Introduction to Early Childhood Behavior Management, Instructional Design, Child Development, Instructional Resources and Technology
Early childhood education, child care management, teaching education
Preschool teachers, family support specialists, teacher’s assistants, childcare workers, Head Start teachers
The median salary for a family support specialist is $30,830 per year, $24,900 for a teacher’s assistant, and $20,320 for childcare workers.
Job prospects in the field of early childhood education are favorable, and are expected to increase by approximately 5% through 2024.
Online Early Childhood Education Degrees
If you want to make a difference in young children’s lives, becoming a teacher is one of the most fulfilling ways to inspire, educate, and contribute to the development of the next generation of students. Graduates from early childhood education programs typically become preschool teachers, childcare center directors, and kindergarten teachers. The degree requirements for early childhood educators vary depending on the state, and can range from an associate degree to a master’s with certification.
Schools always need more creative, patient, and organized teachers who love working with children. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects a job growth rate of about 7% for early childhood educators between 2014 and 2024.
Online early childhood education programs are a convenient option for working professionals who want to advance their skills on a flexible schedule. For more information on early childhood education degrees, read on to learn about the many career opportunities available in the field and the academic requirements needed to earn a job.
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Online Early Childhood Education Degrees
|Degree||Avg Degree Cost||Avg Loan Default Rate||Time Commitment||Early Career Pay||Mid-Career Pay||Unemployment Rate|
The degree you need depends on the educational setting and the state. Preschool teachers in states with Head Start programs, for instance, must have at least an associate degree; in other states, they may need early childhood education degrees at the bachelor’s level. BLS notes that your job prospects will increase with a postsecondary degree in the field, and many professionals choose to earn an online bachelor’s in early childhood education while they are working. Additionally, many preschools require national certification, such as the Child Development Associate (CDA) or the Childcare Professional (CCP).
Online Early Childhood Education Degrees
Children’s Literacy, Educational Psychology, Classroom Management
Psychology, education, child care management, special education
Preschool teachers, kindergarten teachers, preschool and childcare center directors, Head Start teachers
The median salary for preschool teachers is $28,570; $54,550 for kindergarten and elementary teachers; $45,670 for preschool and childcare center directors.
The BLS projects a 7% increase in preschool teachers from 2014 to 2024, 6% for kindergarten and elementary school teachers, and 7% for preschool and childcare center directors.
Early Childhood Education Bachelor’s Degree Rankings
|Rank||School Name||School Logo||City||Cost||Address & Contact Info||School Links||Acclaim for Online Programs||School Description|
|1||University of North Carolina at Greensboro||Greensboro||$$$$$||1400 Spring Garden St|
Greensboro, NC 27402-6170
UNCG offers a multidisciplinary human development and family studies (HDF) program focusing on the crossroads of social and behavioral sciences as they pertain to early childhood development. The program offers two concentrations: birth through kindergarten teacher licensure and early care and education. UNCG's early childhood education bachelor's degree online program emphasizes culture, diversity and internationalization, studying early child development across cultural, school and family contexts.
|2||National University||La Jolla||$$$$$||11255 North Torrey Pines Road|
La Jolla, CA 92037-1011
National University’s online bachelor's degree in early childhood education program provides students with the skills and field experience they need for a career in early childhood development. Students can pursue one of several concentrations relating to infant and toddler development, teacher education and early childhood administration. Courses are taught asynchronously, and online students enhance their classroom experience through discussion boards, lectures, readings, quizzes and interactive presentations.
|3||Florida International University||Miami||$$$$$||11200 S. W. 8 Street|
Miami, FL 33199
The ECE program at Florida International prepares students for rewarding careers in a variety of childhood specialist roles. Students focus on the cognitive, language and emotional development of children from birth through five years old. The early childhood education bachelor's degree online program themes include educational psychology, special needs children, community and beginning literacy.
