B.S.Ed. Early Learning and Development

early learning

The Bachelor of Science in Education, with a major in Early Learning and Development, is designed for individuals who wish to teach in preschool or child care centers with children from birth to five years of age. Students are prepared to pursue different opportunities in the field, from operating a childcare center to managing an early childcare agency.

This program is unlike any other offered, allowing students to enter an early learning non-certification degree without GACE requirements. However, students are required to take the Georgia Educator Ethics Entrance Exam (Program Entry 350), available on the GACE Website. The program will focus on the growth, development and learning styles of infants, toddlers and young children. Students are taught the theory and practice of management and human resource issues in childcare centers and other early care and education settings.


Upon completion of the program, students will demonstrate proficiency in: 

  • Child care development and classroom strategy
  • Building an integrated, technologically enhanced curriculum that meets the needs of children in child care centers
  • Preparation and knowledge of various curriculum models and best practices in early learning and development programs


Observation hours are an integral part of the teacher preparation program. Each candidate is expected to complete a sequentially planned series of observation hours in diverse settings, and meet cluster requirements of their individual program plan. (See program plans for specific number of field experiences and cluster requirement information.) Observation hours are coordinated through the Office of Field Placement and Sheila Thompson.


The B.S. in Early Learning and Development program is delivered in a flexible format, which includes evening face-to-face classes that meet once a week. The program is offered at Mercer’s Atlanta, Douglas County and Henry County locations and students are admitted five times per year in August, October, January, March and May, providing students the flexibility and convenience to continue working while earning their degree at their pace. Students are also required to participate in observations, which occur during the day.

Learn more about our Bachelor of Science in Education, Early Learning and Development degree


Ready to take the next step?

Schedule your personalized admissions counseling appointment or contact Renee Slaton at 678.547.6500 or enroll@mercer.edu for more information.