How do you want to be remembered? If you want your students to remember you as the person who made an impact, consider one of the Best Online Bachelor’s in Early Childhood Education.

Teachers are the lifeblood of innovation, creativity, and development. If you think back to the individuals who made the most lasting impact on your life, there are likely at least one or two teachers on the list. An Early Childhood educator has the ability to make a positive – and necessary – difference in the lives of all of his or her students.

Early Childhood educators work with children who aren’t even one to about age eight. If you enjoy teaching a diverse group of students and are interested in learning how to deliver the best instruction, intervention, and daily care possible, a Bachelor’s in Early Childhood Education might be for you.

What is an Early Childhood Education degree?

There are several types of Early Childhood Education degrees, depending on your personal goals and the setting in which you plan to work. You can pursue a certificate program in Early Childhood, which will prepare you to work at a daycare facility or comparable organization. An associate’s degree will prepare you to work as a lead teacher in one of these settings.

A Bachelor’s degree, on the other hand, is a prerequisite for working in a public school. This type of degree often includes a licensure component, allowing you to work in practically any setting. These types of programs will focus on classroom-specific issues, as well as instructional interventions, special education identification, and behavioral strategies.

How much can you earn with an Early Childhood Education degree?

Depending on the setting in which you choose to work, as well as the specific credentials you earn, Early Childhood Educators can earn very high starting salaries. The highest paid individuals work in public school classrooms, educating students in grades pre-K through Eighth. Directors of child care also earn higher salaries, with entry level daycare employees earning the lowest wages.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, early childhood educators earn, on average, around $56,900 per year. Some individuals in high-paying states, like New York and Connecticut, earn even more. Best yet, these positions are expected to grow about seven percent, which is average.

What is required for an Early Childhood Education degree?

For admission to an Early Childhood Education program, you will likely need to have some sort of prerequisite coursework or an associate’s degree. However, this can often be completed by finishing some General Education courses within the same school’s degree plan before moving on to your core courses.

To earn a Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education, you will take a range of classes in topics such as instructional interventions, behavioral management techniques, and assessment strategies. Most programs also require you to engage in a field experience or student teaching placement to gain classroom experience. These types of programs typically qualify you to apply for state certification, though not always.

What are the best Early Childhood Education degrees?

We have compiled a list of the 35 Best Online Bachelor’s in Early Childhood Education. Our ranking system evaluates the overall caliber of the progra, determined based on factors like faculty experience, credentials, and overall student satisfaction.

Because career success is the most important factor in choosing a degree, we also look at acceptance rates and policies, average starting salaries, job placement rates, and retention. All of these factors culminate in a final program score.

We know how powerful your commitment is to educating the future of tomorrow, so we worked just as hard to make sure you find the school that will help make your dream a reality.

  1. Fort Hays State University

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $17,831/$27,654
    Acceptance65
    Earnings Potential59
    Online Presence4
    Online Program Quality74
    Retention75
    Student Satisfaction79
    Reputation100
    Pros
    • Ranked 12th in the nation for overall quality
    • Utilized the latest in educational technology
    • Led by instructors who have taught in actual elementary classrooms
    Cons
    • Internships and student teaching experiences are required
    • Not valid for licensure in all states
    • Nearly 50% of all required courses are General Education classes
    100%OSR Score

    This program is offered at a significantly lower cost than comparable programs, offering an unparalleled educational experience. Each student is required to complete an internship and student teaching experience. Roughly 100 additional credits are required in topics ike Principles of Instruction and Behavioral Strategies.

  2. Florida International University

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $25,750/$38,148
    Acceptance92
    Earnings Potential49
    Online Presence5
    Online Program Quality38
    Retention83
    Student Satisfaction78
    Reputation91
    Pros
    • Low student-to-faculty ratio
    • Top-ranked with U.S. News and World Report
    • Affordable tuition
    Cons
    • Must have a bachelor’s degree and work experience related to degree program
    • Non-licensure program
    • Out-of-state students are billed tuition at a higher rate than in-state students
    97%OSR Score

    In this program, each student is assigned a personal student success coach to help guide him along his degree pathway. With a total of 120 credit hours, course requirements include topics such as Classroom Management and Issues in Early Childhood Education. Students may also take classes in specialization areas, such as Child Development, Family and Community Studies, or Literacy.

