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Certificate in Early Childhood Education Care And Development (Ececd)

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Early childhood care and education makes a positive contribution to well-being of young children. A growing body of research on brain development shows that experiences that children have in the first five years of  life have a decisive and long lasting impact on all areas of children’s later development.

This continuing education (CE) programme in Early Childhood Education Care and Development (ECECD) is a new programme to be offered by the UWI Open Campus starting in Academic Year 2017/2018. Continuing education is used in this context to mean the post-secondary education, training and development that individuals undertake for personal enrichment and for furthering their secondary education experiences and qualifications. This CE programme is a non-credit academic programme, and neither does it offer professional licensing certification. The primary purpose of the programme is to provide an alternative learning pathway for early childhood workers and others who wish to pursue an undergraduate degree in early childhood education. It also designed to expose individuals who are new, or are already working in the field, to the fundamentals of early childhood care and education.

Programme Aims And Objectives

The aims and objectives are informed by the Caribbean Vocational Qualification (CVQ) Level III competencies which focus on a post-secondary qualification emphasising the acquisition of knowledge, skills and attitudes to function at the technician/supervisory level and pursue studies at a higher level.  This speaks to (a) knowledge and understanding of, and ability to, apply foundational facts, principles and established processes of a field of work or study; (b) fundamental logical, and practical communication skills that allow persons to extract information from a range of sources; summarize information in written or graphical format; take active part in discussion; and (c) responsibility for completing assignments for which goals are outlined, implement decisions with limited supervision, and guide/supervise others in simple undertakings. 
Upon completion of the programme participants will be able to:
  • provide general care to children from birth to eight years, based on child development theories which promote holistic development of the child
  • prepare and carry out activities that stimulate and enhance children’s learning experiences
  • understand and apply the basic principles of operating an early childhood institution
  • communicate effectively with children, families and communities
  • develop the right attitude in caring for children
  • provide a safe, healthy, comfortable and pleasant environment for children to learn, play and rest
  • provide the basic needs to children in respect of the Articles of the Convention on the Rights of the Child
  • demonstrate a professional attitude and strong work ethics in carrying out their responsibilities as early childhood practitioners 

Who Is The Programme For?

This programme targets: 
  • Individuals in the early childhood environment (pre-schools, day-care centres, etc.) with no formal training or are seeking to upgrade themselves in the field
  • Untrained individuals with at least three years’ experience working in an early childhood setting 
  • Individuals who have completed Caribbean Vocational Qualification (CVQ) Levels I and  II or the equivalent training in Early Childhood Development
  • Individuals who are desirous of embarking on a career in early childhood care and education but do not have the lower level entry requirements to matriculate  

Programme Structure

Course Codes  Course Titles  Continuing Education Units
Semester I 
EDUC 025  Introduction to Early Childhood Education  3.0
EDUC 026 Principles of Teaching Young Children  3.0
EDUC 027  The Learning Environment – Two day field visit.
(Please see course outline for more details.) 
EDUC 028  Introduction to Health, Safety and Nutrition  3.0
EDUC 029  Working with Family and Community  3.0
EDUC 030 Administration of the Early Childhood Institution -
Two day field visit. (Please see course outline for more details.) 


When Will The Programme Start?

Contact your nearest Open Campus Country Site on the start date for the programme. 

How Do I Apply?

Kindly contact an Open Campus Country Site location nearest to you for further information on the application process.


Entry Requirements 

To enter the programme applicants should fall under one of the following categories: 

(a) Holders of any one of the following certification:

  1. Caribbean Secondary Examinations Certificate (CSEC) – 3 or less subjects General Proficiency  
  2. Caribbean Certificate of Secondary Level Competence (CCSLC)
  3. Caribbean Secondary Examinations Certificate (CSEC) – Basic Proficiency
  4. Jamaica School Certificate (JSC) or its equivalence; 
  5. Secondary School Certificate (SSC)
  6. High School Diploma Equivalency (HSDE) 
  7. National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) or Caribbean Vocational Qualification (CVQ) Level I or Level II in Early Childhood Development.
(b) Persons 21 years and over who do not possess any of the above qualifications but have been working in early childhood settings for over three years and have attained up to a Grade 9 educational level of the formal school system. 

Programme Duration

The duration of the programme is one academic year. The four courses and practicum will be delivered over Semesters 1 and 2 of the academic year.

How Much Will This Programme Cost?

The cost for this programme may be obtained at Open Campus Country Sites.  Please contact your nearest Open Campus Site for information on the cost for this programme.

Assessment Structure

A model of continuous in-course assessment is proposed for all courses to be offered in this programme. Students will be assessed at different intervals over the duration of each course as an alternative to mid-semesters and final examinations. Continuous assessment is learner-focused and reduces anxiety with respect to the finality of testing. Students are provided with more than one opportunity to develop mastery and as a result, develop their own pace as they progress through each course. This assessment method, therefore, enhances learning since students will be able to remediate weaknesses before each course ends.

Requirements For The Award Of The Certificate

In order to qualify for the award of this CE programme in ECECD, a student must complete six courses, four of which will award a total of 12 continuing education units (CEUs), that is:
  • four theoretical courses with 3.0 CEUs per course -  4 x 3 = 12.0 CEUs
  • two guided practical courses with in-field components  
A Certificate of Achievement (Pass) will be awarded upon full participation in all class activities, (online/face-to-face) and successful completion of all course assignments and assessments. To obtain a ‘Pass’ grade participants must receive at least 50 marks in individual courses. 


Course of Study
Level 1 
EDUC 030
Administration of the Early Childhood Institution:
EDUC 029
Working with Family and Community
EDUC 028
Introduction to Health, Safety and Nutrition
EDUC 027
The Learning Environment
EDUC 026
Principles of Teaching Young Children
EDUC 025
Introduction to Early Childhood Education