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CDA Credential Course Information

Childcare Development Associate (CDA) course

Virtual CDA Course

About Childcare Development Associate Credential

Educational First Steps offers professional development training to EFS assisted centers as well as educators from other organizations serving at-risk children, including nonprofits, ISDs and other early caregivers.

We help educators enhance their qualifications and effectiveness by earning the most widely recognized credential in early childhood education – the Child Development Associate credential – and share key elements of Educational First Steps’ own Four Steps to Excellence 2.0 quality-building curriculum.

Courses take place at Educational First Step’s Dallas and Tarrant County locations.

Woman tending to a toddler in the crib

The CDA certification process includes the following:

  1. Attend 120 hours of early childhood education training in the 8 competency standards
  2. Have professional work experience in a group-setting classroom for a minimum of 480 hours within the last 3 years
  3. Develop a professional portfolio
  4. Complete family questionnaires
  5. Complete observation by a Professional Development Specialist
  6. Complete a formal exam
  7. Apply for the CDA credential

CDA course competency standards include:

  1. Safe – To establish and maintain a safe, healthy learning environment
  2. Physical – To advance physical and intellectual competence
  3. Self – To support social and emotional development and to provide positive guidance
  4. Families – To establish positive and productive relationships with families
  5. Program Management – To ensure a well-run purposeful program that is responsive to participant needs
  6. Professionalism – To maintain a commitment to professionalism
  7. Observations & Assessment– To observe and assess children’s behavior for curriculum planning and individualized teaching
  8. Child Development– To understand developmentally appropriate principles of learning

Applicants from EFS Assisted Centers Click Here to Apply

Non-EFS Applicants Click Here to Apply

For more information about the Child Development Associate credential, please visit www.cdacouncil.org.