Award-Winning Program

De Anza's Child Development and Education program has been recognized by the state Chancellor's "Workforce Stars" initiative for strong performance on a key indicator:
  • Students in the program found jobs in their field 94% of the time 

Careers in Child Development and Education

young children seated in front of teacherChild development professionals work directly with children as preschool teachers, teacher assistants, home care providers and early childhood mental health specialists.

Studying child development can also provide a foundation for a wide range of other careers – from pediatric nursing or child psychology to children’s librarian, playground designer, family court advocate or parent educator.

Child development professionals should enjoy working with children and be patient, enthusiastic and able to communicate effectively. Salaries can be higher for employees with college credits, certificates or degrees in this subject. Many positions require state licenses or permits, so it’s important to investigate the requirements for the position you want to pursue.

Employment Outlook: 2016-2026

  • The number of jobs for child care workers is expected to increase by 6.8%
  • Jobs for preschool teachers are expected to increase 9.7%
  • Jobs for child care center administrators are expected to increase 9.6%

These ten-year projections are calculated by California's Employment Development Department, which collects data about the state's workforce and economic trends.

Programs at De Anza

The Child Development and Education Department offers certificates and degree programs that are aligned with the requirements of employers and licensing agencies.

young man with child at easelDe Anza's associate degrees are accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children. Instructors have both practical experience and scholarly expertise in a wide range of specialized areas. The department also works closely with De Anza's Child Development Center, a laboratory school that provides year-round child care for more than 100 children and their parents from the campus and surrounding community.  

Child Development

  • Certificate of Achievement - Child DevelopmentDetails for Certificate of Achievement - Child Development

    This vocational training program prepares future early childhood workers and educators to work with diverse children in early childhood settings. The program includes academic instruction, job skills training, and field and community engagement experiences. Students acquire knowledge to integrate developmentally appropriate practices and their application to teaching young children along with skills in building relationships with children and families. This Certificate of Achievement meets entry-level professional requirements for teachers in early childhood programs and fulfills requirements to qualify as a teacher in a center licensed by the California Department of Social Services. Students who wish to qualify to become a director must also take C D 59G “Supervision and Administration of Child Development Programs (Management Systems)” and C D 59H “Supervision and Administration of Child Development Programs (Leadership Skills).” The Certificate of Achievement is designed to meet the Child Development course requirements for a Child Development Associate Teacher Permit. The permit requires 18 quarter units (equivalent to 12 semester units).

    Degree Requirements

    View in Catalog

    Gainful Employment Disclosure

  • Certificate of Achievement-Advanced - Early Intervention/Special Education AssistantDetails for Certificate of Achievement-Advanced - Early Intervention/Special Education Assistant

    This vocational training program prepares future early childhood workers and educators to work with children with disabilities and special needs in public and private early intervention, special education and educational settings that serve typical and atypical developing young children and their families. Students are taught practical skills in early intervention and early childhood special education from a culturally responsive perspective. Students learn to integrate early intervention/ special education practices and apply them to teaching young children with special needs. Certificate requirements include student participation in field experiences with communitybased, inclusive educational programs. The Certificate of Achievement-Advancement prepares students for two career paths: early intervention assistant and early childhood teacher. It is the equivalent of the Teacher level permit on the California Child Development Matrix. The Teacher level permit also requires 24 quarter units (equivalent of 16 semester units) ofGeneral Education courses.

    Degree Requirements

    View in Catalog

    Gainful Employment Disclosure

  • Associate in Science-Transfer - Early Childhood EducationDetails for Associate in Science-Transfer - Early Childhood Education

    The Early Childhood Education major consists of courses appropriate for an Associate in Science in Early Childhood Education for Transfer degree, which provides a foundational understanding of the discipline, a breadth of coursework in the discipline, and preparation for transfer to any CSU that accepts the Transfer Model Curriculum (TMC). The degree will facilitate the student’s successful transfer to certain California State University (CSU) campuses that prepare them for advanced study in a variety of graduate programs, as well as a variety of careers such as teaching, Child Development Specialist, Program Directors, and Child Life Specialists, and paraprofessionals in early special education. With a B.A. in ECE/Child Development, students are eligible for the Master Teacher and Site Supervisor levels of the CA Child Development Permit, using the Alternative Qualifications category. The Associate in Science in Early Childhood Education for Transfer is intended for students who plan to complete a bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education at a CSU campus. Students completing this degree are guaranteed admission to the CSU system, but not to a particular campus or major. Students transferring to a CSU campus that does accept this degree will be required to complete no more than 60 (semester) units after transfer to earn a bachelor’s degree. This degree may not be the best option for students intending to transfer to a particular CSU campus or to a university or college that is not part of the CSU system. In all cases, students should consult with a counselor for more information on university admission and transfer requirements.

