Associate of Applied Science: Early Childhood Education 

AAS Degree: 94 credits. Advising Guide

Career Description

The Early Childhood Education AAS degree is equivalent to a Step 9 in the Oregon Registry and qualifies students for a variety of positions within the field of early childhood education including Family Advocate, Parent Educator, Head Teacher, Quality Improvement Specialist, Child Care Center Director, and many others.

Course of Study

The AAS degree provides graduates with the ability to know and apply the depth and breadth of all six professional standards and competency areas recognized nationally across the birth through age 8 continuum and settings, with a dedicated focus on young children in birth through age 5 settings.

The degree runs seven consecutive terms, fall of year one through spring of year two. It is designed for full-time students but can also be completed part-time. All required courses and competencies mastered for the ECE Fundamentals and ECE Curriculum certificates apply to the AAS degree. 

Students must also meet Associate degree comprehensive requirements and Associate of Applied Science degree requirements.

Program Outcomes

Students who successfully complete this degree will be able to:

  1. Use multidimensional knowledge to make evidence-based decisions for creating and implementing curriculum, teaching practices, and learning environments that are safe, healthy, respectful, culturally and linguistically responsive, supportive and challenging for each.
  2. Use knowledge of family structures, positive parental and family development, available community resources, and a variety of communication and engagement skills to establish and sustain respectful, reciprocal relationships that affirm and respect family diversity and engage families in their child’s development and learning as collaborative partners.
  3. Use observation, documentation, and assessment to inform instruction and planning in early learning settings in ways that are ethically grounded and developmentally, culturally, ability, and linguistically appropriate to promote positive outcomes for each child in partnership with families and professional colleagues.
  4. Create an inclusive classroom culture, maintain supportive relationships and interactions with young children and use a broad repertoire of developmentally appropriate, culturally and linguistically relevant, anti-bias and evidence-based teaching skills and strategies that reflect the principles of universal design for learning and meet the needs of each child.
  5. Use knowledge of child development and early learning standards to describe how young children learn across core content areas and use this understanding to select or create curriculum that counters biases and stereotypes, fosters young children’s interest in the content areas, and facilitates individual and group learning.
  6. Use collaborative, reflective, and intentional practice in their work with young children and as members of the early childhood profession.
  7. Use knowledge of history, current issues, the NAEYC Code of Ethical Conduct, the mission of the early childhood education profession, and college-level speaking and writing skills to support and advocate for young children, families and the profession.


  • Placement into MTH 65 Beginning Algebra (4 credits) or MTH 98 Quantitative Math (4 credits)
  • Placement into WR 115 Introduction to Expository Writing (4 credits) or IRW 115 Critical Reading and Writing (5 credits)

ECE Electives

  • ECE 177 Multi-Age Groups (1 credit)
  • ECE 179 Child Portfolios in ECE (1 credit)
  • ECE 185 Field Trips in Early Childhood (1 credit)
  • ECE 187 Cooking Experiences for Young Children (1 credit)
  • ECE 188 Block Play and Woodworking for Young Children (1 credit)
  • ECE 238 Administration of ECE Programs (3 credits)
  • ED 101 Teachers Make a Difference: Exploring the K-5 Classroom (1 credit)
  • CAS 109 Digital Presentations (1 credit)
  • CG 209 Job Finding Skills (1 credit)
  • WR 122 or WR 122Z Composition II (4 credits)
  • Up to 3 credits of Physical Education (PE) courses
  • Up to 3 credits of Set Three Community-based Training (1 credit per 10 hours)
  • Up to 3 credits of foreign language

Course Map

Sequence shown is a recommended plan for full-time enrollment. Scheduling requirements may prevent all courses from being offered every term. Students must meet with an academic advisor to map their specific degree plan.

Courses Credits
ECE 101 Exploring the ECE Field 1 credits
ECE 120 Introduction to Early Childhood Education 3 credits
ECE 126 Early Childhood Development: Birth to Age 8 3 credits
CG 101 Career Guidance and College Success: Personal Responsibility 1 credit
HE 262 Children's Health, Nutrition, & Safety 3 credits
WR 115 Introduction to Expository Writing (or higher) 4 credits
Total 15 credits

Courses Credits
ECE 121 Guidance & Classroom Management: Birth to Age 8 3 credits
ECE 122 Environments & Curriculum: Birth to Age 8 4 credits
ECE 130A Practicum Orientation 2 credits
ECE 234 Inclusion of Children with Special Needs 3 credits
HE 113 First Aid and CPR/AED/Professional Rescuers/Healthcare Providers1 1 credit
ECE Electives 2 credits
Total 15 credits

Students with a valid CPR card may submit a form to request non-traditional credit.

Courses Credits
ECE 124 Anti-Bias Practices 3 credits
ECE 200 Professionalism & Advocacy 3 credits
ECE 235 Art, Music & Movement: Birth to Age 8 3 credits
ECE 236 Language & Literacy in Early Childhood Education 3 credits
HEC 201 Family-Teacher Partnerships and Community Connections 3 credits
Total 15 credits

Courses Credits
ECE 130B Practicum Seminar 1 1 credits
ECE 134 Practicum 1 2 credits
ECE 221 Observation, Documentation & Assessment 3 credits
WR 121 or WR 121Z Composition I 4 credits
Total 10 credits

Courses Credits
ECE 222 Resilience & Wellness for Educators 3 credits
HEC 226 Child Development2 4 credits
MTH 65 Beginning Algebra or MTH 98 Quantitative Math (or higher) 4 credits
General Education Elective: Arts & Letters 4 credits
Total 15 credits

2 Fulfills general education Social Science elective requirement.

Courses Credits
ECE 223 Supporting Dual Language Learners: Birth to Age 8 3 credits
HEC 202 Contemporary Families in the US2 3 credits
ECE Electives 2 credits
General Education Elective: Science/Math/Computer Science 4 credits
Total 12 credits

2 Fulfills general education Social Science elective requirement.

Courses Credits
ECE 130C Practicum Seminar 2 1 credits
ECE 135 Practicum 2 2 credits
ECE 232 S.T.E.A.M: Birth to Age 8 3 credits
ECE 237 Trauma-Informed Care and Education: Birth to Age 8 3 credits
ED 219 Civil Rights & Multicultural Issues in Educational Settings2 3 credits
Total 12 credits

2 Fulfills general education Social Science elective requirement.

Credit Summary  
Requirements Credits
Early Childhood Education (ECE) 52
ECE Electives 4
Education (ED) 3
Consumer & Family Studies (HEC) 10
College Guidance & Success 1
Health Education (HE) 4
Mathematics (MTH) 4
Writing (WR) 8
General Education Electives 8