What Courses Do I Take?

Learning Tracks

SFL's VA-ECAP team will determine required courses for each student during the application process. Typically, students will need to complete these four courses under the Child Development and Leadership & Management tracks listed below:
 

Note: Prospective VA-ECAP Credential students must be accepted into the credentialing program before enrolling in Virginia community college course(s) unless they have already completed them.

At this time, equivalency courses in lieu of CHD 120 & CHD 205 are not accepted as requirements for receiving the VA-ECAP Credential. 

Leadership & Management
Offered by SFL

Child Development
Offered by Virginia community colleges

SFL LM 101 - Management 
(36 clock hours. Optional: CEUs offered by Old Dominion University- Required fee: $35.)

CHD 120 - Introduction to Early Childhood Education
(3 CR)

SFL LM 102 - Leadership*
(36 clock hours. Optional: CEUs offered by Old Dominion University- Required fee: $35.)

*Prerequisite: SFL LM 101

CHD 205 - Guiding the Behavior of Children*
(3 CR) 

*Prerequisite: CHD 120

Facts to Understand about Taking the Courses

Should I enroll in Level I or Level II?

Level I is designed for early childhood educators who have obtained a Child Development Associate (CDA) Credential OR Early Childhood Development Career Studies Certificate. If you have a current (unexpired) CDA/Early Childhood Development C.S.C. in addition to the core requirements, you must apply for Level I.

Level II is designed for early childhood educators who have obtained an Associates Degree in Early Childhood Education/Child Development or have a Bachelors/Masters degree in any field  and meet core requirements.

What is the difference in coursework between Level I and Level II?

Students from each level must complete a total of four courses under two tracks. Students enrolled in both levels must complete the CHD 120 & CHD 205 courses offered by Virginia community colleges. However, in each of the SFL courses (SFL LM 101 & SFL LM 102), students are placed in learning groups designed to challenge their level of learning. Students in each learning group are required to read course-related content, articles, participate in rich discussions, and complete assignments.

Will I need to take courses under both tracks if I am enrolled in Level II?

Yes, Level II students will also need to take courses under both tracks to earn the VA-ECAP Credential.

What if I already took CHD 120 – Introduction to Early Childhood Education and CHD 205 – Guiding the Behavior of Children?
Applications for acceptance in the VA-ECAP Credentialing Program are reviewed by the SFL's VA-ECAP team who determines which courses each prospective student needs to complete. If you have already successfully completed CHD 120 & CHD 205 courses as part of your Associate’s degree in ECE/CD, you must provide a copy of your official transcripts, along with the VA-ECAP application, so that this information is considered in the application process.

What do I need to do in order to complete the courses?
Students must complete all assignments and course-related tasks in a timely manner to successfully complete the SFL Leadership & Management courses. Students must follow all instructions posted by the instructor in the course delivery platform. For Child Development courses, please follow guidelines by Virginia community college instructors. Students in each learning group must read course-related content, articles, participate in rich discussions, and complete assignments with weekly task deadlines throughout a 15 week semester.

Do I need to be employed at a center-based early learning program while enrolled in the VA-ECAP Credential Program?
This program is applicable for center-based programs. Students must have access to a center-based early learning program (NOT Home-based/Family child care) while enrolled in the VA-ECAP Credential Program. Students who are not currently employed at a center-based early learning program must make their own arrangements for access to a licensed center-based early learning program (NOT Home-based/Family child care) while enrolled in the credentialing program. Students will need to submit an Early Childhood Program Accessibility Verification Letter from a program director acknowledging access to their center-based early learning program to complete required assignments and tasks. 

How long does it take to complete the Credential Program?
Students can complete the entire credentialing program in as little as one semester if enrolled in all required courses simultaneously.  However, students can take as few as one course per semester to balance home, work, and school, as long as all course work is complete within a two-year window.