Graduate Diploma of Education (Early Childhood)
March, July, October
1 year full-time; 2 years part-time
Gold Coast, Online
Online students may be required to attend on-campus workshops during some of the units.
Yes Learn more
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IELTS Overall Score 6.5
Please note, some locations may not have all intake periods available. See the full availability details for further information.
February, June, October
1 year full-time; 2 years part-time
Yes Learn more
No Learn more
IELTS Overall Score 6.5
Early childhood education is an immensely satisfying career and a precious opportunity to give children the very best start in life.
Within 10 months, our Graduate Diploma in Education (Early Childhood) will qualify you to be an early childhood teacher to work in early childhood education and care services, long day care centres, and preschools.
Our course covers key areas of early childhood education and care, theory, principles and practices that best support children's learning and development. Admission into the course is via an undergraduate degree in any discipline, including a teaching qualification.
This course includes 60 days (480 hours) professional experience learning via placement in early childhood education settings. Pre-requisites to meet national and state-based regulatory requirements, as detailed on Faculty of Education Professional Experience Requirements website, must be met prior to attending professional experience placement. All professional experience learning days must be completed, and professional behaviour and conduct must be demonstrated.
The Southern Cross Model is a game-changer in higher education study.
Our students now engage in shorter, six-week unit structures designed around immersive and interactive learning experiences. The shorter unit structure gives students a greater sense of momentum as they achieve milestones quickly, resulting in increased student success rates, and course and teacher satisfaction. Lectures are a thing of the past - students will be engaged in active, interactive and discussion-based learning.
On-campus students experience a variety of teaching approaches including lectures, tutorials, online activities and video-linked or podcast virtual classes.
Our online study option is highly interactive and may include a combination of podcast or video-linked lectures, electronic study materials, workshops, online discussion forums and virtual classes.
The method of teaching and assessment may vary from unit to unit.
Course Learning Outcomes express learning achievement in terms of what a student should know, understand and be able to do on completion of a course. These outcomes are aligned with the graduate attributes (GA).
|Course Learning Outcome|
GA1: Intellectual rigour
Exercise critical analysis, problem solving, and decision making in Early Childhood educational based practice
Demonstrate application of advanced knowledge and current research in relation to Early Childhood education practice
Demonstrate cognitive, technical, and creative skills to investigate, analyse, and synthesise complex information, problems, concepts, and theories
GA3: Ethical practice
Demonstrate a knowledge of social responsibility, ethics and legal principles consistent with what is expected of an Early Childhood professional working in a learning community with all stakeholders
Demonstrate an awareness of the need for student safety and support within professional frameworks
Demonstrate an understanding of and commitment to legislative requirements and codes of conduct relevant to the education profession
GA4: Knowledge of a discipline
Demonstrate advanced integrated knowledge and understanding of Early Childhood teaching and relevant curriculum framework
Demonstrate an evidence based understanding and knowledge of the pedagogy for effective Early Childhood educational practice
GA5: Lifelong learning
Demonstrate a commitment to personal and professional development through self-directed learning and reflective practice
GA6: Communication and social skills
Demonstrate an advanced ability to communicate and interpret evidence based research which inform professional decision making
Demonstrate teamwork and leadership skills applicable in professional educational settings
GA7: Cultural competence
Apply and integrate an understanding of social, indigenous and cultural diversity, and respect for the identity of all persons, in local and international contexts
Identify and apply proactive and inclusive strategies to encourage and support student engagement and behaviour including diverse groups of learners such as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students, migrants and students from non- English speaking backgrounds
Demonstrate an understanding of the principles of inclusion and diverse learning needs
Demonstrate an understanding of and respect for diversity in others and self
Students undertake 60 days (480 hours) of professional placement during this course in two environments - a preschool setting and an infant and toddler setting.
Pre-requisites to meet national and state-based regulatory requirements, including a Working with Children Check, must be met prior to attending professional experience placement. All professional experience learning hours must be completed and professional behaviour and conduct must be demonstrated.
The major areas of study include theories of learning and development, principles and practices of early childhood education and care, key issues in the early childhood education and care field including social justice, diversity and equity, working with families, investigating different early childhood educational models around the world and applying knowledge, skills and capabilities in professional experience.
Note: International EAP 2 students can progress to a Graduate Diploma in Education (Early Childhood) with an equivalent of IELTS 6.5
|Gold Coast||Term 1, Term 3, Term 5|
|Online||Term 1, Term 3, Term 5|
|Location||Teaching period||Annual Fees||CRICOS|
|Gold Coast||Term 1, Term 3, Term 5||$28,000 ($3,500 per unit)||102984F|
Tuition fees are in Australian dollars, and are subject to change, including annual increases over the duration of a course. Annual tuition fee is based on completing 8 units per year. In addition students are required to pay OSHC for the duration of their visa in advance. Non-tuition fee covers textbooks, stationery and excursions.
Career opportunities arising from this course include:
- Early childhood teacher in preschool and long day care (child care) settings
- Family day care educator
- Early childhood services.
The Graduate Diploma of Education (Early Childhood) is accredited by the Australian Children's Education and Care Quality Authority (ACECQA).
This course qualifies early childhood teachers to teach in settings for children aged from birth to five-years.
