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Child Development and Early Education Program


Lansing Community College offers three program options in Child Development and Early Education. Each addresses the various components of high quality early education and care in a variety of settings and for all ages, including infants, toddlers, preschoolers, and school-aged children. Instructional methods include lecture-discussion, hands-on experiences, and supervised fieldwork. Some courses are offered on-line or as a hybrid.

The conceptual framework of the Child Development and Early Education program evolved out of a series of meetings held in 2007 and 2008.  Full-time and adjunct faculty, field instructors, and community stakeholders engaged in guided discussions to identify the program's core values, to explore our assumptions about adult learners, and then to collaboratively develop mission and vision statements which encapsulate our shared philosophy.  The resulting conceptual framework is seen as a dynamic document which continuously guides the development, implementation, evaluation, and revision of courses and curriculum whose content and outcomes are closely aligned with NAEYC standards for Associate Degree programs and the Michigan Core Knowledge and Competencies for early childhood professionals.

Graduates of these programs may apply for the national CDA credential through the National Council for Professional Recognition. Requirements vary, but many centers require an associate degree or a child development associate (CDA) credential. Minimum state requirements for program directors are 60 semester credits with at least 18 credits in child development and 2 credits of Early Childhood Program Administration.

The Child Development and Early Education Associate in Arts Degree program has been awarded Early Childhood Associate Degree Accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC).


To view degree and certificate requirements click on the curriculum code below.


Degrees and Certificates

Gainful Employment


Child Development - Certificate of Achievement (PDF)

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This is a 40-credit, three semester program that prepares students for positions as assistant teachers or teachers in early education and care programs. Course work for the certificate can be applied toward the associate degree.


Child Development - Associate in Arts Degree (PDF)
This is a 62-credit program that can be completed in a minimum of four semesters. It qualifies individuals to be teachers or program directors in early education and care programs.


Training for CDA/Certificate of Completion (PDF)

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This is an 16-credit, three semester program that provides the training necessary for qualified individuals to apply for the national Child Development Associate Credential. Coursework can be applied toward the certificate of achievement or the associate degree.

Click here to view Advising Guide

Field Placement Policies

CHDV 284 Practicum Application

CHDV Frequently Asked Questions

Seminars for Early Education and Care Professionals

Child Development and Early Education Seminars supplement the core courses and provide professional development for early education and care personnel. A variety of times and formats, (including weekends) meet the needs of early education and care workers.

Course Offerings

Many of the courses are offered at LCC throughout the academic year and can be taken to upgrade current skills or fulfill degree and certificate requirements. Visit the Course Offerings page for information pertaining to courses available during a particular semester and to view course descriptions.

To schedule an appointment with a program advisor or for specific program information, contact the Child Development and Early Education Program at: (517) 483-1972 or (517) 483-1410.

Nature of Work

Child development workers are care providers, teaching assistants, teachers or directors in early education and child care centers or family child care homes. They provide quality care and education for infants, toddlers, preschoolers or school youngsters in both full-day and part-day programs. They promote the intellectual, physical, social and emotional development of children through positive interactions and developmentally appropriate activities. Program directors are responsible for the entire daily operation of the center.

Young children learn mainly through play. Recognizing the importance of play, child development workers build their program around it. They plan activities and interactions that capitalize on children's play to further language and literacy development (storytelling and pretend play), improve social skills (working together during play with blocks), and introduce scientific and mathematical concepts (balancing and counting blocks, when building a bridge or mixing colors when painting). Thus, early education and care teachers help children learn through active involvement with materials and people. Techniques include small group activities, individual interactions, and learning through creative activities, such as art, dramatic play, and music.

Interaction with peers is an important part of child's early development. Preschool children are given an opportunity to engage in conversation and discussions, and learn to play and work cooperatively with their classmates. Child development workers play a vital role in preparing children to build the skills they will need in school.

Employment Prospects

Employment of child development workers is projected to increase about as fast as the average for all occupations through the year 2010. Many child development workers leave the occupation each year to take other jobs, to meet family responsibilities or for other reasons. Qualified persons who are interested in this work should have little trouble finding and keeping a job.

Skills You Need

Early education and childcare work requires patience, creativity, flexibility, and the ability to nurture. Good communication and positive guidance skills are essential. Teachers and directors must possess leadership, teamwork and organizational skills, and the ability to problem solve.

Expected Earnings

Salaries vary widely according to job status and agency. Current starting salaries may be $7 to $15 per hour for child care workers. Director salaries may be higher. Pay depends on the educational attainment of the worker and the type of establishment.