    Degree Requirements

    View in Catalog

  • Certificate of Achievement - Early Childhood Mental HealthDetails for Certificate of Achievement - Early Childhood Mental Health

    De Anza College’s Child Development and Education Department developed the Early Childhood Mental Health Certificate of Achievement to train mental health professionals at the entry- and advanced-level, ECE educators at the beginning and advanced-level, and professionals working in early education, mental health and community services settings and/or programs. Certificate requirements include student participation in field experiences with community-based, early childhood mental health programs. Students develop skills to work with both children and their families. The Certificate of Achievement is designed to meet Child Development course requirements for a Child Development Master Teacher level as specialization units. The Child Development Master Teacher permit requires 36 quarter units (equivalent to 24 semester units) ECE/C D including core courses. The permit also requires 24 quarter units (equivalent to 16 semester units) of General Education courses plus 3 quarter units (equivalent to 2 semester units) of adult supervision.

    Degree Requirements

    View in Catalog

  • Certificate of Achievement-Advanced - Child DevelopmentDetails for Certificate of Achievement-Advanced - Child Development

    This vocational training program prepares future early childhood workers and educators to work with diverse children in early childhood settings. The program includes academic instruction, job skills training, field experiences, and civic and community engagement skills. Students learn to integrate developmentally appropriate practices and apply them to curriculum design for teaching young children. They also learn how to build culturally responsive partnerships with children and families. The Certificate of Achievement-Advanced is designed to meet the Child Development course requirements for a Child Development Teacher Permit. The permit also requires 24 quarter units (equivalent of 16 semester units) of General Education courses.

    Degree Requirements

    View in Catalog

    Gainful Employment Disclosure

  • Associate in Arts - Child DevelopmentDetails for Associate in Arts - Child Development

    The A.A. degree vocational training program prepares future early childhood workers and educators to work with diverse children in early childhood settings. The program prepares students for entry-level careers or entrance into a Bachelor’s degree program in Child Development studies. The degree program focuses on integrating developmentally appropriate knowledge and practice, and developing professional competencies and job skills. Students learn how to build partnerships with local, national and international resource organizations in order to advocate effectively for the needs of children and families. The degree fulfills the Child Development course requirements to qualify for the Child Development Permit Site Supervisor on the California Child Development Matrix. Students who wish to qualify as a site supervisor must also take C D 59G “Supervision and Administration of Child Development Programs (Management Systems)”, C D 59H “Supervision and Administration of Child Development Programs (Leadership Skills)” and C D 67 “Supervision and Administration of Child Development Programs (Adult Supervision)”.

    Degree Requirements

    View in Catalog

  • Skills Certificate - Trauma Informed CareNEWDetails for Skills Certificate - Trauma Informed Care

    De Anza College’s Child Development and Education developed the Trauma Informed Care Skills Certificate to train early childhood practitioners working in early education and in Family, Friends and Neighbors programs. Certificate requirements include student participation in field experiences with community based programs. Students develop skills to work with both children and families who have experienced trauma. The Skills Certificate is designed to meet Child Development course requirements for a Child Development Master Teacher as specialization units. The Child Development Master Teacher permit requires 36 quarter units (equivalent to 24 semester units) in Early Childhood Education/Child Development including core courses. The certificate is also aligned with the Infant-Family and Early Childhood Mental Health professional endorsement: Reflective Practice Facilitator I and Transdisciplinary Infant-Family and Early Childhood Mental Health Practitioner.

    Degree Requirements

    View in Catalog


In addition to the programs listed above, you may be able to apply courses in this department toward General Education requirements.

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Financial Aid

Questions?

Contact Us!

Li Wei Sun
Child Development and Education Co-Chair

408.864.5329
sunliwei@deanza.edu

Nellie Vargas
Child Development and Education Co-Chair

408.864.8788
vargasnellie@deanza.edu


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