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Child Development Associate (CDA)

The Child Development Associate credential (CDA) is a national credential awarded by the Council for Professional Recognition to individuals who have successfully completed the CDA assessment process. Earning the CDA credential has many advantages, including motivating practitioners toward continuing education and providing a platform for professional and career opportunities in Early Childhood Development.


Who is eligible for TECTA assistance?

Any Tennessee resident who works in a state regulated early childhood facility in Tennessee.  Candidates for CDA assessment must meet the guidelines for submission of materials to the CDA Council.  The TECTA statewide management office will award assessment fee scholarships, as funds are available, on a quarterly basis to candidates who have completed the three steps outlined below.

Step I: Complete TECTA Orientation

  • Contact your local TECTA office for an Orientation schedule and register for an Orientation.

Step II: Complete Early Childhood Courses required for education

  •     ECED 2310 Safe, Healthy Learning Environment
  •     ECED 2335 Clinical Practicum I
  •     ECED 2315 Early Childhood Curriculum
  •     ECED 2340 Family Dynamics

Step III: Participate in CDA support group meetings sponsored by TECTA

    TECTA can help by:

  •     Providing you with an advisor
  •     Completing the CDA Assessment Observation Instrument
  •     Reviewing your Competency Statements and Resource File
  •     Assisting you with completing the CDA application
  •     Paying the Application Fee


Financial support for the Child Development Associate (CDA) credential course preparation, documentation preparation assistance, consultation  and  assessment fee scholarships is made possible through funding from the Tennessee Department of Human Services to Tennessee State University for the operation of the Tennessee Early Childhood Training Alliance ( TECTA) Program.

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