Program highlights

SUNY Cortland prepares more elementary and pre-school teachers than any other public institution in New York state. That’s because of the strength of the university’s Childhood/Early Childhood Education Department. This accelerated program, with coursework offered exclusively online, is intended for people who want to pursue a career in childhood education, teaching first through sixth grade.

Under the guidance of our expert childhood education faculty, teacher candidates will build on a strong foundation in the liberal arts and sciences as they incorporate theory into practice. In just 12 months of full-time graduate study, including extensive school-based field experiences and two quarters of full-time student teaching, candidates can complete this highly marketable CAEP-accredited degree. 

Starting with full-time summer enrollment through the completion of student teaching, candidates will delve into instructional options for the key topics of mathematics, science, literacy and social studies. Teacher candidates will also explore technology, research, social advocacy and working with diverse learners. Extensive practicum experiences provide the opportunity to apply theories in child development, educational foundations and classroom organization and management to real-world situations. 

A fully online curriculum

You’ll explore instructional options for mathematics, science, literacy and social studies. You’ll also master technology, research, social advocacy and working with diverse learners.

In-person requirements

You’ll complete two requirements in person:

  • 175 hours of school-based field experiences

  • Two eight-week, full-time student teaching assignments at two levels

You will receive support from the university’s Field Experience and School Partnerships (FESP) Office in order to help arrange placements near you.

Strong alumni network

Many of our graduates are among the knowledgeable and caring teaching staff who support your field experiences.

Their guidance provides you the opportunity to apply child development theories, content mastery and classroom management to real-world situations. In short, you become a part of SUNY Cortland’s proud teaching legacy.

Local residency program option

Our Professional Development School partnership with the Homer and Dryden school districts can support your quest to be a teacher if you live near Cortland.

You work for a full year in several classrooms, becoming part of a nearby school community. You begin with two sessions of practicum — 25-45 hours in summer and 150 hours in fall — then apply those rich practicum experiences as a student teacher for the spring semester.

Career potential

Graduates are prepared to teach in the elementary school classroom, first through sixth grade. Students also benefit from our annual Teacher Recruitment Day, a career-focused event that takes place in the spring and draws many school districts from across the country.