  3. University of Toledo

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $23,553/$32,891
    Acceptance67
    Earnings Potential49
    Online Presence43
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention66
    Student Satisfaction72
    Reputation85
    Pros
    • Faculty is comprised of nationally-recognized scholars
    • Students receive access to resources like advising, technology support, and eLibraries
    • Transfer-friendly with multiple scholarships available
    Cons
    • Non-licensure program
    • Students must already hold an associate’s degree in early childhood education
    • Will not allow graduates to teach in public schools
    90%OSR Score

    This centuries-old undergraduate institution offers an online bachelor’s that is designed for candidates seeking a comprehensive, research-based education. The curriculum is broken down into themes, allowing students to fast-track their progress and receive a degree in less than two years. Students will take roughly 32 credit hours consisting of core pedagogy and intensive fieldwork.

  4. Granite State College

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $21,057/$21,969
    Acceptance67
    Earnings Potential33
    Online Presence45
    Online Program Quality72
    Retention87
    Student Satisfaction70
    Reputation86
    Pros
    • Enables students to teach in public schools
    • Admission offered on a rolling basis
    • Ranked as one of the best online Bachelor’s degrees in the country
    Cons
    • Candidates must already be working in approved New Hampshire settings
    • Designed specifically for transfer students
    • Several on-campus courses are required
    89%OSR Score

    This program, which enables graduates to work with young children in state public schools, is top ranked by U.S. News and World Report. Students are taught by faculty who are subject matter experts as they engage in coursework such as Behavioral Interventions and Special Education Law. The program is 120 credit hours and hosts affordable tuition, insightful career counseling, and placement services.

  5. University of Nebraska-Lincoln

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $24,544/$39,664
    Acceptance65
    Earnings Potential80
    Online Presence1
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention93
    Student Satisfaction76
    Reputation80
    Pros
    • One of the few programs designed for educating students in mobile situations
    • Most courses can be taken in any sequence
    • Students receive access to internships, study abroad, and research experiences
    Cons
    • Three practicum experiences required
    • Will not lead to licensure
    • Candidates may not be eligible to work in public school settings upon graduation
    88%OSR Score

    The University of Nebraska – Lincoln’s program in Early Childhood Education is unique in that it is designed for Education in a Mobile Society. Students learn how to work with children from military families, immigrant families, homeless families, and other individuals in unique situations of mobility. Graduates of this program will pursue courses in areas such as Assessing Young Children and be prepared to deal with the challenges presented in early care education in a mobile society.

  6. Kansas State University

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $22,663/$38,020
    Acceptance85
    Earnings Potential61
    Online Presence1
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention79
    Student Satisfaction74
    Reputation81
    Pros
    • Graduates enjoy above-average starting salaries
    • Loan deferment and scholarship options available
    • Average licensure examination pass rate of 99 percent
    Cons
    • Over a third of the program coursework consists of general education credits
    • Each student must purchase a tablet for coursework
    • Testing and licensing fees required for final certification
    88%OSR Score

    This program is exemplary in that it not only prepares students for licensure in the state of Kansas, but also enables students to apply for certification in all 50 states and U.S. territories. The program requires 120 total credits, which can be obtained by taking a combination of general education and core coursework. Key content areas include Curriculum for Cognitive and Language Development, Interaction Techniques, and Emergent Literacy.

  7. California Baptist University

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $51,644/$51,644
    Acceptance67
    Earnings Potential33
    Online Presence1
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention66
    Student Satisfaction84
    Reputation78
    Pros
    • Can be completed in fewer than 16 months
    • Extensive financial aid available
    • Up to 100 credits may be transferred in
    Cons
    • One of the more expensive options
    • Christian-focused curriculum may not coincide with your personal worldview
    • Significant General Education and Christian Education coursework required
    87%OSR Score

    This program allows students to work with children in grades 0-8 and to pursue licensure in most states. While the price tag of this university may be slightly higher, extensive financial aid, including grants and scholarships, are available. Students will take 48 major units in topics such as Social and Emotional Development and Early Childhood Curriculum.

  8. Ball State University

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $24,342/$40,510
    Acceptance71
    Earnings Potential74
    Online Presence1
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention91
    Student Satisfaction74
    Reputation76
    Pros
    • Online program is taught by same nationally recognized faculty who teach on campus
    • One of the largest online educator preparation programs
    • Scholarships and competitive tuition available
    Cons
    • Does not lead to teacher licensure
    • Selective admissions process
    • Designed for candidates who already have associate’s degrees
    87%OSR Score

    This program is one of the most flexible on the list, allowing students to complete their courses in five-, eight-, or ten-week chunks. Students are required to take 120 credits in topics such as Building Family and Community Relationships, Teaching and Learning, and Becoming a Professional. This degree is part of Ball State’s award-winning Teachers College, giving students access to outstanding field experience and mentoring opportunities.

