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Early Childhood Development

Early Childhood Development - Certificate

Program Requirements:

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Admission Type:

General College Admission
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(843) 347-3186

Early Childhood

If you enjoy children and creative activities, possess patience, excellent communication skills, sound decision-making abilities, and have a strong work ethic, HGTC's Early Childhood Development Certificate (ECD) might be the right path for you. Early Childhood Development professionals work in partnership with families to create a nurturing environment that is respectful of culture and rich in experiences to promote the optimal growth and development of each child. Students in this program receive the tools and resources necessary to provide language- and literacy-rich environments, appropriate math and science skills, an inquiry-based approach to learning about the world, and safe, healthy environments that promote emotional and social well-being. The program includes interactive classroom experiences, as well as off-site experiences in a variety of childcare and early education environments.

Specific Admission Requirements for Program

  • Criminal Background Check is a prerequisite for lab classes and field experiences in licensed child care centers (not required for ECD 101)
  • Obtain Negative PPD (not required for ECD 101)
  • Obtain certification in Pediatric CPR and First Aid prior to graduation (ECD 135)

Course Sequence and Progression Requirements
A minimum grade of "C" or better is required for all ECD-prefixed courses for progression and graduation. Most Early Care and Education (ECD) courses are offered only once each year, so following the recommended course sequence is extremely important.

Career Outlook

Recent scientific research has confirmed the need for high-quality care and education during a child's early years, when optimal brain growth and development occurs. This has increased the demand for qualified early-childhood professionals. The Early Childhood Development certificate prepares graduates to work in a variety of settings for children ages birth through eight years. These settings include:

  • Childcare centers
  • Head Start Centers
  • Family childcare homes
  • Morning preschool programs
  • After-school programs
  • Programs for children with differing abilities
  • Summer camp programs
  • Private schools
  • Public Schools

Employers of HGTC Alumni Include:

  • Horry and Georgetown County Schools
  • Horry County Head Start
  • Child Development Ministries at First United Methodist Church
  • The Learning Tree Day School
  • The Learning Station
  • Gateway Academy
  • Carolina Forest Child Development Center

For more information about careers, visit O*Net Online for an overview of South Carolina and National earnings statistics, and Career Services for more employment, career, and professional development resources. 

Career Pathways

Previous education and work experience could qualify for Credit for Prior Learning, saving you time and money.
Go to the University Transfer page for more information.

For more information, contact:
Becky Hubbard - (843) 349-7117
Allissa Santmyer - (843) 349-7500
Babs Crane - (843) 349-5266
Jennifer Cusack - (843) 349-5261

T.E.A.C.H. Logo

T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® South Carolina provides scholarships for teachers, directors, owners, and family/group providers working in childcare to complete coursework in early care and education with little to no cost. These scholarships are available to eligible individuals working a minimum number of hours per week and meet the maximum pay requirements in a licensed or registered child care facility through the South Carolina Department of Social Services. T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® South Carolina provides scholarships to complete course work in early childhood education courses toward the South Carolina Early Childhood Credential, a Certificate or an Associate Degree in Early Childhood Education. Eligible individuals can even transfer to a partnering 4-year college/university to complete a bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education. Students who earn credentials may be eligible for a Smart Money bonus through this organization as well.

  • Level One The SC Early Childhood Credential - $200:
    • ECD 101 Introduction to Early Childhood
  • Level Two Preschool Credential - $300:
    • ECD 102 Child Development I
    • ECD 105 Guidance and Classroom Management
    • ECD 107 Exceptional Children
  • Level Two Special Needs Credential - $300
    • ECD 102 Child Development I
    • ECD 107 Exceptional Children
    • ECD 132 Creative Expressions
  • Level Three Preschool Credential - $500:
    • ECD 131 Language Arts
    • ECD 132 Creative Expressions or ECD 133 Science and Math
    • ECD 203 Child Development II

Curriculum Sequence

First Semester - Fall Course Title Semester
Credit Hours
ECD 101 Introduction to Early Childhood 3
ECD 102 Growth and Development I 3
ECD 132 Creative Experiences 3
Second Semester - Spring    
ECD 105 Guidance - Classroom Management** 3
ECD 131 Language Arts** 3
ECD 203 Growth and Development II* 3
Third Semester - Summer    
ECD 107 Exceptional Child*/*** 3
ECD 133 Science and Math Concepts** 3
ECD 135 Health, Safety, and Nutrition**/*** 3



*Students are required to conduct observations of children, families and learning environments in a variety of early childhood settings.
**Students are required to participate in lab/class assignments involving visits to and/or work in licensed childcare facilities.
***ECD 107 is also available in the spring and ECD 135 is also available in the fall.
Students in this program are strongly encouraged to take classes in this order.