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Online College Courses in Early Childhood Education with School Info

Find out about early childhood education courses that are available online. Learn more about program requirements, and see which schools currently offer distance learning options in the field.

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Overview of Online Programs

Online early childhood education courses provide distance learners with the skills and knowledge to design programs that teach social, cognitive, developmental and motor skills to learners from newborn to five years old. Undergraduate and graduate college courses in this field may be found at community colleges, private online career schools and four-year universities.

While students may be able to take online classes on an individual basis, coursework in early childhood education is typically offered through a degree program. Distance learning programs, which may include some on-site requirements, usually lead to a bachelor's or master's degree and are designed for those who already have experience in the field. The following schools provide such online programs.

University of Cincinnati

Current early childhood education teachers are offered a solely online bachelor's degree program at the University of Cincinnati. Participants in this online program utilize Blackboard, which is an online learning management system. Peer and faculty discussion is available via communication tools such as discussion boards and e-mail. Accepted online students are assigned an advisor for the duration of the bachelor's degree program in order to ensure academic requirements and educational goals are met.

Online Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education

The University of Cincinnati's online bachelor's degree program is jointly offered to associate degree holders through the College of Education, Criminal Justice and Human Services. This online undergraduate early childhood education program provides current practitioners with the advanced knowledge and skills to design, implement and assess learning environments for young learners, including those with special needs.

Online learners follow a rigorous curriculum in literacy, child development, classroom management, curriculum planning and social development. Throughout the program, online students must complete fieldwork, practicums and an internship with the assistance of a video camera. Most students in the program already work in a child care environment, which may also be used as the site for their fieldwork with approval. This early childhood education bachelor's degree program prepares learners for licensure requirements in the state of Ohio.

University of North Carolina at Greensboro

Early childhood education teachers can further their education from home by pursuing a graduate program from the University of North Carolina (UNC) at Greensboro. The online graduate program offered at this school is a joint degree program offered through the School of Education's Department of Human Development and Family Studies and the Department of Specialized Education Services. Although a fully online program, students must attend regular live virtual classes that require the use of a Web cam and microphone.

Online Master of Education in Birth to Kindergarten Interdisciplinary Studies in Education and Development

Early childhood education professionals seeking advanced leadership and administration roles are the target for this online, interdisciplinary master's degree program in birth-kindergarten education. Applicants must have a bachelor's degree and may be required to complete prerequisite courses if they lack an undergraduate background in early childhood. Students can choose between a program administration emphasis or an advanced licensure emphasis, the latter of which requires an initial teaching license.

The 37-credit master's degree program places heavy emphasis on creating learning experiences, developing leadership skills and underscoring the importance of family involvement in programs for disabled and non-disabled children. Distance learners take courses in the following areas:

  • Early childhood programs and policies
  • Curriculum development
  • Early childhood development theories and research
  • Educational research
  • Leadership and mentoring
  • Early childhood screenings and assessments

Both emphasis options for this program require students to complete an inclusive early childhood practicum.

Arizona State University

Early childhood education distance learners can participate in the convenient online master's degree program at Scottsdale's Arizona State University (ASU), which is offered through the College of Teacher Education and Leadership. Online students take classes utilizing learning technologies such as course management systems, web conferencing software and communication tools. Throughout the program, distance learners have full access to ASU's online library collections and 24-hour tech support.

Online Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction: Early Childhood Education

As with other master's degree programs, prospective students must have a bachelor's degree to be eligible for admission into ASU's graduate program. The school offers tracks of study for those seeking initial teacher certification or an endorsement; there's also an option for those who aren't seeking professional certification.

The online graduate program develops advanced knowledge of early childhood education program design and instruction through a combination of courses in professional knowledge, research and applied experiences. Online learners will also complete a practicum assignment based on the program track they are pursuing. Some coursework includes the following:

  • Educational research
  • Instructional and learning methods
  • Child guidance
  • Literacy
  • Diversity
  • Child assessment methods
  • Early childhood mathematics
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  • Areas of study you may find at University of Pennsylvania include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: First Professional Certificate, Post Master's Certificate, Postbaccalaureate Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Education
      • Counseling and Guidance
      • Curriculum and Instruction
      • Educational Administration and Supervision
      • Educational Evaluation and Research
      • ESL Teaching
      • Philosophical Foundations of Education
      • Teacher Education for Specific Levels and Methods
        • Teacher Education, Multiple Levels
        • Teaching, Elementary
        • Teaching, High School
        • Teaching, Young Children
      • Teacher Education for Specific Subject Areas
  • Areas of study you may find at Vanderbilt University include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Undergraduate: Bachelor
    • Education
      • Counseling and Guidance
      • Educational Administration and Supervision
      • International and Comparative Education
      • Special Education
      • Teacher Education for Specific Levels and Methods
        • Teaching, Elementary
        • Teaching, High School
        • Teaching, Young Children
      • Teacher Education for Specific Subject Areas
  • Areas of study you may find at University of Florida include:
      • Graduate: Doctorate, First Professional Degree, Master
      • Post Degree Certificate: Post Master's Certificate
      • Undergraduate: Associate, Bachelor
    • Education
      • Counseling and Guidance
      • Curriculum and Instruction
      • Educational Administration and Supervision
      • Educational Evaluation and Research
      • Philosophical Foundations of Education
      • Special Education
      • Teacher Education for Specific Levels and Methods
        • Teaching, Elementary
        • Teaching, Young Children
      • Teacher Education for Specific Subject Areas

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