Bachelor of Education (Honours) (Early Childhood Education) in Leadership and Special Needs (Four-year Part-time)
This programme aims to respond to the increasing demand for suitably qualified leaders and managers within preschools who can support the learning needs of children with special needs. It also assists qualified early childhood educators to become highly competent, innovative and ethical professionals who are able to contribute to the development of quality programmes for young children and their families in Hong Kong.
The teaching methods of this programme aim to encourage students to challenge and extend their understanding of early childhood education in general, and their own practice in particular. Approaches to teaching are generally interactive and non-didactic. Students will be encouraged to reflect and build on their practical experience through participation in workshops, seminars and tutorials in a stimulating teaching and learning environment.
- The report of the Committee on Free Kindergarten Education strongly the importance of quality education which caters for children with special needs.
- In the 2006/07 Policy Address, the government encourages all kindergarten principals to pursue further studies and obtain a degree by 2011/12.
- The Education Bureau (EDB) proposes as one of the new initiatives in Pre-primary Education that all new principals from the 2009/10 school year must have a degree in early childhood education (BEd(ECE)).
- Graduates of this programme will be eminently positioned so as to meet the challenges of responding to EDB policies. So more children with special needs are the recipients of quality early years education.
- Graduates of this programme who have been teaching in special child care service units throughout the programme years and have completed the required courses in Diverse Needs will be considered as having acquired training on the One-year In-service Course in Special Child Care Work recognized by the Social Welfare Department. Note 1
Note 1: Students may be required to provide proof of service for taking the courses in diverse needs. The University reserves the right to approve students' eligibility.
Interactive Learning Mode
- Students will be encouraged to reflect and build on their practical experience in early childhood education through participation in workshops, seminars and tutorials in a stimulating teaching and learning environment.
This programme is a four-year part-time programme consisting of 81 credit points (cps). It is designed as an "add-on" to the in-service Certificate / Higher Diploma in Kindergarten Education Programme (CE(KG) / HD(KG)), or the pre-service Certificate / Higher Diploma in Early Childhood Education Programme (CE(ECE) / HD(ECE)) or equivalent. This programme comprises the following domains:
|Domain||Credit Points (cps)|
|Final Year Project||Research Methods||3|
|Honours Project / Capstone Project||3|
|English Enhancement Course||3|
Major helps students appreciate the importance of professional excellence, ethical responsibility and innovation to the role of an early childhood educator. We aim for our graduates to become experienced early childhood educators and capable leaders who are caring and competent, intellectually enthusiastic, socially committed, and globally aware.
Core courses give students the chance to study teaching and learning from an interdisciplinary perspective. Students will study early childhood education from psychological, sociological, philosophical, pedagogical and other perspectives. Students will develop a range of skills necessary for professional practice, such as problem solving, critical thinking, creativity, communication, social interaction, ethical decision making and global perspectives.
The core courses are:
- Child Health, Safety and Welfare
- Children in Transition
- Emergent Literacy
- Effective Leadership for Early Childhood Education
- Resources Management in Early Childhood Sector
- Educational Reform and International Perspectives: Rethinking Policy and Practice for Young Children
- Leadership for Engaging Diversity in Early Years
- Advanced Practices in Assessment and Intervention for Children with Special Needs
- Developing Potentials of Young Children with Special Needs
- Inclusive Education: Comparison of Policies and Practices at Global and Local Levels
- The interdisciplinary course namely “Working with Families from Diverse Backgrounds” strengthens students’ leadership role in enhancing home-school collaboration with the help of innovative policies and empowering practices.
