Early Childhood Education

Program Competencies for ECC and ECT

Upon graduation from these programs, students shall have demonstrated the ability to:

  1. Create an environment that is healthy, respectful, supportive, and challenging for each child.
  2. Design, implement, and evaluate experiences that promote positive development and learning for every young child.
  3. Demonstrate an understanding of the importance of developmental domains and content in early childhood curriculum.
  4. Demonstrate experience in using developmentally effective approaches based on children’s ages, characteristics, and culture.
  5. Explain and analyze the importance of creating respectful, reciprocal relationships that support and involve families in their children’s development and learning.
  6. Demonstrate skill and knowledge in child observation, documentation, and effective assessment strategies that positively influence the development of children.
  7. Conduct themselves as members of the early childhood profession, upholding ethical guidelines and professional standards related to early childhood practice.
  8. Show ability to be reflective learners who integrate knowledge from a variety of sources.
  9. Engage in informed advocacy for children and the early childhood profession.

Technical Standards1 for ECC and ECT

1

For general information about technical standards and accommodation, see Technical Standards.

Students entering these programs must be able to demonstrate the ability to:

  • Comprehend textbook material at the 11th grade level.
  • Communicate and assimilate information either in spoken, printed, signed, or computer voice format.
  • Gather, analyze, and draw conclusions from data.
  • Lift a child up to 50 pounds to safety or for assistance.
  • Stand for extended periods of time up to one hour, stoop, bend and get up and down from a floor sitting position.
  • Use small muscle dexterity necessary to do such tasks as preparing meals and diapering.
  • Work as part of a team, as in team teaching or parent meetings.
  • Exhibit social skills appropriate to professional interactions and in accordance with early childhood standards.
  • Communicate clearly with children and respond immediately and appropriately.
  • Identify at-risk behavior that might endanger the safety of a child, peers and/or staff during instructional, social or recreational activities.
  • Identify situations when a child is in distress or exhibiting behaviors that endanger their safety by reacting in an appropriate and timely manner.
  • Remain calm, rational, decisive, and in control at all times, especially during emergency and alarm situations.
  • Function without causing harm to self or others if under the influence of prescription or over-the-counter medications.

Early Childhood Education—Career Degree (ECC)

In addition to attending to children’s basic needs, early childhood education professionals organize activities that stimulate children’s physical, emotional, intellectual, and social growth. They help children explore interests, develop independence, foster creativity, build self-esteem, and learn how to behave with others. MWCC’s program will prepare you to begin a career working with children ages 0-5. Benefits of MWCC’s program include a great job placement rate (90 percent of students find jobs), the option of both day and evening classes, day classes scheduled conveniently for parents of school-age children, opportunities to gain real world experience, and many excellent, local practicum sites.

Year 1
FallCredits
ECE 101Introduction To Early Childhood Education 3
ENG 101English Composition I 3
PSY 105Introduction To Psychology 3
CIS 127Computer Technologies 3
BIO 103Human Health And Disease 3
Spring
ENG 102English Composition II 3
PSY 108Child Development 3
SPC 113Speech (formerly THE113) 3
SOC 206Marriage And The Family 3
MAT 140Elements Of Mathematics I 3
Year 2
Fall
ECE 134Guiding Children's Behavior 3
ECE 114Early Childhood Education Practicum I 4
PSY 244Children With Special Needs 3
ECE 102Early Childhood Curriculum And Program Planning 3
ECE 104, 105, 132, or 250Infant And Toddler Development And Curriculum (or Child Care Administration or Applying Theories of Curriculum or Observation and Assessment in Early Childhood) 3
Spring
ECE 124Early Childhood Education Practicum II 4
ENG 235Children's Literature 3
ECE 103Home, School, And Community Relations 3
PER 126 or 130Fitness And Wellness 12-3
ECE 260Leadership In Education Seminar 3
 Total Credits: 61-62
 
1

PER 130 Health, Fitness, And Wellness is recommended for transfer

See the early childhood education general information for program competencies and technical standards.

Campus/format

Click here for information on the campus/format.

State certification

After completing the degree, students can apply for Department of Early Education and Care (EEC) Lead Teacher certification. Lead Teachers must be age 21 or over (those under 21 can receive Teacher certification). EEC certification indicates that students are qualified to work in childcare facilities.

Helpful hints

To meet Department of Early Education and Care (EEC) requirements, students should attain First Aid certification. Childcare facilities are required to have one CPR certified professional always present, therefore, students who attain certification will be even more marketable.

