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Pursue a rewarding career guiding, teaching, and motivating young children.

Developed in collaboration with employers and subject matter experts, the BS in Early Childhood Studies curriculum is designed to equip you with skills that are highly marketable in the field. This program is ideal for professionals already working in the early childhood field who seek career advancement and greater job security.

Rigorous Coursework

Build knowledge through rigorous coursework aligned with National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) standards.

Customized Learning Experience

Our Walden’s Tempo Learning® format gives you control over the pacing of your studies and program cost.

Authentic Case Studies

Analyze authentic, video-based case studies to develop inclusive, evidence-based practices in an early childhood setting.

Hands-On Training

Get hands-on training with two field experiences in different areas of expertise: infants and toddlers and children in grades P–3.

Readily Applicable Learnings

Acquire new skills that you can apply immediately in the field.

Expert Faculty

Learn from published, nationally recognized experts in the field of early childhood education.

Program Savings

Tempo Competency-Based Learning™: Receive your first subscription at no cost and a 50% tuition reduction for the life of the program if you reside in the U.S. and start this program on December 7, 2020. Contact one of our Enrollment Specialists to learn more.

Get Started Now

Tempo Competency-Based Learning™

Tempo Competency-Based LearningTempo Competency-Based Learning is an alternative way to earn your Walden degree. It’s different from our standard course-based learning because you can work at a pace that makes sense for you, and progress once you’ve shown you understand a subject. With Tempo Learning®, you have the flexibility of online learning, plus the ability to personalize and control the length, cost, and pacing of your program.


The BS in Early Childhood Studies online program is delivered through Tempo Competency-Based Learning™. This means that rather than progressing toward your degree course by course, you prove your knowledge by completing competencies.

Competencies are skills, knowledge, and abilities that students use to demonstrate their progress. For each degree, a series of competencies that students need to be successful in their careers is identified. By completing all the competencies within a degree program, students demonstrate that they have acquired skills and knowledge specifically identified by leaders in their field and are able to apply them immediately in the workplace.

Mastery of competencies is proven through a variety of assessments.

The BS in Early Childhood Studies program competencies are grouped within areas of expertise.

Areas of Expertise and Competency

Course Code Title Credits

Health and Safety for Young Children [Tempo Learning®-Specific Course]

Keeping children safe and promoting their healthy development—physically and emotionally—is both a privilege and responsibility of every early childhood professional. In this course, educators' time is well spent learning principles of healthy nutrition; factors that support physical and mental health; developmentally appropriate strategies to promote physical activity; guidelines and procedures to ensure children's safety; and ways to promote wellness in children and families.

(5 cr.)

Becoming an Early Childhood Professional [Tempo Learning®-Specific Course]

Early childhood professionals are grounded in the historical and pedagogical foundation that built a field committed to fostering positive outcomes for young children and families. In this course educators explore the evolution of the field through theories and practitioners. They will also delve into the role, responsibilities, roles, ethics, resources, and current issues and trends that not only inform professional growth but also offer critical perspectives to inform their identities as early childhood professionals.

(5 cr.)

Early Childhood Development [Tempo Learning®-Specific Course]

A baby brightens when she hears a loving voice. A toddler takes a deep breath as he risks jumping into a pile of leaves. A preschooler writes her first word: me. How does development happen and what makes each child similar and unique? Content included in this course can increase educators'  knowledge of the milestones, unique qualities, and influencing factors that help determine who young children are and how caring adults can foster their healthy development and learning.

(5 cr.)

Children With Exceptionalities [Tempo Learning®-Specific Course]

How can educators support the healthy development of every child? What do educators need to know to better understand what it means to have an exceptionality (or disability) at a very early age? This course offers insights into the legal and procedural requirements for supporting young children and their families; underscores the importance of early intervention; and explains the characteristics of children and services integral to fostering healthy development and learning.

(5 cr.)

Child, Family, and Community Relationships [Tempo Learning®-Specific Course]

Early childhood professionals know that children are deeply connected to their families in dynamic relationships that influence development and learning. With this awareness is mind, it becomes essential to develop and maintain supportive and caring relationships with significant adults in children's lives. The competencies in this course involve educators in thinking about theories essential to understanding child, family, and community relationships and strategies for fostering caring, respectful relationships with families and communities that promote children's healthy development and learning.

(5 cr.)

Culturally Responsive Practice [Tempo Learning®-Specific Course]

How does culture influence actions, relationships, preferences, language, customs, and even values and beliefs? Why is it vital that early childhood professionals understand the ramifications of bias and stereotyping on children's identity development? As an early childhood professional, educators can use the information in these competencies to analyze how current policy issues impact diverse populations of children and families in early childhood settings; apply principles of culturally responsive curriculum to promote children's healthy development and learning; recommend culturally responsible practices to promote meaningful relationships with families; and apply strategies to promote access, equity, and positive social change for young children, families, and the early childhood field.

