Early Childhood Education students develop the knowledge and skills necessary to work with young children and their families in diverse early learning settings in British Columbia. Students develop skills through courses and practica designed to integrate academic and practical experiences. This program may be completed on a part- or full-time basis. Students may complete the program within their own community through online delivery.
Northern Lights College has a memorandum of agreement with Educacentre to provide courses to be translated into French and offered to their students.
The program meets provincial training requirements for Early Childhood Educators in the province of British Columbia. In addition to the education requirements, individuals must also complete 500 hours of work experience in the field under the direction of a licensed Early Childhood Educator to qualify for a License to Practice as an Early Childhood Educator. For additional information regarding provincial training requirements and career prospects, students may visit the Early Childhood Educator Registry website.
The Early Childhood Education program has multiple entry-points throughout the year, so applications are accepted on an ongoing basis. Typical application periods are as follows: May-July for the fall semester; October-November for the winter semester; and February-April for the spring and summer semesters.
Early Childhood Educator in a licensed group childcare centre or preschool, Program Supervisor, Assistant Director of a preschool or school age centre, Director of a preschool or school age centre, Nursery School Director, Family Child Care Provider, Child Development Counselor, Family Resource Centre Coordinator, Child Care Coordinator, ECE Researcher, Strong Start Facilitator, Daycare programs, Young Parent programs, Drop-In programs, Home Visit programs, Provincial Licensing Officer, Holiday Destination Children’s Program worker, Child Advocate, Nanny, or Respite Provider.
Location: Online/Distributed Delivery
Length: 38 weeks
Start: September, January, or April
Fees: Current Fee Schedule
- High school diploma or “mature student” status.
- Passing grade on the "Maîtrise de la langue" French test.
- Compulsory spoken English evaluation test.
- Criminal record check for the practicums.
- Valid certification in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) for children.
- Interview with the program coordinator.
- Doctor’s letter certifying good physical and mental health.
- Complete the designated Program Questionnaire.
- Provide a comprehensive letter stating background, interest, and goals in taking the program.
- Provide two current letters of reference (must be written and dated within the last year), attesting to personal suitability for working with young children.
- Provide a current certificate of good health from a physician.
- The program is eligible for Canada Student Loans. Visit StudentAid BC to apply for financial assistance online.
- Each student is required to authorize a Solicitor General's Criminal Record Check before participating in a practicum involving children or vulnerable adults. No student will be permitted to begin workplace practicum with children or vulnerable adults until the Criminal Record Check has been received and reviewed by NLC. Students are obligated to report any Schedule B criminal convictions that occur after they authorize a Criminal Record Check but are still enrolled in the program. Failure to do so may result in immediate dismissal from the program.
- Please note the following application deadlines: May 1 for Fall (September) start; October 1 for Winter (January) start; and February 1 for Spring (April) start.
- Students complete practica within their own communities provided the options exist for acceptable placements. Students unable to locate suitable practicum placements in their own communities may need to relocate to another community for one or more of the practica.
- The duration of study for the program will vary in length due to course offering schedules and student course selection, but may be completed in four semesters of full time studies.
- The information on this program page is a summary of the official Program Completion Guide approved by NLC’s Education Council. Download a PDF of the Program Completion Guide.
APPLY NOW for the Early Childhood Education – Educacentre Certificate program
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Program Chair: Cindy Page