Academic Calendar

ECCS - Early Childhood Curriculum Studies

ECCS 101
Healthy Environments for Early Childhood
3 Credits

In this introductory course, students explore the components of quality early childhood settings. Attention is paid to relevant legislation, regulation, standards and appropriate practices in environments for young children. Selected types of early learning programs are reviewed. The role of the early childhood educator in creating healthy safe environments for children and their families is discussed. Students reflect on the personal attributes of the early childhood professional.

ECCS 102
Languages of Expression: Well-Being
3 Credits

In this curriculum course, students explore creativity in early childhood. They select, plan and implement creative experiences to support the development of literacy, art, music and dramatic play. The role of the educator as a co-learner is introduced when planning children's play with art and sensory materials. Resources and diverse materials used to support languages of expression and to foster children's well-being in early childhood settings are examined.

ECCS 110
Child Development I: Current and Emerging Theories
3 Credits

This course provides students with a basic understanding of the growth and development of children. The focus is on developing a sensitivity to children and the world in which they live, based on historical and current perspectives and emerging child development theories for understanding the study of children. The impact of diversity, culture and lifestyle on child rearing and identity formation is discussed. Students use techniques for observing children's behaviours and documenting developmental outcomes. Note: Students can receive credit for only one of ECDV 110 and ECCS 110.

ECCS 115
Communication within a Practice of Relationships
3 Credits

This communications course introduces a theoretical base to support students' personal and professional development. Focus is on identity formation as influenced by socialization processes and the socio-cultural context of children, families and educators. An introduction to team processes with a view to developing communication skills for nurturing positive interactions with colleagues is considered. The image of the child is examined and emphasis is placed on developing safe, supportive verbal and emotional environments for positive interactions with children and families - the basis of reciprocal and responsive relationships.

ECCS 120
Field Placement I: Well Being
3 Credits

This is the first of four field placement courses designed to support the student's progressive development of applied skills in practice. Field placement provides students with the opportunity to blend theory from classes with practice in early childhood settings. Students are mentored by a university field placement coordinator. Students are assessed in the following categories: professional suitability, participation and performance, and play and curriculum experiences. The focus of this first field placement is children's well-being, one of the four holistic play based goals as described in Alberta's Early Learning and Care Framework. Students will develop beginning skills in planning, and begin to demonstrate professional attitudes by being responsible, cooperative and thoughtful.

Prerequisites: ECCS 101, ECCS 102, ECCS 110 and ECCS 115.

Co-requisites: ECCS 125.

ECCS 125
Integration Seminar I - Well-Being
1 Credit

This course provides an opportunity to reflect on professional practice with peers under the guidance of an instructor. Field placement issues are discussed and class learning in Term I is integrated with practical field experiences. Seminar focuses on recognized early learning and care practice across a broad range of early childhood programs. Seminar discussions and assignments provide an opportunity to discuss issues and explore topics in early learning and care.

Prerequisites: ECCS 101, ECCS 102, ECCS 110, ECCS 115.

Co-requisites: ECCS 120.

ECCS 155
Curriculum II: Languages of Play
3 Credits

In this curriculum course, students explore the nature and development of play in the lives of children. Students learn how to research, organize and prepare meaningful and aesthetic play experiences and play spaces to enhance care, learning and development for children. Through active exploration, students gain a personal appreciation of the value and functions of play, an understanding of the importance of organization and presentation of materials for play, and their role as educators.

Prerequisites: ECCS 101, ECCS 102, ECCS 110, ECCS 115, ECCS 120, ECCS 125, or consent of the department.

ECCS 160
Child Development II: Growth and Development of Young Children
3 Credits

Building upon ECCS 110, this course provides students with a basic understanding of the growth and development of children. The focus is on recognizing typical milestones across all developmental domains, and building on theories of child development presented in ECCS 110. Observation techniques used to document children’s development are discussed and used to make recommendations for play and curriculum planning. Students discuss how diversity and cultural values impact child rearing practices.

Prerequisites: ECCS 120, ECCS 125 plus Minimum grade of C in ECCS 110.

ECCS 170
Field Placement II: Play and Playfulness
3 Credits

This is the second of four field placement courses designed to support the student’s progressive development of applied skills in practice. Field placement provides the student with the opportunity to blend theory from classes with practice in early childhood settings. The student is mentored by a university field placement coordinator. Students are assessed in the following categories: professional suitability, participation and performance, and play and curriculum experiences. The focus of this second field placement is Play and Playfulness, one of the four holistic play based goals as described in Alberta's Early Learning and Care framework. Students will plan safe and interest-based play experiences for individual children and groups of children while continuing to develop skills for observing children and a sensitive approach for supporting families.

