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Bachelor of Science

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Major: Early Childhood Studies

The Early Childhood Studies program focuses on working with young children (birth through age eight), their families and their communities. The major is intended to strengthen skills, increase understanding and broaden attitudes of our students in their work with children and families. The importance of educating young children cannot be overstated in the present and for the future. The Early Childhood Studies degree is even more imperative due to federal government regulations that require each day care center and head start program to have teachers and directors with a minimum of a bachelor’s degree.

New Concentrations within the Early Childhood Studies major

Because there are varied professional paths and opportunities in this field, separate areas of specialization, called concentrations, are offered. Students may choose to take courses within concentrations that focus on

  • Early Childhood Administrator
  • Teacher as Practitioner

It is important to note that the teacher concentration does not grant certification, but provides a sound pedagogical foundation for students who wish to apply for teacher certification in their respective states.

The major in Early Childhood Studies prepares students

The Bachelor of Science degree with a Major in Early Childhood Studies is designed to provide a vehicle for professionals in the field to directly apply their knowledge. The major promotes professionalism in the field and can only improve the development of young children.

The curriculum is guided by research and adherence to best-practices in the field. Learning outcomes drive the direction of the curriculum and are adopted from the National Association of the Education of Young Children (NAEYC).

  1. Promoting Child Development & Learning
  2. Building Family and Community Relationships
  3. Observing, Documenting and Assessing to Support Young Children & Families
  4. Connecting with Children and Families
  5. Using Content Knowledge to Build Meaningful Curriculum
  6. Becoming a Professional

Early Childhood Studies Students will be able to

  • Apply knowledge of young children’s development and needs from birth to age eight to create healthy, respectful, supportive, engaging, and challenging learning environments.
  • Identify ethical practices in engaging diverse families and communities through respectful, reciprocal relationships.
  • Select and apply developmentally, culturally, and linguistically appropriate formal and informal modes of individual assessment.
  • Use (select, interpret, apply) assessment data for planning for individual children, groups and programs.
  • Identify a broad repertoire of developmentally appropriate instructional strategies and tools to promote positive outcomes for each and every child.
  • Design developmentally appropriate curriculum across content areas including academic subjects and environment settings.
  • Engage in and advocate for the early childhood professional community for the purpose of continuous learning and improvement.

Early Childhood Studies Program Benefits

  • A sound pedagogical curriculum taught by field practitioners with advanced degrees
  • You will be paired with a program advisor who will guide you through the Early Childhood Studies program
  • Individualized attention from staff who understand your academic and scheduling needs
  • The option to earn college credits through CLEP, DANTES, Challenge Exams, prior learning assessment, certified learning, and credits recommended by ACE though military training
  • Up to 90 transferable college credits accepted toward the degree
  • Accelerated degree completion option
  • The option to join a learning cohort of early childhood professionals

Accelerated Degree Completion Options

  • Those that need only 30/32 upper-division credits in their degree plan finish in less than one year
  • Attend on-ground or online classes that meet your adult schedule
  • Classes meet weekly in eight (8) week sessions
  • Transfer credits from other regionally accredited colleges and universities
  • Request credit for knowledge gained outside of the classroom, through work or professional experience
  • Successfully complete CLEP or DSST (sometimes known as DANTES) tests
  • Apply college credits for training through certified learning

Careers

There is a need for professionals in the field of early childhood studies. The federal mandate ACF-IM-HS-08-12 states that “…at least 50% of Head Start teachers nation-wide must have a baccalaureate or advanced degree.” Additionally in Florida, there is a need as specified by law. Florida State Statute 1002.652 states that “…the aspiration goal that each Voluntary Prekindergarten (VPK) classroom will have at least one Pre-K teacher who holds a bachelor degree or higher in the field of early childhood education or child development.”