Jul 14, 2024  
2018-2019 Graduate Catalog 
2018-2019 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Division of Education and Social Work

Dr. Kimberly Bryant, Interim Head, Division of Education and Social Work
Dr. Paula Moten-Tolson, Coordinator, Graduate Education
Telephone: (919) 546-8544
Fax: (919) 546-8531
Email: pmoten@shawu.edu

Degree Offered

Master of Science in Curriculum and Instruction
Concentration: Early Childhood Education


Education Mission Statement

The Shaw University Education program builds on the knowledge, skills, and values that students acquire through their liberal arts and science foundations. Candidates graduating from the department will have the specialty area knowledge, professional skills, and experiences that will enable them to function as competent and effective teachers and leaders who think critically and demonstrate effective problem-solving skills.


The Master of Science in Curriculum and Instruction with a concentration in Early Childhood Education is designed for early childhood educators who work directly with young children in a variety of early childhood settings, who accommodate children with a range of abilities and special needs, and who work collaboratively with families and other professionals.

All regularly admitted students are expected to have an undergraduate major consisting of at least 30 semester hours of course work in Early Childhood Education and at least two years of documented relevant educational or professional experience. Students are expected to be practicing teachers in public and private early childhood education settings, including the public schools, centers, and home-based programs.

However, applicants who are licensed in other areas of education, such as Special Education and Elementary Education and who have a minimum of two years of documented relevant educational or professional experience, may also be considered for admission. Relevant educational or professional experience includes such experiences as public school teaching in another field (e.g., Special Education).

The Master of Science Program in Curriculum and Instruction with a concentration in Early Childhood Education requires the equivalent of four semesters of full-time study. However, students are expected to attend part-time if they are practicing teachers. Students must complete a minimum of 42 semester hours of course work with student teaching and a thesis or internship. This graduate-level program is open only to graduate students. The primary target audiences are preschool or public school teachers in central and eastern North Carolina who are in the initial stage of licensure. Other candidates who meet the admissions requirements may be considered for admission.

The Training Model

Instructional delivery is conducted through the use of the traditional Socratic lecture method and the cooperative group-oriented case analysis method. Students are engaged in field-based action research projects and activities that support community service and other scholarly pursuits. Additionally, students complete a research project in all courses. Instructional activities are research-based and infused with technology. All courses are taught using Distance Education either the online mode or the hybrid (a blend of face-to-face and online) mode.

Application Process

Application to the Master of Science Program

Only the official application forms should be used in applying to the Master of Science degree program in Curriculum and Instruction. Admission to graduate study can be authorized only by the Graduate Program Committee (consisting of graduate faculty and the Division Head). The prospective student must hold the degree of Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science from an accredited college or university in the United States or its equivalent-based on a four-year curriculum-in an institution outside of the United States. Admission is competitive and students are selected because of their preparation, experiences, intellectual and leadership abilities.

Types of Admission

Unconditional Admission

In order to obtain unconditional admission, the applicant must have a minimum undergraduate grade point average of 3.0 (B) from an accredited institution. In addition, the applicant must provide two letters of recommendation (one professional reference must be from a present or former supervisor), a minimum of two years of documented relevant educational or professional experiences, a valid teaching license issued by a Department of Public Instruction in the United States, Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores on the aptitude section (GRE scores must not be more than five years old), proficiency in written and spoken English demonstrated in a written goals statement, a successful interview with the Graduate Program Committee and if the applicant is an international student a TOEFL score of at least 500 on the paper-based test, or at least 173 on the computer-based test (TOEFL scores must not be more than two years old). A nonrefundable application fee of $50 must accompany the application.

Conditional Admission

Conditional admission may be granted for those applicants who do not satisfy all of the requirements for unconditional admission. For example, an applicant may be admitted with a minimum undergraduate grade point average lower than 3.0 but no lower than 2.75 from an accredited institution and a graduate degree in a related discipline from an accredited institution. The Graduate Program Committee (consisting of graduate faculty and the Chair) decides final disposition of cases involving students conditionally admitted.

Course Credit

Shaw University uses the Federal Definition and the Carnegie Unit to determine semester credit hours awarded to students for coursework. The University awards a Carnegie Unit of credit to students for satisfactory completion of one (1) fifty (50) minute session of classroom instruction or direct faculty instruction. A unit of credit equates to three hours of student work per week (1) hour lecture plus two (2) hours of homework or three (3) hours of lab for not less that 16 weeks or the equivalent time in non-traditional terms.

