Associate of Science

Early Childhood Education

Earn a Degree Earn a Certificate

Program Overview

Program Overview

Earn a degree

  • Degree options include:
  • Career-oriented students are prepared for beginning positions in Early Childhood Education. Typical positions for which graduates are qualified include: Lead Teacher or Assistant Teacher in a Birth-5 Early Childhood Program or a State of CT Certified Teacher, Pre-K-Grade 3 Program. Graduates of the program are eligible to apply for the Early Childhood Teacher Credential (ECTC), a competency-based credential awarded by the Connecticut State Office of Early Childhood, which allows the graduate to meet the educational requirements to work in a Connecticut state-funded preschool program. 
  • A variety of transfer options are available. 

Earn a certificate 

A Certificate in Early Childhood Education is available to students who do not wish to pursue a full two-year course of study.

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Quick Facts

Early Childhood Education Quick Facts

Our ECE Grads Get Jobs
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100% of ECE graduates who seek employment in the field get jobs.


A Variety of Transfer Options Available
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This program is eligible for Transfer to an ECE Teacher Certification Program at CT State Universities, to UConn’s Human Development and Family Studies Program and to Charter Oak State College’s Child Studies Program.

Work in a State-Funded Preschool Program
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Graduates of this program are automatically eligible to apply for the Early Childhood Teacher Credential (ECTC) awarded by the CT State Office of Early Childhood which allows graduates to meet the educational requirements to work in a state-funded preschool program.

Additional Details

Enter the job market, gain credentials for career advancement, or get on a path to transfer to a four-year teacher certification program.

If you’ve ever enjoyed working with young children, why not consider it as a career choice? If you’re already working with children, why not further your education in the field? Whether you enjoy working with infants or toddlers, preschoolers, kindergartners or children in grades 1-3, our program may be just the place for you.

Our faculty have decades of experience working with young children, and can offer you not only theory, but real, practical classroom applications.  You will also have the opportunity to observe, participate and student teach with young children at the college’s Child Development Center Laboratory School, a nationally accredited center that serves children ages 18 months to 5 years of age, using the most current teaching techniques and curriculum.

To be formally admitted into the program, students must receive a grade of C- or better in each ECE course and meet the state requirements for background checks before working with young children.

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Child Development Center Lab School

The Student Teacher Experience

In addition to providing high quality care and early childhood education, another important component of the Child Development Center laboratory school (CDC) is the student teaching experience.


Practicum Experiences

The Early Childhood Education (ECE) program requirements include practicum experiences in CDC laboratory school classrooms as well as opportunities to observe and participate in a variety of early childhood programs. Student teachers are observers in the classroom settings as well as active participants, writing and implementing lessons approved by the student teaching supervisor. All lesson plans and activities are supervised by ECE faculty and CDC staff.

Practical Applications

The CDC affords student teachers the opportunity to take the theories and strategies that are taught in courses and practically apply their interpretations of them under the guidance and supervision of CDC staff and ECE faculty.

Program Requirements

Early Childhood Education A.S.

Competency or
Program Requirement
Course Number and Title Required
Credits
FIRST SEMESTER
Continuing Learning/Information Literacy and Ethical Dimensions ECE*H109 Science & Math for Children 3
Critical Analysis and Logical Thinking/Written Communication ENG*H101 Composition 3
Scientific Knowledge◊◊ BIO*H105 Introduction to Biology or BIO*H115 Human Biology 4
Social Phenomena PSY*H111General Psychology I 3
Program Requirement ECE*H101 Introduction to Early Childhood Education 3
SECOND SEMESTER
Aesthetic Dimensions and Written Communication ECE*H103 Creative Experiences for Children 3
Written Communication Any written communication course, ENG*H102 Literature and Composition or ENG*H200 Advanced Composition recommended 3
Program Requirement ECE*H231 Early Language & Literacy Development 3
Program Requirement ECE*H106 Music & Movement Education 3
Program Requirement ECE*H141 Infant/Toddler Growth & Development 3
Program Requirement PSY*H203 Child Development 3
THIRD SEMESTER
Quantitative Reasoning MAT*H135 Topics in Contemporary Mathematics or higher (except 136 or 137) 3
Program Requirement SOC*H101 Principles of Sociology 3
Program Requirement ECE*H176 Health, Safety & Nutrition 3
Program Requirement ECE*H210 Observation & Participation 3
Program Requirement ECE*H290 Student Teaching I (Fall only) 3
FOURTH SEMESTER
Oral Communication Choose any Oral Communication listed 3
Program Requirement Any Liberal Arts and Behavioral/Social Sciences course: ART*H101, ART*H102, ART*H141, ART*H161, DAN*H101, ENG*H215, MUS*H101, MUS*H103, MUS*H115, MUS*H137, MUS*H218, THR*H101 recommended 3
Program Requirement ECE*H215 The Exceptional Learner 3
Program Requirement ECE*H222 Methods & Techniques in ECE 3
Program Requirement ECE 291 Student Teaching II (Spring only) 3

