Online Training Programs in Early Childhood Education

Get info about online programs in early childhood education. Learn about program requirements, course topics and degree levels, as well as career and continuing education options.

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Essential Program Information

Online training programs in early childhood education are available at the associate, bachelor's and master's degree levels. The academic portion of these programs can typically be completed totally online; however, most programs also have in-person fieldwork requirements that involve observing and/or interacting with young children and teachers. Students are encouraged to look for programs accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) in order to ensure that the online training program fulfills the licensure requirements of their respective state.

Associate Degree - Early Childhood Education

Most online associate degree programs in early childhood education prepare the student for state licensure to teach pre-kindergarten children. Graduates will generally work in preschools, Head Start programs or similar educational childcare settings.

Common Courses

Associate online training programs in early childhood education include some general education core requirements. Core courses usually include an introductory early childhood education course and a class in health and safety. Other requirements may include the following:

  • Early childhood curriculum
  • Child development
  • Beginning literacy
  • Family dynamics

Bachelor's Degree

Some schools offer separate online bachelor's degrees in teaching and administration. Other schools only offer bachelor's degrees to prepare teachers; others combine both areas into one program. Online bachelor's programs generally assume students have had the courses required for associate degrees.

Common Courses for Teachers

  • Music, movement and drama
  • Art as expression
  • Teaching through play
  • Trauma and abuse

Common Courses for Administrators

  • Program administration
  • Leadership and supervision
  • Planning the environment
  • Conflict resolution

Master's Degree - Early Childhood Education

Online master's degree programs in early childhood education often have a special focus in either applied research and theory or special needs children; most programs include courses in both areas. Some topics covered in the master's degree program, such as working with families, language development and play development, overlap with those found in undergraduate courses.

Common Courses

  • Special education characteristics in early childhood
  • Special needs and early intervention
  • Educational research
  • Research analysis

Early childhood education online training programs are available at the associate's, bachelor's and master's degree levels. Although the majority of courses can be taken online, there may also be fieldwork requirements at local schools.

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