Early Childhood Education

Start your career in early childhood education

Harper College offers several degree specializations and certificates to begin your career in early childhood education or add teaching credentials. Harper offers Early Childhood Education degrees with Director, Family Child Care and Teacher specializations, as well as numerous transfer options.

At Harper, you'll get hands-on experience through the Early Childhood Laboratory School, an onsite pre-school.

Harper instructors are highly credentialed and experienced educators who make classroom theory come alive through interactive experiences and teaching practices.

Start at Harper. Finish at a four-year university.

The Associate in Arts (A.A.) degree prepares you to transfer to a four-year college or university to complete a bachelor's degree in early childhood education. Speak with your advisor about the best courses to take to meet your academic goals.

Harper also offers institution-specific transfer information to help prepare you to transition to a four-year university. To learn more, visit our Transfer Information page or see your advisor.

Earn a career-ready degree

The Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.) degree is designed to prepare you for immediate entry into this career field. This is one degree with different areas of specialization. Course work in the A.A.S. may also prepare you to transfer to a four-year college or university.

Earn a workforce credential

Jumpstart your career by learning new skills through a certificate program. Many of Harper's certificates are stackable to a degree program through additional course work.

Flexible program options


Next steps

For more information about starting your college education at Harper, please contact Admissions Outreach at 847.925.6700 or fill out our request information form.


Get the latest news and updates from the Early Childhood Education Program at Harper College.

Ana Sandoval and her daughter

Ana Sandoval and her daughter

Going It Alone

Ana Sandoval was in her second year of college, studying accounting; the first in her family to go to college. But her family was struggling to make ends meet in Ecuador. The economic crisis was crushing them. Hoping for a... Watch the Video

Jody Paine with scholarship recipients Sherry Baluch and Ana Sandoval

Jody Paine with scholarship recipients Sherry Baluch and Ana Sandoval

Polly's Kids Scholarship to benefit single parents studying at Harper

Olive “Polly” Paine was a visionary during her time, a highly educated woman – she earned a PhD from Yale in 1930 – who devoted her life to developing innovative early education programs. Her memory will continue to live... Watch the Video

Karina Guillen

Karina Guillen

Students to Watch: Karina Guillen

Since enrolling at Harper College, Karina Guillen has taken big strides to make the most of her learning experience in the Early Childhood Development program - and she's only just getting started. ... Watch the Video