Students use Blackboard for course deliverables, including lectures, readings and assignments. For webinars and live synchronous meetings with peers and faculty, Florida International uses Adobe Connect.
|4||University of Cincinnati||Cincinnati||$$$$$||2624 Clifton Avenue|
Cincinnati, OH 45221-0063
Cincinnati offers an online bachelor's degree in early childhood education that prepares graduates for professional careers in early childhood development. Online coursework meets the competencies outlined by the National Association for the Education of Young Children. Graduates often become preschool teachers, infant or toddler specialists and program administrators in early childhood settings.
Aside from field assignments, the degree is available entirely online and facilitated through Blackboard. Upon enrollment, a student orientation specialist guides each student through a technology orientation to acclimate distance learners with the program.
|5||Harding University||Searcy||$$$$$||915 E. Market Ave.|
Searcy, AR 72143
At Harding, students may pursue a degree in birth through kindergarten education (B-K). This comprehensive program blends coursework in ECE, child development and special education. By diversifying the fields of study in the B-K program, students can obtain teaching licenses in both general and special education.
Access to online materials, syllabi, assignments, quizzes and discussion boards is available through the Canvas learning management system.
|6||Granite State College||Concord||$$$$$||25 Hall Street|
Concord, NH 03301-3471
Granite State's online bachelor degree programs in early childhood education prepare graduates to obtain both the N-3 certificate in early childhood education and the Birth-8 certificate in special education. The program helps students understand current neurological research on children and its implications for teachers and students. The online program is supported by Moodle, a platform students can access to view course materials, check grades and participate in discussion forums.
|7||Southwestern College||Winfield||$$$$$||100 College Street|
Winfield, KS 67156-6224
Southwestern College offers an online bachelor's degree in early childhood education. The program also encompasses early childhood special education, providing students a versatile teaching license upon graduation. The ECE program offers courses on infant development, child psychology and educational psychology.
In addition to their on-campus preschool, Southwestern College has partnered with early education programs across the country to provide students with practical learning opportunities. The school's distance courses are supported by Blackboard. Southwestern encourages students to "test-drive" one of their courses for free to determine if they like the online format.
|8||California Baptist University||Riverside||$$$$$||8432 Magnolia Ave|
Riverside, CA 92504-3297
The ECE program at California Baptist is designed for students interested in pursuing a teaching credential in early childhood education and early childhood special education. Students learn how to create developmentally appropriate educational curriculums and are taught how to assess educational progress in toddlers.
While some online programs cater only to transfer students, CBU encourages freshmen to apply as well. Online coursework is managed through Blackboard, which also hosts online labs, lectures and discussion forums.
|9||Arkansas Tech University||Russellville||$$$$$||Administration Bldg 200; 1509 N Boulder Ave|
Russellville, AR 72801-2222
The ECE program at Arkansas Tech provides students with a thorough understanding of child development. As part of the curriculum, students learn the value of play for infants and toddlers, and are taught how to foster language development and healthy teaching environments for young children. The program also demonstrates how family dynamics affect child development.
|10||Brandman University||Irvine||$$$$$||16355 Laguna Canyon Road|
Irvine, CA 92618
Brandman's ECE program allows distance learners to study child development through guided fieldwork with children and faculty. The curriculum uses evidence-based practices regarding early brain development, and students learn to integrate childhood development theories into a classroom environment. Coursework is developed internally and assignments are transmitted through Blackboard.
|11||Florida State College at Jacksonville||Jacksonville||$$$$$||501 W State St|
Jacksonville, FL 32202
The ECE program prepares students for teaching careers in preschool through third grade in public and private settings. All students are required to pass the Florida Teacher Certification Examinations prior to graduation. Additionally, students are required to complete over 150 hours of fieldwork in Florida’s Voluntary Prekindergarten Program.
|12||Utah State University||Logan||$$$$$||Old Main Hill|
Logan, UT 84322-1400
Graduates from Utah State's ECE program are prepared for careers in child care, early intervention, child welfare and teaching prekindergarten through third grade. Students can pursue several practicum and field experiences, and select an emphasis of their choice. Options include multicultural education, arts methods, healthy living and differentiated teaching strategies.
