Early Childhood Education


Core Courses

  • Advanced Curriculum Planning
  • Career Strategies for Early Childhood
  • Child Growth and Development
  • Child Health, Safety, and Nutrition
  • Current Topics and Issues in Child Care
  • Early Childhood Curriculum I
  • Early Childhood Curriculum II
  • Early Childhood Guidance
  • Early Childhood Professional Portfolio
  • Early Childhood Program Administration
  • Field Experience I *
  • Field Experience II *
  • Field Experience Seminar I
  • Field Experience Seminar II
  • Home, School, and Community Relations
  • Infant/Toddler Care and Education
  • Introduction to Early Childhood Education
  • School Age Care

* You must pass the Department of Human Services criminal history record check and a national FBI fingerprint check before participating in lab and field experience courses. If you do not pass, you will not be able to complete the coursework and will not graduate from the Early Childhood Education program.

Program Details

Award: Associate of Applied Science (AAS)
Credits: 61
Program Start: Fall, Spring

View Suggested Sequence of Study & Course Cost



Graduates of the two-year program work as lead, assistant, or associate teachers in child care centers, private preschools, child development homes, and private and public schools. With additional experience and credentials, graduates may become a paraeducator in a public school or the director of a child care center.

Diploma graduates work as child care workers, teacher assistants, and early childhood professionals in child care centers, private preschools, child development homes, and private and public schools. Many graduates provide in-home child care and nanny services.

The Early Childhood certificate prepares the student for an entry-level position in a child care program. The certificate meets the course work requirements for the formal education component of the Child Development Associate (CDA) credential.

Example Careers and Average Wages

Entry Average Experienced
Childcare Workers $17,500 $21,200 $23,000
Preschool Teachers in Head Start and Private Preschools $20,500 $28,500 $32,600
Teaching Assistants $19,500 $25,400 $28,400

Source: 2020 Iowa Wage Report, Iowa Workforce Development


The following is a partial list of employers who have hired graduates from this program:

Business Location
Community United Child Care Centers Waterloo and Cedar Falls, IA
Dike New Hartford Elementary School Dike, IA
Discoveries Learning Center Denver, IA
Exceptional Persons, Inc. Waterloo, IA
Hawkeye Child Development Center Waterloo, IA
Purple Bloom School Coralville, IA
The Goddard School Waukee, IA
Tri-County Child & Family Development Council, Inc. Waterloo, IA
Trinity Preschool and Child Care Waterloo, IA
Vinton Shellsburg Community Schools Vinton, IA
Waterloo Community School District Waterloo, IA
Waverly Child Care and Preschool Waverly, IA

Admissions Requirements

Step #1: Apply at Hawkeye

  1. Apply for admission at Hawkeye.

  2. Send official transcripts to Admissions.

Step #2: Demonstrate College Readiness

In order to be eligible for the Early Childhood Education program, all students must meet minimum score requirements and/or successfully complete the required college success courses in English, reading, and math with a C- grade or higher at Hawkeye Community College or comparable courses at another accredited college. For appropriate college success course placement, work with your program advisor.

Minimum score requirements
Math 40 Arithmetic 24 Pre-Algebra 14 240 Arithmetic
241 Quantitative Reasoning, Algebra, and Statistics
Reading 58 69 16 239 2.50
Writing 64 Sentence Skills 41 16 240 2.50

Step #3: Program Acceptance

Applicants successfully demonstrating college readiness criteria are eligible for acceptance.

Applicants falling short of successful demonstration of college readiness criteria will be accepted to a Pre-Program. As a pre-program student, you will begin with general education and prerequisite classes. An advisor will help you create an academic plan to meet your program admission requirements. Once you have completed your pre-program coursework contact Admissions.

Equal Opportunity Statement

Contact Us

Admissions Email Admissions 319-296-4000 Hawkeye Center 114
Academic/College Success Advisor Amber Dullard Email Amber Dullard
Schedule an appointment with Amber Dullard
319-296-2329 ext.1223 Student Services
Hawkeye Center 208
Program Advisor Jane Even Email Jane Even 319-296-2329 ext.1431 Black Hawk Hall 236
Program Advisor Emily Knutson Email Emily Knutson 319-296-2329 ext.1558 Black Hawk Hall 236
Administrative Assistant Kate Childers Email Kate Childers 319-296-4007 Black Hawk Hall 258
Dean Catharine Freeman Email Catharine Freeman 319-296-4041 Black Hawk Hall 258

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