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ERIC Number: ED505291
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Jul
Pages: 91
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 38
Learning Together: A Study of Six B.A. Completion Cohort Programs in Early Care and Education. Year 1 Report
Center for the Study of Child Care Employment, University of California at Berkeley
This report reflects the first year of a multiyear effort to examine B.A. completion cohort programs in early care and education in four California counties. The six programs under investigation were developed with similar goals: (1) To increase and retain a pool of B.A.-level professionals in the ECE field with culturally, linguistically, and professionally diverse backgrounds; (2) To invest in institutional change at colleges and universities in order to expand their capacity to provide appropriate and accessible B.A. programs for ECE practitioners; and (3) To assure that degree recipients are able to demonstrate and articulate professional competencies that are appropriate to the degree obtained. The first year of the study focused primarily on: (1) Are such programs an effective strategy to help working adults in ECE access and succeed in higher education? (2) What is the impact of the cohort experience on students' professional practice? and (3) Can institutions of higher education, with sufficient support, create and maintain such programs successfully? The study team sought out the perspectives of students, and of key representatives of three institutions of higher education, about the cohort program experience. Both groups of interview subjects expressed a strongly positive message about the success of these programs. Students generally felt a strong sense of achievement, expressing confidence in their ability to complete their degrees. Higher education administrators and faculty members also expressed confidence in the programs to date, and showed creativity and flexibility in adapting their offerings to a student cohort structure, or developing new program models. Because first-year investigation was limited to obtaining the cohort students' own perceptions of the impact that this educational experience had had on their classroom practice, self-assessment claims warrant confirmation through observational study. In considering the reflections of administrators and faculty members, their pressing concerns revolved less around issues of creating or improving programs for working adults in ECE than about whether the programs can be sustained. The report concludes that the first phase of this investigation indicates the potential of B.A. completion cohort programs to contribute a linguistically and ethnically diverse group of well-trained teachers and leaders to the early care and education profession. The six programs under study build on lessons from other fields and could become models for the ECE field in California and other states, and also for other fields, helping diverse groups of working adults gain access to and succeed in higher education. Three appendixes are included: (1) Supplementary Tables and Figures; (2) Cohort Program Profiles; and (3) Cohort Program Chart. (Contains 21 figures, 15 tables, and 3 footnotes.) [Support for this publication was provided by First 5 Alameda County--Every Child Counts, First 5 San Francisco, First 5 Santa Barbara County, and WestEd's E3 Institute (Advancing Excellence in Early Education).]
Center for the Study of Child Care Employment. Institute of Industrial Relations, University of California at Berkeley, 2521 Channing Way #5555, Berkeley, CA 94720. Tel: 510-643-7091; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Adult Education; Early Childhood Education; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: University of California, Berkeley, Center for the Study of Child Care Employment
Identifiers - Location: California