Arcadia University offers the Pennsylvania Director Credential, a three-course, graduate-level program that is a requirement of the Keystone STARS program under the Pennsylvania Early Learning Department. The goal of the program is to provide directors and administrators of early child care sites, centers, preschools, and before and after school care programs with the skills and knowledge to organize, lead, and manage high quality education centers based on state mandates, current trends, and research-based practices.
Fully Online Format
Courses are offered as a cohort program in an online format. Instruction and learning take place within a 7-week schedule for each course. New cohorts start every January for those interested in the stand-alone PA Director Credential. Other start dates are available for those who are applying for additional programs.
Keystone STARS Initiative
Arcadia is an approved director credential institution of higher education and is approved by Keystone STARS, a voluntary quality improvement program, administered by the state Office of Child Development and Early Learning. The program is an initiative to improve, support and recognize the continuous quality improvement efforts of early learning programs in Pennsylvania. This comprehensive professional development system, including career pathways with credentials, is for practitioners in settings including center- and home-based child care, school-age programs, Head Start, early intervention programs, and school-based programs. In order for Early Childhood Programs to reach Keystone STARS Level 3, directors must be credentialed.
Apply credits earned toward an M.Ed
Credits earned in the PA Director Credential program can be applied in a variety of ways toward a M.Ed. Program options include a concentration in Early Childhood, Educational Leadership or a Modular Master Degree program. Individual advising will guide students who wish to pursue further coursework.
At various times throughout the year, tuition support for PA Director Credential college coursework is available from Arcadia as part of our affiliation with South Eastern Regional Key, which works with providers, colleges and child care staff to offer scholarship programs and support systems that improve the education and compensation of child care workers. Inquire with the School of Education for scholarship eligibility and availability.
Special Tuition Rate
Students in the non-certification Early Childhood Education Cohort programs receive a 1/3 discount off of the prevailing part time graduate credit rate.
In partner with Pennsylvania Child Care Association (PACCA), T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® Pennsylvania, and The Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL), Arcadia collaborates to offer scholarships or tuition assistance to early care and education professionals in our community.