Transfer options

For transfer options, please click here. It is recommended that you also consult with your academic advisor.

Special requirements

Technical standards must be met with or without accommodations.

Career options

For career options, please click here.

Earning potential

$16,320 to $35,380.

Early Childhood Education—Transfer Degree (ECT)

This program satisfies the requirements of the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education -Early Childhood Education Transfer Compact for transfer to a state college or university bachelor degree program (nursery school to grade 2). Preschool, kindergarten, and elementary school teachers play a vital role in the development of children, introducing them to numbers, language, science, and social studies. They facilitate student learning through interactive class discussions, educational activities, "hands-on" learning, and one-on-one assistance. The need for qualified teachers continues to grow because of retirements, increasing student numbers, and demands for smaller class sizes. Benefits of MWCC’s program include: day, evening, and distance learning options; day classes scheduled conveniently for parents of school-age children; opportunities to gain real world experience; and a strong liberal arts & sciences curriculum for more effective transfer.

Year 1
FallCredits
ECE 101Introduction To Early Childhood Education 3
ENG 101English Composition I 3
PSY 105Introduction To Psychology 3
BIO 109, EAS 115, or EAS 125Biology I (or Biogeology:History of Life or Physical Geology of the Earth) 4
Spring
ENG 102English Composition II 3
PSY 108Child Development 3
ECE 103Home, School, And Community Relations 3
MAT 140Elements Of Mathematics I 3
Year 2
Fall
PSY 244Children With Special Needs 3
ECE 102Early Childhood Curriculum And Program Planning 3
SPC 113Speech (formerly THE113) 3
ECE 114Early Childhood Education Practicum I 4
MAT 141Elements Of Mathematics II (or higher) 3
ART 109, 110, or MUS 103Art History I (or Art History II or Music Skills and Theory I) 3
Spring
PHY 101 or 105Introduction To Physical Science (or College Physics I) 4
ENG 235Children's Literature 3
HIS 201History of United States I 3
PER 130Health, Fitness, And Wellness 3
ECE 124Early Childhood Education Practicum II 4
 Total Credits: 61

See the early childhood education general information for program competencies and technical standards.

Campus/format

Click here for information on the campus/format.

Transfer options

For transfer options, please click here. It is recommended that you also consult with your academic advisor.

Special requirements

Satisfactory completion of the Communication and Literacy (CLST) section of the Mass Tests of Educator Licensure (MTEL) is required for transfer into a four-year educational program prior to entrance to junior-level courses. The exam is not a prerequisite to enter MWCC's program. Technical standards must be met with or without accommodations.

Career options

For career options, please click here.

Earning potential

$43,580 to $48,690.

Courses

ECE 101. Introduction To Early Childhood Education. 3 Credits.

This course is an introduction to the field of early childhood. It studies the foundations, history, philosophy, ethics, the role of the teacher, and the changing needs of children in a variety of settings. This course will address licensing regulations, state and national standards and how they impact on the social, emotional, and intellectual growth of the child. A 16-hour field experience is required for all ECT (transfer) students only, in order to meet the new Massachusetts Early Childhood Transfer Compact. Students participating in field experiences must undergo a Criminal Offender Record Information (CORI) check. Prerequisites: ENG 098, FYE 101, RDG 098, or placement.

ECE 102. Early Childhood Curriculum And Program Planning. 3 Credits.

This course surveys the theory and methods needed in developing, planning and maintaining an interesting, comprehensive curriculum/program for preschool children. Particular attention is given to developmental theory and the integration of State standards and licensing guidelines into the curriculum. Students gain skills in working with, understanding, and meeting the needs of all young children. Various curriculum areas involving language, science, math, social studies, music, art, literacy, and drama are emphasized, along with understanding the importance of play, and of planning the development of children’s' social, emotional, physical, and cognitive development. Students also develop plans for cultural diversity and explore strategies for including families in the program. Prerequisite: PSY 108 (or corequisite) or permission of division dean. A passing grade is 'C' or better.

ECE 103. Home, School, And Community Relations. 3 Credits.

This course will examine the role of teacher and parent in the development, care, and education of young children. Special emphasis will be placed on improving communication skills in order to create more effective positive relationships among parents, teachers, and other professionals. Students will explore attitudes and communication styles that inhibit or enhance communication. Topics include understanding parents' roles, trends influencing families, characteristics of effective and ineffective communication, encouraging both direct and indirect parent involvement in the classroom and the community, cultural diversity, and working with parents in special situations, i.e., special needs, divorce, single parenting, and abusive parents. An advocacy component will be included to help students develop a vehicle for speaking out for children, families, and early childhood education. Prerequisites: ENG 098, FYE 101, RDG 098, or placement.