  9. National University

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $30,248/$30,248
    Acceptance77
    Earnings Potential58
    Online Presence1
    Online Program Quality80
    Retention81
    Student Satisfaction74
    Reputation78
    Pros
    • Yellow Ribbon School with military tuition discounts
    • Large alumni base of over 150,000 members
    • Extensive opportunities to tailor individual course plans
    Cons
    • Field experiences required in general education, inclusive settings
    • Vaccinations must be completed prior to field experiences
    • May not lead to licensing in all states
    85%OSR Score

    National University requires 54 quarter units of major requirements, including studies in topics like Early Cognition and Play as Pedagogy. Students may choose from multiple concentrations, such as those in Early Childhood Administration, Teacher Education, and Infant and Toddler. These concentrations enable students to work in a variety of fields, including as daycare employees and elementary school teachers.

  10. The University of Alabama

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $29,424/$46,744
    Acceptance86
    Earnings Potential33
    Online Presence3
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention100
    Student Satisfaction76
    Reputation75
    Pros
    • Applications accepted year round
    • Low tuition cost
    • All coursework is available online
    Cons
    • Full semester-long internship required
    • No more than 60 hours can be transferred in
    • Candidates must find their own field placements
    84%OSR Score

    The program requires 120 credit hours. This allows students to gain an acute understanding of how children grow and develop from birth to age eight. Students will enroll in classes such as Life Span Human Development and Preschool Development, and also complete an in-depth, semester-long field internship. The program also includes an optional Child Development Practitioner concentration for individuals who are interested in working at Head Start agencies.

  11. Southwestern College

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $42,724/$42,724
    Acceptance65
    Earnings Potential49
    Online Presence11
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention76
    Student Satisfaction74
    Reputation77
    Pros
    • Credit awarded for prior college, military, and work or life experiences
    • General and special education licensure available upon degree completion
    • On-campus early learning after school programs available
    Cons
    • Previous college experience required
    • Does not necessarily lead to licensure outside of the state of Kansas
    • Capstone required to graduate
    84%OSR Score

    This exemplary program provides distance learners with the opportunity to extend their studies to real-life, on-campus experiences. Southwestern offers early child care centers around the country to give candidates the opportunity to work with students with special needs and those in day care facilities. The program requires 124 credit hours and has courses in topics such as Motor Development and Educational Technology.

  12. Mississippi State University

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $24,370/$38,410
    Acceptance76
    Earnings Potential51
    Online Presence19
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention71
    Student Satisfaction71
    Reputation71
    Pros
    • Can be started at any time of the year
    • Most courses are taught by full time MSU faculty
    • Field experiences can be completed anywhere in the country
    Cons
    • Georgia residents may not pursue certification through this program
    • Not ideal for candidates who are seeking employment outside of a classroom
    • Additional fees are charged on top of tuition expenses
    83%OSR Score

    Mississippi State’s Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education offers two concentrations, either in Early Childhood or Middle School Education. Both are offered entirely online, giving students the ability to work while completing their courses and field work. Students will complete 120 credit hours of coursework, in addition to over 200 hours of classroom field experiences.

  13. Brandman University

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $29,792/$29,792
    Acceptance78
    Earnings Potential50
    Online Presence14
    Online Program Quality75
    Retention75
    Student Satisfaction73
    Reputation75
    Pros
    • Available online, on-campus, and in a hybrid format
    • Faculty members are full-time practitioners
    • Curriculum development is guided by employment trends and industry feedback
    Cons
    • More expensive tuition rates
    • Requires previous college credits
    • 42 General Education credits required
    83%OSR Score

    This unique degree program is designed for students interested in educating children up to the age of eight. The curriculum of the Early Childhood Education degree at Brandman includes multiple fieldwork experiences and two practicums. In addition, students will take classes such as Child Growth and Development and Principles and Practices of Teaching Young Children.

