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Early Childhood & Elementary Education Frequently Asked Questions

How long does the application process take after I submit my materials?
The processing of applications usually takes from four to six weeks. While admission is rolling, we encourage students to apply as early as possible for scholarship opportunities and to ensure that applications are completed and processed before their desired start date.
What do you look for in your students?
We look for individuals who bring intelligence, caring, life experience, and commitment to working with young children and their families.
Can I take courses before I apply?
Prior to enrolling in an early childhood or elementary education program, students may apply on a non-matriculated basis.  This is an abbreviated application process that allows student to take up to 12 credits to be used for personal or professional development, as prerequisites for advanced study, or to be applied toward a degree in the future.  Please click here to download the application for non-matriculated graduate enrollment.  Prospective students may also check to see course offerings each semester by clicking here and consulting the Office of Graduate Admissions to be sure courses are approved by the program director.
When are classes offered?
Courses are typically offered during fall and spring semesters once a week for two hours, beginning at 4:30 or 6:30. Hofstra boasts three additional summer sessions as well as a January intersession that students can take advantage of. 
How long will it take me to finish the program?
Students progress through the programs under advisement of their program director.  9 credits per semester is considered full time graduate study, and it is possible to take courses on a part time basis.
When are the placements for observation and student teaching?
The Office of Field Placement arranges all observation hours and student teaching placements within a reasonable commute of your home.  Curriculum courses before student teaching provide opportunities to practice what you are learning on campus with small groups of children.  Students may view which courses have clinical components by visiting Hofstra Bulletin.
How does Hofstra prepare graduates for the job search?
Class sessions focus on sharing content-based methods with an understanding of why and how we use them.  There are opportunities to critically analyze and reflect on both methods and materials that are used in the classroom The Career Center provides support for resume building, maintaining reference files, and opportunities to attend job fairs and network with professionals in the field.  Preparation for interviews is ingrained in each of the graduate programs, and many find full time positions through their student teaching placements.
What makes the Early Childhood and Elementary Education programs at Hofstra stand out above the rest?
We have small classes and caring, dedicated individual faculty advisement.  Many of the department faculty have been recognized for outstanding teaching and scholarship in the field.  Our dedicated Office of Educational Support Services helps to send your completion recommendation to the New York State Department of Education and provides support in meeting state regulations.  There is also some scholarship funding, particularly during student teaching.  The Curriculum Materials Center provides wonderful support for planning instruction and Hofstra University has a world-class Library.  Hofstra’s fantastic alumni are working in almost every district of the LI/metropolitan area and seek out our well prepared grads.
What are the most important skills that students learn?
The priority is to prepare teachers to be independent curriculum producers who can match teaching and learning, and respectfully meet the needs of diverse children and their families.