher education programs. Meeting the above criteria makes the applicant eligible for admission but does not guarantee admission. Students who meet all criteria are further evaluated by the department to determine the most qualified applicants. For more information on the application process, contact Teacher Education Admissions in Miller Hall 254F, call 360-650-6161, or visit the website at wce.wwu.edu/admissions/contact.

Retention in the program requires continuous demonstration of competence in standard oral and written English in all coursework. Retention also requires maintenance of a 2.75 quarterly GPA including the quarter in which the application was reviewed by the Department of Special Education. The State of Washington requires students to earn a “C” or better in all major endorsement and education courses.

See the Education Leadership and Inclusive Teaching  section of this catalog for program admission and completion requirements.

Certification Advisement

Each student will be assigned an adviser when admitted to the Department of Special Education; the adviser for the Early Childhood major is Dr. Lindsay Foreman Murray. Students will be assisted and monitored by Dr. Foreman-Murray on a regular basis throughout their program.

Grade Requirements

Students must earn a grade of C (2.0) or better in the special education professional program and in all courses required for the endorsement.


Major — Early Childhood Special Education (P-3) and Early Childhood Education (P-3)

Public School Practica and Internship — Special Education

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