  14. University of Arizona

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $30,177/$53,607
    Acceptance67
    Earnings Potential33
    Online Presence1
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention86
    Student Satisfaction75
    Reputation67
    Pros
    • Small class sizes with the prestige of a top-ranked research university
    • Courses offered utilizing interactive TV, video conferencing, and other online technologies
    • Curriculum includes six specific courses designed to meet employer needs
    Cons
    • Not intended for individuals seeking teaching certification
    • AAS in Early Childhood Education or related field is required
    • No student teaching component required
    83%OSR Score

    The Bachelor of Applied Science with an emphasis in Early Childhood Education at the University of Arizona is designed for candidates who are not seeking teacher certification. Instead, it is for candidates who wish to work with young students in a non-classroom setting. Students will engage in hands-on experiences while taking classes such as Early Childhood Language and Literacy and Teaching Exceptional Children in Early Childhood.

  15. Northern Arizona University

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $27,133/$40,915
    Acceptance69
    Earnings Potential63
    Online Presence1
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention81
    Student Satisfaction75
    Reputation63
    Pros
    • Multiple emphasis areas available
    • Recognized by the National Association for the Education of Young Children
    • Can be combined with an Early Childhood certificate for licensure-seekers
    Cons
    • Does not lead to teaching certification
    • Extensive liberal studies requirements
    • Independent study and capstone projects required
    81%OSR Score

    This program is unique in that it allows students to tailor their studies toward a specific career goal. Available emphases include early childhood leadership, early childhood teacher, and early childhood national board preparation. The program consists of 120 total credit hours, with core studies in topics such as Curriculum and Instruction and Evidence-Based Practices.

  16. Liberty University

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $38,178/$38,178
    Acceptance71
    Earnings Potential73
    Online Presence4
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention86
    Student Satisfaction76
    Reputation66
    Pros
    • Low student-to-faculty ratio of 18:1
    • Electronic textbooks provided at no cost
    • Frozen tuition rates for all programs
    Cons
    • Highly selective admissions process
    • Can take nearly four years to complete
    • No comparable on-campus program
    81%OSR Score

    This entirely online program allows students to transfer in up to 75 percent of their course requirements, with the rest completed as eight-week courses in a digital setting. This program requires 120 credit hours, engaging students in key educational coursework such as differentiated learning strategies and early childhood educational development and behavior. This degree allows students to pursue licensure-track graduate education programs upon completion.

  17. Wilmington University

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $20,540/$20,540
    Acceptance87
    Earnings Potential57
    Online Presence11
    Online Program Quality92
    Retention81
    Student Satisfaction71
    Reputation79
    Pros
    • Classes start every eight weeks
    • Affordable tuition and generous financial aid
    • Well-respected program among school administrators and other industry leaders
    Cons
    • Some courses must be completed as part of a sequence
    • Technological proficiency required
    • Prerequisite courses in Fine Arts, Social and Behavioral Sciences are mandatory
    79%OSR Score

    This holistic program trains students in all aspects of early childhood education, including overall health, ideal learning environments, and family partnerships. The program requires 122 total credit-hours for degree completion, and is highly interdisciplinary. Classes can be completed at any time of the day, with this program the top choice for K-12 school employees in the state of Delaware.

  18. Regent University

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $36,728/$36,728
    Acceptance76
    Earnings Potential57
    Online Presence8
    Online Program Quality49
    Retention72
    Student Satisfaction81
    Reputation60
    Pros
    • Ranked one of the best colleges for education in Virginia
    • Awards over $8.3 million in institutional scholarships and financial aid
    • Taught by Virginia Beach campus faculty with terminal degrees
    Cons
    • Built on a Christian framework that can be unappealing to some students
    • Admissions process can be confusing – changes depending on your stage in life
    • Background checks are required
    79%OSR Score

    This fully-online program is broken down into eight-week sections, with each student required to complete 120 credit hours of study. Students take a variety of education-themed courses to prepare them to create effective lesson plans and better understand the best practices for educating young children. While this program does not lead directly to Virginia teacher certification, an additional track in Interdisciplinary Studies is available to satisfy this interest.

  19. Park University

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $22,216/$22,216
    Acceptance82
    Earnings Potential51
    Online Presence3
    Online Program Quality88
    Retention87
    Student Satisfaction76
    Reputation67
    Pros
    • All coursework is available online, with practical experiences in classrooms
    • Multiple internship opportunities
    • Faculty are advanced, experienced professionals in the field
    Cons
    • Extensive, time-consuming admissions requirements (including fingerprinting)
    • Two required practicums
    • Does not lead to state licensure
    78%OSR Score

    The Early Childhood Education degree at Park consists of 93-credit hours and is designed especially for adult learners seeking to become teachers or administrators. Students will engage in key coursework covering child development and learning, curriculum development, and professionalism. While this degree does not result in Missouri Teacher Certification, additional pathways are offered through the university to assist with this goal.