ECE 104. Infant And Toddler Development And Curriculum. 3 Credits.

This course is designed to give students information on physical, cognitive, language, and social-emotional development from birth to three years, as it relates to early childhood education. Students will become familiar with developmentally appropriate practices in infant and toddler care settings with regards to such areas as environment, care giving, and curriculum. Specific topics, such as children with special needs, parent-child interactions, and parent-teacher communications, will also be included. Prerequisite: PSY 108. Fall.

ECE 105. Child Care Administration. 3 Credits.

This course examines the organization, planning, and the administering of various types of early childhood programs. Emphasis will be placed on the responsibility of the director to provide a quality program through thoughtful planning, sound fiscal management skills, and interpersonal relationships, while meeting State standards and guidelines and State licensing regulations. Topics included in the course will be funding, budgeting, evaluating, hiring, collecting fees, writing reports, and communication skills. Prerequisite: Lead Teacher Certified or permission of division dean.

ECE 114. Early Childhood Education Practicum I. 4 Credits.

This course provides students with practical experience (150 hours each) working with children in an early childhood setting under faculty supervision. Competencies emphasized include working as a team member, developing, implementing and evaluating appropriate activities for young children; demonstrating positive guidance and communication strategies, keeping children safe and healthy; and creating and maintaining a developmentally appropriate inclusive learning environment. Students will develop confidence and sense of professionalism while reflecting on their teaching skills. Passing grade of C or better. Prerequisites: ECE 102 (or co-requisite), PSY 108 or permission of division dean. Students must be matriculated in the ECC or ECT degree programs. Students participating in a practicum must undergo a Criminal Offender Record Information (CORI) check.

ECE 124. Early Childhood Education Practicum II. 4 Credits.

This course provides students with practical experience (150 hours each) working with children in an early childhood setting under faculty supervision. Competencies emphasized include working as a team member, developing, implementing and evaluating appropriate activities for young children; demonstrating positive guidance and communication strategies, keeping children safe and healthy; and creating and maintaining a developmentally appropriate inclusive learning environment. Students will develop confidence and a sense of professionalism while reflecting on their teaching skills. Passing grade is C or better. Prerequisites: ECE 114; permission of division dean. Students must be matriculated in the ECC or ECT degree programs. Students participating in a practicum must undergo a Criminal Offender Record Information (CORI) check.

ECE 132. Applying Theories Of Curriculum. 3 Credits.

This course will explore and analyze current trends, theories, and standards of curriculum in early childhood education. Emphasis will be placed on the Massachusetts Early Childhood Program Standards and Preschool Learning Guidelines and the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) program standards. Students will gain a more in-depth understanding of inquiry-based teaching that reviews the value of play and the importance of cultural diversity. Prerequisites: ECE 102, PSY 108.

ECE 134. Guiding Children's Behavior. 3 Credits.

This course helps students examine and interpret young children's behavior. Students will examine a variety of positive approaches to discipline and study how materials, environment, scheduling, appropriate speech and action all contribute to children's behavior. Students will learn effective techniques to guide children toward cooperation and positive productive interactions with others, and develop realistic expectations of young children according to each child's developmental level. Attention is given to special accommodations designed to meet the needs of all children. Prerequisite: PSY 108 or division dean. Spring.

ECE 250. Observation and Assessment in Early Childhood. 3 Credits.

This course examines observation and assessment of children from birth through eight years. Formal and informal tools will be discussed with an emphasis on the connection between effective observation and documentation in collecting information regarding children's development and learning. Focus will be on the appropriate use of integrating assessments and teaching in a variety of early childhood settings. The Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care (EEC) regulations and National Standards will be reviewed. Prerequisite: PSY 108.

ECE 260. Leadership In Education Seminar. 3 Credits.

In this capstone course, students analyze and articulate themes in educational leadership demonstrating their mastery of the content of completed required early childhood courses within their degree. The focus will be for students to examine their own roles in the leadership process in their work with the care and education of young children and their families. Students will study professional ethics using the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) Code of Ethical Conduct. Prerequisites: ECE 101, ECE 102, ECE 103, ENG 102, PSY 108, PSY 244. Corequisite: ECE 114, ECE 124. Spring.