Students are permitted to take up to 12 credits at Utah State prior to matriculating. The school distributes all online coursework through its proprietary learning portal. Courses either follow the traditional semester schedule or FLEx plan for independent learning.
|13||City University of Seattle||Seattle||$$$$$||521 Wall Street, Suite 100|
Seattle, WA 98121
City University offers a bachelor's in education with an endorsement in early childhood education. The program introduces students to recent research in cognitive and brain development, while also demonstrating the importance of culture, the community and play in early childhood growth. Students are allowed to complete their coursework entirely online or supplement online classes with Saturday school in a hybrid delivery option.
The school creates its own course content, videos and discussion topics. These are made available to students through Blackboard.
|14||Mayville State University||Mayville||$$$$$||330 Third Street NE|
Mayville, ND 58257-1299
Mayville State's ECE program prepares students to teach children from birth to age eight, or to focus on more specific fields like educational psychology and special needs education. The program develops leadership skills in its students, preparing them to work with families and with children with disabilities.
|15||Notre Dame College||Cleveland||$$$$$||4545 College Rd|
Cleveland, OH 44121-4293
The early childhood education license is one of two licensure tracks available to students at Notre Dame College. Students are taught current educational research as it pertains to the Ohio Standards for the Teaching Profession, ensuring their preparedness for the field upon graduation. Graduates pursue careers as child care workers, preschool-elementary teachers, special education instructors, principals and school administrators.
|16||Central Methodist University - College of Graduate and Extended Studies||Fayette||411 Central Methodist Square|
Fayette, MO 65248-1198
CMU's program in child development is geared towards students seeking careers in a field that doesn't require a public school teaching certificate. Coursework provides students with the skills they need to establish and manage daycare centers. Careers relating to commercial or non-profit childcare initiatives are also available for graduates.
Central Methodist delivers its online courses through its own myCMU platform. Courses run for eight weeks apiece.
|17||Western Governors University||Salt Lake City||$$$$$||4001 East 700 South, Suite 700|
Salt Lake City, UT 84107
WGU's ECE program is unique in its competency-based learning approach. Students are required to complete WGU’s own "assessments" to determine competency in the field of early childhood development. All assessments are accompanied by a study guide and recommended resources to help students along the way. Assessments last six months and students are graded on a pass or not pass basis. Distance learners must also complete a capstone or a professional portfolio to graduate.
WGU provides its own student portal as a means to structure communication and connectivity across classes.
|18||Wilmington University||New Castle||$$$$$||320 Dupont Hwy|
New Castle, DE 19720
Wilmington offers their online BS in education studies as an entry-level major. The program is intended for students who would like to work with young children in positions that do not require teaching licensure, or for students wanting to obtain licensure at a later date. The online curriculum introduces students to learning theory, child development and education best practices.
All of Wilmington’s online courses are supported by Blackboard, providing distance learners with constant access to course materials, lectures, discussions and tech support.
|19||The University of Montana Western||Dillon||$$$$$||710 S Atlantic|
Dillon, MT 59725-3598
The online ECE program at Montana Western is designed for students who want to teach young children. Graduates are prepared to work with children through the age of eight in an array of childcare settings. Students take courses that integrate developmentally appropriate curricula with social, emotional and trauma informed practices. Montana Western uses Moodle as its online learning management system to host assignments, facilitate discussion forums and provide access to course materials.
|20||Park University||Parkville||$$$$$||8700 NW River Park Dr|
Parkville, MO 64152-3795
Park offers an online BSE program in early childhood education to students pursuing teaching certification for children from birth through grade three. The degree is offered both online or in a hybrid format for local students. Coursework includes several specialties, such as family study, language and literacy development, and emotional learning for young children.
Park University uses the Pearson eCollege learning management system to transmit course materials, lectures, quizzes and discussions to distance learners.
|21||State College of Florida - Manatee-Sarasota||Bradenton||$$$$$||5840 26th St W|
Bradenton, FL 34207
This ECE program is geared for students who want to teach infants and toddlers in Florida. Graduates of the program are prepared to teach children through the age of four. As part of the program, students fulfill the necessary requirements to become Head Start teachers and administrators as well as children’s services workers. The school uses Canvas as its online learning management system.
|22||Prescott College||Prescott||$$$$$||220 Grove Ave|
Prescott, AZ 86301
Prescott offers an online ECE program for students pursuing careers in early childhood development. Students are exposed to theoretical and in-person observational learning experiences online and in their home states. The school also offers courses in child growth and development, child guidance and classroom management, and early language and literacy for students interested in becoming educators.