Total Credits: 64

Any given course may only be used to satisfy one of the competency areas even if it is listed under more than one.

MAT*H137 and courses numbered lower than
MAT*H137 will not transfer to Connecticut State Universities as Quantitative Reasoning courses.

◊◊ At least one Scientific Knowledge and Understanding OR Scientific Reasoning course must have a lab component.

Upon successful completion of all program requirements, graduates will be able to:

  1. Compare and contrast various child development theories.
  2. Demonstrate a basic knowledge of Early Childhood Education and the skills required to make objective observations of young children in the classroom setting.
  3. Use effective classroom management techniques.
  4. Plan, implement and reflect upon a wide variety of music, visual and performing arts experiences.
  5. Describe and facilitate high quality literacy, math, science and social studies learning environments and effective teacher interactions.
  6. Describe various differences or delays in, set developmentally appropriate goals for and effectively support young children in their language development.
  7. Construct motivating, inviting and aesthetic learning environments and demonstrate an understanding of the concept of creativity through planning and implementing creative experiences.
  8. Discuss and use techniques and skills that are specific to the developing needs of infants and toddlers.
  9. Describe how learning theories can be applied to understanding children’s behaviors.
  10. Use effective communication skills in relation to families, colleagues and children.
  11. Identify and describe identifiable special needs of young children and plan and implement general curricula accommodations and guidelines to meet those needs.
  12. Create motivating, inviting and aesthetic learning environments and experiences.
  13. Discuss and utilize the Connecticut Office of Early Childhood’s Child Care Licensing Regulations, N.A.E.Y.C. Accreditation Standards and Procedures and the Connecticut Early Learning Development Standards.
  14. Effectively plan, organize, implement and reflect upon classroom experiences.

CSCU Pathyway Transfer: Early Childhood Teacher Credential Studies A.A./A.S.

Competency or
Program Requirement
Course Number and Title Required
Credits
FIRST SEMESTER
Aesthetic Dimensions/Written Communications Choose any Aesthetic Dimensions/Written Communications listed 3
Critical Analysis and Logical Thinking/Written Communication ENG*H101 - Composition 3
Oral Communication Choose any Oral Communication listed 3
Social Phenomena PSY*H11 General Psychology I 3
Program Requirement ECE*H101 Introduction to Early Childhood Education◊◊◊ 3
SECOND SEMESTER
Quantitative Reasoning Choose any Quantitative Reasoning listed 3
Program Requirement ECE*H103 Creative Experiences for Children◊◊◊ 3
Program Requirement ECE*H106 Music and Movement for Children◊◊◊ 3
Program Requirement ECE*H176 Health, Safety◊◊◊ and Nutrition 3
Program Requirement ECE*H231 Early Language◊◊◊ and Literacy Development 3
THIRD SEMESTER
Scientific Knowledge◊◊ Choose any Scientific Knowledge listed 3-4
Written Communication Choose any Written Communication listed 3
Program Requirement ECE*H210 Observation, Participation and Seminar 3
Program Requirement ECE*H290 Student Teaching I 3
Program Requirement PSY*H203 Child Development
(Must be completed before ECE*H215)
3
FOURTH SEMESTER
Continuing Learning/Information Literacy/Ethics Choose any Continuing Learning/Information Literacy/Ethics listed 3
Historical Knowledge Choose any Historical Knowledge listed 3
Scientific Reasoning◊◊ Choose any Scientific Reasoning listed 3-4
Program Requirement ECE*H215 The Exceptional Learner1 3
Program Requirement ECE*H291 Student Teaching II 3

Total Credits: 61-62

Any given course may only be used to satisfy one of the competency areas even if it is listed under more than one.