For distance education courses, the same process and criteria are used to determine credit hours. Shaw University does not award for coursework taken on a noncredit basis.

Application Deadlines

The Education program will begin processing applications and making admissions decisions as applications are returned. Applicants are urged to apply early due to the limited number of openings each year.

Applicants Living in the U. S. and U. S. Citizens

For fall semester admission - April 1
For spring semester admission - October 31

International Applicants

For fall semester admission - January 30
For spring semester admission - August 30

Application Fee

A non-refundable fee of $50.00 must accompany all applications. Personal checks are not accepted. Certified checks and money orders should be made payable to Shaw University. MasterCard and VISA are also accepted.

Letters of Recommendation

Two letters of recommendation must be submitted from persons who are familiar with the applicant’s academic and professional qualifications. One professional reference must be from a present or former supervisor.


Foreign University transcripts will only be accepted after evaluation by World Education Services (WES).

Graduate Record Examination (GRE) Scores

Scores on the GRE are required as part of the application to graduate school. Dates for administration of the GRE during the academic year are usually October, December, April, and June. Four to six weeks are usually required for test scores to reach the University. Graduate Record Examination scores more than five years old are not accepted.

If an applicant did not specify at the time of taking the GRE that Shaw University was to receive his/her scores, the Educational Testing Service should be asked in writing to send the GRE scores to Shaw University (ETS Institutional Code R5612). If scores will not arrive by the application deadline, a photocopy of the student’s score report should be sent which will be used until an official score report arrives. Registration forms for the GRE may be obtained by visiting www.ets.org or writing to Graduate Record Examinations, Educational Testing Service (ETS), CB6000, Princeton, NJ 08541-6000.

Professional Resume

Each applicant should submit a professional resume which includes their educational background and previous and current places of employment.

Goals Statement

Each applicant must submit a one-page statement presenting his/her reasons for pursuing the Master of Science degree in Curriculum and Instruction with a concentration in Early Childhood Education along with any other information concerning the applicant’s background and plans that may be helpful in considering the application.

Financial Assistance

To apply for aid, a student should submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), listing Shaw University in item 32 as one of the schools to receive information from the processing agency. The FAFSA may be obtained online or from any college financial aid office or in person from the Shaw University Office of Financial Aid. An aid applicant must also provide a Financial Aid Transcript, completed by the financial aid office at each college or university the student has previously attended. The form is available in the Office of Financial Aid and may be duplicated as needed for several schools. Priority consideration is given to students who submit the FAFSA by the application deadline for the summer session or semester for which aid is requested. Applications filed after the deadlines will be processed as time and funds permit.

For detailed information on financial aid, contact the Office of Financial Aid at (919) 546-8240.

Special Requirements for International Applicants

Application & Transcripts for International Students

All prospective international students must submit a Shaw University International Application Package to the Admissions Office. Contact the Admissions Office for an International application to be mailed to you.

The following forms must be returned in a timely manner:

  1. Notarized International Student Application
  2. Certified official high school and/or college transcripts;
    *College transcript: At the expense of the applicant, an official evaluation of transcript should be submitted to:
    World Education Services
    PO Box 5087
    Bowling Green Station
    New York, NY 10274-5087
  3. SAT, ACT or TOEFL Scores
  4. Complete a notarized Affidavit of support (including original bank statements to confirm affidavit of support)
  5. Non-refundable $40 application fee

International students must be approved for admission before an I20 form is issued. An I20 form will not be issued until all financial documentation is received and approved.

Time Limitation and Residency

A master’s degree student has five years to complete his or her degree. There is no special requirement concerning residency.

Acceptable Licensure Areas

Applicants applying for admission into the graduate program should be licensed in one of the following areas: Birth through Kindergarten (B-K), Elementary Education, Social Work, Psychology, or Sociology. Other applicants who show demonstrated experience/accomplishments in the field of Early Childhood Education and who meet the requirements for admission may be considered for admission and will be handled on a case-by-case basis.

