Early childhood education programs are for those interested in receiving a degree in the education of infants, preschool, and pre-kindergarten through third grade, and in some cases up to sixth grade. The three schools included in this article offer bachelor’s degrees and some schools offer master and doctoral programs in early childhood education. Many of the programs emphasize educational theory or leadership and offer real-world experience in early childhood classrooms. You will find the top early childhood education programs at Vanderbilt University, The University of Texas at Austin and Arizona State University. Continue reading to learn more about the top early childhood education programs.

Top Early Childhood Education Programs

  • Vanderbilt University
  • The University of Texas at Austin
  • Arizona State University

Vanderbilt University

Vanderbilt University is located in Nashville, TN and in the late 70s merged with Peabody College. They offer a Bachelor’s Degree in early childhood education. The students begin field observation and participation in classrooms of the local schools quickly. Peabody College also offers experimental programs where students can participate. Students are required to complete a second major in child studies. This adds courses beyond the standard 120 needed in a primary major. They also have the opportunity to study abroad through a variety of international partner institutions.


  • Placed as early as second semester in real classrooms
  • Gain a large amount of practical experience
  • Second major in child studies is required

The University of Texas at Austin

This Undergraduate degree program is for early childhood through 6th grade. The University of Texas at Austin offers a generalist option or a bilingual generalist option. This program focuses on early childhood education issues and child development and research methodology. Their degree options expand beyond Bachelor’s to a Master of Education, or Doctor of Philosophy in Early Childhood Education. Within the Doctoral program, students are offered specialized courses in play and thinking as a social construction. The students also have access to education related organizations, such as Teachers of Tomorrow and the Student Council for Exceptional Children.


  • Offers many education related student organizations
  • Offers a bilingual option for degree choices
  • Offers a Doctoral Degree in Philosophy of Early Childhood Education

Arizona State University

Arizona State University is located in Tempe, Arizona. The Bachelor of Arts in Education degree offers certifications in both early childhood and early childhood special education. Students receive training in areas such as, community building, public policy and technology in the classroom. Arizona State University offers a Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction that focuses on early childhood education. Outside of the real world classroom experience, the Master program can be completed online. Students in the Master Program can take extra credits to earn additional certification.


  • Offers certification in special education
  • Offers a Master of Education
  • Completely online option for Master’s Degree


If you are interested in Early Childhood Education Programs, there are many options available to you, each with their unique offerings. Some offer advanced degrees, or specialized education-related organizations. Some even offer international opportunities to teach and learn in other countries. Make sure you look at all these schools have to offer and be sure to find the school that offers you exactly what you want from an educational perspective. The three listed in this article are the top Early Childhood Education Programs available because of what they have to offer you.