Graduate Certificate in Early Childhood

About the Program 

The purpose of the Early Childhood Certificate is to give practitioners (e.g., teachers, others who work with infants and toddlers) coursework that will increase their knowledge in child development and early childhood education so that they are better prepared to implement best practices in early childhood education in their work with young children. This hybrid program will allow students to engage in face-to-face coursework or complete their coursework online. Students will gain practical experience by integrating course content with field-based experiences.

Students will be required to take 12 credit hours of coursework, including two (6 credits) required courses. The electives may be selected from any early childhood courses offered in the School of Education. Coursework taken in the Early Childhood Certificate program can be applied toward a graduate degree in curriculum and instruction, with a concentration in early childhood education.

The Early Childhood Certificate is ideal for those who are 1) non-certified individuals to gain foundational information needed to enter a master’s degree program; 2) certified teachers wanting to add early childhood coursework intending to take the early childhood Praxis and add an early childhood endorsement to their certificate; and 3) childcare staff needing early childhood coursework, in order to meet criteria set forth by the Quality Start Child Care Rating System (QRS) Model.


The Early Childhood Certificate consists of a 12 credit hours designed to increase knowledge in child development and early childhood education. An Early Childhood Certificate is desirable to post-baccalaureate students wanting to further their education in order to gain foundational information to enter a master’s program, add a PK-3 certification, or meet child care staffing requirements.

  • 3.0 in the last 60 hours of the bachelor’s degree
  • 2 letters of recommendation.


Early Childhood Education courses


Course Number Title Hours
EDCI 7056* Theories in Child Development 3 credit hours
EDCI 7054* Child Guidance and Behavior 3 credit hours
EDCI 7059 Parent Involvement in Early Childhood Education 3 credit hours
EDCI 7843 Early Childhood Education 3 credit hours
EDCI 7053 Infant Development 3 credit hours
EDCI 7055 Human Development 3 credit hours
EDCI 4060 (CFS 4060) Organization & Administration of Early Childhood Programs 3 credit hours
EDCI 4382 Critical Issues in Early Childhood Education 3 credit hours
EDCI 4482 Capstone in PK3 3 credit hours

Total Credits: 12



Cynthia DiCarlo
Phone: (225) 578-7005
Office: 123B Peabody Hall



Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education Grant (TEACH Grant) 

Undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in an eligible program, maintain a 3.25 GPA, and commit to teach in high-need field, at a low-income school, for at least four years within eight years of completing the program for which the grant was awarded. 

Louisiana Pathways

For child care employees working towards an approved master’s degree or doctorate, or taking individual courses to meet Quality Start staff qualifications or to advance on the Louisiana Pathways Career Ladders, scholarships will pay for tuition only.

Louisiana Early Childhood Association Scholarships & Grants

Each year LAECA has up to $3,600.00 in scholarships and mini-grants available to members.

The Classroom Teacher Enrollment Program (CTEP)

The Louisiana Classroom Teacher Enrollment Program (CTEP) allows classroom teachers to attend Louisiana’s public colleges and universities tuition free (all other fees must be paid by the teacher) on a space available basis. The law also requires that classroom teachers who participate in CTEP during any one school year shall be obligated to practice as a classroom teacher in the elementary or secondary schools of Louisiana for at least the subsequent school year.

The CTEP program is applicable and valid only for courses offered on the main campus offered by the college or university which the teacher plans to attend. CTEP may not be used to schedule off-campus, correspondence, or distance learning courses. Independent study courses, practicum courses requiring individual supervision, thesis courses, and dissertation courses are not eligible for tuition exemption under the CTEP program. The law creating CTEP limits course enrollment to six (6) semester hours per academic year semester. Course enrollment limits for summer sessions or quarters under this program are those imposed by the college or university in which the teacher enrolls.