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What is Child Development?

The Child Development program trains students to work with infants, toddlers, preschool, and school age children in center-based child care, family child care, school districts (including Transitional Kindergarten) and afterschool programs.  It also prepares students to work in non-profit agencies that support children and families. Child Development courses also provide the opportunity to update knowledge and skills for in-service professionals.

Successful completion of specific Child Development courses fulfill the Early Childhood Education (ECE) requirements for the California Department of Social Services, Title 22 Regulations, to work in licensed childcare settings.   In addition, successful completion of specific Child Development courses fulfills the education requirements for a Child development permit, offered by the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing at various levels:  Assistant, Associate Teacher, Teacher, Master Teacher, Site Supervisor and Program Director.


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Career Opportunities:

A career in Child Development involves working with children and families to ensure positive emotional, social, physical, psychological, and cognitive development.  Professionals in Child Development usually work with children birth to eight years old and career opportunities include working as teachers and teaching assistants, researchers, technical specialists, data collectors, foster care and kinship specialist, and juvenile justice advocates. For a more complete list please of career opportunities follow this link (insert career list link).

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Hands on Experience:

While attending Child Development classes, students learn the most current practices in the field of Child Development with a focus on STEM.  This foundational learning is then taken into the Orfalea Child Development Center where students gain hands-on application of those skills they have learned in the classroom. In this award-winning STEM based lab school, students work closely with the Master Teachers to expand their skills in interacting with children while learning how to plan and implement effective learning experiences for young children. 


At this moment in our nation’s history, it is especially important for our field and our department to support the Black Lives Matter movement. Building relationships and understanding the context in which children and teachers live is at the forefront of our program’s pedagogy. The child development and education department at Ventura College stands fast in the equitable, thoughtful, responsive education and care of children and in the preparation of future teachers.