Prerequisites: ECCS 155, ECCS 160, ECCS 180, plus a minimum grade of C in ECCS 120 and ECCS 125.

Co-requisites: ECCS 175.

ECCS 175
Integration Seminar II: Play and Playfulness
1 Credit

This course provides an opportunity to reflect with peers on professional practice in early learning settings under the guidance of an instructor. Field placement issues are discussed and class learning in Term II is integrated with practical field experiences. Seminar focuses on recognized early learning and care practices across a broad range of early childhood programs. Seminar discussions and assignments provide an opportunity to discuss issues and explore topics in early learning and care.

Prerequisites: ECCS 155, ECCS 160, and ECCS 180 plus a minimum grade of C in ECCS 120 and ECCS 125.

ECCS 180
Family-Centred Practice
3 Credits

Students learn to understand and support the diverse range of families. Beginning with their own family experiences, students are encouraged to explore their image of the family, for understanding the diversity of family structures, values, beliefs, lifestyles and needs. Students will also examine the role of the educator in creating a sense of belonging for families through a practice of relationships. The course draws on knowledge and theories of family systems, processes, stages and communication. Students will develop strategies and resources to support a variety of families in early childhood settings.

Prerequisites: ECDV 101, ECDV 102, ECDV 110, ECDV 115, ECDV 120, and ECDV 125.

ECCS 201
Languages of Exploration: Curriculum for Communication and Literacies
3 Credits

This curriculum course introduces the principles of constructivism, emergent curriculum and holistic planning, and the co-inquiry process. Students gain an understanding of, and practice in using a planning cycle for play-based early learning experiences that integrates numeracy, science and drama/dance and are introduced to multi-modal literacies. Students are also introduced to pedagogical documentation as a way to make children's learning visible.

Prerequisites: ECCS 155, ECCS 170, and ECCS 175.

ECCS 202
Expressions of Citizenship: Curriculum for Diversity and Social Responsibility
3 Credits

This curriculum course focuses on planning, preparing and interacting in early learning environments that foster citizenship, democratic practice, diversity and inclusion in early childhood. Planning considerations for infant/toddlers and school-age children, using the co-inquiry model, will be explored as well as integrating social studies, music, and story into an early learning curriculum. The role of free play, both indoors and outdoors, in early learning settings will also be examined.

Prerequisites: ECCS 201.

ECCS 220
Field Placement III: Communication and Literacy
3 Credits

This is the third of four field placement courses designed to support the student's progressive development of applied skills in practice. Field placement provides the student with the opportunity to blend theory from classes with practice in early childhood settings. The student is mentored by university field placement coordinator. Students are assessed in the following categories: professional suitability, participation and performance, and play and curriculum experiences. The focus of the third field placement is communication and literacies, one of the four holistic play based goals as described in Alberta's Early Learning and Care framework. Students will take on an increased responsibility for the daily functioning of the program. Students will also continue to develop relationships with families and demonstrate effective communication skills and guidance strategies with young children.

Prerequisites: ECCS 201, ECCS 260 and ECCS 265 plus a minimum grade of C in ECCS 170 and ECCS 175.

Co-requisites: ECCS 225.

ECCS 225
Integration Seminar III: Communication and Literacy
1 Credit

This course provides an opportunity to reflect with peers on professional practice in early learning settings under the guidance of an instructor. Field placement issues are discussed and class learning in Term III is integrated with practical field experiences. Seminar focuses on recognized early learning and care practice across a broad range of early childhood programs with a particular focus on communicative practices, multimodal literacies and literate identities within early learning communities It also provides an opportunity to discuss issues and explore topics in early learning and care. Seminar discussions and assignments provide an opportunity to discuss issues and explore topics in early learning and care.

Prerequisites: ECCS 201, ECCS 260 and ECCS 265 plus a minimum grade of C in ECCS 170 and ECCS 175.

ECCS 250
Foundations of Early Childhood
3 Credits

Students look at current issues in the field of early childhood development from the view of a reflective educator. The course focuses on selected historical philosophers and educators who have shaped present early childhood theory, practice, materials/equipment, and who raised issues still relevant. Contemporary models of early childhood programs and the role of research are examined. Students consider professional ethics and apply it to their practice with families and children. Professional resources, opportunities for further education and professional associations are presented.

