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Online Master’s in Human Development: Early Childhood Education and Development Specialization

Kids smiling and dancing in a crowd

The Online M.A. Human Development: Early Childhood Education and Development focuses on critically evaluating the implications biological, sociological, psychological, and emotional factors have on skills and milestones that develop throughout a lifetime.

2 years full time or 4 years part time
30 credits required for completion
Available online

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Online M.A. Human Development: Early Childhood Education and Development

Students in Pacific Oaks Online M.A. Human Development: Early Childhood Education and Development program are immersed in theories of human development and in the biological, psychological, emotional, and sociological factors that contribute to an individual’s growth. In addition, this integrative program prepares and inspires graduates to bring social justice, advocacy, and respect for diversity and individualism to their careers.

Graduates from this human development program will be ready to apply these theories and principles to roles as an educator, caregiver, supervisor, and any capacity where a significant role is played in the development of children. Pacific Oaks’ graduates have gone on to pursue careers in education, administration and supervisory roles in a range of situations.

Other M.A. Human Development Specializations


All M.A. and Credential programs require fieldwork or field experience appropriate to the program emphasis. Fieldwork ranges from classroom observations to completion of fieldwork- related projects at the students’ place of employment.

Sample Courses

Play, Language, and Literacy Development

Students will evaluate the development of symbolic behaviors and the role of adults in supporting children’s play, language and literacy. Students will evaluate culturally relevant and developmentally appropriate curriculum and assessment design for diverse literacy learners. Students will assess the concept of play as the basis of learning, language, and literacy development in childhood. Topics include language development, dramatic play, using tools and materials to represent their experiences, and reading readiness. Observation of children required.

Modeling Family Engagement

This course is designed for administrators, teachers, staff, and parents to create effective teams that value working together with mutual respect. Student will evaluate and critique avenues, both direct classroom participation and program support activities for family engagement with preschool and elementary programs.

Students will also evaluate and create strategies for exploring experiences of power and powerlessness among people with diverse roles that include cultural and socioeconomic factors, the realities of working and single parent families, perceptions, and histories. Variation among program types are assessed and synthesized in the construction of new models of family engagement and collaboration with the school system.

Admissions Requirements

  • Demonstrated commitment to the mission and values of Pacific Oaks College
  • Bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution
  • Completed Application for Admission
  • Application Fee
  • Resume
  • Official transcripts from all institutions attended
  • Personal Statement
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