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Course Description

This course is designed to provide early childhood education professionals with the knowledge and skills to assess their own level in terms of the eight core competencies, across the infant-toddler, preschool and out-of-school age range.  This survey course consists of eight learning modules.  Each module is based on one of the eight core competencies: 1) understanding growth and development of children and youth, 2) guiding and interacting with children and youth, 3) partnering with families and communities, 4) health, safety and nutrition, 5) learning environments and curriculum, 6) observation, assessment and documentation, 7) program planning and development, and 8) professionalism and leadership.  


The learning modules serve as a tool to educate participants about the initial level of each competency, an additional online survey will to allow the participant to evaluate his/her own knowledge of the competency, and then will develop a plan to extend that knowledge through readings provided and resources that explain the science supporting each competency. 

Course Objectives

  • Become familiar with the base indicator level of knowledge and skills in each competency.
  • Complete a self-assessment for each of the eight competencies, to determine: initial, mid, or advanced level for each indicator.
  • In each competency, identify the skills and knowledge that they need to acquire or deepen.
  • Identify the links between the core competencies and EEC licensing regulations; NAEYC Code of Ethics; DEC recommended practices; Guidelines for Preschool Learning Experiences; Early Childhood Program Standards; NAFCC, NAEYC or COA Accreditation; Common Core Standards; and various MA curriculum frameworks.
  • Create a short-term, individualized professional development plan for the immediate year and a long-term plan for a five-year period.

Massachusetts State Core Competencies

This module will address Core Competency 6a: Observing and Assessing and Core Competency Area 5: Learning Environments and Implementing Curriculum.  Participants will also learn about typical development in math (Area 1e: cognitive development). 

Required Textbook

all reading materials are available online


Component Percentage

Participation in

two WIMBA session

8 online classes & weekly reading
Eight Self-Assessment surveys 20%
Short term professional development plan 20%
Long term professional development plan 20%
8 Discussions 30%
see full syllabus


Other Documents
Study Guide