  20. Brenau University

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $44,248/$44,248
    Acceptance87
    Earnings Potential54
    Online Presence1
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention83
    Student Satisfaction76
    Reputation66
    Pros
    • Low student-to-faculty ratio of 11:1
    • Affordable tuition costs
    • Students can access coursework at any time of day
    Cons
    • 46 credits must be completed at another university prior to beginning the program
    • Each student must write a Philosophy of Education paper before enrolling
    • One night a week of on-campus attendance required
    78%OSR Score

    The Early Childhood Bridge program at Brenau is short, consisting only of seven courses that allow you to enter a bachelor’s program of 19 additional courses. This program enables graduates to pursue licensure and only requires the completion of one class at a time. Classes begin year-round, and allow candidates to meet weekly with a small learning team with like-minded goals and similar schedules.

  21. Chaminade University of Honolulu

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $41,184/$41,184
    Acceptance85
    Earnings Potential53
    Online Presence1
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention71
    Student Satisfaction81
    Reputation74
    Pros
    • Up to 18 credit hours may be transferred in
    • Accreditation by the Montessori Accreditation Council for Teacher Education
    • Small student-to-faculty ratio of 11:1
    Cons
    • Prerequisite coursework must be taken before engaging in early childhood curriculum
    • Minimum of 15 weeks of student teaching
    • Employment or additional coursework is prohibited during student teaching
    77%OSR Score

    This high-ranking program is designed for students who are interested in working with young children ages two and a half through six in private schools and other non-traditional educational environments. The degree is offered with an optional Montessori Credential to enable students to work in these specialized schools. Other required coursework includes 120 credit hours of topics such as Child Development, Educational Technology, and Curriculum Foundations.

  22. Mayville State University

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $18,180/$20,808
    Acceptance86
    Earnings Potential44
    Online Presence45
    Online Program Quality72
    Retention70
    Student Satisfaction70
    Reputation63
    Pros
    • Designed for professionals who are currently employed in Early Childhood Education
    • University has been training teachers for over a century
    • Utilizes unique technology, like Interactive Video Network, to deliver courses
    Cons
    • Some courses require synchronized attendance
    • 36 hours of “essential studies” are required before completing major requirements
    • Previous college experience may be required
    75%OSR Score

    This affordable program is a great option for busy working adults, allowing candidates to transfer in large amounts of credits from recognized accredited institutions. The program requires 132 total credit hours to graduate, including studies in topics such as Theories of Learning and Educational Technology. Upon completion of this program, graduates may apply for birth through 3rd grade licensure in the state of North Dakota.

  23. Bluefield College

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $36,660/$36,660
    Acceptance75
    Earnings Potential55
    Online Presence1
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention77
    Student Satisfaction80
    Reputation60
    Pros
    • Provides opportunities in a number of settings outside of the public school system
    • Online format gives access to thousands of potential students
    • Extensive financial aid available
    Cons
    • Does not result in teaching licensure
    • Internships are required
    • 120 hours of field experiences are required
    74%OSR Score

    This hands-on degree program places students on the ground floor of early childhood education and innovation. Students are required to participate in hundreds of hours of field experiences, in addition to engaging in coursework to prepare them for careers in social services, government agencies, and childcare programs. Additional related degrees are available in topics such as Elementary Education and Special Education.

  24. Central Michigan University

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $21,734/$32,894
    Acceptance80
    Earnings Potential80
    Online Presence1
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention84
    Student Satisfaction75
    Reputation53
    Pros
    • Tuition assistance available through T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood Michigan
    • Conditional admission available to some students
    • Meets the training guidelines of the National Association for the Education of Young Children
    Cons
    • Each student must complete additional coursework via a minor
    • No comparable on-campus program is available
    • Does not lead to teacher licensure
    73%OSR Score

    The program consists of 124 total credits, with each student required to select a major and a minor. Four minors are available online: Geography, Political Science, Psychology, and Coaching, with more available through the use of transfer credits. Students in the Early Childhood Development and Learning program will take immersive classes in topics such as Developmental Assessment, Constructivism, and Guidance for Young Children.

