Do you want to influence and shape the lives of young children and their families? If so, our Early Childhood Education (ECED) program is a great place to start.
About the Program
Our Early Childhood Education (ECED) is designed to allow you to meet the requirements for various levels of entry into the early childhood field and, if you choose, articulate with UH Mānoa’s and UH West O‘ahu’s bachelor’s degree programs in Education.
Our ECED program consists of two pathways: Infant–Toddler option or Preschool option. Both options combine class assignments with field experience (practicum), and take place on-campus and in the community. Upon completion of either option, you’ll have met the requirements for various levels of entry into the early childhood field!
You’ll have an opportunity to earn various certificates as you progress through the program, leading to an associate’s degree. There are also childcare facilities on-campus at Honolulu Community College, Kapiolani Community College, and Leeward Community College, where you can gain practical, real-life experience working with young children during your practicum.
If you have a National Child Development Association (CDA) credential that is still valid, you may be eligible to receive college credit. For more information, contact the ECED program counselor.
Criminal history record checks are a workplace requirement in early education and care settings. The criminal history record check must be completed satisfactorily within two weeks of enrollment into ECED 191, Field Based Practicum in Early Childhood. The cost of the record check, currently $24, is the responsibility of the student.
Program Learning Outcomes
Program Learning Outcomes are program goals that describe what you will gain from this learning experience. They are located in the program descriptions in the College Catalog.
Technical Standards describe some of the essential mental, physical, and behavioral skills that are necessary for successful participation in and completion of courses in this curriculum.
Apply concepts from child development research and best practices in the field to work effectively with children and their families.
- Do simple research using library and Internet resources.
- Solve interpersonal problems with and between children.
- Make decisions about program environment and curriculum.
- Resolve issues involving childcare staff and families.
Assess children’s behavior and environment for care and safety.
- Observe children at a distance and close at hand.
- Perceive children’s verbal and nonverbal cues and respond appropriately.
- Scan environment and facilities for safety purposes.
Possess sufficient physical strength, flexibility, and dexterity to perform education and care routines for children.
- Manipulate materials and equipment such as scissors, puzzles, computers, and CD players.
- Provide safe and nurturing contact to promote healthy development.
- Safely lift and transport children during care routines such as diapering or feeding.
- Interact with children at varying heights.
- Evacuate children in cases of emergency.
Communicate effectively to gather and convey information and guidance.
- Share information with children, family members, and colleagues through notes, meetings, and phone calls, etc.
- Understand and respond to information received from children, family members, and colleagues through notes, newsletters, portfolios, written reports, meetings, and phone calls, etc.
- Communicate clearly with groups of children during indoor and outdoor activities.
- Write clearly with and for children.
Behave appropriately and safely in a childcare environment.
- Demonstrate maturity and sensitivity in dealing with children and adults.
- Exercise good judgement to respond promptly and responsibly to children’s needs.
- Work cooperatively with partners and groups.
- Use appropriate interpersonal skills.
- Follow safety procedures.
Function safely in a childcare lab and playground.
Work for prolonged periods amidst: Dirt, dust, and odors, Residue from cleaning products
In addition to the Tuition, other costs include:
- Textbooks and supplies: Approximately $500 for the program
- Apply to Honolulu Community College.
- Prerequisites: Placement in ENG 100
- To obtain an AS-IT or AS-PS, students must earn a “C” or higher in all courses with an ECED alpha, and demonstrate proficiency.
- at the ENG 100 and Math 100 levels or higher
- To obtain a CO-IECE, CO-ECEPI, CO-ITC, or CA, students must earn a “C” or higher in all courses with an ECED alpha.
Degrees & Certificates Offered
Associate in Science Degree Program (AS)
The Associate in Science (AS) degree program prepares students for immediate employment as teachers in private early childhood programs. There are two options for the AS degree program. The Early Childhood Education – Preschool Option prepares students for immediate employment as teachers in private early childhood programs for children ages 2-6 year old. The Early Childhood Education – Infant/Toddler Option prepares students for immediate employment as infant/toddler caregivers in private early childhood programs for children from birth to 3 years old. This is the only Infant/Toddler specialization degree offered in the State of Hawai‘i. The course of study leading to the AS degree is developmentally based and emphasizes observation and opportunities to participate in programs with children through class assignments and field experiences, both on campus and in the community. The program provides candidates with varied opportunities to develop their skills for working with children and families and with a general understanding of the field of early education and care. Students who successfully complete this degree may transfer to the Early Childhood Concentration in the Social Sciences Program at the University of Hawai‘i-West O’ahu. The AS degree in Early Childhood Education meets all requirements of that program for lower division course work.
