Early Childhood Education and Family Studies - Degree

Associate of Applied Science Degree Program | mhcc.edu/ECEandFamilyStudies 

Faculty Adviser

Yolanda Buenafe: 503-491-7129 | Room ECC106 | Yolanda.Buenafe@mhcc.edu

The Early Childhood Education and Family Studies program prepares students to work with young children and their families in a variety of settings and sets the stage for those who wish to pursue higher levels of education and training. It is a broad-based foundation of theory and practice intended to support both those who have a definite career goal and those who are exploring potential options for working with children and families.

Coursework and practicum experiences emphasize the understanding and application of typical child growth and development theories, positive guidance approaches, high quality interactions and engaging curriculum experiences with children, and fostering development in all domains for children birth to five.

As an open entry program, we welcome students of diverse backgrounds and ages. All students must demonstrate the necessary emotional stability and maturity, the cognitive skills and abilities, and the physical stamina and responsiveness needed by professionals in this field. Students with challenges in any area should consult the program adviser for individual planning.

Students must fulfill all program competencies and expectations with or without accommodations, including those of our practicum courses in classrooms with young children. The number of practicum (co-op) placement sites is limited and students may only enroll in these courses with program faculty permission.

Graduates are prepared to be employed in a variety of capacities including working with children birth to five in early learning programs, assisting with instruction in the primary grades, and advocating for families in education and social service settings.

Program Outcomes

At the completion of this program, students should be able to:

  • Design learning environments to support children’s development and learning in all domains
  • Implement Developmentally Appropriate Practices and all relevant guidelines
  • Articulate the importance of effective observation, documentation and assessment of children’s development
  • Develop positive relationships with families, colleagues, and community members
  • Apply content knowledge and inquiry tools to construct meaningful curriculum
  • Demonstrate an exemplary work ethic and uphold the standards of the early childhood profession

Students with a non-credit credential, such as the Child Development Associate (CDA) or Step 7 on the Oregon Registry, may apply for up to 12 transcripted credits at MHCC upon completion of one ECE credit course at MHCC. See the program adviser for more information. Students must successfully complete first-year classes/certificate coursework prior to admission to second-year classes. Program advisers will determine individual eligibility.

For the most part, courses that fulfill general education requirements can be taken in any term. Students should work with the faculty adviser(s) to create a custom academic plan based on course placement levels, career goals, and full time/part time status.

Admitted students may also log on to Navigate to start the process of building an academic plan based on this major and can notify an adviser for review.

Students must earn a grade of “C” or higher in all program (ECE) courses.

Plan of Study Grid
First Quarter
ECE125 The Early Childhood Professional 3
ECE140 Introduction to Early Childhood Education 3
ECE158 Learning Environments 3
ECE170 Health, Safety and Nutrition 3
WR121 English Composition (Course offered online) 4
Second Quarter
ECE144 Observation Techniques 2
ECE145 Positive Guidance 3
ECE147 Infant/Toddler Caregiving 3
ECE166 Seminar - Beginning 1
WE280CDC1 Co-op Education - Beginning - Early Childhood Education 1 3
Beginning Algebra II (Course offered online) (or higher)
or Quantitative Reasoning I
Third Quarter
ECE135 Math Concepts in Early Childhood 3
ECE171 Families and Diversity 3
ECE173 Creative Art Experiences 3
HE261 CPR - Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation 1 1
Health and Physical Education requirement (HE252 required for those without First Aid certification) 2-3
Elective 2 4
Fourth Quarter
ECE243 Language and Literacy 3
ECE244 Observation and Documentation 3
ECE258 Curriculum Development 3
ECE285 Seminar - Intermediate 1
WE280CDC1A Co-op Education - Intermediate - Early Childhood Education 3
Human Relations requirement 3-4
Fifth Quarter
ECE248 Special Needs and Inclusion 2
ECE256 Science in Early Childhood 3
ECE260 Values and Issues in Early Childhood Education 3
ECE261 Child Development Principles 3
Elective 3 4
Sixth Quarter
ECE236 Social/Emotional Development 3
ECE246 Home/School Relations 2
ECE286 Seminar - Advanced 1
WE280CDC2 Internship 3
Elective, if needed to reach 90 credits 3-4
 Total Credits91-94