MAT*H137 and courses numbered lower than MAT*H137 will not transfer to Connecticut State Universities as Quantitative Reasoning courses.

◊◊At least one Scientific Knowledge and Understanding OR Scientific Reasoning course must have a lab component.

1Must be completed before ECE*H290 and ECE*H291

Certificate Program Early Childhood Education

Course No. Title Credits
ENG*H101 Composition 3
PSY*H111 General Psychology I 3
PSY*H203 Child Development 3
ECE*H101 Introduction to Early Childhood Education 3
ECE*H103 Creative Experiences for Children 3
ECE*H109 Science and Math for Children 3
ECE*H141 Infant/Toddler Development 3
ECE*H176 Health, Safety & Nutrition 3
ECE*H210 Observation and Participation 3
ECE*H231 Early Language and Literacy Development 3
Total Credit Hours 30

Program Outcomes

Upon successful completion of all program requirements, graduates will be able to:

  1. Utilize the writing skills for developing lessons and composing reports.
  2. Be knowledgeable about various theories as they apply to young children.
  3. Be able to apply theories to the physical, social emotion and cognitive development of children.
  4. Learn how theories can be applied to understanding children’s behavior.
  5. Demonstrate a basic knowledge of Early Childhood Education & the skills required to make objective observations of young children in the classroom setting.
  6. Be able to systematically observe and record children’s behavior.
  7. Understand the different aspects of speech and communication.
  8. Become acquainted with various communication impairments or delays and set realistic goals for young children in the area of language development.
  9. Make an initial assessment of a child’s language development.
  10. Understand how a child’s sensorimotor development influences a child’s ability to learn.
  11. Recognize possible signs of physical handicaps and developmental delays.
  12. Be aware of the interrelationships between child development and the areas of health, safety and nutrition.
  13. Be knowledgeable about the control and prevention of communicable diseases.
  14. Provide general curriculum adaptations and guidelines to help children meet their special needs.
  15. Gain the experience to create a supportive and interesting learning environment.
  16. Be able to write goals, objectives and developmentally appropriate activities.
  17. Develop a curriculum using a multisensory approach to teaching.
  18. Plan, organize, execute and evaluate classroom activities on a weekly basis.
  19. Write developmentally appropriate explorations prescription based upon a child’s individual learning style.

Students who have a current and valid Child Development Associate Credential (CDA) for preschool are eligible to receive up to 6 credits toward the ECE A.S. Degree Program. Students who are interested in obtaining a CDA from the Council for Professional Recognition can take 12 ECE credits (four 3-credit courses) that cover the CDA competency areas.  These credits would also apply to the ECE A.S. Degree Program.

Certificate Programs

Certificate Programs

The certificate program consists of thirty (30) credits in Early Childhood Education. These courses are designed to develop the basic skills and knowledge necessary in Early Childhood Education. The curriculum is a form of a connector, or intensified refresher program, for those who have either been away from academic studies for a while and/or have been engaged in group child care without formal training in the area. For further information, contact the Program Coordinator. 

Early Childhood Education- Related Programs

Student Success



Where does this take me?

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Academic & Transfer

This program is eligible for Transfer to an ECE Teacher Certification Program at CT State Universities, to UConn's Human Development and Family Studies Programs Program and to Charter Oak College's Child Studies Program. Talk to your advisor.

Career Paths

Our programs and certificates will prepare you to immediately enter the job market, credential you to advance in your career or put you on the path to transfer to a four-year teacher certification program. Whichever career path you choose, our Early Childhood Education program can give you a great start.

  • Lead Teacher or Assistant Teacher in a Birth-5 Early Childhood Program
  • State of CT Certified Teacher, Pre-K-Grade 3
  • Career Options such as Connecticut Birth-to-Three Providers and State of Connecticut Child Care Center Licensing Specialists and Public School Paraprofessionals 

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