  25. Indiana Wesleyan University-Marion

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $37,096/$37,096
    Acceptance87
    Earnings Potential58
    Online Presence1
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention92
    Student Satisfaction75
    Reputation68
    Pros
    • Only takes 24 months to complete
    • Allows candidates to work directly with children and families
    • Provides a pathway to initial teaching licensure in Indiana
    Cons
    • Literacy-heavy program content
    • Background check and test scores required for admission
    • 48 transferable credit hours required before beginning bachelor core program
    73%OSR Score

    This 120 credit-hour program emphasizes the key knowledge and attitudes needed to create an effective early childhood educator. The program includes a built-in minor in Reading, and includes crucial coursework such as Educational Psychology and Literature Focused Preschool Environments. It is taught by highly qualified practitioner-faculty who have extensive experience in early childhood education.

  26. Colorado Christian University

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $41,880/$41,880
    Acceptance77
    Earnings Potential50
    Online Presence1
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention73
    Student Satisfaction81
    Reputation54
    Pros
    • Courses offered online, on-campus, and in a hybrid format
    • Small class sizes
    • Networking opportunities available
    Cons
    • Students are responsible for researching all state licensure requirements
    • Student teaching is not a core component
    • Part-time tuition rates are expensive
    67%OSR Score

    Colorado Christian University offers a flexible program from a Christian worldview, addressing the needs of today’s learners in classrooms and society. This program is available to students around the world and offers a teaching license pathway to enable students to work in practically any state’s public school system. The program requires 120 total credit hours, with core coursework in areas such as curriculum studies in social studies, reading, and mathematics.

  27. Mount Vernon Nazarene University

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $38,140/$38,140
    Acceptance60
    Earnings Potential80
    Online Presence1
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention97
    Student Satisfaction79
    Reputation78
    Pros
    • Locked-in tuition guarantee
    • Easy-to-access online course materials
    • Advising teams for all students
    Cons
    • One of the more expensive online degrees offered by the university
    • Admissions interview required
    • Not a good option for candidates looking to work in daycare or non-school settings
    66%OSR Score

    Featuring high-quality curriculum and the guidance of supportive, experienced faculty, this program includes an impressive 600 clock hours of field and clinical experiences. Students will engage in 51 total program hours of classes like Content Reading and Classroom Management. Each candidate is also required to create a portfolio and to consistently reflect upon his training.

  28. Central Methodist University-College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $34,470/$34,470
    Acceptance78
    Earnings Potential49
    Online Presence4
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention76
    Student Satisfaction84
    Reputation58
    Pros
    • Multiple hands-on learning opportunities such as projects and practicum experiences
    • Satisfies requirements needed to apply for advanced degree studies
    • Leads to state certification
    Cons
    • Highly selective admissions process
    • Missouri General Education Assessment must be passed before admittance
    • Multiple field experiences can be difficult to complete for working professionals
    66%OSR Score

    The Early Childhood Education program at Central Methodist University is offered online, on-campus, and via a hybrid format. Requiring 120 credit hours, this program includes key coursework in Methods of Teaching Mathematics, Educational Psychology and Creative Arts. Related degrees are available in Special Education, Middle School Education, and Educational Studies.

  29. Concordia University-Portland

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $42,750/$42,750
    Acceptance72
    Earnings Potential69
    Online Presence1
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention92
    Student Satisfaction82
    Reputation77
    Pros
    • Courses can be completed at any time of the day
    • Collaborative course structure offers built-in support systems and networking
    • Scholarships available
    Cons
    • Non-licensure program
    • Must have some college credits to begin studies
    • Foundational courses in spiritual formation and intercultural experiences required
    65%OSR Score

    This program, designed with the Early Childhood Professional Preparation Standards in mind, is ideal for future educators. Each student is required to complete 109 credit hours of study, with core coursework including Well-Being of the Child and Innovative and Creative Approaches to Learning. Each course lasts only eight weeks, and allows students to interact with faculty and peers via interactive discussion boards.

  30. University of Phoenix-Arizona

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $20,787/$20,787
    Acceptance88
    Earnings Potential53
    Online Presence32
    Online Program Quality67
    Retention75
    Student Satisfaction74
    Reputation70
    Pros
    • Students receive access to hundreds of K-12 teaching partnerships around the country
    • Ideal for candidates with no teaching experience
    • Tuition is guaranteed throughout the duration of the degree program
    Cons
    • Some previous college experience may be required
    • Field experiences and student teaching required
    • 54 General Education credits required
    65%OSR Score

    The University of Phoenix is unique in that it allows students to pursue their coursework one class at a time, enjoying flexibility and diversity in the curriculum. Students may receive college credit for previous work experiences as they study under the guidance of dedicated staff. Key coursework emphasizes hands-on experience and offers students multiple avenues to complete internships and student teaching.

