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4 Semesters (2 Years)
Credential Awarded
Ontario College Diploma

About the Program

In this four-semester diploma program, you will learn about the physical, cognitive, social and emotional needs of children. You will understand how to develop and implement inclusive programming in order to support the healthy development of children ranging in age from infancy to school-age.

Your studies will include courses in child development, curriculum. philosophy of education, communication, working with families and administration.

Each week you will spend three days in class and two days practicing your skills in field placement. If you choose to study in the summer, you will have the option to earn your Early Childhood Education (ECE) diploma in 16 months.

Seneca offers two lab schools, which are model child care centres that provide you with opportunities for observation and programming.

To practice in Ontario as a Registered Early Childhood Educator (RECE) graduates must apply for registration with the College of Early Childhood Educators (CECE). Graduates of this program will meet the educational requirement for membership.

Note: If you are currently working in child care and would like to work towards your Certificate of Apprenticeship and ECE diploma at Seneca, please contact your local Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities Apprenticeship Office:

  • Toronto 416.326.5800
  • Peel 1-800-736-5520
  • Markham 905-513-2695


Throughout this program you will develop the following skills:

  • Design healthy, safe, inclusive and engaging environments for children from infancy to school age. 
  • Plan and implement inclusive programming to support children’s development using current theories.
  • Build positive relationships with children, families, colleagues and other professionals

Work Experience

Field Placement

Field placement is central to the learning experience, so you will be placed in the field for two days each week during each semester. Field placement provides the opportunity to integrate classroom learning into practice with groups of children in the community.

Your Career

When you graduate from this program, these are the types of employers waiting for you:

  • Child care centres

  • Family resource programs

  • Settlement centres 

  • EarlyON centres

  • After-school programs

  • Nursery schools

  • Parent co-operative centres 

  • Private home child care

  • Centres for children with special needs

  • Kindergarten in the elementary school system


Upon graduation you will qualify to join the following affiliations and associations:

  • Association of Early Childhood Educators Ontario (AECEO)

  • The Canadian Association for Young Children (CAYC)

  • Canadian Child Care Federation (CCCF) 

  • National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)

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