For elective areas, students are required to take five compulsory courses in Diverse Needs area. Students who have acquired training in Special Child Work recognized by the Social Welfare Department are required to take 5 elective courses from at least two of the following seven areas of study:
- Chinese Language and Literacy
- Mathematics and Science
- Creativity and Aesthetics: Art
- Creativity and Aesthetics: Music and Movement
- Child and Family Well-being
- Diverse Needs
- Leadership, Policy and Innovatio
Students are required to take one of the following courses:
- Art II
- An Introduction to Modern Chinese Language
- Academic English: Writing and Reading Mathematics II
- Introduction to Chinese Culture
- Mathematics II
- Music II
- Physical Education II
- Putonghua II
- Science II
- Social Studies II
In this domain, students employ the principles and theories on early childhood education, which develop students’ global awareness of early childhood care and education of the current trends on child studies and development.
The ES courses are:
- Current Curriculum Issues in Early Childhood Education
- Comparative Early Childhood Education
- Current Trends in Child Development and Assessment
- Theoretical Perspectives on Early Childhood Practice
The Field Experience that composed of Integrated Field Experience I (2cps) and Integrated Field Experience II (4cps) aims to assist students to innovate and reflect on their practice that builds on the students' foundation of situated knowledge. It help students critically reflect on their practice and enrich their theoretical knowledge of early childhood practice. Students are expected to develop and implement theory-based teaching Note 2 in an early childhood education setting in Hong Kong Note 3 for enhancing teaching and learning.
Note 2: Students specializing in Diverse Needs area are required to develop their Field Experience study in Diverse Needs.
Note 3: Supervisory visits will be arranged in students’ serving school with children at 3-6 years old.
Final Year Project
The Final Year Project comprises of two 3-cp courses:
- Honours ProjectI/Capstone Project I: Introduction of research methods and proposal in Semester 2 of Year 3; and
- Honours Project II / Capstone Project II: A one-year project to be conducted in the final year. Students can choose their topic from either their Major or Education Studies, and will complete an individual project under the supervision by an academic staff. Note 4
Note 4: Students specializing in Diverse Needs area are required to develop their Honours ProjectII/Capstone Project II study in Diverse Needs.
Students are required to take one 3-cp course selected from a list of General Education (GE) courses which cover a variety of areas, including positive thinking, stress management, healthy living or teachers’ personal and professional interest.
English Enhancement Course
The compulsory 3-cp English Enhancement Course aims to help students acquire linguistics skills in both academic and social contexts. It prepares students to write coherent and organized academic texts by developing essential skills in critical thinking, reading and writing. In addition, the course will enhance student’s ability to make appropriate correspondence in the workplace.
Medium of Instruction
The medium of instruction is mainly Chinese. English or Putonghua is adopted as the language of instruction for relevant courses, (e.g. the course "Inclusive Education: Comparison of Policies and Practices at Global and Local Levels" and "Working with Families from Diverse Backgrounds" might be conducted in English) as appropriate.
Mode of Study
Students are normally required to attend two to three 3-hour sessions per week. Courses will be held on weekdays from 6:30 pm to 9:20 pm at Tai Po Campus or Tseung Kwan O Study Centre/satellite study centre at urban locations as decided by the University whereas some may be offered on Saturday afternoon in one of the campuses.
Career Prospects / Professional Qualifications
Graduates of the programme will:
- meet the professional qualifications as kindergarten principal Note 5;
- be able to work competently in a broad range of positions that involve working with children and families;
- obtain degree-level professional qualifications that are in high demand in the early childhood education sector and advanced knowledge to lead and promote educational practices that support the learning needs of children with special needs; and
- be eligible to apply for the University's Master of Education Programme.
Note 5: Graduates' individual registration on professional qualifications as kindergarten principal is subject to the approval of the Education Bureau.
To be eligible for admission, applicants should normally have completed the Certificate / Higher Diploma in Kindergarten Education Programme (CE(KG) / HD(KG)) or Certificate / Higher Diploma in Early Childhood Education Programme (CE(ECE) / HD(ECE)) or equivalent, such as Higher Diploma in Child Care and Education. Eligible applicants may be required to attend an interview.
Early admission offers will be given to highly qualified applicants. These applicants will be informed of the admission result individually by email. Applicants who are not offered early admission shall not assume that they are not being considered for admission. Please check your personal email and your online application account regularly for the progress of your application.
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