What Are the Best Early Childhood Education Schools and Programs?

Review the characteristics of a good early childhood education program. Get info about three schools with top programs, as determined by their education program rankings. Find out what kinds of early childhood education degrees you could pursue at each school. Schools offering Early Childhood Education degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Are Some Characteristics of the Best Schools for Early Childhood Education?

You'll probably want an accredited program with high licensing examination pass rates. Entry-level, associate pre-K degrees awarded by nationally-ranked 4-year schools are hard to find, but are available. A certificate or online program may be more convenient. Schools may sponsor demonstration sites and institutes, or offer cross-cultural training opportunities.

What Are Three of the Best Schools for Early Childhood Education?

University of Cincinnati in OH

UC was U.S. News & World Report's 78th-ranked university for education in 2019 (www.usnews.com). The school's Arlitt Child and Family Research and Education Center acts as a practicum site. UC's Early Childhood Learning Community for virtual students has been identified as a model program by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (www.naeyc.org). These programs are available:

  • Associate of Science in Early Childhood Care and Education
  • Bachelor of Early Childhood Education
  • Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education

University of Georgia in Athens

UG was the seventh-ranked school for elementary education in U.S. News & World Report's 2019 ratings (www.usnews.com). The College of Education (COE) offers Study Abroad Programs in Latin America, Africa, Europe, and Asia. COE's network of Professional Development Schools provides students with service learning opportunities. These degrees are possible:

  • B.S. in Education in Early Childhood
  • Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.) in Early Childhood Education
  • M.Ed. in Early Childhood Education
  • Educational Specialist (Ed.S.) in Early Childhood Education

University of Washington in Seattle

UW was ranked tenth for elementary teacher education by U.S. News & World Report in 2019. UW's Haring Center for Applied Research and Training in Education trains teachers to work with disabled and non-disabled children. In 2010, UW received a $40 million federal Head Start grant to spearhead a multi-institution National Center on Quality Teaching and Learning. These programs are offered:

  • B.A. in Early Childhood and Family Studies
  • M.Ed. in Early Childhood Special Education

More Top Schools with Education Programs

College/University Institution Type Location Estimated Undergrad In-State Tuition*
Johns Hopkins University 4-year, Private not-for-profit Baltimore, MD $54,000
Harvard University 4-year, Private not-for-profit Cambridge, MA $50,000
Stanford University 4-year, Private not-for-profit Stanford, CA $51,000
Vanderbilt University (Peabody) 4-year, Private not-for-profit Nashville, TN $50,000
University of Wisconsin - Madison 4-year, Public Madison, WI $11,000
Northwestern University 4-year, Private not-for-profit Evanston, IL $55,000
Teachers College, Columbia University 4-year, Private not-for-profit New York, NY N/A
University of Texas - Austin 4-year, Public Austin, TX $11,000
University of Michigan - Ann Arbor 4-year, Public Ann Arbor, MI $15,000
University of Oregon 4-year, Public Eugene, OR $12,000

*Source: NCES, U.S. Department of Education

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  • Liberty University

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