Prerequisites: ECCS 220, ECCS 225.

ECCS 255
Inclusive Environments and Practice in Early Childhood
3 Credits

This course extends the principles of Child Development I and II providing students with opportunities to identify and examine the needs of children in relation to inclusive principles and practices. Students will examine advocacy in the context of identifying and providing supports, including individualized plans and specialists, to children in the early learning environment. Students explore a range of early learning assessment and screening tools, techniques and practices with a focus on learning stories.

Prerequisites: ECCS 160.

ECCS 260
Family and Community Issues
3 Credits

This course looks at the family from a societal perspective, with the intention of deepening participants' understanding of the families with whom they will be working and their awareness of issues concerning families. The focus is on the ecology of the family with particular emphasis on family policy, economic issues, the social safety net, power and violence, gender issues, children's rights/parent's rights and advocacy. Capacity building and strengths based approaches are presented as strategies to support families and develop resiliency.

Prerequisites: ECCS 180.

ECCS 265
Supporting Social and Emotional Well-Being within a Practice of Relationships
3 Credits

This communications course supports students' personal and professional development. Recognizing children as citizens and respecting and honouring children's behaviour as a means of communicating, educators learn principles, skills and strategies to support young children's social and emotional well-being. There is focus on guiding children's behaviour in responsive and supportive ways. Knowledge of child development assists students in understanding the importance of fostering a child's strong sense of self and identity. Students have opportunities to apply communication principles, skills and strategies that support relationships with children.

Prerequisites: ECCS 110,ECCS 115, ECCS 160, ECCS 170, and ECCS 175.

ECCS 270
Field Placement IV: Diversity and Social Responsibility
3 Credits

This is the fourth of four field placement courses designed to support the student's progressive development of skills. Field placement provides the student with the opportunity to blend theory from classes with practice in early childhood settings. The student is mentored by a university field placement coordinator. Students are assessed in the following categories: professional suitability, participation and performance, and play and curriculum experiences. The focus of this final field placement is diversity and social responsibility, one of the four holistic play based goals as described in Alberta's Early Learning and Care framework. In this final field placement, students will apply early childhood practice and theory to support children's care, play, learning and development and will demonstrate a commitment to professional growth.

ECCS 275
Integration Seminar IV: Diversity and Social Responsibility
1 Credit

This course provides an opportunity to reflect with peers on professional practice in early learning settings under the guidance of an instructor. Students bring experience in different field placement settings to group discussion in seminar. Field placement issues are discussed and class learning in Term IV is integrated with practical field experiences. Seminar focuses on recognized early learning and care practice across a broad range of early childhood programs. Seminar discussions and assignments provide an opportunity to discuss issues and explore topics in early learning and care and in particular, to consider inclusion, equity, democratic practices and sustainable futures.

Prerequisites: ECCS 202, ECCS 250, ECCS 255, plus a minimum grade of C in ECCS 220 and ECCS 225.

ECCS 301
Designing Emerging Curriculum
3 Credits

In this course, students will learn and practice designing a localized holistic, play-based, emerging, early childhood curriculum. Students will further their understanding of pedagogical documentation and the co-inquiry process of observation and documentation, reflection and interpretation, planning and taking action.

Prerequisites: ECCS 202 or with consent of the department.

ECCS 302
Landscapes for Learning
3 Credits

In this curriculum course, students will continue to theorize early childhood practice through a constructivist and socio-cultural lens applying the values, principles, concepts, goals and dispositions of Alberta’s Early Learning and Care Framework. Integrating the various domains of learning and subject content areas, students will explore a broad range of literacy practices deepening their understanding of multimodal literacies and how literacies develop in early childhood.

Prerequisites: ECCS 301.

ECCS 310
Images of Children in Society
3 Credits

Every society, culture, and family imagines children and childhood in its own way. In Alberta’s Early Learning and Care framework the image of a child is strong, resourceful, capable - a mighty learner and citizen. In this course students will explore societal images of children and childhood across time, place and culture and how these images influence early childhood education, practice, curriculum, and policy.

Prerequisites: ECCS 250 or with consent of the department.

ECCS 355
Inclusion and Equity in Early Childhood
3 Credits

In this course, students will explore inclusion and equity in early childhood with a socio-cultural lens and in relation to their practice as early childhood educators. Topics of discussion will include barriers to inclusion, cultivating belonging, reframing assessment, proactive systems of support, gender issues, social justice, and critical reflection.

Prerequisites: ECCS 255 or with consent of the department.

