skip to main content

Gateways Credentials & License Endorsements

The ECP3 program offers opportunities to earn additional Gateways Credentials and Licensure Endorsements.

Gateways Credentials

Earn Gateways to Opportunities Early Childhood Education Credentials while completing your AA or AS degree.

Gateways to Opportunities credentials are important for employers to show that they have a qualified staff.  Because of ExceleRate Illinois (Illinois' state-wide quality rating and improvement system), childcare programs will be looking for employees with credentials.  Having these credentials will increase your marketability when applying for jobs in early childhood.

Credentials you can earn include:

Gateways Early Childhood Education Credential Level 2

  • Complete CHLD 102 - Growth & Development of the Young Child.
  • Complete CHLD 202 - Health, Safety & Nutrition for the Young Child.
  • Complete any two of the other required ECP3 courses (CHLD 110 - Introduction to Human Verbal Development, CHLD 207 - Exceptional Child, CHLD 209 - Child, Family & Community, or EDUC 135 - The Multicultural Classroom).

Gateways Early Childhood Education Credential Level 3

  • Complete all five required ECP3 courses (CHLD 102 - Child Growth & Development, CHLD 110 - Introduction to Human Verbal Development, CHLD 207 - Exceptional Child, CHLD 209 - Child, Family & Community, EDUC 135 - The Multicultural Classroom).
  • Complete CHLD 202 - Health, Safety & Nutrition for the Young Child.
  • Complete these general education courses (ENGL 101PSY 101, and MATH 131 or MATH 141). 

Gateways Early Childhood Education Credential Level 4 

  • Complete all five required ECP3 courses (CHLD 102 - Child Growth & Development, CHLD 110 - Introduction to Human Verbal Development, CHLD 207 - Exceptional Child, CHLD 209 - Child, Family & Community, EDUC 135 - The Multicultural Classroom).
  • Complete the following additional early childhood classes.  Note that these additional Early Childhood Education classes will not directly count towards your ISU degree, but they will fulfill the Gateways Credential. ( CHLD 101 - Intro to Early Childhood, CHLD 105 - Curriculum for Early Childhood Programs, CHLD 109 - Observation and Assessment of Young Children, CHLD 201 - Child Development Practicum 1, CHLD 202 - Health, Safety & Nutrition for the Young Child).

Begin the application process for a Gateways to Opportunity Credential today.

Licensure Endorsements and Approvals

As you complete the ISU portion of the ECP3 program, you may also pursue the requirements for several licensure endorsements and approvals.

English as a Second Language (ESL) Endorsement

Information about this option begins on page 7 of the Illinois State Board of Education's Illinois Licensure, Endorsement, and Approval Requirements (PDF).

Bilingual Education Endorsement

Information about this option begins on page 7 of the Illinois State Board of Education's Illinois Licensure, Endorsement, and Approval Requirements (PDF).

Bilingual Special Education Approval

Information about this option is available on pages 20-21 of the Illinois State Board of Education's Illinois Licensure, Endorsement, and Approval Requirements.

Early Childhood Special Education Approval

Information about this option is available on pages 20-21 of the Illinois State Board of Education's Illinois Licensure, Endorsement, and Approval Requirements (PDF).

English as a Second Language (ESL) Special Education Approval

Information about this option is available on pages 20-21 of the Illinois State Board of Education's Illinois Licensure, Endorsement, and Approval Requirements (PDF).

Contact Us

Johnna Darragh Ernst

Professor Early Childhood Education
Phone: 309-268-8746
Email: Johnna.Darragh@heartland.edu