The Associate of Applied Science (AAS) in Early Childhood Development is a program in the School of Education (SOE) that prepares teaching assistants, Head Start teachers, preschool teachers, and other learning professionals to work in early care and education settings, including the public school system. The program prepares candidates to work with young children from birth to eight years. Unique features of the program include a foundation in content with coursework in child development, culturally responsive curriculum practices, and family engagement. Candidates engage in field experiences throughout their coursework to directly apply teaching and learning principles. In addition, candidates complete a culminating semester-long practicum experience.
The AAS in Early Childhood Development is accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC).
- Complete the Admission Requirements for Associate Degrees.
- Most courses in the Core Requirements include a clinical field experience expectation. Candidates must complete and clear a background check from the Alaska Department of Health within the first semester of enrollment to participate in these experiences. The SOE Office of Student Services will facilitate this process.
- Candidates must submit an application to the SOE Office of Student Services for placement in the Early Childhood Practicum. The SOE Office of Student Services will facilitate this process.
- Some schools and agencies may require a tuberculosis (TB) test before entering their facility.
- Practica, internships, and other field placements are made only in partnering school districts and agencies. Placements outside of partner facilities will be considered on a case-by-case basis. The school districts and agencies partnering with the School of Education reserve the right to request additional information and/or preparation from candidates as determined by their established policies and practices. Cooperating districts and agencies also determine the available spaces and placements for candidates. Placements may become competitive if the number of applicants exceeds the number of spaces. Districts and agencies also reserve the right to refuse or terminate placements when candidates do not meet an acceptable standard of performance. Thus, while the university makes every effort to find appropriate field placements for candidates, admittance to a degree/certificate/endorsement program does not guarantee acceptance by cooperating school districts or agencies. Unacceptable academic performance, an unprofessional attitude, unsatisfactory field reports, violation of professional ethics or other factors may result in removal from the field placement.
- Candidates who have taken all or part of an approved program at another university must take at least 9 credits of approved education courses at the University of Alaska prior to being admitted to an advanced practicum or internship.
- Complete the General University Requirements for Associate of Applied Science Degrees.
- Complete the General Education Requirements for Associate of Applied Science Degrees.
- Complete the following major requirements with a minimum grade of C:
|EDEC A105||Introduction to the Field of Early Childhood Education||3|
|EDEC A106||Creativity and the Arts in Early Childhood||3|
|EDEC A107||Child Development and Learning||3|
|EDEC A108||Health, Nutrition and Wellness for Children Birth-12||3|
|EDEC A190||Selected Topics in Early Childhood||3|
|EDEC A206||Interdisciplinary Curriculum for Young Children||3|
|EDEC A210||Guiding Young Children||3|
|EDEC A241||Infant and Toddler Development||3|
|EDEC A242||Culturally Responsive Family Engagement||3|
|EDEC A292||Early Childhood Practicum Seminar||3|
|EDEC A295||Early Childhood Practicum 1||3|
|EDEC A303||Young Children in Inclusive Settings||3|
To be admitted to EDEC A295, applicants must complete an application and have earned a minimum grade of C in all EDEC courses.
A minimum of 60 credits is required for the degree.
Program Student Learning Outcomes
Student outcomes are based on the Standards for Alaska’s Teachers. Outcomes are also based on the professional preparation standards of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). The students will demonstrate the following outcomes:
- Create a healthy, respectful, supportive, and challenging learning environment based on knowledge of child development.
- Create respectful, reciprocal relationships that support and empower families, and involve all families in their children’s development and learning.
- Use systematic observations, documentation, and other effective assessment strategies in a responsible way, in partnership with families and other professionals, to positively influence children’s development and learning.
- Design effective approaches to teaching and learning, implement and evaluate experiences that promote positive development and learning for all children.
- Incorporate knowledge of content areas to create appropriate experiences for young children.
- Use ethical guidelines and other professional standards related to early childhood practice.
- Demonstrate knowledgeable, reflective, and critical perspectives on professional practice, making informed decisions that integrate knowledge from a variety of sources.
The expected mastery of student outcomes differs in accordance with program level. Students who complete the Associate of Applied Science in Early Childhood Development will be proficient entry-level child care workers, have knowledge of child development and demonstrate basic abilities in child care paraprofessional skills.