To complete the degree, students must demonstrate proficiency at the English 100 and Math 100 levels. To successfully complete the program, students must earn a grade of “C” or higher in all courses with an ECED alpha.
Certificate of Competence Initial Early Childhood Education (CO-IECE)
The Certificate of Competence for Initial Early Childhood Education is obtained by completing three courses, ECED 105, ECED 110, and ECED 131, which meet the formal training requirement of the national Child Development Associate (CDA) credential. Students must earn a grade of “C” or higher in all courses with an ECED alpha.
Certificate of Competence for an Early Childhood Education Practitioner I (CO-ECEPI)
The Certificate of Competence for an Early Childhood Education Practitioner I requires a 16-credit sequence designed to give the candidate the most basic skills needed to work with children from infancy through eight years of age. This certificate also meets the ECE/CD coursework requirements of the Department of Human Services (DHS) for teachers and lead caregivers who hold an Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree in a field other than early childhood. Students must earn a grade of “C” or higher in all courses with an ECED alpha.
Certificate of Competence for an Infant-Toddler Caregiver (CO-ITC)
The Certificate of Competence for an Infant-Toddler Caregiver requires a 21-credit sequence designed to meet the Department of Human Services (DHS) requirements for both coursework and work experience to become an Infant-Toddler Caregiver. Students must earn a grade of “C” or higher in all courses with an ECED alpha.
Certificate of Achievement in Early Childhood Education-Preschool (CA)
The Certificate of Achievement-Preschool is obtained by completing 32 credits of core courses in Early Childhood Education. Students must earn a “C” or higher in all courses with an ECED alpha.
Workplace Requirements in Early Childhood Education and Care Setting
Current TB clearance and medical clearance (within the last 12 months), and a criminal history record check are a workplace requirement in early education and care settings and must be complete for practicum placements. The cost of the criminal history record check; currently $13.25, is the responsibility of the student.
Prior Learning Credit
The Early Childhood Education (ECE) Program recognizes that learning takes place in a variety of environments, not just in a college classroom. Work experience, professional development, volunteer training, and community involvement in the ECE field, for example, may be considered college-equivalent learning. The ECE program has created several options for Prior Learning Credit for students to demonstrate relevant knowledge and skills and request for credit in lieu of completing coursework.
Students with a current Child Development Associate (CDA), awarded by the Council for Professional Recognition, may apply for credits for ECED 105, ECED 110, ECED 151F, and ECED 151S by submitting an official CDA certificate to the ECED academic counselor.
Credit by Examination is available for ECED 105, ECED 110, and ECED 131. Eligible students who learned the course content through previous training or experience, but did not receive college credit for the course may apply for credit by examination by contacting the ECE Program Coordinator.
A Portfolio-Based Assessment (PBA) is a type of Prior Learning Credit where students prepare a portfolio to provide evidence of learning aligned with course learning outcomes. Students will also present their portfolio. The documentation and presentation is reviewed by a committee of ECE experts who determine if the student’s documentation and evidence meets the course learning outcomes for the requested course. If the determination is positive, the student receives credits applicable to the requested course. PBA’s are available for ECED 115 and ECED 245.
- Honolulu CC-Hawai‘i at Mānoa UHM: Articulation Agreement – April 2019 (PDF)
- Multi-Campus (Between HonCC, Hawaii CC, Kauai CC, UH Maui College, UH West Oahu): Articulation Agreement – January 2016 (PDF)
Many of our Early Childhood Education graduates have gone on to careers in the occupations listed below:
Visit the Hawaii Career Explorer website for more information.
Degrees & Certificates Offered
- Associate in Science (AS)
- Certificate of Achievement (CA)
- Certificate of Competence (CO)
Financial Aid and Scholarships
First, complete your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to determine if you are eligible for financial assistance which may help to cover your tuition and any additional costs. For more information about Financial Aid and FAFSA, visit Financial Aid Overview.
Next, see if you may qualify for Scholarships, which are awarded on the basis of merit, academic performance, and/or financial need. View the Scholarships page for available scholarships.
HonCC offers more than 23 academic programs offering 22 associate degrees and 31 certificates to prepare you for a lifetime of meaningful work.