What is Early Childhood Education?

Early childhood educators work with children ages birth to eight in variety of different types of programs. The field of early childhood education or E.C.E. includes teachers and child care providers, family support workers, home visitors, parent educators and more. It is widely known that experiences in early childhood strongly affect human development. Those caring for and educating young children have a tremendous responsibility. See our careers page for more information about employment opportunities in early childhood care and education.

Is studying early childhood education right for me?

There is not one "right" type of person who should study early childhood education, but research has shown that having some of the following characteristics contributes to success in working with children and families (Feeney et al., 2010).

  • Positive outlook
  • Curiosity
  • Openness to new ideas
  • Enthusiasm and willingness to take risks
  • Commitment
  • High energy
  • Physical strength
  • A sense of humor
  • Flexibility and patience
  • Self-awareness
  • Capacity for empathy, warmth and sensitivity
  • Emotional stability
  • Perseverance
  • Respect for children and families

See our video showing how men can make a valuable contribution to in the early childhood education profession.

How can I study Early Childhood Education at Chemeketa?

Chemeketa's Early Childhood Education program offers certificate and degree options to meet your needs. Students can start during fall, winter, spring and even summer term. Click here to see term-by-term course offerings.

Our instructors and on-campus laboratory Child Development Center provide you with the training, skills and practical experience needed to work effectively in infant and toddler, preschool, kindergarten or family education programs. Click here to get started!

For more information, e-mail or call 503.399.6076.