Michigan Career Pathway for Early Childhood and School Age Professionals

Child Development Program Related Links

Early Childhood Standards for Infants/Toddlers

Early Childhood Standards for Pre-Kindergarten

Early Childhood Investment Corporation

Great Start to Quality

National Associate for the Education of Young Children

Council for Professional Recognition (CDA Credential)

Occupational Outlook Handbook United States

Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics

Office for Young Children

Ingham Great Start Collaborative


State of Michigan Child Care

Michigan Department of Education, Office of Great Start
"Child Care and Early Education Research Connections," is a free, federally-funded Web site offering a comprehensive, up-to-date, and easy-to-use collection of more than 13,000 resources from the many disciplines related to child care and early education. The site allows users to search, refine searches, download full-text resources, analyze data on line, and perform many other tasks important to researchers, policymakers, and education decision-makers.

LCC Scholarships

See the LCC Scholarship Application process for more information.

For information available to Health and Human Services Division Students, please see the LCC Foundation Occupational Program Award Information page.

For further questions regarding LCC Scholarships, please contact the Foundation Office at 517-483-1989.

Other Scholarships Available:

T.E.A.C.H. (Teacher Education and Compensation Helps)
T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood Michigan is a statewide scholarship program designed to help child care center teaching staff, preschool teachers,
family child care providers, group home owners, center directors, and administrators meet their professional development goals while continuing their current employment in regulated early childhood and school age care settings.

Michigan Association for the Education of Young Children
Student Leadership Scholarship
Application available at

Child Development and Early Education Field Experiences

Students enrolled in the CHDV program are required to complete field experiences as part of their coursework. Field work is an essential part of the CHDV program that allow students real-world experiences to practice and apply what they are learning.

Most students will be placed at Early Learning Children’s Community (Early LCC) to complete their field experiences. Early LCC is located on the north end of LCC’s Main Campus.

Students who are employed in licensed or registered child care centers or family child care homes may be approved by the CHDV program to use their worksite to complete field experiences.

More information on placement for CHDV field experiences can be found here Field Placement Policies

CHDV Courses with Field Experiences

CHDV Course Field Experience Hours Required During the Semester
CHDV 111-Child Guidance and Communication 4 hours per week
CHDV 215-Infant Toddler Program 4 hours per week
CHDV 220-Early Childhood Curr/Learn Environ 4 hours per week
CHDV 284-Early Childhood Practicum 12 hours per week


Field Experiences at Early LCC - What Students Can Expect

  • A Field Instructor will assign each student to a classroom and create a semester long weekly schedule for completing the required field experience hours. 
  • During the field experience, students will interact and engage with children in the classroom to practice and demonstrate the skills being taught in the corresponding class.
  • A Field Instructor will be assigned to each student to complete 4 or 5 formal observations using a rubric to evaluate the student’s skills and provide feedback as well as opportunities for reflection. Informal observations may take place periodically based on student needs.
  • Students will be responsible for recording field experience hours on attendance sheets kept at Early LCC.
  • Students should park in designated student parking on campus. The Early LCC parking lot (Lot C) is reserved for staff and families. Vehicles without proper permits will be ticketed.

Field Experiences at Approved Worksite - What Students Can Expect

  • Students will work with a Field Instructor to make sure that worksite meets the program field placement requirements.
  • During the field experience, students will interact and engage with children in the classroom to practice and demonstrate the skills being taught in the corresponding class.
  • A Field Instructor will be assigned to each student to complete 4 or 5 formal observations using a rubric to evaluate the student’s skills and provide feedback as well as opportunities for reflection. Informal observations may take place periodically based on student needs.
  • Students will coordinate days/times for formal observations with their assigned Field Instructor.
  • Students will be responsible for keeping a log of their weekly hours. The supervisor or center director at the worksite will need to verify the hours completed at the end of the semester. The student is responsible for turning in the attendance log to their course instructor.

Useful Documents for Students Completing Field Experiences

Student Dress and Grooming Code

List of Required Documentation for Placement at ELCC

CHDV 284 Practicum Application

How to Complete the ICHAT Michigan Criminal Background Check

For more information, contact a Field Instructor:

Heidi Jordan
Phone: (517) 483-1417




Health and Human Services at Lansing Community College

Child Development
Health and Human Services Bldg, Room 108
Phone: (517) 483-1410
Additional contact information »