Course Description

This course provides the learner with an overview of the Early Childhood Education (ECE) profession. The course includes information on how an ECE teacher creates a healthy, safe, and supportive learning environment for children as well as building relationships with families.  Early Childhood concepts such as Developmentally Appropriate Practices, the importance of Play as a teaching strategy, and Intentional Teaching are woven throughout the course.  It includes a review of state and national ECE standards and exposes the learner to the ethical and legal standards of working with young children. 

Learner Outcomes

Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Understand the Foundations of Early Childhood Education, including identifying key historical people and theories that influence current ECE practices and be able to discuss current issues and trends.
  • Understand and follow the NAEYC Professional Code of Conduct.
  • Understand the personal and professional attributes of an effective ECE teacher.
  • Understand the standards and professional organizations that govern the ECE profession.
  • Understand the dimensions of Developmentally Appropriate Practice including factors teachers must take into consideration when making decisions, creating a caring community of learners, and adapting for individual differences in development as well as cultural and language differences.
  • Demonstrate the concepts of Intentional Teaching including building effective partnerships, guiding young children, enhancing learning and development, and assessing their learning and development
  • Evaluate the uses and pitfalls of assessing young children,
  • Evaluate the pros and cons of using digital media for communicating with parents and instructing young children.


Participants will need regular access to a personal computer that is compatible with Canvas and Microsoft Word as well as a personal Internet connection.
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Section Title
The Foundations of Early Childhood Education
Start Now, you have 365 days to complete this course once enrolled.
Delivery Options
Course Fee(s)
SPU Tuition credit (3 units) $345.00
Available for Credit
3 Quarter Credits
Reading List / Textbook

Effective Practices in Early Childhood Education: Building a Foundation.  Sue Bredekamp; Pearson/Always Learning; Third Edition; 2017. Print: ISBN 978-0-13-395670-2;  eText: ISBN: 978-0-13-402677-0

Professionalism in Early Childhood Education: Doing Our Best For Children.  By Stephanie Feeney. Pearson. 2012  ISBN-13: 978-0-13-706470-0.

Section Notes

Course is self-paced. Completion time: up to one year from date of enrollment.

Refund Policy: Withdrawals submitted online through SPU within 7 days of enrollment will receive a 95% refund. Withdrawals received after that point will not receive a refund and no withdrawals will be accepted after the completion deadline for the course. Instructions on how to withdraw are located on our website under Students/Withdrawal and Refund Policies.


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