Launch a rewarding and in-demand career, with VU's one-year Graduate Diploma of Early Childhood Education.
Our graduate diploma allows graduates of degree programs to become early-childhood teachers.
You'll engage with units focused on children from birth to five years, learning how teaching practice can include children and families as capable participants in education.
If you're a domestic student or you won’t be studying at VU on a student visa, you can study this course online.
You'll also gain hands-on work experience in a range of settings, graduating with expertise in early-childhood learning built on a strong sense of social justice.
Gain insight into the early years by studying these fascinating areas:
- child development
- teaching practice that includes Aboriginal perspectives
- education and curriculum studies focused on childhood and relationships
- family and community contexts
- advocacy and activism in early-childhood settings
- history and philosophy of early childhood
- ethical early-childhood professional practice.
From 2021, this course will be delivered in four-week mode, which means you study one unit (subject) at a time over four weeks, rather than juggling several units at once. And with its focused timetables and smaller, collaborative classes, VU’s Block Model gives you more time to connect with your peers, lecturers and industry partners, helping you to build strong professional networks.
The VU Block Model has improved our student results and engagement, and has won multiple international awards for innovation and excellence.
You'll complete 60 days of supervised professional experience, including:
- 15 days with infants and toddlers
- 15 days with 3–5 year olds
- five days in a primary school setting, engaging with and understanding the transition between preschool and primary school
- 25 days in an early-childhood setting (birth–3 or 3–5 year olds) working towards becoming a graduate early-childhood teacher.
This course has been approved by Australian Children's Education & Care Quality Authority (ACECQA), which oversees national quality frameworks in early-childhood education.
This means that you'll graduate with the latest early-childhood teaching methods and knowledge.
The Victorian Government offers the Early Childhood Scholarship and Incentives Program to individuals looking to start a rewarding career as an early childhood teacher. Educators wanting to upskill and take the next step to become degree-qualified are also eligible. Students applying for an approved qualification are eligible to receive up to $25,500.
Childcare job openings are expecting massive growth, with the number of qualified early-childhood teachers required at long-day-care centres to double in 2020 (ACECQA).
Thanks to the essential experience you’ll get from teaching early-childhood settings during your placement, you’ll be work-ready when you graduate.
With an ACECQA approved early-childhood teacher qualification, our graduates can find employment in:
- public or private kindergartens (preschool)
- long-day-care centres
- early-childhood centres in the state of Victoria, Australia.
Interstate applicants should check with their state’s relevant teaching registration board or authority to see if their state requires early-childhood teacher registration and accepts this qualification.
Use Job Outlook to find the average salary for early-childhood teachers.
To attain the Graduate Diploma in Early Childhood Education students will be required to complete:
- 96 credit points of Core units.
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On successful completion of this course, students will be able to:
|1.||Initiate teaching and learning practices that foster learner engagement in complex contexts and foreground Aboriginal standpoints in early childhood education.|
|2.||Critically review on different ways of knowing, being, and doing founded on the view of children and families as capable contributors to conceptual and pedagogical decision-making in learning and teaching.|
|3.||Design teaching practices that reflect an ability to contextualise, question, resist, rethink, and act towards equity and the public good.|
|4.||Exhibit a broad and coherent body of knowledge of early childhood pedagogy, curriculum and assessment in relation to the changing nature of education in a rapidly-evolving global context.|
|5.||Appraise, adapt, and exemplify a range of oral and written communication techniques to engage and connect with learners, their parents/carers and the wider community.|
|6.||Create learning opportunities that embrace a rich and varied curriculum, ensuring that learning and teaching approaches are based on sound ethical principles and foster reciprocal relationships in early childhood settings.|
What's a unit?
A unit or 'subject' is the actual class you'll attend in the process of completing a course.
Most courses have a mixture of compulsory 'core' units that you need to take and optional elective units that you can choose to take based on your area of interest, expertise or experience.
Each unit is worth a set amount of study credits based on the amount of time you study. Generally, 1 credit is equal to 1 hour of study per week.
Fees & scholarships
Fee type for this course: Commonwealth Supported Place (CSP)
Fee type definitions
The amount you pay for your course depends on whether you’re offered a Commonwealth supported place (CSP) or a full fee-paying place.
Students who enrol in a:
- Commonwealth supported place pay tuition fees that are partly subsidised by the Australian government
- full fee-paying place need to pay the full amount for all enrolled units before census each study period.
In addition to your tuition fees, you may also be charged a Student Services & Amenities Fee (SSAF).
Scholarships & assistance
Apply for a scholarship to help with your study costs.
We can help with fee assistance and advice.
Admission & pathways
Meeting the minimum admission requirements does not guarantee you entry into this course. Some courses receive more applications than the number of places available. In this situation we will also assess your education, work and other relevant experience.
Completion of an Australian Bachelor degree (or equivalent) in any discipline.
Applicants with a Bachelor’s degree from countries other than Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, United States of America, Canada or the Republic of Ireland will be required to complete IELTS: Overall 7.0 with Listening 7.5, Reading 6.5, Writing 6.5, Speaking 7.5.
OR the following scores that serve as equivalent scores for the IELTS:
• ISPLR: Overall (3+) L (4), R (3+), W (3+), S (4)
• TOEFL: Overall (94), L (27), R (21), W (24), S (24)
• PTE: Overall (65-72), L (73), R (58), W (58), S (73)
Applicants with a minimum of a 3 year Bachelor’s degree from Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, United States of America, Canada or the Republic of Ireland will not be required to complete IELTS.
If you have completed study with another university or institution and believe you are eligible to receive credit for skills and past study, you can apply for advanced standing.
Applications for advanced standing can be made after a discussion with your course chair or academic adviser.
Working with Children Check: Applicants must complete a Working with Children Check prior to undertaking placement.
This course is ACECQA accredited and is recognised by the Victorian Institute of Teaching (VIT) for teaching registration in Victoria. It is not necessarily recognised in other states and territories in Australia.
Refer to VIT Registration information https://www.vit.vic.edu.au/registering-as-a-teacher/how-do-i-register-as...
How to apply
Before you apply
Before applying, you should consider whether you also want to apply for:
- Special admission programs: Depending on your life circumstances you may be eligible for special consideration of your application.
- Advanced standing: If you have significant experience or studies elsewhere you may be eligible for credit for some units of your course and not have to undertake them.
25% off our pathway course in 2021
For semester 2, 2021 only, domestic students will have the opportunity to undertake the first 4 units of this graduate diploma as a stand-alone Graduate Certificate in Early Childhood Education.
The certificate course has been discounted by 25%, meaning that you will save money as well as gaining a certificate qualification along the way.
Find out more about applying for our courses.
Apply direct to VU
Direct applications are due on 25 July 2021 for our next intake which starts on 2 August 2021.
Already a VU student?
If you are already a VU student, apply direct to VU using our Admissions centre to transfer into this course. Remember it’s best to be accepted into your new course before withdrawing from your current one.
After you apply
- It’s important to check for emails from us (which may go to your spam/junk folder).
- Complete any requests for information by the given dates, otherwise your application may not be considered