Which CDA Setting is Right for You?
The CDA can be obtained in four different settings:
- the Family Child Care setting. This setting is for those who work in a registered or licensed family home day care. Therefore, if you work in your home, this setting is for you!
- the Infant and Toddler Center-Based setting, for those who work in a registered day care center with children ages birth to 3 years. So, if you work in a center with infants and toddlers, this setting is for you!
- the Preschool Center-Based setting, for those who work in a registered day care center with children ages 3 to 5. Therefore, if you work with preschoolers in a center, this setting is for you!
- the “Home Visitor” setting, for those who make home visits to families and/or work in a program that teaches parenting skills to adults.
So, how do you choose a CDA setting? Choose the setting that matches your work setting!
How to choose your CDA setting
In order to decide which of these settings is right for you, you have to ask yourself 2 questions:
- Which of these settings have I (or will I) be able to accumulate a total of 480 hours of direct work experience (within a 3 year window) working with children?
- Which of these settings will I be able to invite a CDA representative to come visit and observe my competency working directly with children?
So, if one of the CDA settings listed above matches BOTH of these questions, then you have found the setting that’s right for you!
Now the question is, do you qualify to get started?
CDA Credential Qualifications
- …hold a high school diploma (or equivalent) or currently take classes as part of an early education vocational program in a high school at the junior or senior grade level?
- …speak, read, and write well enough to communicate with children and their parents, and demonstrate to a CDA representative your competency as a child care provider through the completion of a Professional Portfolio?
If you answered yes to BOTH of these questions, then you are ready to get started on the path toward earning a CDA!
Interested in learning more about what you can do with a CDA Credential? Check out our blog What Can You Do With A CDA?
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