Programs And Courses

Social Science
Social Science

Early Childhood Care and Education - Certificate (5170)

If you enjoy working with young children and have a passion for teaching, a certificate in early childhood care and education may be your option.

Jump to career information below!

After graduating from our certificate program, you will be prepared to enter the childcare workforce on level IV of the Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL) career framework (pdf). This framework encourages you to obtain credentials and degrees, as well as plan your educational pathway.

With a certificate, you are able to obtain employment in childcare or school-age care programs, in early head start or head start programs, public school districts or private academic schools as a family childcare provider or teacher aide.

With additional hours of experience with children, you can advance to an assistant teacher or assistant group supervisor.


Explore YOUR career with Career Coach! Career Coach is a helpful tool that will assist you in developing a path from your education to the job market. With Career Coach, you can find:

  • Average hourly wages
  • Information about possible careers of interest through a variety of search options
  • Discover what occupations are in demand within the region you select
  • Number of individuals currently employed within that occupation
  • Anticipated number of job openings available – just to name a few!

Begin exploring your options today!


Our certificate prepares you to enter the workforce at the career lattice Level IV as determined by the Office of Child Development & Early Learning (OCDEL). This OCDEL framework encourages you to obtain credentials and degrees, as well as plan your educational pathway.  Our curriculum provides you with the opportunity to spend approximately 46-hours of field experience working in a variety of childcare settings. In addition, if you are interested in pursuing an Infant and Toddler credential, this certificate allows you to select specific courses within the "Open Electives" that will aid you in reaching this goal.

Because our curriculum involves both field experiences and classroom observations through placement in one of many childcare centers. You must obtain the following clearance requirements, at your own expense, prior to enrolling into EDUC 111:

  • FBI clearance
  • ACT 151: PA Child Abuse History Clearance
  • ACT 34: Request for Criminal Record Check - PA State Police
  • Tuberculosis Skin Test (TB test)

Please note that these clearances are to be updated each year. For more information on required clearances, please download the clearances required for education students (pdf) or contact our clearance and placement coordinator Jen Myers.

In conjunction with the National Association for the Education of Young Children's (NAEYC) standards, our curriculum will prepare you to:

  • Apply the theories of child development in order to promote healthy and challenging learning environments
  • Observe and assess children’s development and document their learning in order to assist in the delivery of appropriate curriculum and promote positive outcomes for each child
  • Use content knowledge to recognize meaningful curriculum
  • Use effective strategies to implement developmentally-appropriate teaching and learning 
  • Assist the lead teacher in supporting and involving families and communities in their child's development and learning
  • Uphold national standards for professionalism and ethics as well as participate in continuous professional growth





  • View summaries of every course at HACC by browsing our class schedules database.
  • Review our program guide (pdf) to view a list of required courses, recommended course sequencing and program competencies.

Our certificate program is designed to lead you directly into the workforce. However, if you wish to continue your education with us and pursue an associate degree, all of your coursework in this program counts toward the completion of our associate degree in early care and education.

Conveniently YOURS, this certificate may be completed at all of HACC’s campuses through various modalities (e.g., on-campus/in-person instruction, hybrid, synchronous remote instruction and/or asynchronous instruction).

Yes! We offer many scholarships through the HACC Foundation. Each scholarship has specific eligibility requirements. To learn how to apply, please visit

You can apply anytime for our spring, summer and fall classes by applying online. When you submit your application, make sure to include the unique program code 5170. This code ensures you are applying for the correct program. 



Future students, we are excited to connect with you and answer your questions. Please choose the option that works best for you to meet with us.

Current HACC students, please contact our Advising Department with any questions.