Prescott University employs its own MyClassroom portal to serve as its online learning management system.
Education and Psychology, Curriculum Development in Early Childhood Education, Foundations of Educational Leadership
Special education, English, education
Kindergarten and elementary teachers, preschool and childcare center directors, elementary, middle and high school principals
The median salary for kindergarten and elementary teachers is $54,550; $45,670 for preschool and childcare center directors; and $90,410 per year for elementary, middle, and high school principals.
The BLS projects most positions in the field to grow by approximately 5%.
Early Childhood Education Master’s Degree Rankings
|Rank||School Name||School Logo||City||Cost||Address & Contact Info||School Links||Acclaim for Online Programs||School Description|
|1||University of Colorado - Denver||Denver||$$$$$||1380 Lawrence Street, Lawrence Street Center, Suite 1400|
Denver, CO 80217-3364
University of Colorado Denver offers a master's in early childhood education online through its School of Education, the largest graduate school for education in Colorado. The degree is comprised of 36 total credit hours combining recommended core courses, performance-oriented assessments, an exam, practica and field work experience. Distance learners are required to participate in a three day seminar on-campus during the summer term.
Online courses are delivered through Canvas via week-long modules and are self-guided, taught by the same instructors and covering the same material as on-campus sessions. Distance learners have the added benefit of integrating multimedia skill-development into their online training, often preparing A/V presentations or sharing documents using innovative learning tech. Additionally, online students may now study from a tablet or phone via the UCD mobile app.
|2||University of Dayton||Dayton||$$$$$||300 College Park|
Dayton, OH 45469
The University of Dayton offers an online MSE with a concentration in early childhood leadership and advocacy. The degree is designed to prepare graduates for careers as administrators, supervisors, lead teachers and child and family advocates. The master's in early childhood education online program awards credit for work-related training and allows students to build on an associate degree to earn credits toward bachelor’s and master's degrees. Students pursuing the MSE must complete the program’s graduate leadership core sequence as well as either the advocacy or administration strand.
Online MSE students complete assignments through Blackboard, supported by numerous additional learning tools, including Turnitin, Isidore online training and more. Distance learners are encouraged to communicate frequently with each other and their instructors via Webinars, e-conferencing and Telecom services.
|3||University of North Dakota||Grand Forks||$$$$$||264 Centennial Drive, Stop 8193|
Grand Forks, ND 58202-8193
The University of North Dakota offers an early childhood education master's degree online, encompassing a 32-credit program designed to prepare teachers and leaders to address the needs of students ages 3 to 8 in public and private schools, child development and child care centers, Head Start programs and other programs related to educating young children. Graduates are also prepared to pursue director credentials for early childhood administrators in North Dakota, if desired. Coursework combines online assignments and a required teaching practicum, intended for application in a classroom setting. The program emphasizes educational methods related to children in the context of their family, gender, culture and community.
Online courses are run on the Blackboard learning management system; additional resources can be accessed through the same one-stop student portal that hosts the online learning system, including financial management, academic advising, Campus Connection communication tools and a live chat feature for program and online assistance.
|4||University of Alabama at Birmingham||Birmingham||$$$$$||Administration Bldg Suite 1070|
Birmingham, AL 35294-0110
University of Alabama at Birmingham offers an online MA Ed. in early childhood and elementary education; if preferred, students have the choice in specializing in one or the other or taking a mix of courses that cover both. Courses that make up the curriculum include work in language development, curriculum seminar and special topics in special education. The online program also results in class A certification in students’ specific teaching field, be it early childhood education or elementary education.
