Early Childhood Education Graduate Certificate Programs

Updated: Jan 9, 2024

Early Childhood Education (ECE), also known as Pre-School Education, ensures children learn the most important lessons – including literacy and math – from an early age. It is fundamental to later education.

An online Early Childhood Education Graduate Certificate is targeted at education grads and others who wish to teach children in the earliest years of education, including pre-school and pre-K. There are, however, other career options.

What Are the Online Early Childhood Education Graduate Certificate Requirements?

Those considering an online ECE graduate certificate should meet all the admissions requirements. This means having the proper prior educational degrees and meeting other criteria. While this varies based on school, applicants should generally meet the following:

  • Accredited bachelor's degree in any subject and master's degree (usually education-related)
  • Minimum 2.75 GPA. Be advised more prestigious schools may ask for a higher grade of 3.0
  • Official transcripts in support of grades and graduation
  • If you come from a country where English is not a major language, certification will be required. Supported standards include IELTS, PTEA, and TOEFL. Check individual colleges as some also accept DuoLingo and ELS112
  • Multiple letters of academic recommendation – typically 2 or 3. Applicants with no academic references may submit employer references with enough experience
  • Application fee
  • A personal supporting statement
  • Some schools may ask for a longer essay submission to answer a specific question requiring knowledge of education systems

What Type of Classes Are Included in the Online Early Childhood Education Graduate Certificate Curriculum?

ECE graduate certificates are made up of some mandatory and some elective courses, which can be completed in just several semesters. Course topics and titles often include the following:

  • Developing Early Childhood Curriculum
  • Assessment and Evaluation in Early Childhood
  • Families in Early Childhood Education
  • Policy and Transition
  • Child & Adolescent Development
  • Problems in Educational Psychology
  • Early Childhood Instruction
  • Special Education
  • English Language Teaching
  • Current Issues in Early Childhood Education
  • Curriculum and Methods for Early Childhood Education
  • Advanced Childhood Education Development
  • Internship / Work Experience in Schools

What Type of Careers Can I Pursue with an Online Early Childhood Education Graduate Certificate?

A graduate certificate in early childhood education is a wonderful building block towards a career working with young children, often in running operations and developing curricula. Career options may include:

  • Early Years / Daycare Teacher: This includes teachers in Pre-K and preschools. You’ll teach children the fundamentals and basics they need through schooling.
  • Private Tutor: You can work offering private tutoring to young students, gifted children, or those who simply need extra help to keep up.
  • Preschool Facilities Director: As a director, you are responsible for ensuring the integrity of educational tools and the curriculum, ensuring that they are age-appropriate. You’ll also hire teachers and communicate with parents.
  • Curriculum Development: This involves working in preschools and early education developing strategies and educational tools/methods either in a government role or in a school.
  • Teacher Training: Use your skills to train teachers in the latest methods, including any changes to the state's curriculum. You won't work with children directly, but with the teachers who do.
  • Reading Specialist: This role revolves around children who struggle in the early years and need extra help with their reading.

Early Childhood Education Graduate Certificate Programs List

Interested in an early childhood education graduate certificate program? Check out our listings below to find a traditional, online, or hybrid program near you.


Troy UniversityTroy, ALHybrid - Early Childhood Education
University of West AlabamaLivingston, ALHybrid - Early Childhood Education


College of the CanyonsSanta Clarita, CAOnline - Early Childhood Education
Skyline CollegeSan Bruno, CAHybrid - Early Childhood Education
United States UniversitySan Diego, CAOnline - Early Childhood Education


Fairfield UniversityFairfield, CTHybrid - Early Childhood Education


Columbus State UniversityColumbus, GAHybrid - Early Childhood Education
Georgia Southern UniversityStatesboro, GAHybrid - Early Childhood Education
Kennesaw State UniversityKennesaw, GAHybrid - Early Childhood Education
University of GeorgiaAthens, GAHybrid - Early Childhood Education


Boise State UniversityBoise, IDOnline - Early Childhood Interventions and Supports


National Louis UniversityChicago, ILHybrid - Early Childhood Education


Indiana University- EastRichmond, INOnline - Early Childhood Education


Louisiana State UniversityBaton Rouge, LAHybrid - Early Childhood
Louisiana State University and Agricultural & Mechanical CollegeBaton Rouge, LAHybrid - Early Childhood Education
Louisiana Tech UniversityRuston, LAHybrid - Early Childhood Education


American International CollegeSpringfield, MAHybrid - Early Childhood Education
Fisher CollegeBoston, MAOnline - Early Childhood Education


Towson UniversityTowson, MDHybrid - Early Childhood Education


University of MaineOrono, MEOnline - Early Childhood Education


Oakland UniversityRochester Hills, MIHybrid - Early Childhood Education


Walden UniversityMinneapolis, MNOnline - Teaching and Diversity in Early Childhood Education
Walden UniversityMinneapolis, MNHybrid - Early Childhood Education

New Hampshire

Antioch University-New EnglandKeene, NHNature-Based Early Childhood Education

New Jersey

Bloomfield CollegeBloomfield, NJEarly Childhood Education

New York

CUNY Hunter CollegeNew York, NYHybrid - Early Childhood Education
CUNY Queens CollegeQueens, NYHybrid - Early Childhood Education
SUNY College at PlattsburghPlattsburgh, NYHybrid - Early Childhood Education


Kent State UniversityKent, OHEarly Childhood Deaf Education


Champlain CollegeBurlington, VTOnline - Early Childhood Program Administration


Eastern Washington UniversityCheney, WAOnline - Early Childhood Education

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