Welcome to the Northern Virginia Community College Website

Accessibility Navigation:


Early Childhood Development -- What can I do with this major?

While the normal response is work in a preschool, home day care or before and after school program this major can also be the foundation for other occupations you have not yet considered. Check out this list prepared by the University of Tennessee for other ideas and suggestions. This list is provided solely to challenge you to think where you might go from here. It is responding to students in a B.A. program.

I want to get a CDA from NOVA. What classes do I take to get my CDA?

NOVA does not award a CDA. A CDA is awarded by a private national non-profit organization based out of Washington, D.C. There are several requirements to get a CDA, one of which is you having to show employment in the early childhood profession for at least 480 hours before you can apply.

NOVA assists you with your CDA by helping you meet the 120 hours of training and education required before you can apply. These hours can be met with 3-credit college courses.

You can select from several early childhood courses offered at NOVA but we recommend you select from:

    • CHD 120-Introduction to Early Childhood Education
    • CHD 205-Guiding the Behavior of Young Children (for those seeking a preschool endorsement)
    • CHD 166-Infants and Toddlers (for those seeking a home day care or infant/toddler center endorsement)
    • EDU 235- Health, Safety & Nutrition for Young Children
    • CHD 145-Art, Music & Movement

For information on what else is required for a CDA visit the Council for Professional Recognition.

I heard I can get my classes paid for by the State? Is that true?

YES! The Virginia Child Care Provider Scholarship Program is a tuition assistance program offering current and future child care providers a foundation in the care and development of children. The program, funded through Virginia's share of the federal Child Care and Development Fund, provides assistance for providers to attend courses at Virginia institutions of higher learning.

Courses required for a certificate or degree in the early childhood education field may be approved for payment through the VCCPSP, as funding allows. The maximum benefits allowable for the Scholarship Program include either eight classes or a maximum lifetime award of $2,689.00, whichever comes first. The scholarship award pays the cost of tuition and the technology fee for up to two courses per semester. Any additional fees for travel or expenses, such as books and activity fees are the responsibility of the student. 

Does the Early Childhood Development A.A.S. Degree transfer?

While most A.A.S. degrees do not transfer, NOVA has an articulation agreement with George Mason University which accepts the ECD-AAS Degree into their Bachelors of Individualized Study (BIS) Program which leads to a degree in Early Childhood.

How do I get admitted to the Early Childhood Program?

There is no formal admission process to begin taking early childhood courses. You need to be program placed to receive a certificate or degree, but that can be done after you begin classes. First, you need to be admitted to NOVA. This process is free and can be done online. Click on the box at the top of the NOVA home page that says APPLY NOW to get started.