Assignments are completed through Canvas, with numerous services available to support distance learners; students may access online tutoring, Web-based labs, Webinars and student counseling through the SREB electronic campus, the Canvas Help Center and the UAB Division of eLearning and Professional Studies.
|5||Erikson Institute||Chicago||$$$$$||451 N. LaSalle Street|
Chicago, IL 60654-4510
Erikson Institute offers a master's in early childhood education online, ideal for educators with at least three years of post-bacc experience in the field. An optional specialization in bilingual/ESL education is also offered. Students in the 28-month program complete coursework via a cohort method, making it easy to collaborate and learn from their peers. Coursework includes core child development courses, early childhood education courses and an integrative seminar: Leadership in Early Childhood Education.
Online courses are delivered via EriksonOnline, the institute’s single sign-on portal. Student services available via EriksonOnline for distance learners include virtual library access, an online events schedule and an exclusive Webmail option.
|6||Concordia University - Chicago||River Forest||$$$$$||7400 Augusta|
River Forest, IL 60305-1499
Concordia University–Chicago offers an early childhood education master's degree online, designed to produce specialists in instruction, administration and advocacy in a range of education environments. Students will emerge with a strong understanding of child and language development, assessment, research, family and community relationships, theory and practice of birth to age eight educational programs. Additionally, graduates will be able to design and implement early childhood curriculum and programs in schools, home child care, districts, centers and other settings. Concordia-Chicago offers both endorsement and certification programs in ELL/ESL, special education, reading education (Type 10) and more.
Courses are delivered in a cohort model through Blackboard, with links to a variety of student services to support online learning, including a mobile learning app and Blackboard Collaborate. Concordia-Chicago offers a global classroom; students and faculty attend class online from around the globe. Each course lasts eight weeks.
|7||Mercy College||Dobbs Ferry||$$$$$||555 Broadway|
Dobbs Ferry, NY 10522
Mercy College offers an online MS in early childhood education with a concentration in children ages birth to second grade. Candidates of the degree can pursue multiple certificates including Early Childhood, Birth to Grade 2; Early Childhood, Birth to Grade 2 and Childhood Education, Grades 1-6, and Dual Certification; and Early Childhood, Birth to Grade 2, Childhood Education, Grades 1-6, with Students with Disabilities, Triple Certification. All of these certificates are specific to the state of New York. Permanent certification requires three years of teaching experience and an initial certificate.
Online students complete assignments through Blackboard, with the support of numerous other programs and applications that enable resources such as group chat, live online job boards and extensive help desk support. Students must also complete an internship in their concentration. Mercy provides a comprehensive set of tools for distance learners to stay social and learn Webiquette while completing their degree online, encouraging the use of its Twitter, YouTube and Facebook accounts, as well as a fully integrated online learning center via the MercyConnect student portal.
|8||Stephen F Austin State University||Nacogdoches||$$$$$||2008 Alumin Drive, Rusk 206|
Nacogdoches, TX 75961
Stephen F Austin State University offers an online M.Ed in early childhood education, developed around a research-based content model designed to address the needs of future elementary educators. The 36-credit-hour program emphasizes leadership skills and a mastery of concepts including language and literacy, classroom management and advanced research concerning children ages eight and under. Students may complete the program in as little as 22 months; graduates are prepared for careers as researchers, early ed. specialists, teachers and consultants.
Online assignments are delivered through Desire2Learn, using web-conferencing and streaming video tools to provide and share content and course materials. Online support services developed for distance learners include Steen Library remote access, counseling services, tutoring and academic advising and testing and proctoring services.
|9||Northern Arizona University||Flagstaff||$$$$$||1900 S. Knoles Dr, Babbitt Administrative Center|
Flagstaff, AZ 86011-4132
Northern Arizona offers an online M.Ed in early childhood education, with available emphases in either early childhood or early childhood leadership. The program encompasses 30-31 credit hours consisting of core and emphasis courses, as well as a student teacher or internship experience. The M.Ed degree at NAU stresses in-class experience as part of its required coursework, and is intended for students looking to become lead teachers or master-level instructors in preschool and primary classrooms. Online assignments are completed both asynchronously and synchronously via Blackboard, using multimedia lecture presentations and virtual discussion platforms. The university’s extended campus portal offers a variety of support services developed exclusively for distance learners, including 24/7 IT support, library access and tutoring through the NAU Student Learning Center.
|10||Albany State University||Albany||$$$$$||504 College Drive|
Albany, GA 31705
Albany State University offers an early childhood education master's degree online, designed to provide master-level teaching skills for instructors of pre-k through five-year-old students, as well as lead to the T-5 certification in early childhood education. The program is comprised of 36 course credit hours, aligned within the conceptual structure of the university’s department of education to build problem-solving skills, as well as raise cultural and technological awareness through transformative education practices for young children. Graduates are eligible for careers involving teaching, administration, program development and special education, among other options.
