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Frequently Asked Questions 
The Child Development Associate (CDA) Credential Training Program


The School of Education offers a Child Development Associate (CDA) Credential training program.  Upon successful completion of this program, students/candidates will receive:

Nine college credits toward an Associate Degree in Early Childhood Education and fulfill the candidate’s formal education training requirement to earn the CDA credential

CDA guidance to: 

  • Develop a Professional Resource Filecda image 1
  • Prepare for the CDA written assessment
  • Prepare for the Oral Situational Interview
  • Distribute/collect Parent Opinion Questionnaires

What are the requirements of earning the CDA Credential?  

To receive a CDA credential, candidates must have:

120 clock hours of formal education training/CDA coursework within the past five years.

480 hours of experience working with children within the past five years.

Documents that verify their competence in early child care and education. These include:

  • A Professional Resource File
  • Parent Opinion Questionnaires
  • The CDA Assessment Observation Instrument
  • An Oral Interview
  • A Written Assessment 


 What are the CDA coursework and schedule at Montgomery College?  

CDA coursework includes three education courses which can be completed within two semesters:

 First Semester ED 120 Child Growth and Development (3 credits)
 Second Semester  ED 121 Curriculum Planning in Early Childhood Education (3 credits)

Choose one of the following ED courses (3 credits), according to the type of CDA Credential that you want to receive:

 ED 123 Infant and Toddler Development and Curriculum Planning (Infant/Toddler CDA)
 ED 213 Social-Emotional Development in Young Children (Preschool CDA)
 ED 215 Planning and Administering Child Care Programs
(Family Child Care CDA or Home Visitor CDA)

What CDA courses should I take if I already earned the 90-Hour Course Certificate?  

If you have earned the 90-Hour Course Certificate at Montgomery College within the past four years, you only need to take one of the following classes to meet the CDA education training requirement: 

 ED 123 Infant and Toddler Development and Curriculum Planning (Infant/Toddler CDA)
 ED 213 Social-Emotional Development in Young Children (Preschool CDA)
 ED 215 Planning and Administering Child Care Programs (Family Child Care CDA or Home Visitor CDA) 

What requirements must I meet before applying to the training program? 

Candidates must:

  • Be 18 years or older
  • Hold a high school diploma or equivalent
  • Be currently employed in an child care setting (center-based or family day care)

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How do I register for CDA courses?  

To register for ED 120 (the first CDA course) please call the Office of Admission, Records, and Registration on any campus; or see the MC web site for information on applying and registering for classes.

 Germantown   (240) 567-7823 
 Rockville   (240) 567- 5034 
 Takoma Park/Silver Spring   (240) 567-1501

How much do the CDA courses cost? 

The tuition for three CDA courses (9 college credits) is about $1,110. 00 If this is the first time you are taking course at Montgomery College, a $25.00 admission fee is required.

ABCIs financial assistance available to help CDA Candidates?  

Child Care Quality Enhancements Scholarships are available through Montgomery County ’s Early Childhood Initiative.  Child care providers can receive scholarships for CDA courses at Montgomery College.  For more information, go to the Providers link at the Montgomery County Child Care Resource and Referral site.

Candidates who intend to continue on towards an associates degree in Early Childhood may also be eligible for the Child Care Career and Professional Development Fund, Scholarships and Grants for Teacher Education 

Who should I contact to receive or renew the CDA Credentials?  

Please contact the CDA Council for Professional Recognition at or call 1-800-424-4310.

Where should I receive CDA guidance for meeting the CDA requirements?  

The workshop:

  • Introduces candidates to the CDA assessment process and options;
  • Offers guidance in compiling the CDA documentation;
  • Provides opportunities for candidates to share their writing with the instructor and other candidates.

The CDA training sessions for Spring 2014 are scheduled as follow:

                Tuesdays, April 1st  and 22nd from 6:00 to 8:00 pm

The training is free and will be held at the Computer Science Building, Room 103, Rockville Campus.

Please complete the attached Registration Form (pdf - 50kb).

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