Preschool Certificate

Three toddlers playing with toys

Preschool Certificate

Program Code: C55220D

Our short-term Preschool certificate program will provide you with an introductory knowledge of early childhood education, child development, health, safety, and nutrition.

Upon completion, you will have 16 credits which can be applied to the Early Childhood Education diploma or degree program.

This is a certificate program and requires fewer credits and less time to complete than a degree or diploma program. Certificate programs can be taken alone but are often taken along with other Early Childhood Education programs.

The Early Childhood Education program also offers degree, diploma, and additional certificate options.

This certificate is also available to high school students through our Career & College Promise program.

Learn more about this program's student outcome data.

*Practicums must have prior approval and observations conducted at an educational institution.

Skills You’ll Learn

The Early Childhood Education program is focused on job-related skills in the following areas:

  • Understanding child growth and development, health, safety, and nutrition practices in childcare settings
  • Mastering cognitive/language, physical/motor, social/emotional, and creative development of young children
  • Understanding how to make activity plans, work with families, and make career plans

Career Opportunities

There are many employment opportunities for Early Childhood Education graduates, including:

  • Childcare programs
  • Private preschool programs
  • Recreational centers
  • School-age programs

 Additional Information

  • Most career opportunities in child care require you to pass the NC Division of Child Development and undergo a fingerprint and Early Education background check
  • You must complete EDU 119 with a grade of C or higher in order to be eligible for the NC Childcare Credential
  • Public schools require 40 credits hours to be a teacher assistant (Craven County also requires a bus driver’s license)

Certificate requirements

16 Credit Hours

Courses in this program

Course Course Code Credit Hours Link to course details

This course introduces the foundations of early childhood education, the diverse educational settings for young children, professionalism and planning intentional developmentally appropriate experiences for each child.

Lecture Hours: 4  Lab Hours: 0  Clinical Hours: 0  Credit Hours: 4 
  • Prerequisites:
    None
  • Corequisites:
    None

This course covers the development of partnerships among culturally, linguistically and ability diverse families, children, schools and communities through the use of evidence-based strategies. Emphasis is placed on developing skills and identifying benefits for establishing and supporting respectful relationships between diverse families, programs/schools, and community agencies/resources reflective of the NAEYC Code of Ethical Conduct and the Code of Ethics for North Carolina Educators.

Lecture Hours: 3  Lab Hours: 0  Clinical Hours: 0  Credit Hours: 3 
  • Prerequisites:
    None
  • Corequisites:
    None

This course includes the theories of child development, observation and assessment, milestones, and factors that influence development, from preschool through middle childhood.

Lecture Hours: 3  Lab Hours: 0  Clinical Hours: 0  Credit Hours: 3 
  • Prerequisites:
    None
  • Corequisites:
    None

This course introduces evidence-based strategies to build nurturing relationships with each child by applying principles and practical techniques to facilitate developmentally appropriate guidance. Topics include designing responsive/supportive learning environments, cultural, linguistic and socio-economic influences on behavior, appropriate expectations, the importance of communication with children/families including using technology and the use of formative assessments in establishing intentional strategies for children with unique needs.

Lecture Hours: 3  Lab Hours: 0  Clinical Hours: 0  Credit Hours: 3 
  • Prerequisites:
    None
  • Corequisites:
    Take EDU-145

This course covers promoting and maintaining the health and well-being of every child. Topics include health and nutritional guidelines, common childhood illnesses, maintaining safe and healthy, learning environments, health benefits of active play, recognition and reporting of abuse/neglect, and state regulations. Upon completion, students should be able to apply knowledge of NC Foundations for Early Learning and Development for health, safety, nutritional needs and safe learning environments.

Lecture Hours: 3  Lab Hours: 0  Clinical Hours: 0  Credit Hours: 3 
  • Prerequisites:
    None
  • Corequisites:
    None

Questions others are asking.

We offer several credentials that provide the flexibility you need. Most degree programs last two years and provide the most in-depth study of a particular subject. Diplomas and certificates take less time and are often taken in conjunction with other degree programs. Specialized training is also available for workforce development programs that are completed in less than a year.

This program is accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), a professional membership organization that works to promote high-quality early learning for all young children, birth through age 8, by connecting early childhood practice, policy, and research.

After completing EDU 119 with a grade of C or better, students will apply to the NC Division of Child Development to receive the lead instructor credential. Forms are online here. Original transcripts must be sent to DCD, either directly from Craven Community College or in a sealed envelope accompanying the student’s completed credentials application.

The Financial Aid office, located in Barker Hall on our New Bern campus, has information about national and state financial assistance, scholarships, grants, and work-study positions. Federal financial aid begins with you completing the Free Application for Financial Assistance (FAFSA) at www.fafsa.gov.

Program-specific scholarships and/or resources may also be available (depending on funding, availability, and other criteria) to individuals already employed in the fields of Early Childhood and/or education. Information about these potential scholarships/funding sources is available at the Craven County Smart Start Office.

Individuals teaching in the N.C. Public Schools are required to meet N.C. Department of Public Instruction licensing requirements which include, at the minimum, a bachelor’s degree and state certification for the area/grade in which they plan to teach. Graduates from our Early Childhood Education program earn an associate in applied science degree and therefore would need to continue education at the baccalaureate level (or beyond) if planning to work as a teacher in N.C. Public Schools. There are also teacher associates who assist classroom teachers in the public schools, and the AAS degree is the requirement for those positions.

Although a limited number of articulation agreements have been developed between the N.C. Community College System and the University of North Carolina System for Early Childhood graduates who wish to transfer, these articulation agreements are designed to provide support to students who decide to transfer to a baccalaureate program after completion of an associate in applied science degree. It is therefore generally more efficient for students who plan (at the time of enrollment) to complete a bachelor’s degree in a field of education to enroll in the Associate of Arts program at Craven Community College.

Contact Information

Career Programs
Advanced Manufacturing Center
New Bern Campus
252-638-7370

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