What is a CDA?

According to the Council of Professional Recognition, “The Child Development Associate (CDA) Credential™ is the most widely recognized credential in early childhood education (ECE) and is a key stepping stone on the path of career advancement in ECE.

The Child Development Associate (CDA) Credential™ is based on a core set of competency standards, which guide early care professionals as they work toward becoming qualified teachers of young children. The Council works to ensure that the nationally-transferable CDA is a credible and valid credential, recognized by the profession as a vital part of professional development.

CDAs have knowledge of how to put the CDA Competency Standards into practice and understanding of why those standards help children move with success from one developmental stage to another. Put simply, CDAs know how to nurture the emotional, physical, intellectual, and social development of children.

Earning the Child Development Associate (CDA) Credential™ has many advantages, including exposure to the larger community of early childhood educators. Over 370,000 educators have received their CDA to date!

Becoming a CDA is a big commitment, but one that creates confident practitioners with command of today’s best practices for teaching young children.”

To work as a Headstart teacher, you must possess a minimum of a CDA Credential.  To receive your CDA Credential, you must .

  • Earn a high school diploma, GED or be enrolled as a junior or senior in a high school career and technical program in early childhood education.
  • Complete 120 hours of formal early childhood education training, covering the growth and development of children ages 0 to 36 months, with no fewer than 10 training hours in each of the CDA subject areas.
    CDA Subject Areas

    – Planning a safe and healthy learning environment
    – Advancing children’s physical and intellectual development
    – Supporting children’s social and emotional development
    – Building productive relationships with families
    – Managing an effective program operation
    – Maintaining a commitment to professionalism
    – Observing and recording children’s behavior
    – Understanding principles of child development and learning

At stephaniElearning you can start your journey to becoming a headstart teacher by completing your CDA requirements with us.  There will be a series of four 30 clock hour classes to meet the 120 hour requirement.  Our first class, Infant and Toddler, starts January 16th.  Sign up today and your book is free.  That is a $50 savings.

This course is a study of infant and toddler (birth to 3 years). It includes an overview of development, quality caregiving routines, appropriate environments, materials and activities as well as teaching/guidance techniques. This is an eight week course and 30 Clock Hours will be awarded. Available live each week or watch the recording.

Course meets Director Professional Development Annual Training Requirements and Careegiver Annual Training Requirements as well as CDA Requirements.

$150 for 30 Clock Hours (Only $5 per hour of training) 


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stephaniElearning View All →

I am an educator in every facet of my life. I teach early childhood education in the classroom and online as well as develop online training and professional development for employers. I also teach homeschoolers literature and homeschool my 17 year old son who graduates in May.

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