Online Class: Early Childhood Development 101

This course is designed to help you follow the growth, development, and milestones of a child from birth to three years of age.

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  • 9
    Lessons
  • 20
    Exams &
    Assignments
  • 3,989
    Students
    have taken this course
  • 8
    Hours
    average time
  • 0.8
    CEUs
 
 

Course Description

Child development may be defined as the various changes that occur for humans (e.g., physical, cognitive, social, and emotional) between birth and adulthood.  Child development may also examine changes that occur prenatally (i.e. before birth).  The changes that happen before birth and in the early years of life impact us all and shape who we become as adults.  Early child development often focuses on the first five years of life.

Child development is a multidisciplinary field which relies on knowledge from several other fields such as psychology, sociology, human development, and the medical field.  The study of child development is important to improve outcomes for children and in turn, society as a whole.  The following course provides key knowledge of this field.  Each lesson includes and introduction, a lesson which contains the major aspects of each topic area, a conclusion section which summarizes the lesson, and a quiz on the lesson.  Some lessons also contain helpful online resources for learning more about early childhood development.  After taking this course, a person should be familiar with the basics of the field of child development, the four key domains of child development, developmental milestones, and development disabilities.  

What is child development? 

Child development may be defined as the various changes that occur for humans -- physical, cognitive, social, and emotional -- between birth and adulthood. Child development may also examine changes that occur prenatally (before birth). The changes that happen before birth and in the early years of life impact us all and shape who we become as adults. Early child development often focuses on the first five years of life. 

The study of child development is often broken down into major domains of development. These include physical, cognitive and social-emotional development. In addition, language/literacy development and identity development are often studied within child development. The chart below summarizes each of these domains.

Physical development

Biological development of the human body and skills that are performed using the body

 

Examples of physical development in childhood: growth of limbs, development of the brain

 

Examples of skills performed related to physical development: learning to crawl, walk, and run

Cognitive development

Development of thinking processes that occur for human beings

Examples of cognitive development in childhood: children performing mental reasoning and making decisions based on their reasoning

Social-emotional development

Development of the skills used to form and maintain human relationships and connectedness; development of emotional skills

Examples of social-emotional development in childhood: babies developing the ability to self-soothe (e.g., thumb sucking); children learning to share toys with others

Additional domains:

 

 

Language & literacy development

Development of the skills used to communicate with others through languages, as well as the ability to read and write

Examples of language and literacy development in childhood: learning to speak the native language of one's parents; a deaf child learning sign language; a young child learning to read

Identity development

Development of one's sense of self; identity may develop around one's gender, culture, and morals

Examples of identity development in childhood: a child learning what behaviors are considered "right" vs. "wrong" (i.e., acceptable vs. unacceptable) within their culture; a child learning what behaviors are expected based on their gender and using this knowledge to guide their actions

Why does child development matter?

The main reason that child development is a field of study is to improve child outcomes. There are many uses for the knowledge generated from the study of child development. For one, child development knowledge can be used to inform parenting practices and optimize outcomes for individual children. For example, the study of infants generates knowledge to help parents learn what to expect during their child's first year of life and interpret infant behaviors, like crying and eye-gazing. Understanding a baby's behaviors helps parents better meet the needs of their children and improves outcomes for children.

Another use of the knowledge generated from the study of child development is to inform the practices used by child care professionals, such as child care providers, teachers, social workers, child psychologists, and pediatric doctors and nurses. For example, child development studies help define the normative physical changes that should occur for children, which enables medical and mental health professionals to detect the presence of development disabilities and disorders, like autism. 

The knowledge generated from the study of child development is also used to inform public policy. Policies that affect children may operate on the micro level (e.g., local community regulations) or on the macro level (e.g., federal legislation). For example, in the U.S., federal law makers have used the results of child development studies to shape educational programs.

How is child development studied

Child development is studied using major theories of the broader field of human development and scientific research, which are guided by these theories. The concept of "nature versus nurture," which refers to the idea that all humans are influenced by both nature-based factors (e.g., genetics) and nurture-based factors (e.g., home environment in which one is raised), is one that underlies the study of child development. The theories used in child development all vary in the degree to which they emphasize heredity versus environmental influences.


  • Completely Online
  • Self-Paced
  • 6 Months to Complete
  • 24/7 Availability
  • Start Anytime
  • PC & Mac Compatible
  • Android & iOS Friendly
  • Accredited CEUs
Universal Class is an IACET Accredited Provider
 

Course Lessons

Average Lesson Rating:
4.6 / 5 Stars (Average Rating)
"Extraordinarily Helpful"
(2,615 votes)

Lesson 1: Basics of Child Development

Child development is a multidisciplinary field that relies on knowledge from several other fields, such as psychology, sociology, human development, and the medical field. 21 Total Points
  • Lesson 1 Video
  • Lesson discussions: Reasons for Taking this Course
  • Complete Assignment: An Introduction
  • Complete: Lesson 1 Assignment
  • Assessment: Lesson 1 Exam

Lesson 2: Prenatal Development

Prenatal development is the earliest stage of human development. It pertains to all of the development that occurs before birth. Additional lesson topics: Stages of Prenatal Development; Problems With Prenatal Development 19 Total Points
  • Lesson 2 Video
  • Complete: Lesson 2 Assignment
  • Assessment: Lesson 2 Exam