We encourage you to apply for the courses you most want to study. If you are not eligible to enter your chosen course right now, our team will work with you to find the best pathway option.
Before applying, make sure you double check all entry requirements, gather required documentation and review the University’s Rules Relating to Awards, noting any specifics listed below.
- Applications for admission to candidature in the Graduate Diploma in Education (Early Childhood) may be selected where they can demonstrate academic or professional standing considered by the School Board or Course Coordinator to be equivalent to the requirements of Rule 2, Section 3.
To meet the minimum English language requirement an applicant must satisfy one of the following criteria:
have completed senior secondary study equivalent of Australian Year 12 or have completed at least one year of full-time study (or equivalent part-time study) at AQF diploma equivalent or higher where:
- the country where those studies were undertaken is listed in Schedule A of the Rules Relating to Awards - Rule 2, and
- the language of instruction was English; or
achieved a minimum test score within two (2) years of the date of application for admission, equal to or above the minimum listed below:
- International English Language Test System (IELTS). The applicant must have a minimum overall score of 6.5, including a minimum result of 6.5 in speaking, listening, reading and writing; or
- International Second Language Proficiency Rating (ISLPR). The applicant must have a score of at least 4+ in each of the four areas: speaking, listening, reading and writing.
- have completed senior secondary study equivalent of Australian Year 12 or have completed at least one year of full-time study (or equivalent part-time study) at AQF diploma equivalent or higher where:
English language requirements apply to International applicants and other applicants whose previous study was undertaken in a language other than English. The minimum English language requirements for such applicants for entry to this course are as follows
- To be eligible to receive the Graduate Diploma of Education (Early Childhood) students must complete the equivalent of 8 units (96 credit points), comprising:
- 8 core units (96 credit points); and
- 2 professional experience units (0 credit points).
2. Permission to undertake a professional experience placement requires meeting all academic and non-academic requirements as stipulated by the University and relevant accreditation bodies.
Students may be eligible to exit with the Graduate Certificate in Education (Early Childhood) after completing the equivalent of 4 units (48 credit points).
Inherent Requirements apply to this course as defined on the Student Access and Inclusion website. If you have a disability or health condition which may impact on your ability to meet these requirements please refer to the Student Access and Inclusion website for further information and contact details.
Other things to consider
Credit for Prior Learning, also referred to as ‘Advanced Standing’ or Recognition for Prior Learning (RPL), is the process of looking at your prior study and/or experience to assess if you can be awarded academic credit or gain entry to a course on the basis of your existing knowledge and skills.
The Early Offer program allows Year 12 students to secure a place in a Southern Cross University undergraduate degree before Year 12 results are released. It’s designed to remove some of the pressure from Year 12 and provide a pathway directly into university study that is not based solely on Year 12 results.
Going straight from school to a degree is one way to start uni, but it’s not the only way.
Whether you are returning to study after some time or you just left school, Southern Cross University offer two excellent, fee-free academic preparation programs that develop the skills you need to be successful at university.
Why Education at SCU
5-star rating for postgraduate overall experience, student support, skills development and teaching quality in Education and Training(GUG 2023)
Higher starting salary
Graduates have a higher starting salary than national average in Teacher Education(Graduate Outcomes Survey 2017-2019)
90% of graduates employed within four months of completing their course(Graduate Outcomes Survey 2017-2019)
Fees and Scholarships
You are a domestic student if you are an Australian citizen or permanent resident, New Zealand citizen, or Australian humanitarian visa holder. Your course will either be a Commonwealth Supported Place or a full fee-paying place. This is noted in the course snapshot.
Commonwealth Supported Places:
In a Commonwealth Supported Place (CSP), the Government pays some of your fees and you pay the rest as the Student Contribution Amount (SCA).
SCA is calculated per unit, not per course. Eligible students can defer the SCA through a HECS-HELP loan.
Full Fee-Paying Places:
A full fee-paying place is where you pay the full (unsubsidised) tuition fee for your course. Eligible students can defer the payment of their tuition fees through the FEE-HELP scheme (including employer-reserved places for The Hotel School courses).
Also known as SSAF, the Student Services and Amenities Fee is a compulsory fee for most students used to provide important services and amenities to students both on and off campus. It’s charged per unit, based on the unit’s credit point value. Eligible domestic students have the option of deferring this fee through the SA-HELP loan scheme. More about SSAF
Depending on your course, your costs could also include computer equipment and software, books, stationery, field trips, uniforms or other course-specific expenses such as art materials, musical equipment or travel for practicums, internships, vaccinations or industry experience.
Southern Cross University offers a range of scholarships for undergraduate (your first degree), postgraduate, Indigenous Australian students as well as international students. There are also scholarships available to help you study overseas for a short period as an international exchange student. Scholarships range from a few hundred dollars a year to several thousand dollars a year.
Fees and Scholarships
If you're an international student, you can find the annual course cost in Australian dollars (AUD$) on our International Courses and Fees page or on the web page for your course under fees.
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Dates for the diary
Our shorter, more focused six-week unit structure gives students a greater sense of momentum and motivation as they achieve milestones quickly. Application dates per Term are shown on each course page however refer to our key dates and teaching calendar for detail on when enrolment opens, studies commence and when grades are published. There are also Dual Term and Tri Term calendars for those who have specific subjects.