Online Early Childhood Education Degrees
Early childhood education degree programs equip students with the skills and competencies needed to effectively lead and teach young children. Students who are creative and patient with great communication and instructional skills, and who have an interest in working with young children, may be interested in a program in this field. Early childhood education degree programs are available online at the associate, baccalaureate, master’s, and doctoral levels. Select schools may also offer a certificate option.
Graduates of early childhood education programs may seek employment in a multitude of environments within the education field, including organizations and centers which extend beyond the traditional K-12 classroom setting. In addition to roles as preschool and elementary school teachers at public and private schools, students may find work as child care workers, recreation center directors, or teacher aides.
Available Degree Levels
- Certificate: One to two years to complete
- Associate Degree: Two years to complete
- Bachelor’s Degree: Four years to complete
- Master’s Degree: One to two years to complete
- Doctoral Degree: Three to five years to complete
Students who pursue an online certificate in early childhood education may become well-equipped to work in daycare centers, preschools, and Head Start programs. Curriculum may focus on the basic skills needed to work effectively with young children, and cover topics such as children’s literature, guidance and discipline, and movement and music.
A two-year online associate degree in early childhood education readies students for a career in the classroom. Coursework may focus on literacy development, rule enforcement in the classroom, and physical, mental, and social development of students.
An online bachelor’s degree in early childhood education prepares students for a teaching career in public and private schools. Students may complete general education requirements as well as major-specific courses such as children’s literature, child psychology, nutrition, and first aid.
Students with an interest in leading a classroom can earn a master’s degree in early childhood education after obtaining their bachelor’s degree. Graduate-level coursework may cover topics in classroom management, family engagement, and strategies to eliminate achievement gaps. Master’s-level programs in early childhood education often allow students to hone their skills in a specialized area, such as curriculum and instruction, K-12 studies, reading and literacy, or special education.
A doctoral degree in early childhood education prepares students for leadership roles in education, typically shaping curriculum and public policy for young students. Coursework may focus on advanced topics such as early childhood development, program development, assessment, and policy design.
An online certificate, or degree in early childhood education may prepare students for a number of career tracks, including traditional preschool and elementary school teachers, child care and after-school program employees, teaching assistants, and school principals. Graduates of early childhood education program may have learned the skills to become effective leaders for young children who need their guidance to excel in the classroom and beyond.
Possible career fields include:
- Elementary School Teacher
- Special Education Teacher
- Head Start Employee
- Preschool Aide
- Daycare Center Director