Early Childhood Education
Associate of Applied Science DegreeEarly Childhood Education Associate in Applied Science
What is Early Childhood Education?
Early Childhood Educators specialize in the care and education of children birth–age eight. Students gain content knowledge about young children’s development in order to develop the skills and dispositions to work with young children and their families. Students will learn about child development, demonstrate understanding of developmentally appropriate practices, and implement curricula in field experiences. IVCC’s ECE program is a Gateways-Entitled institution. Graduates of the program are highly sought after by area employers. Students pursuing work with children birth through age eight may choose to enter the workforce with a credential/degree or transfer to a university upon completion of the AAS degree. As of July 28, 2021, the AAS in ECE transfers, in full, to universities. Students will have junior status upon transfer, will not be required to repeat courses or take additional credit hours beyond native university students. Public Act 102-0174
Students can earn the following stackable certificates that build into the AAS degree:
- Gateways ECE Credential Level 2 Certificate (18 credit hours)
- Gateways ECE Credential Level 3 Certificate (27 credit hours)
Gateways Infant/Toddler Credential Level 2 Certificate
(ECE Level 2 + 3 credit hours)
- Gateways Infant/Toddler Credential Level 3 Certificate
(ECE Level 3 + 6 credit hours)
- Each of the certificates stack into the AAS degree, which is the Gateways ECE/Infant Toddler Level 4 Credential.
Features of the Program
Courses in the Early Childhood Education program are offered in a Flex-Attend model. Most courses are offered in an online format, but if a course is listed as blended, then the course is delivered in three formats; in-person, livestream, and recorded. Students may access the blended course in the format that best suits their needs. Several courses are offered in eight-week options. Three courses have the CDA (Child Development Associate) requirements built into them. Upon completion of the three courses, child care providers who meet CDA requirements may apply for that certification. The Early Childhood program has observation hours/field experience hours built into all certificates and degree options. Most students are hired prior to completion of certificate/degree. The AAS degree in ECE will allow students to enter the workforce or have a seamless transfer to a university.
IVCC tuition is just one-third to one-fourth the cost of state universities and far
below most private institutions. An approximation of tuition and fees and cost comparison
can be found on the IVCC website at www.ivcc.edu/payment and at www.ivcc.edu/save.
Many scholarship opportunities are available through the IVCC Foundation at
www.ivcc.edu/foundation and Financial Aid is available for those who qualify at www.ivcc.edu/financialaid. Students may qualify for Gateways Scholarships if they are have earned their ECE Level 1 Credential through their high school or they are currently working in a licensed setting. Other early childhood scholarships are available to people working in licensed settings.
High school dual credit courses are available through some in-district high schools.
- Lead Teacher
- Assistant Teacher
- Director in a Child Care Center
- Family Child Care Provider
Application of Skills
Places where graduates work
- Lead teacher in a child care center
- Assistant teacher
- Paraprofessional in public and private school systems
- Family child care provider
- Early intervention support
Things graduates will be expected to do
- Demonstrate professionalism
- Design and implement developmentally appropriate curricula
- Guide children in culturally responsive ways
- Communicate effectively with families
- Work collaboratively in diverse work settings
The AAS ECE degree at IVCC is accredited by the Commission on the Accreditation of Early Childhood Higher Education Programs of the National Association for the Education of Young Children, www.naeyc.org. The accreditation term runs from March 31st, 2021 - March 31st 2022.
Program Outcomes Data Report