Child Development Associate (CDA)

What Is a Child Development Associate (CDA)?

The Council for Professional Recognition is a leader in the credentialing of early childhood educators worldwide. They ensure that candidates who earn our Child Development Associate® (CDA) credential are well prepared to foster the social, emotional, physical and cognitive growth of young children.

The CDA® national credentialing program is a professional development opportunity for early educators working in a variety of settings with children ages birth to 5 years old and their families to demonstrate their knowledge, skills, and abilities in the early childhood education field. The program is designed to assess and credential early childhood education professionals using multiple sources of evidence, including an exam, observation, and a professional portfolio. By earning a CDA credential, an educator demonstrates a commitment to career advancement and professionalism.

CLICK HERE to learn more about the CDA Credential administered thru the Council for Professional Recognition.

Overviews of the CDA Credential Process: English | Spanish

Child & Family Resources offers a comprehensive training opportunity to assist candidates in obtaining their CDA credential. For 30 years, Child & Family Resources (CFR) has been assisting candidates complete the training requirement of the CDA Credential. CFR staff provide formal professional education in English & Spanish in the required eight CDA Subject areas:

  • Planning a safe, healthy learning environment
  • Advancing children’s physical and intellectual development
  • Supporting children’s social and emotional development
  • Building productive relationships with families
  • Managing an effective program
  • Maintaining a commitment to professionalism
  • Observing and recording children’s behavior
  • Understanding principles of child development and learning

Classes are offered in both English and Spanish and have ongoing enrollment. Child & Family Resources provides the required 120 hours of classroom course work (IACET credit bearing), technical assistance, mentoring, and portfolio development support; in accordance to the policies and standards established by the Council for Professional Recognition, to those students interested in obtaining the CDA.

Once a student completes all the required components, the student schedules the CDA exam and Verification Visit with the Council for Professional Recognition. If the student successfully passes, the Council for Professional Recognition issues the CDA credential.


  • There is a one-time registration fee in the amount $30.00 that is due at the time of initial enrollment and should be submitted with the attached completed Registration Form.
  • The tuition fee for the CDA Professional Education course is $1,500.00

Scholarships are available through NJCCIS for eligible staff.

Registration Process

Have questions about our CDA program? Contact us at (973) 398-1730 or!