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Early Childhood Growth and Development




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University of Phoenix reserves the right to modify courses. While widely available, not all programs are available to residents of all states. Please check with a University Enrollment Representative.

Course level: Undergraduate

This course examines the theories, concepts, and trends related to early childhood growth and development from prenatal development through the early school years. It examines the physical, social, emotional, cognitive, and language development of children from birth through age 8/grade 3. The course focuses on defining the various stages as they impact instructional practices and decisions in the context of the early learning environment. This course is not available for students residing Alaska, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Iowa, Idaho, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New York, North Dakota, South Dakota, Texas, Wisconsin, Wyoming  and individuals who live outside the United States are not eligible to enroll in this course.



What you'll learn

Course skills and outcomes

Week 1

  • Define the characteristics of early childhood growth and development.
  • Identify some early childhood theorists’ contributions to the field.
  • Analyze common theories of early childhood development.

Week 2

  • Describe the stages of prenatal development.
  • Summarize the expected cognitive, social, emotional, and physical development of a newborn.
  • Identify environmental factors that may affect prenatal development.
  • Discuss genetic disorders and threats to development in newborns.
  • Define the role of a caregiver in the life of a newborn.

Week 3

  • Describe the physical characteristics of infants and toddlers.
  • Compare and contrast the similarities between infants and toddlers.
  • Summarize the expected physical, cognitive, language, social, and emotional development of infants and toddlers.
  • Define the role of an early childhood educator for infants and toddlers.

Week 4

  • Summarize the expected physical, cognitive, language, social, and emotional development of preschoolers.
  • Investigate and explain the environmental factors that may affect preschool or kindergarten growth and development.
  • Define developmentally appropriate practice.
  • Apply the understanding of growth and development to classroom practices and environments.

Week 5

  • Summarize physical, social, emotional, and moral development in the primary elementary years.
  • Describe the effect of poverty, health problems, and violence on child development in the primary elementary years.
  • Define supportive learning environments in the primary grades.


Why take courses at University of Phoenix

Accreditation that matters

We’ve been accredited by the Higher Learning Commission ( for more than 40 years.

Real-world instructors

Learn from instructors who bring an average of 25 years of working experience to the classroom.

Affordable and potentially reimbursable

Our tuition and fees are competitive and fixed. Also, check to see if your employer will cover you for this course.

Next Steps

Start a conversation about your future with an enrollment representative today.

Start a conversation about your future with an enrollment representative today.

Call (844) 937-8679

Transfer Credits

Credit Transfer

Credit Transfer

Need to transfer credits to another college or university?

Before you enroll in a course, check with your school of choice to make sure they will accept our transfer credits and to understand any requirements or limitations. Then you can complete your course, and request your official transcript be sent to your school. That’s it!

How to request your transcripts