Skip to content

Online Bachelor's Degree in Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE)

teacher with student working at desk

Gain Impactful Skills in SMSU’s Online ECSE Program


2—4 Years

80—81 Credit Hours (Major)

$305 per Credit

Request More Information

Complete this form to receive information about coursework, admissions, tuition, and more.

Become a Licensed Special Education Teacher

Prepare to work with infants, toddlers, and young children with disabilities. Southwest Minnesota State University’s online Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Special Education is accredited by the Minnesota Professional Educator Licensing and Standards Board (PELSB) and includes a variety of clinical experiences throughout the program concluding with a semester-long student teaching experience. You can earn your degree in two to four years while learning from experts in the field.

This BS in Early Childhood Special Education program is also offered on campus.

Program Details

Request Info

Make a Difference in the Lives of Students with Special Needs

120 Total Credits

26 Courses

The interdisciplinary curriculum in SMSU’s ECSE program includes a variety of hands-on experiences, concluding with a semester-long student teaching experience, giving you the opportunity to apply what you learn in a real classroom or educational setting. Personal connection is a core component of our online programs, so you’re learning online but not alone. The program meets the requirements for Minnesota licensure.

Course Highlights

  • ECSE 441: Assessment and Curriculum in Early Childhood Special Education Lab
  • SPED 450: Curriculum Design & Implementation in Special Education
  • ECSE 452: Transitions in ECSE
  • SPED 480: Procedural Safeguards in Special Education
Curriculum Details

Apply to the Early Childhood Special Education Online Program

Start Date August 26, 2024 Fall Term 2024

Start your application process with the support of the SMSU team. During the application process, our enrollment team will answer questions and help you meet application deadlines for the online early childhood special education bachelor’s degree.

Online Application FormApply Now
Application Fee$20 waivable fee*
Official TranscriptsSend official high school transcripts. Transfer students must send transcripts from each institution attended
Minimum GPA2.5 minimum, 3.0 recommended

It’s always the right time to invest in your education with SMSU. Contact an enrollment counselor by calling 1-800-201-2944 to get started today.

Admissions Details

Tuition and Aid for the SMSU ECSE Program

Calculate your cost for attending SMSU Use our tuition calculator to help you estimate your total tuition costs.  

The first step toward creating a successful future for yourself is investing in your education. Whether applying for a college degree for the first time or picking back up where you left off in your education, Southwest Minnesota State University’s tuition and aid packages can assist you. Take advantage of available scholarships, competitive tuition, and transfer credits when paying for your ECSE degree.

Cost per Credit Hour$305
Total Credit Hours120
Total Estimated Cost**$36,600
Other CostsThe estimated tuition cost does not include factors such as textbooks, supplies, or additional fees and expenses

Military Benefits

SMSU proudly welcomes active military and veteran students. We accept the GI Bill™ and VA education benefits. Learn more by contacting an enrollment counselor or by visiting our military benefits page.

Financial Aid Options & Support

Southwest Minnesota State University offers a variety of solutions to help you invest in your education. SMSU offers in-state tuition rates to all students, along with a variety of financial services, including military benefits, financial aid opportunities, and scholarships for qualifying applicants.

Take your next step in financing your education by completing your FAFSA today. Use SMSU’s school code: 002375

Tuition Details
special education teacher with student at table

Launch Your Early Childhood Special Education Career

The knowledge and skills you gain will prepare you to work with at-risk young children and their families in home-based settings or teach children with special needs in early childhood classrooms. In 2022, almost 500,000 special education teachers were needed in the U.S.1 These teachers work in public schools, preschools, and more.

Jobs for ECSE Graduates

Special Education Teacher $62,950 per year1

Early Childhood Educator $43,472 per year2

Program Outcomes

In SMSU’s ECSE program, you’ll get hands-on experience from your first semester through graduation, allowing you to learn directly from experts in the field. You will graduate with the expertise to collaborate with families, care teams, and other service providers to ensure the children in your care grow and thrive.

What You’ll Learn

Meet Our Faculty

SMSU employs a faculty of experts who are top-skilled in their fields. Our educators are fully committed to providing each student with personalized and thoughtful instruction to help you succeed academically and professionally.

Faculty Spotlight: Dr. LeAnne Syring

Dr. LeAnne Syring began her education as a non-traditional student after raising four children. She enjoys teaching and has recently completed her Doctor of Philosophy in Early Childhood Education with an emphasis in Inclusion of Students with Special Education Needs. With a love of teaching early childhood and special education, her goal is to continue to teach at the University level until retirement.

Learn Online with Southwest Minnesota State University

Whether you’re enrolling in a degree program for the first time or completing a degree you previously started, learning online with SMSU provides the flexibility you need to be successful. Our online programs offer the same rigorous curriculum delivered on campus, plus the convenience of studying on your schedule from the location of your choice.

Discover SMSU Online

Sources and Disclaimers

  1. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Special Education Teachers, at (visited September 26, 2023).
  2., Early Childhood Educator, at (visited September 22, 2023).

*Contact our enrollment team for more details!

**Tuition costs and fees will vary based on semesters of enrollment and number of transfer credits accepted. Contact our enrollment team to learn more.