Online assignments are completed in Desire2Learn via the Ramnet portal, with the support of numerous online resources, including an online computer lab, virtual tutoring services and a convenient ticketing system for tech support requests. Distance learners are encouraged to stay connected via ASU’s Flickr account and various other social media outlets.
|11||Concordia University - Saint Paul||Saint Paul||$$$$$||1282 Concordia Ave|
Saint Paul, MN 55104-5494
Concordia University–Saint Paul offers an online MA in early childhood education, designed for students with teaching or volunteering classroom experience. The degree is comprised of 33 credit hours in a variety of core courses in curriculum and instruction, ethics for educators, language development and emergent literacy and more; completion of a professional efolio is also required. Individual courses are delivered in accelerated, seven-week modules.
Online assignments are completed through Blackboard, with a range of student support resources centered on distance learning. Additional services available via the CSPConnect student portal include access to the library archives, special interest student groups and personalized tutoring services for online learners.
|12||Texas A & M University - Kingsville||Kingsville||$$$$$||955 University Blvd|
Kingsville, TX 78363
Texas A & M University–Kingsville offers an online M.Ed in early childhood education. The program is designed to build skills for best practices of early childhood development through exploration of a variety of teaching methods and models, including Constructivist, Waldorf and Montessori, among others. A & M’s online M.Ed degree encompasses 36 total credit hours, in a combination of core, research and resource-area course requirements; students must also perform a graduate research project to complete the degree.
Distance students may access assignments through the exclusive Blue & Gold Connection student portal, which also directs students to a range of Internet learning resources at the same single-sign-on site; additional support tools include financial assistance, an interactive course scheduler and live registration and application services.
|13||University of West Alabama||Livingston||$$$$$||Station One|
Livingston, AL 35470
The University of West Alabama offers an online M.Ed education specialist in early childhood education program. Curriculum in the 33-credit program combines intensive research and field experience to provide advanced leadership skills for prospective child education specialists. Students seeking field certification without relevant undergraduate experience are required to complete a survey course prior to enrolling in the M.Ed program.
Online assignments are delivered primarily through Blackboard, assisted by learning tools like WebView, WebAdvisor and the university Help Desk. Additionally, support specifically for M.Ed students enrolled in early childhood education-based distance learning programs is available through the NBC Learn portal for K-12 education.
|14||Edinboro University of Pennsylvania||Edinboro||$$$$$||219 Meadville Street|
Edinboro, PA 16444-0001
Edinboro University of Pennsylvania offers an online M.Ed in early childhood education, with available tracks for both certified educators and those seeking certification with completion of this degree. The program encompasses core curriculum in pre-k through third-grade child education and development, as well as an independent study project in the field or specialty area of the student’s choice.
Though courses may be completed online through Edinboro’s learning management system, students are required to attend a one-week residency as part of the distance program. Support tools for online learners include tutoring via the SmartThinking platform, self-service email and communication through Banner and the option to create a personalized student profile on myEdinboro.edu.
|15||Northwestern State University of Louisiana||Natchitoches||$$$$$||University Parkway|
Natchitoches, LA 71497-0002
Northwestern State University of Louisiana offers an online M.Ed in early childhood education, the only program of its kind in the state of Louisiana. The M.Ed degree is designed for certified teachers with undergraduate experience in education of children up to eight years of age. Coursework in this program combines core studies with a practicum experience, developed to reflect the standards set for curriculum in this field by the NAEYC.