(5 cr.)

Social-Emotional Development and Positive Guidance [Tempo Learning®-Specific Course]

Early childhood professionals understand how deeply social-emotional development influences children during childhood and for the rest of their lives. In this course early childhood professionals delve into the unique characteristics of the social emotional developmental continuum, explore how to build responsive relationships that foster healthy social-emotional development, immerse themselves in positive guidance strategies to help children become independent and fair problem solvers as members of positive classroom communities, and study how to truly support young children as they practice, learn, and grow to be strong and healthy in their relationships with themselves and with others.

(5 cr.)

Effective Practices for Quality Programs Serving Young Children [Tempo Learning®-Specific Course]

If education professionals were asked to define quality as it pertains to practices and programs serving young children and families, what would they say? This course provides essential information about how the principles of developmentally appropriate practice, early childhood program standards, pedagogical and organizational models, and effective teaching and leadership practices inform quality programs and family partnerships.

(5 cr.)

Early Literacy [Tempo Learning®-Specific Course]

From the meaningful relationships that build when sharing stories to the empowering feeling of writing a first word, early literacy is an adventure and an accomplishment. It is essential that early childhood professionals understand developmentally appropriate ways to foster early literacy and literacy learning for children from birth through third  grade. In this course, educators also can become proficient at evaluating children's literature and analyzing issues and strategies related to the appropriate use of technology to promote literacy learning in young children.

(5 cr.)

Observation, Assessment, and Planning [Tempo Learning®-Specific Course]

Developing meaningful learning experiences requires understanding children's specific strengths and challenges. What kinds of assessment methods and strategies will help educators learn this vital information? What do educators need to know about communicating and collaborating with families and other stakeholders to promote meaningful assessment practices? Through the course content, educators can ground themselves in the wisdom and practicality of developmentally appropriate assessment for young children.

(5 cr.)

Play, Creativity, and the Arts [Tempo Learning®-Specific Course]

Play, creative expression, and the arts offer children opportunities to learn about who they are—to express and explore their individuality and to flourish together. The competencies in this course allow educators to explore the value and practice of fostering play, creativity, and the creative arts with children preschool through third grade. Educators also analyze the role child-centered learning and teaching play in fostering children's creative thinking and creative involvement in the arts.

(5 cr.)

Effective Practices for Infants and Toddlers [Tempo Learning®-Specific Course]

A caregiver gazes deeply and warmly into the eyes of an infant as she continues to intentionally foster their attachment. How do responsive, respectful relationships like these begin? How do they grow? And how do they support young children's growth and development? In this course, educators explore how early childhood professionals can foster healthy development and learning in infant and toddlers through relationships, play, routines, transitions, and supportive environments. Educators also take part in field experience, developing a meaningful experience for infants or toddlers and working with young children and their teacher to make this experience come alive with learning for all.

(5 cr.)

Meaningful Learning Experiences [Tempo Learning®-Specific Course]

How do early childhood teachers nurture children's curiosity, interests, and wonder, while providing them with opportunities to actively engage with ideas, content areas, and each other? In this course, educators get to know the context—children, families, community—of the classroom where they are completing their field experience. As well, educators ground themselves in the standards, strands, and themes that underpin key content areas that children are learning about all the time. And then, educators collaborate with their host teacher to design, implement, and evaluate a unit of study that effectively integrates content areas to provide opportunities for children to engage in meaningful learning experiences.

(10 cr.)

Learning and Teaching in Inclusive Early Childhood Settings [Tempo Learning®-Specific Course]

How can an early childhood professional help to ensure that every child thrives in the early childhood setting? In this course, educators delve into the foundation of high-quality early childhood inclusion programs. As well as studying practical strategies for working with children and partnering with families and other professionals, educators also apply evidence-based advocacy approaches to support high-quality inclusive programming in early care and education settings.

(5 cr.)

Tuition and Fees

Progress at Your Pace. Control Your Cost.

Walden’s Tempo Learning® programs follow a subscription-based pricing format. Students are billed a flat-rate for each 3-month subscription term. All pricing is represented in U.S. dollars and is subject to change.

Program Subscription Period Tuition Subscription Period Technology Fee Subscription Period Time Frame
BS in Early Childhood Studies $1,500 $75 3-month subscription period


Many Walden degree-seeking students—67%—receive some form of financial aid.* Create a customized plan that makes sense for you.

*Source: Walden University’s Office of Financial Aid. Data reports as of 2018.

Find Ways to Save

Program Savings

Tempo Competency-Based Learning™: Receive your first subscription at no cost and a 50% tuition reduction for the life of the program if you reside in the U.S. and start this program on December 7, 2020. Contact one of our Enrollment Specialists to learn more.

Get Started Now

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FAQ About Walden’s Online BS in Early Childhood Studies - Tempo Competency-Based Learning™