Satisfactory Academic Progress Policy

Academic Standing and Satisfactory Academic Progress

At the end of each semester, the records of all matriculating graduate/professional students are reviewed to determine satisfactory academic progress. A graduate student’s academic standing at Shaw University is classified in one of four official standings: Good Standing, Academic Warning, Academic Suspension, or Academic Dismissal. A student will remain in good academic standing if he/she demonstrates satisfactory academic progress in accordance with the standards listed below. Standards by which a student will be evaluated include progress in increments of hours completed (quantitative) and cumulative grade point average earned (qualitative).

Quantitative Standards:
  • Students receiving financial aid must successfully earn 67% of the credit hours attempted. Attempted hours include all hours attempted at the University. [Example: If a student has attempted (enrolled in) in a total of 18 credit hours, he/she must earn a minimum of 12 credit hours (18 credit hours x 0.67 = 12 credit hours) in order to maintain satisfactory academic progress.]
  • The maximum time frame allowed for a student to complete degree requirements and remain eligible to receive financial aid is 150% of the total credit hours required to receive a degree in a particular course of study. Hours accepted for transfer will count toward the maximum number of attempted hours. This means that graduate programs requiring 42 hours for graduation will be eligible for financial aid during the first 63 attempted hours. Programs requiring 90 hours will be eligible for financial aid during the first 135 attempted hours, and programs requiring 66 hours will be eligible for financial aid during the first 99 attempted hours.
Qualitative Standard:
  • Graduate students must meet the following minimum cumulative GPA requirement to retain financial aid eligibility:
Graduate Program Cumulative GPA
College of Graduate & Professional Studies
  • Master of Science - Curriculum & Instruction, Concentration: Early Childhood Education
Divinity School
  • Master of Divinity
  • Master of Arts in Christian Education

Academic Warning

A student is placed on academic warning when the student’s semester grade point average and credit hours are below the minimum requirements according to the table above. If a student fails to remove the sanction by the end of the following semester, the student will be placed on academic suspension.

Students who have an academic warning, or who have been readmitted after an academic suspension or dismissal must adhere to the following:

  1. Enroll in no more than 9 semester hours each semester.
  2. Repeat all required courses (when offered) for which at least the grade of “C” has not been achieved.
  3. Provide written documentation to the Department Chairperson (for College of Graduate and Professional Studies students) or Dean (for Divinity School students) regarding meeting with their academic advisor to review their status and steps needed for correction.

Academic Suspension and Academic Dismissal

Academic suspension occurs automatically at the end of the semester when a student fails to remove the academic warning sanction. Letters of academic suspension will be mailed to the student and the Dean from the Registrar’s Office. Students may submit an appeal to the Graduate Academic Standards Committee and be readmitted upon their recommendation.

Academic dismissal occurs automatically at the end of the semester when a student fails to remove the academic suspension. A student who has been academically dismissed will be required to leave the university for one semester. The student may appeal the dismissal in writing to the Graduate Academic Standards Committee.

The appeal process for Academic Suspension and Academic Dismissal is as follows:

Any student who is on Academic Suspension may appeal the suspension in writing to the Graduate Academic Standards Committee. This is done with the assistance of the student’s faculty advisor and the Program Coordinator.

  • Students receive a letter of suspension or dismissal and respond by the specified date on the letter to their faculty advisor with a letter of appeal.
  • Students work with their academic advisors on an individualized Recovery Plan then submit this plan, any supporting documentation, and letter of appeal to the Program Coordinator.
  • (Supporting documentation which supports extenuating circumstances includes, but is not limited to: death certificates, statements from physician(s), clergy, or other verification information.)
  • Program Coordinators will submit student appeals to the Graduate Academic Standards Committee for review.
  • Faculty advisors will inform students of the Committee’s acceptance or denial of the appeal.

If the appeal is approved, the readmitted student will be allowed to resume attending classes. If the appeal is denied, the Academic Suspension/Academic Dismissal will stand and the student will be required to comply with the conditions based on the decision of the Graduate Academic Standards Committee. Students will be informed of the Committee’s decision in a formal letter from the Committee.

The Graduate Academic Standards Committee will review a students’ progress following readmission to the University when considering a subsequent appeal. It is recommended that students attending on appeal successfully complete all attempted hours.

A student who has been readmitted twice on an appeal is no longer eligible to be readmitted to the University.

Appeal approval by the Graduate Academic Standards Committee does not automatically qualify a student to receive federal aid. The conditions for re-enrollment may require that students attend and pay in cash only.

Please contact the Division Head of your program for additional assistance.

Course Descriptions