Inclusive Childhood Education

Master of Science in Education


  • Learn to differentiate instruction among diverse learners in grades 1-6 and be more employable as a dual-certified elementary teacher equipped for regular, special, and inclusive education.
  • Nazareth defines inclusion as a multi-faceted process in which every student, with or without special needs, is nurtured to pursue a meaningful life.
  • Benefit from Nazareth University's accomplished faculty and clinically rich, innovative approaches to learning, which have given the University's inclusive education programs a long, proud history of transforming dedicated learners into well-prepared, effective educators in urban, rural and suburban schools.

Teacher residency option

Seeking initial certification? Nazareth's 15-month teacher residency programs:

  • pay you to co-teach in a local school
  • provide you with a tuition scholarship and mentoring
  • all while you earn your master's degree from Nazareth

Learn more: ROC Urban Teaching Fellows Program in Rochester, and Monroe Regional Teacher Residency Program in local suburban/rural districts.


Classes are offered mostly evenings


Traditional (on-campus) and hybrid (half online) classes offered


Complete in as fast as 14-20 months full-time


Fieldwork in urban, suburban, and rural schools

Program Options

Initial Certification (42 or 48 credits)
  • Career re-inventors — people who want to become elementary school teachers.
  • Recent college graduates, not yet certified as teachers, who want to teach students in grades 1-6 with a wide range of learning styles/capabilities, including students with disabilities (special education).

Catalog: Initial certification program requirements (48 credits) and course descriptions »

Catalog: Initial certification program with school district teaching residency (42 credits) »

Additional Certification at the Same Developmental Level (36 credits)

Program is ideal for teachers certified for grades 1-6 who want to also be certified to teach students with disabilities in grades 1-6.

Catalog: Additional certification (same level) program requirements and course descriptions »

Additional Certification, Changing Developmental Level (39 credits)

Program is ideal for certified teachers who want to extend their certification to teach students in grades 1-6.

Catalog: Additional certification (changing level) program requirements and course descriptions »

Inclusive Education Specialty (30 credits)

Nazareth’s M.S.Ed. Inclusive Education Specialty program is for teachers who hold initial certification in teaching students with disabilities (Birth-grade 2, Grades 1-6, 7-12, or all grades) and either Early Childhood Education (Birth-grade 2), Childhood Education (grades 1-6), or a content area (grades 7-12).

Curriculum Examples

  • Social Foundations of Education
  • Strategies for Complex Learners in an Inclusive Classroom
  • Diverse Learners Learning and Learning Environments
  • Science: Curriculum and Methodology
  • Math: Curriculum and Methodology
  • Literacy, Language Arts, and Social Studies: Curriculum and Methodology
  • Capstone Seminar

Value of your degree

  • Employment of kindergarten and elementary school teachers nationwide is projected to grow 12 percent by 2022, due to projected increases in enrollment and declines in student-teacher ratios, according to the U.S. Occupational Outlook Handbook.
  • Openings vary by region. Many Nazareth education graduates work in the Rochester region, providing extensive practicum and networking opportunities.

Making Grad School Affordable

Grants, scholarships, veterans benefits, partner benefits, loans, and undergraduate loan forgiveness are options for paying for this grad degree.

Among the Nazareth opportunities: Teacher residency programs provide initial certification seekers with tuition support, a paycheck, co-teaching experience and mentoring. Funding is also available for high-need teachers and teacher candidates from underrepresented populations.



Student's Perspective

"The childhood inclusion program at Nazareth helped me to discover my full potential as an inclusive educator by supporting my research-based curricular studies as well as my practical field experience training. The professors at Nazareth are passionate educators who believe in the ability of all learners."

Meghan Zumbo '12G, first-grade teacher at Victor Early Childhood School, Victor Central School District

What to Expect

  • Nazareth's affordable cost for grad teaching degrees makes this high-demand certification within reach, enabling you to fill a needed teaching position in a school district in the local region or beyond.
  • Clinically rich program
  • Classes taught on-site in local elementary schools
  • Exposure to rural, urban, and suburban schools
  • Choose part-time or full-time
  • Individual advisement is available for program planning and support in applying for N.Y. state certification
  • You have the option to get specialized preparation in teaching students with autism and students with severe or multiple disabilities. Details: Interdisciplinary Specialty Program in Autism (I-SPAN) specialization, Teaching Students with Severe or Multiple Disabilities annotation.
  • You have the option to take a three-course elective sequence to earn a local certificate of specialization in deafness.
  • Nazareth's full-time director of clinical experiences and partnerships and full-time certification officer provide you with strong support, including prep for certification exams and facilitating hands-on experiences with students. If you're working in a school district, this can include facilitation with your own school district so you can meet degree requirements while keeping your job.
  • Your full-time career coach for education (part of Nazareth's nationally recognized Center for Life's Work) is available for resume, interviewing, and job search guidance.
  • Additional guidance and support is available from your individual academic advisor and from the School of Education's director of academic support services.