Early Childhood Education FAQ | GCTC

Program Contact

Dr. Beth VanWassenhove

Early Childhood Education

Assistant Professor and Program Coordinator

(859) 442-1185


Early Childhood Education FAQ

Child Development Associate

The Child Development Associate (CDA) is a competency-based national credential awarded to individuals who work with children ages five (5) and under.

IEC 101 Orientation to Early Childhood Education

IEC 102 Foundations of Early Childhood Education

One of the following IEC courses:

  • IEC 130 Early Childhood Development
  • IEC 180 Approaches to Early Childhood Education Curriculum
  • IEC 200 Guidance of Young Children

No. The coursework is one component of achieving your CDA. The Council for Special Recognition requires that you complete a total of 120 training hours in Early Childhood Education.

Each 3-credit college course is worth 40 training hours. In these classes you will complete the following:

  • 120 hours of training in Early Childhood Education
  • Your Professional Portfolio
  • A Resource File
  • Field Advisor assessment (may be completed while you are taking classes or after you have completed your classes).
  • Preparation for the oral & written exam.
  • Parent Questionnaires
  • 480 hours of working with young children in an early childhood setting

Council for Special Recognition
2460 16th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20009-3575
(800) 424-4310

  • To complete the application, visit CDA online, click on Login under the heading your CDA.
  • You will submit your completed CDA application, verification that you have completed all 120 training hours (copy of college transcript), and a check for $425 to the Council for Professional Recognition in Washington, DC.
  • To apply for a mini-grant to cover the cost of $425, please contact one of the counselors below.

Locate your Professional Development Coach by visiting the Child Care Aware website and searching by your county of residence.

The CDA Credential is valid for 3 years from the date of the award, and can be renewed for 5-year periods.

Renewal of the CDA Credential includes the following:

  • First Aid Certificate
  • 4.5 Continuing Education Units, or a 3-credit college course
  • A minimum of 80 hours work experience with young children (within the year)
  • Letter of recommendation from an Early Childhood Education Professional
  • Membership in a national or local early childhood professional organization (within the year)

KY Early Childhood Director Credential

  • IEC 101 - Orientation to Early Childhood Education
  • IEC 102 - Foundations of Early Childhood Education
  • IEC 240 - Administration in Early Childhood Education
  • IEC 230 - Business Administration of Early Childhood Education Programs, OR BAS 200 - Small Business Management
  • A final grade of C or better is required in all classes.

No. If you have your CDA, you are exempt from taking IEC 101 and IEC 102. However, you must submit a copy of your CDA certificate to the IECE program coordinator for verification.

Yes. IEC 101, IEC 102, and IEC 240 are three courses that fulfill the coursework requirement for the CDA. You will need to complete the fourth class, IEC 230 Business Administration of Early Childhood Education; or BAS 200 Small Business Management.

Following completion of all required classes, submit a copy of your official transcript to the IECE Program Coordinator. The IECE Program Coordinator will then complete and send a formal statement to the Office of Early Childhood Education in Frankfort, KY. Following receipt of the formal statement verifying that you have completed the required classes, you will receive your KY Early Childhood Director Credential certification.