Lesson 3: Infant Development

Infant development is the earliest stage of a childs development after birth. In general, the term infant refers to babies between the ages of 0 to 12 months. Additional lesson topics: Infant development: Birth to Several months; How Your Newborn Grows: Infant Development 20 Total Points
  • Lesson 3 Video
  • Complete: Lesson 3 Assignment
  • Assessment: Lesson 3 Exam

Lesson 4: Physical Development

This lesson covers the key areas of knowledge one should have regarding early childhood physical development, including the development of the body, motor skills, senses, and brain. 19 Total Points
  • Lesson 4 Video
  • Complete: Lesson 4 Assignment
  • Assessment: Lesson 4 Exam

Lesson 5: Cognitive Development

The term cognition refers to how the mind operates and the study of cognitive development focuses on how the mind thinks and learns during the early years of life. Additional lesson topics: Cognitive Developmental Milestones; Understanding your baby's cognitive development 20 Total Points
  • Lesson 5 Video
  • Complete: Lesson 5 Assignment
  • Assessment: Lesson 5 Exam

Lesson 6: Emotional and Social Development

The following lesson covers the key areas of knowledge one should have in regard to early childhood emotional and social development, including the key areas of this type of development. Additional lesson topics: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cafXa6Z-elA; Understanding Social and Emotional Development in Preschoolers; Social and Emotional Development in Early Childhood 20 Total Points
  • Lesson 6 Video
  • Complete: Lesson 6 Assignment
  • Assessment: Lesson 6 Exam

Lesson 7: Language and Literacy Development

Language and literacy development are major domains of early childhood development. Additional lesson topics: The Role of Early Oral Language in Literacy Development; How important is it? 14 Total Points
  • Lesson 7 Video
  • Complete: Lesson 7 Assignment
  • Assessment: Lesson 7 Exam

Lesson 8: Developmental Milestones

The following lesson presents the key milestones that babies and toddlers should reach within their early childhood development. Additional lesson topics: American Academy of Pediatrics Ages and Stages Information 20 Total Points
  • Lesson 8 Video
  • Complete: Lesson 8 Assignment
  • Assessment: Lesson 8 Exam

Lesson 9: Developmental Disabilities

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, developmental disabilities are a group of conditions due to an impairment in physical, learning, language, or behavior areas. 63 Total Points
  • Lesson 9 Video
  • Lesson discussions: How would you rate this course?; Program Evaluation Follow-up Survey (End of Course); Course Comments
  • Complete: Lesson 9 Assignment
  • Assessment: Lesson 9 Exam
  • Assessment: The Final Exam
216
Total Course Points
 

Learning Outcomes

By successfully completing this course, students will be able to:
  • Describe brain development in early childhood.
  • Describe the developmental connections made in early childhood.
  • Describe development in infants.
  • Describe developments in early language and literacy.
  • Describe ways to communicate with your baby.
  • Summarize cognitive development from infant to early childhood.
  • Describe the emotional and social development of children.
  • Summarize the effects of maltreatment on early brain development.
  • Describe developmental issues of premature infants.
  • Recognize and describe developmental disabilities in children.
  • Demonstrate mastery of lesson content at levels of 70% or higher.
 

Additional Course Information

Online CEU Certificate
  • Document Your Lifelong Learning Achievements
  • Earn an Official Certificate Documenting Course Hours and CEUs
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  • View and Share Your Certificate Online or Download/Print as PDF
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Course Title: Early Childhood Development 101
Course Number: 8900269
Lessons Rating: 4.6 / 5 Stars (2,615 votes)
Languages: English - United States, Canada and other English speaking countries
Last Updated: May 2021
Course Type: Self-Paced, Online Class
CEU Value: 0.8 IACET CEUs (Continuing Education Units)
CE Accreditation: Universal Class, Inc. has been accredited as an Authorized Provider by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET).
Grading Policy: Earn a final grade of 70% or higher to receive an online/downloadable CEU Certification documenting CEUs earned.
Assessment Method: Lesson assignments and review exams
Syllabus: View Syllabus
Course Fee: $90.00 U.S. dollars

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Student Testimonials

  • "It was an exceptionally helpful course because I have witnessed and endured my own form of mental/ emotional disabilities. I am fortunate to be a part of the informative courses that make me a better person and teacher." -- Chante B.
  • "Instructor is knowledgeable and puts her students first, all the email correspondence was answered and timely. Thank you." -- Leela G.
  • "The course was easy to access and the lessons were organized and easy to follow." -- Deanna T.
  • "The instructor was very nice she put nice comments about my work." -- Jessica F.
  • "Wonderful course thank you so much for taking the time to do all this." -- Michael B.
  • "I enjoyed taking this course. I did learn alot." -- Renee H.
  • "The instructor was very supportive." -- Cindy N.
  • "I think in general it was great!" -- Luz G.
  • "Wonderful course and instructor." -- Marta C.
  • "I really liked this course. It helped me a lot. I like my instructor too. Thanks so much." -- Jessica K.
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