  31. Grand Canyon University

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $32,100/$32,100
    Acceptance67
    Earnings Potential40
    Online Presence19
    Online Program Quality59
    Retention90
    Student Satisfaction77
    Reputation55
    Pros
    • Excellent financial aid options such as Servant Scholars Program
    • Leads to teacher licensure
    • Up to 90 transfer credits required
    Cons
    • Nearly a third of all required credits are in General Education
    • University identifies as a private Christian university, which can be limiting for some
    • Practicum hours and state examinations required
    64%OSR Score

    This 120-credit hour program is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. Students will take unique core courses in topics like Educating the Exceptional Learner. Each course lasts only seven weeks, and with online tuition starting at just $440 per credit hour, this program is both convenient and affordable.

  32. Rasmussen College-Illinois

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $23,877/$23,877
    Acceptance67
    Earnings Potential46
    Online Presence14
    Online Program Quality74
    Retention100
    Student Satisfaction74
    Reputation50
    Pros
    • Flex Choice option allows for convenient, fast course completion
    • Two tracks available – Child Development and Early Childhood Education Leadership
    • Free career guidance
    Cons
    • Background check required
    • One of the more expensive options
    • Does not lead to certification
    63%OSR Score

    Rasmussen College is an innovator in higher education, offering the unique Flex Choice option that allows students to combine traditional online coursework with self-directed assessments. Candidates can even complete competency-based tasks so that they can demonstrate what they know without having to pay for unneeded credits. The program requires 180 credits, with core coursework covering topics like Child, Parent, and Family Support and Developmentally Appropriate Practices.

  33. University of West Alabama

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $21,047/$28,661
    Acceptance75
    Earnings Potential53
    Online Presence3
    Online Program Quality79
    Retention69
    Student Satisfaction72
    Reputation33
    Pros
    • Field experiences incorporated in the program
    • Each course lasts only 8 weeks
    • Extensive financial aid opportunities
    Cons
    • Non-certification program
    • Can take up to four years to complete
    • Technology fee for online students
    62%OSR Score

    Students will pursue interesting classes like advanced educational psychology and lifespan development and learning for a total of 123 credit hours. In addition, 15 hours of field courses are required to give students real-life experience in teaching. This program is one of the most affordable programs, with 80 percent of University of West Alabama students receiving some form of financial aid.

  34. Pacific Oaks College

    Tuition in State/Out of State: not reported/not reported
    Acceptance77
    Earnings Potential53
    Online Presence7
    Online Program Quality79
    Retention78
    Student Satisfaction75
    Reputation50
    Pros
    • Can be completed in 2 years of full-time study
    • Eligible for Prior Learning Assessment credits
    • Four different degree specializations available
    Cons
    • 3 years of experience needed to apply
    • Multiple examinations required for admission
    • Upper division course tuition is over twice that of lower division courses
    61%OSR Score

    The online Bachelor’s in Early Childhood Education at Pacific Oaks College requires 63 units for degree completion. Students are required to take classes such as The Creative Arts in Early Childhood Education and Creating Inclusive Environments. This program is unique in that it offers multiple specializations, including those in Trauma, STEAM, and Dual California Teaching Credential.

  35. Southern Oregon University

    Tuition in State/Out of State: $22,878/$38,221
    Acceptance86
    Earnings Potential72
    Online Presence1
    Online Program Quality13
    Retention83
    Student Satisfaction73
    Reputation58
    Pros
    • Transfer agreements with hundreds of regional community colleges
    • Multiple scholarships available
    • One of the most affordable options
    Cons
    • General education and prerequisite courses must be completed at a local community college
    • Does not lead to licensure
    • Some transfer credits may not be accepted
    57%OSR Score

    Although this top-ranked, affordable program does not lead to initial licensure in most states, it does allow candidates to pursue an easy pathway to obtain a certificate with further education. The Early Childhood Development program is a degree completion option, including classes like Children at Risk and Whole Child Development. The program includes a practicum and requires 60 credits of online early childhood courses.