Online Bachelor’s Degree in Early Childhood Administration

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Total Courses
Cost per Credit
4 years
Average Completion*
15–18 Hours/Week
Course Effort

Bachelor’s in Early Childhood Administration Overview

It’s time to earn your early childhood administration degree. Become a leader in the early childhood field and be ready to make an impact on the lives of our nation’s youngest learners.

  • Gain the skills to provide developmental and learning opportunities for children from birth to age 8, along with the knowledge and practical business skills to take on administrative or leadership roles.
  • Earn a credential that can help advance your career — a bachelor’s degree is typically required for preschool and childcare center directors and employers may prefer candidates with a degree in early childhood education.
  • Learn from faculty who are professionals in early childhood-related fields.
  • Join our Educators Association for networking and educational opportunities.
  • Shorten your path to a master’s degree with our accelerated bachelor's to master's option.

Gain Skills That Employers — and Young Children — Need

Be prepared for the following:

  • Working with young children in center-based programs
  • Providing or overseeing services to children through agencies
  • Teaching young children in a variety of settings
  • Professional development opportunities in early childhood programs
  • Owning your own early childhood care or education facility
View Program Detail Plan and Policies

Note: At this time, residents of Kentucky may not enroll in this program.

Kentucky students please be advised that this program is not accredited in Kentucky by the Education Professional Standards Board and is not recognized for initial, additional, or renewal of certification or salary enhancement (rank change) for P–12 educators in Kentucky. For more information, please visit the Education Professional Standards Board’s website at:

See Notes and Conditions below for important information.

Practical Experience

Complete five hours of field experience at an early childhood setting, such as child/day care or a home center.

An internship option allows you to gain real-world experience while you earn your degree online.

Engage With Fellow Students

Online discussion boards provide the opportunity to engage with students from around the country and learn from their experiences.

Students are also invited to join the Educators Association for further networking and educational opportunities.

Purdue Global Is Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission

The HLC ( is an institutional accreditation agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

Admissions Requirements

You must be a high school graduate or possess a General Educational Development (GED) certificate or other equivalency diploma. You are also encouraged to complete orientation before you start classes. Refer to the University Catalog or speak to an Advisor to learn more.

What Courses Will I Take?

This social science degree is designed to build your knowledge and skills in early childhood growth and development; early childhood education and curriculum; business and management; and early childhood leadership and advocacy.

In your first course, you'll develop your degree plan with a faculty member to align your degree path with your career outcomes.

Sample Courses

  • Early Childhood Curriculum Planning
  • Child Safety, Nutrition, and Health
  • Young Children With Special Needs
  • Early Childhood Family, Community, and Advocacy
  • Funding Development and Financial Planning
See All Early Childhood Courses

Program Requirements

Core Credits
Major Credits
Elective Credits
Total Credits

Upcoming Start Dates

We offer multiple start dates to give you flexibility in your education, life, and work schedules.

Prepare for the Child Development Associate Credential

The course CE101: Introduction to Early Childhood Education meets the ten hours of training in each of the eight Child Development Associate (CDA) subject areas that are required for the highly regarded CDA credential. Many states require the CDA Credential for those who wish to take on a director of child development role.

The eight areas include:

  • Planning a safe and healthy learning environment
  • Advancing children’s physical and intellectual development
  • Supporting children’s social and emotional development
  • Building productive relationships with families
  • Managing an effective program operation
  • Maintaining a commitment to professionalism
  • Observing and recording children’s behavior
  • Understanding the principles of child development and learning

Earn Credit for the CDA Credential

If you’ve already earned your Child Development Associate (CDA) credential, you may be eligible for credit toward your degree. Students who hold a valid and current CDA credential (preschool, infant-toddler, or family child care) are eligible to receive this credit for the following Purdue Global courses:

  • CE101: Introduction to Early Childhood Education — 5 quarter credits
  • CE114: Early Childhood Development — 5 quarter credits
  • CE220: Child Safety, Nutrition, and Health — 5 quarter credits

For more information on the CDA, see the Council for Professional Recognition website.

See Notes and Conditions below for important information.

Get a Head Start on Your Master’s

Complete both your bachelor’s and master’s degrees in less time and at a lower cost than completing them separately. While you earn your BS in early childhood administration, you can work toward a Purdue Global master’s degree in one of the following areas:

  • Applied behavior analysis
  • Criminal justice
  • Education
  • Educational psychology
  • Higher education
  • Homeland security and emergency management
  • Human services
  • Instructional design and technology
  • Legal studies
  • Psychology
  • Public administration

For accelerated master's degree option details and eligibility requirements, speak to an Advisor.

Earn Credit for Prior Coursework and Experience

The average bachelor's degree student pays $15k and takes 2 years to complete their degree.

Get the Credit You Deserve

Ways to Save on Time and Tuition

Purdue Global works with students to find ways to reduce costs and make education more accessible. Contact us to learn about opportunities to save on your educational costs.

Transfer Credits

Earn credit for prior coursework completed at eligible institutions, including community colleges.