Assignments are delivered through Moodle with the help of additional support services available through the MyNSU portal, including a student help desk and numerous orientation and tutorial modules. Additionally, distance learners may pursue academic advising, counseling, job placement support services and more through the same MyNSU subsite.
|16||Jacksonville State University||Jacksonville||$$$$$||700 Pelham Road North|
Jacksonville, AL 36265
Jacksonville State University offers an online MS Ed in early childhood education, designed for teachers with current certification in the field. The degree combines core and specialty courses with a practicum, focused on building expertise in effective teaching methods and exploring current trends in early childhood education and development.
Online assignments are delivered through Blackboard, with supplemental Web-based resources available for distance learners, such as advising, tutoring and technical support. The online MS Ed at JSU was developed by faculty and Web designers specifically for the university’s unique virtual learning environment, with integrated learning, scheduling and communication functions.
|17||University of South Carolina - Upstate||Spartanburg||$$$$$||800 University Way|
Spartanburg, SC 29303-4999
University of South Carolina–Upstate offers an online M.Ed with a focus in either early childhood education or elementary education. Candidates for the M.Ed program must have Initial teacher certification as a condition of enrollment. Both tracks of the M.Ed at USC Upstate require completion of core, specialty and related study credits; students must also complete a final seminar and graduate professional portfolio in their final semester. Both specializations are offered in an optional fast track format.
Online courses are available through Blackboard, with a wide variety of additional online tools for distance learners. Resources are available through a convenient dashboard of direct links to academic services and student support, including an online writing center, student activities board, career center, online account assistance and more.
|18||Champlain College||Burlington||$$$$$||246 S. Willard St|
Burlington, VT 05401
Champlain College offers an online M.Ed in early childhood education, designed for certified teachers to explore effective educational theories and build leadership skills through reflective practice. The program is comprised of 36 course credits delivered in eight-week-long online modules; it is fully online, save for one brief residency requirement to be completed on campus during the first year of the program. Students have three opportunities for enrollment throughout the year, and may pursue a part-time or full-time schedule.
In addition to facilitating convenient online courses through Canvas, Champlain prides itself on a comprehensive approach to online support for distance learners; the college’s wide range of online student services include career counseling, advising and tutoring options in accounting, math, English and writing, library access and full technical support.
|19||Southern New Hampshire University||Manchester||$$$$$||2500 North River Road|
Manchester, NH 03106-1045
Southern New Hampshire University offers an online M.Ed in early childhood education, well-suited to professional teachers looking to build advanced skills in this discipline. Completion of this degree can lead to initial teacher certification in New Hampshire, or provide additional endorsement credits for those already certified in the state. The M.Ed initial certification track encompasses 42 total credits in core courses, as well as completion of two student teaching seminars over two academic terms.
Courses are delivered through Blackboard, with links to numerous other student support resources via the mySNHU portal. Support tools for the virtual classroom offered through SHNU include a writing center, technical support, academic advising, tutoring options, an online library and online bookstore access.
|20||Shorter University||Rome||$$$$$||315 Shorter Ave|
Rome, GA 30165
Shorter University offers an online M.Ed in early childhood education, designed to promote professional development among teachers currently practicing in the field. The program incorporates Shorter University’s faith-based principles into the M.Ed curriculum, which stresses research and field experience courses totaling 37 credit hours. The degree culminates in a required action research performance portfolio.
All online assignments are accessible through Moodle, and are typically self-paced, though occasional synchronous sessions may be scheduled via video conferencing software. Additional online resources are available to provide fully integrated student support, including a live chat feature, an exclusive university blog and a student advising center.
|21||Youngstown State University||Youngstown||$$$$$||One University Plaza|
Youngstown, OH 44555-0001
Youngstown State University offers an online MS in teacher education with a concentration in early childhood education. The degree is comprised of 32 credit hours in core courses, as well as cognate/specialization courses, in topics including fundamentals of curriculum development, current social issues in early childhood education and literacy and phonics. Students are required to complete an e-portfolio as a final condition of the degree.