ECCS 360
Families in Global Context
3 Credits

This course examines variations of the family from a global perspective through a socio-cultural lens. Students will engage in a cross-cultural consideration of the ecology of the family with particular emphasis on race, ethnicity and culture, Canada’s Indigenous people, individualistic vs. collectivist approaches, immigration, refugees and settlement in the context of globalization.

Prerequisites: ECCS 260 or with consent of the department.

ECCS 380
Working in Professional Teams within a Practice of Relationships
3 Credits

This course is designed to support professional communication principles, skills, and strategies. Students gain a deeper understanding of the nature of professional teams and the skills required for successful practice in teams. Context based learning assists the student to apply theory, and develop skills and strategies in working with families and in interdisciplinary and workplace teams. A focus on values, ethics and diversity in the field of early childhood guides discussion.

Prerequisites: ECCS 270, ECCS 275, Minimum grade of C in INTD 105, ECCS 265 or with consent of the department.

ECCS 401
Theories of Curriculum in Early Childhood
3 Credits

Building on previous curriculum courses, this course emphasizes theories and curriculum models for early childhood. Historical models and how notions of curriculum have changed over time with respect to theories of early learning will be explored. Reflective practice extends the understanding of the educator's role in curriculum planning for early learning based on current critical theoretical perspectives and a co-inquiry model.

Prerequisites: ECCS 302.

ECCS 402
Leadership through Pedagogical Documentation
3 Credits

Building on the previous early childhood curriculum courses, students in this course exercise critical reflection of early childhood theories and approaches. Students will also deepen their understanding of pedagogical documentation for making learning visible, for growing curriculum, and for growing one’s own professional practice. Through this course, students will practice using their pedagogical voices and facilitate curriculum conversations in pursuit of further developing pedagogical leadership competencies.

Prerequisites: ECCS 401 and ECCS 415.

ECCS 410
Understanding Research in Early Childhood
3 Credits

In this course, students will examine and apply research methodologies used in understanding early childhood. Students will read, evaluate, and organize information/data from discipline-specific research and will complete a literature review on a topic related to the students’ capstone project. Particular attention will be paid to practice-based research models, principles, and ethics especially related to research with children and families in educational settings.

Prerequisites: HSAD 325.

ECCS 415
Pedagogical Leadership
3 Credits

This course is an introduction to pedagogical leadership and what it means to lead educators and guide practice in the field of early childhood. Students will examine leadership, organizational, and management theories and models in relation to pedagogical leadership. Examples of pedagogical leadership and communities of practice will be introduced. Themes of advocacy and change will also be explored.

Prerequisites: ECCS 380.

ECCS 425
Advanced Practice in Early Learning and Indigenous Families
3 Credits

In this course, students explore how the field of early childhood might support the well-being of Indigenous children and their families, communities, and nations. Students will recognize the complex social and environmental factors influencing the lives of children and families and will consider how historical and contemporary expressions of colonialism add to the complexities for Indigenous children and families. Throughout the course, students will enhance their awareness and investigate how their values, beliefs, and experiences impact their direct and indirect practice with Indigenous children and families.

Prerequisites: ANTH 250 and ECCS 360.

ECCS 440
Professional Practices: Ethics, Caring and Social Activism
3 Credits

In this course students will explore questions such as: What does caring work entail? What is an ethic of care? What does ethical practice look like when one regularly makes contextually-based decisions for children and families? What does it mean to be professional in the field of early childhood? How does one advance social justice for young children and their families and influence public policy?.

Prerequisites: ECCS 415.

ECCS 450
Capstone Course in Research and Practice
3 Credits

Building upon ECCS 410 and in conjunction with ECCS 455, this seminar supports students’ capstone project, a research project in the field of early childhood. Students will receive guidance and support from a faculty and will receive critical feedback on their project. Guest presenters will share their discipline-specific research. Upon completion, students will showcase their capstone projects.

Prerequisites: ECCS 410.

Co-requisites: ECCS 455.

ECCS 455
Senior Internship in Research, Policy, and Practice
3 Credits

This course provides students with the opportunity to use theory to inform their practice in early childhood settings. Senior internship placements will provide experiences in early childhood policy, leadership, and/or research. Students are mentored by a university faculty member. They may practice pedagogical mentorship with junior-level students or in partnering organizations.

Prerequisites: ECCS 270 and ECCS 275 (or consent of the department), ECCS 401 and ECCS 415.

Co-requisites: ECCS 450.