FAQ Early Care and Education for a Mobile Society

Return to the ECEMS program page.

Visit our FAQs about Great Plains IDEA webpage to see a comprehensive list of questions we hear most often from prospective and current students.

  • How do I apply for this program?

    Every university approaches the application process a little differently.  Regardless of your home university, admission to the ECEMS program is a two-step process:

    • First, you must be admitted to the university.
    • Second, you must be admitted to the program.


    To be admitted to the program, you must already have completed at least 30 credits (applicable to graduation requirements) earning at least a 2.5 GPA.  These hours must include a Human Lifespan Development course.

  • How do I know which university to choose as my home university?

    There is a lot to consider when choosing your home university.  Research the following to determine which university is the best fit for you:

    • Requirements and timelines for admissions and graduation.
    • Any policy for students who stop-out due to unexpected life events but plan to return to the program after a semester or two.
    • The degree title printed on your diploma as determined by the home university rather than the Great Plains IDEA program.
    • Faculty research interests that might influence your decision.
  • Can I transfer credits from another university?

    You may transfer up to 12 credit hours of core course equivalents.  However, you may not transfer equivalents for the Professional Development course or any practicum courses.  Your home university will determine the number of credit hours from previous study that may be transferred in to meet other degree requirements.

  • Can I get academic credit for work experience?

    A Practicum 1 waiver is available for those with qualifying work experience.  To qualify you must:

    • Be a full-time, paid lead teacher, instructional assistant, or paraprofessional
    • Have one (1) or more years of experience in an early childhood setting in the last three (3) years
    • Have approval of your academic advisor at your home university
    • Forms are due November 1 or March 1 the semester prior to the semester in which Practicum 1 is to be completed

    Contact your faculty advisor to learn more about the waiver.

    The decision will be based on supporting documentation and will be made by a committee of faculty members.

  • Is it possible to work full time while earning an ECEMS bachelor's degree?

    Yes!  Many of our students balance work, school family and fun.

    Listen to ECEMS graduates Jacy Phillips and Angela Stagg explain how this program allowed her to balance all of her responsibilities.


    You can also visit our Student Success Center for advice on how to manage your time, fine-tune your study skills and much more.

  • Where can I find you on social media?
    Pinterest logo Follow us on Pinterest to learn about developmentally appropriate lessons to use in early childhood settings.
    Twitter logo Follow us on Twitter to learn about trends in early childhood settings, the latest news affecting children and families, and to interact with the faculty who teach in this program.
    Facebook logo Follow us on Facebook to meet students, alumni, and faculty, as well as hear about the latest research and best practices for early childhood settings.