Accreditation and Patterns of Licensure

Achieving the Potential

Authored by: Marilou Hyson , Marica Cox Mitchell

Handbook of Early Childhood Teacher Education

Print publication date:  August  2015
Online publication date:  July  2015

Print ISBN: 9780415736756
eBook ISBN: 9781315818245
Adobe ISBN: 9781317816294


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Like other teacher education sectors, the early childhood field includes systems of higher education program accreditation and systems of individual teacher licensure. Also like other teacher education sectors, in early childhood these two systems share a common purpose: to define, assess, enhance, and ensure teacher quality. The accreditation system focuses on quality at the level of college or university teacher preparation, while licensure (or certification) focuses on the quality of individual teachers. As Figure 5.1 illustrates, the characteristics of these two systems are influenced by many factors: political and policy imperatives, research findings, professional organizations’ recommendations, and more. Keeping those influences in mind, accreditation and licensure have potentially significant effects on what happens within early childhood teacher preparation programs and, ultimately, what happens when graduates enter the work force—both in their professional practices and in their impact on children’s development and learning.

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