Early Childhood Education Short Specialization Certificate

This Short Specialization Certificate is second in a series of three stackable certificates designed to meet the Washington State Career lattice guidelines for those individuals interested in working in settings structured specifically for the young child (early education programs such as licensed childcare and Head Start).

Credits earned can be applied to the third stackable certificate, the State Credential Certificate.

Learning Outcomes

1. Student will establish or improve, an early childhood learning environment using principles selected from classes (research, ECE theories and their life experiences).

2. Student will observe actions, language, and social behavior of young children in an Early Childhood Education classroom, assess children's skills and behavior based on developmentally appropriate practices, and report their findings.

3. Critique organization and implementation of classroom processes in an early learning setting, identify concerns evident in the classroom, and formulate solutions to address these concerns.

4. Provide parent education and encourage parental participation in early learning experiences with their own and other children through opportunities offered at the early learning setting.


Many classes have prerequisites. Prerequisites are those classes that prove eligibility for entry-level classes by testing or by having satisfied prior course work. Course work earned at other institutions must be unofficially evaluated or approved by a program advisor before registering.

Early Childhood Education Short Specialization Certificate Prerequisites:

This Certificate in concert with the Initial Certificate requirement (ECED&105, ECED&107, ECED&120) are what comprise the Short Specialization Certificate. Students may also take classes that apply to the State Certificate or ECE AAS Degree.

Note: Advanced placement testing, work experience, and transfer of credits may result in course waivers, credit transfer, and advanced placement.

Students enrolling in this program should have access to early childhood settings and preschool-aged children. Observations of children and their environments is a requirement of the ECE Curriculum.

Course Title Credits
EDUC&115 Child Development 5
EDUC&130 Guiding Behavior 3
  Total Credits (excluding prerequisites) 8


Course Title Credits
EDUC&115 Child Development 5
EDUC&132 Infant & Toddler 3
  Total Credits (excluding prerequisites) 8


Course Title Credits
EDUC&115 Child Development 5
EDUC&136 School Age Care 3
  Total Credits (excluding prerequisites) 8




Course Title Credits
EDUC&115 Child Development 5
EDUC&134 Family Development 3
  Total Credits (excluding prerequisites) 8


Course Title Credits
EDUC&115 Child Development 5
EDUC&139 Administration of Early Learning Programs 3
  Total Credits (excluding prerequisites)


Total Credits
Total Credits -- Minimum
Total Credits -- Maximum

What Skills do I need to be successful in this field?

To be successful in early childhood education you need to appreciate children,
their families, and develop the abilities to use observation and assessment in order to plan and implement developmentally appropriate curriculum that meets the individual child's needs. This is best accomplished through formal education and lifelong learning in ECE.

What are some potential job titles?

Teacher Aide, Assistant Teacher, Lead Teacher

Wages, employment trends and pathways:

The concept behind the stackable certificate is the end result of Community College ECE coordinators, SBCTC, and the Department of Early Learning (DEL) joining together in a concerted effort to have in place a much clearer professional development pathway for students/and employees in the field returning to school.

Because there are a variety of wages and positions based on credentials, degrees, and experience for those who work with young children, a career lattice has been established. The more certificates an individual obtains that lead a two-year ECE degree; wages will be increased along the way.

Effective beginning: Winter 2014 
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