Early Childhood Education A.A.S. (ECE)

Attention This is an overview of the program. The course sequencing is meant to serve as a guideline for your semester planning. Please note that the scheduling of courses, program sequencing and curriculum are subject to change.

The Early Childhood Education Associate Degree program is accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC).

The Early Learning Center Lab School is accredited by the National Academy of Early Childhood Programs (NAECP) a division of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC).

This program prepares the graduate to work with children aged birth through nine. Students who complete the AAS in ECE are qualified as a group supervisor or head teacher in an early care and education program, including Head Start classrooms and childcare centers with children in infant/toddler, preschool or schoolage care. With additional experience, graduates can be qualified to be center directors. Students who transfer to four-year colleges work towards Pre-K to fourth grade teacher certification for employment in early childhood or elementary school settings. Students seeking to transfer and interested in seeking teaching certification must consult with an advisor or counselor to select electives very carefully in accordance with the general education and/or preprofessional requirements of the four-year college or university to which students intend to transfer are highly recommended to:

  1. Identify transfer institution early and carefully follow advisor, college catalog, college web page along with transfer agreement.
  2. Maintain a GPA of 3.0 or higher
  3. Successfully take the PAPA exam in order to transfer.
  4. Maintain a credential portfolio which includes clearances such as child abuse, state police, FBI and health clearances.
  5. Document all observations and experiences.
  6. Engage in Professional Community Engagement and Advocacy–TESA-Teacher Education Student Association (Kappa Delta Pi–Teacher Education Honor Society).
  7. Successfully complete six credits in math and immediately take PAPA exam.

Note: Elective courses numbered 101 or above—any credit course numbered 101. However, transfer students must refer to advisement #1 to ensure transfer of course and credits.

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

  • summarize patterns of child growth and development in children ages 9 and under.
  • utilize appropriate regulations and best practices to design and implement a quality early childhood environment.
  • connect theories of learning and developmentally appropriate practice to create and implement quality curriculum units for early childhood classrooms.
  • formulate a plan for supporting collaborative family relationships.
  • summarize the role of advocacy for the early childhood profession.
  • demonstrate proper supervision of children in early education classrooms.
See page 15 for special program admission requirements pertaining to this program.


First Semester
Course Number Course Name Course Credits
ENG 105 Research and Composition 3
ECE 110 Fundamentals of Early Childhood Education 3
ECE 120*
or ECE 125*
Children’s Growth and Development
Education and Care of Infants and Toddlers
MAT 125 Fundamentals of Mathematics I 3
Elective Political Science, Psychology, or Sociology 3
Semester Total 15
Second Semester
Course Number Course Name Course Credits
ENG 106 Introduction to Literature 3
ECE 130* Integrating the Arts and Play in Early Childhood 3
ECE 140* Observation and Recording Techniques 3
EDU 105 Introduction to Special Education 3
MAT 126 Fundamentals of Mathematics II 3
Semester Total 15
Third Semester
Course Number Course Name Course Credits
ECE 210* Integrating Curriculum in Early Childhood 3
ECE 215* Language and Literacy 3
Elective History or Geography 3
Elective Lab Science 4-5
Elective American/British Literature 3
Semester Total 16-17
Fourth Semester
Course Number Course Name Course Credits
ECE 220 Internship 6
ECE 225 The Early Childhood Professional 3
Elective Humanities 3
Elective General Education 3
Semester Total 15
Credit Total 61-62
Teacher Education Advisement guidelines for students seeking a teaching career and/or program of study for transfer into a four-year college program.
Students can select and tailor their program based on career goals.
Students intending to transfer need to choose courses based on the college transfer agreement.
Recommended Electives:
Science Electives: BIO 101, 105, CHE 105, PHY 101.
*Early Childhood Lab (two hours per week per designated course) – field experiences and observations at a variety of inclusive settings. Physical exam and TB screening required.
Up to 15 ECE credits can be transferred from a regionally accredited college. It is highly preferred that ECE credits transfer from a NAEYC Accredited ECE program of study.