Online YSU assignments are delivered through Blackboard, utilizing web conferencing tools and asynchronous sessions to share content. Additional online support services include e-tutoring, a math assistance center, writing center, Maag Library access and other tools provided by the Center for Student Progress.
|22||University of the Southwest||Hobbs||$$$$$||6610 North Lovington Hwy|
Hobbs, NM 88240
University of the Southwest offers an online MS Ed in early childhood education, well-suited as a stand-alone program or in conjunction with teaching licensure for education of children up to third grade. The degree is comprised of 36 credits in a variety of leveling, core, specialization and elective courses, including two practicums and culminating in a comprehensive exam. Students will gain competency in child growth, development and learning; family and community collaboration; curriculum development and implementation; health, safety and nutrition; methods and materials; assessment of children and evaluation of programs; and appropriate developmental practices.
Online students complete assignments in Blackboard, with the support of additional student services including online tutoring, a virtual university store and Web-based research tools. Additionally, technology provided via MediaCAST, Tegrity and Nefis Web Conferencing, for example, help to facilitate multimedia learning in the USW portal.
|23||Missouri Southern State University||Joplin||$$$$$||3950 E. Newman Road|
Joplin, MO 64801-1595
Missouri Southern State University offers an online MS in early childhood education, designed for teachers looking to gain specialized training to guide young children in the classroom. The program comprises 32-33 total semester hours, including core requirements, subject field requirements, concentration and elective courses; students are also required to complete a field experience and a practicum as part of the coursework in the MS degree.
Online assignments are delivered through Blackboard, with numerous additional resources accessible through the Lion Access portal via single sign-on. Student support services include career opportunities, library access and technical help; students are also encouraged to participate in active communication through a variety of social media sites.
Early Childhood Policy, Social Contexts of Learning, Curriculum Development, Research Issues and Assessment Techniques
Education, education and human development
High school principals, researchers and advisors, leaders in teacher training, instructional coordinators, teachers of education professionals (professors)
A high school principal earns a median salary of $90,410 per year; $62,270 for instructional coordinators; $72,470 for postsecondary teachers.
Principalship positions are expected to grow 6-13% through 2024.
Online Early Childhood Education Find Accredited Degrees
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Average Early Childhood Education Salaries
|Growth Rate 2014-2024||Number of Jobs: 2014||Degree||Certifications|
|6%||1,517,400||Bachelor's||State licensure required for public schools|
Kindergarten and elementary school teachers work in public and private schools teaching students basic subjects such as math, English, and reading. They also evaluate student aptitudes, grade assignments, monitor student progress, help students overcome challenges, and supervise them during lunchtime or recess. These professionals require at least a bachelor’s degree, such as an online bachelor’s in early childhood education. Effective teachers must have patience, creativity, and enjoy working with young people.
|Growth Rate 2014-2024||Number of Jobs: 2014||Degree||Certifications|
|5%||1,260,600||High School Diploma or Equivalent||N/A|
When parents and other relatives are unable to care for their children, they turn to childcare workers. They work in centers, which may include their own homes or the homes of children they care for. They monitor the safety of children, organize and supervise meals, change diapers, ensure children have enough rest and playtime, and monitor their development and keep record of their progress. The position requires excellent communication and instructional skills, patience, and stamina. While not always required, professionals who complete online early childhood education programs will be more qualified and stand out to employers.
|Growth Rate 2014-2024||Number of Jobs: 2014||Degree||Certifications|
Childcare center directors are responsible for running the day-to-day operations at their facility. This includes supervising preschool teachers and childcare workers, providing professional development to staff, developing programming and standards, working with staff to interact with parents, and preparing budgets. Candidates who earn their bachelor’s in early childhood education online are typically qualified to work as childcare center directors.
|Growth Rate 2014-2024||Number of Jobs: 2014||Degree||Certifications|
|7%||441,000||Bachelor's||CDA or CCP|
Preschool educators teach children basic skills, such as shapes, colors, numbers, and letters. They create and implement a curriculum targeting different areas of childhood development, design activities for students to explore and develop their skills and interests, and record each student’s progress. Creativity, patience, and great communication and organization skills are vital. Earning an online bachelor’s in early childhood education will qualify you to work as a preschool teacher at most schools.