Online Associate's Degree in Early Childhood Development
Program at a Glance
- Gain the introductory knowledge and skills to work with young children (birth through age 8) and families in early childhood settings, or further your current career in the early childhood development field.*†
- Learn to create effective learning environments for young children.
- Apply your AAS in Early Childhood Development credits toward a Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Administration at Purdue Global.‡
We offer multiple start dates to give you flexibility in your education, life, and work schedules.
Associate of Applied Science in Early Childhood Development Overview
Prepare online to begin or advance your career with the foundational knowledge and skills it takes to work with children from birth through age 8 and their families.
The program curriculum focuses on the young child's growth and development, working with children in the inclusive classroom, health and nutrition needs, and activity implementation.
Online associate's degree in early childhood development courses prepare you to:
- Apply knowledge and theory in early childhood settings.
- Plan lessons for young children and their families.
- Create effective learning environments for young children.
- Help strengthen family and community relationships.
- Apply professional standards, values, and practices.
- Understand the importance of individuality and cultural diversity in learning and development.
See the University Catalog for policy and degree plan information specific to this program.
Purdue Global Is Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission
The HLC (HLCommission.org) is an institutional accreditation agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.
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.
Ways to Save
Earn credit for prior coursework completed at eligible institutions, including community colleges.
Prior Work Experience
You could earn undergraduate credit for your life and professional career experiences.
Title IV federal financial aid is available for many of our degree programs.
Learn about federal financial grants and loan programs that may be available.
Prior Military Experience
We offer credit for ACE-evaluated training and CLEP and DANTES examinations.
Calculate your estimated tuition and ways to save.
Take the Next Step in Your Education and Career
Earning your AAS in Early Childhood Development online at Purdue Global prepares you to pursue a number of careers in the field.*†
Potential job titles include:
- Preschool teacher (except special education)
- Preschool assistant teacher
- Child care program specialist
Potential employers include:
- Head Start programs
- School readiness programs
- Local preschools
- Early Intervention programs
- Child care organizations
Note: This program is not intended for individuals who are pursuing a license to teach early childhood education in a public or accredited private elementary school and is not represented as meeting specific state Board of Education criteria for assisting with children and teachers in a public school setting. This program will not certify graduates to become licensed teachers.
Earning your associate’s degree in early childhood development can have an immediate impact on your career. It also lays the groundwork for advancing to a Purdue Global bachelor’s degree.
Coursework from the AAS in Early Childhood Development is 100% transferrable into Purdue Global’s online Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Administration.‡
What Courses Will I Take?
The associate’s in early childhood development curriculum connects applied theory to practice, ethics, and professionalism. It also helps you develop the critical thinking and communication skills you need to fulfill the responsibilities of early childcare development roles in a variety of learning environments.See All Early Childhood Courses
- Early Childhood Curriculum Planning
- Child Safety, Nutrition, and Health
- Creative Activities for Young Children
- Introduction to Early Childhood Education
- Young Children With Special Needs
- Core Credits15
- Major Credits50
- Elective Credits25
- Total Credits90
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.View Education Faculty Directory
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.
Download our brochure to learn more about the Associate of Applied Science in Early Childhood Development and the benefits of earning your degree at Purdue Global.
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*Employment and Career Advancement: Purdue Global does not guarantee employment placement or career advancement. Actual outcomes vary by geographic area, previous work experience and opportunities for employment.
†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.
‡Future Programs: The University cannot guarantee that students will be granted admission to any future programs. Speak to an Advisor about transfer credit opportunities and see the University Catalog for the Prior Learning policy.