Prior Work Experience Reduction

You could earn undergraduate credit for your life and professional career experiences.

Financial Aid

Learn about federal financial aid programs available for many of our degree programs.

Grants and Loans

Learn about federal and state grants and loan programs that may be available.

Prior Military Experience

Earn credit for your military training. The average Purdue Global military student is awarded 54% of the credits needed for an associate's and 45% of the credits needed for a bachelor's.

View the total cost of attendance for your program.

Calculate Your Time and Cost

Estimate how much your prior learning credits can reduce your tuition and time to graduation.

Get Started

What Can You Do With an Early Childhood Administration Degree?

Prepare for opportunities in a variety of fields, whether you want to operate or own your own early childhood program or manage an early childhood agency or organization. Career pathways for graduates of the bachelor's in early childhood administration program could include:

  • Head Start administrator
  • Childcare worker or center director
  • Owner/operator of an early childhood care or education facility
  • After-school program worker
  • Preschool teacher or director
  • Self-employed worker

Average Salary


General labor market and salary data are provided by Lightcast and may not represent the outcomes experienced by Purdue Global graduates in these programs. Purdue Global graduates in these programs may earn salaries substantially different or less than the amounts listed above. Salary and employment outcomes vary by geographic area, previous work experience, education, and opportunities for employment that are outside of Purdue Global's control.

Lightcast average salary ranges can be explored further using Lightcast’s SkillsMatch tool. Purdue Global does not guarantee employment placement, salary level, or career advancement.

See Notes and Conditions below for important information.

Take 3 Weeks to Get to Know Us

Not sure if Purdue Global is right for you? Experience a Purdue Global undergraduate program for an introductory 3-week period.

There’s no financial obligation and no cost to apply.

That’s the Purdue Global Commitment.

Download the Program Brochure

Download our brochure to learn more about the Online Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Administration and the benefits of earning your degree at Purdue Global.

Prepare yourself for success with a bachelor’s degree in early childhood administration.

Choosing a Bachelor’s Degree in Early Childhood Administration

Become a leader in childhood development and help change lives. Discover the value of pursuing a bachelor’s in early childhood administration.

It’s a tech-driven world. See how technology can be used to increase learning opportunities and expand a child’s understanding and perspective.

Grow your knowledge and awareness in childcare. Learn how additional programs, communities, and mentors can help you provide better quality support.

Get to Know Our Faculty

Purdue Global faculty members are real-world practitioners who bring knowledge gained through the powerful combination of higher learning and industry experience.


Faculty members who have advanced degrees


Faculty members who hold a doctorate


Faculty publications in 2021–2022

More Than 38,000

Professional development hours logged by faculty in 2021–2022

Statistics include all Purdue Global faculty members and are not school- or program-specific calculations. Source: Purdue Global Office of Reporting and Analysis, July 2022. 2021–2022 academic year.

Your Path to Success Begins Here

Connect with an Advisor to explore program requirements, curriculum, credit for prior learning process, and financial aid options.


*Estimated Graduation Date and Average Completion: Estimated graduation date is based on the assumption that you will enroll in time to begin classes on the next upcoming start date, will remain enrolled for each consecutive term, and will maintain satisfactory academic standing in each term to progress toward completion of your program. Completion time is based on a full-time schedule. Programs will take longer for part-time students to complete.

Bachelor's Completion Time and Average Net Price: The average completion time for Purdue Global online bachelor’s degree students who graduated in the 2022–2023 academic year was 2.3 years. Average net price reflects charges for all graduates, including those who transferred to Purdue Global, after application of scholarships, tuition reductions, grants (including federal Pell grants for undergraduate students), employer tuition assistance, and/or military tuition assistance. Source: Purdue Global Office of Reporting and Analysis, July 2023.

Certification Exams: Students are responsible for understanding the requirements of optional certification exams. The University cannot guarantee students will be eligible to sit for or pass exams. In some cases, work experience, additional coursework beyond the Purdue Global program, fieldwork, and/or background checks may be necessary to be eligible to take or to successfully pass the exams.

Credit for Prior Learning: Purdue Global does not guarantee transferability of credit. See the University Catalog for the Prior Learning policy.

Credit Toward Master’s Degree: The University cannot guarantee that students will be granted admission to any future programs. Speak to an Advisor about admissions requirements and transfer credit opportunities and see the University Catalog for the Prior Learning policy.

Early Childhood Education Licensure: This program will not certify graduates to become licensed teachers, is not intended for individuals who are pursuing a license to teach early childhood education in a public or accredited private elementary school, is not represented as meeting specific state Board of Education criteria for assisting with children and teachers in a public school setting, and was not designed to meet any specific state’s requirements for licensure or certification. Refer to Purdue Global's State Licensure and Certifications page for state-specific licensure information.

Education Requirements: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Preschool and Childcare Center Directors. How to Become a Preschool or Childcare Center Director.

Internship: The student is responsible for identifying and obtaining approval for an appropriate internship in his or her location.