at Meredith College

Through the multidisciplinary child development major, you will be prepared for careers in early childhood settings and non-profit agencies serving young children and their families, as well as the pursuit of graduate and professional studies.

“Meredith encouraged me to find my own voice and confidence in myself, and that confidence will carry over wherever I go.”
Madison Burton
Madison Burton, '18
Child Development Major

Our Bachelor’s in Childhood Development

In Meredith’s childhood development program, you gain a deep understanding of the impact a child’s ecological framework has on their development. You will learn more about the physical, social, emotional, linguistic, and intellectual growth of children.

Take a deep dive into the complex interrelationships among the child, the family, their diverse culture, and society at large, and use this knowledge to apply a developmental perspective to your work with children and families. You can combine the child development major with the licensure requirements for either Birth through Kindergarten or K-6 to become eligible to teach in the public school setting.

Multiple internship opportunities allow you to focus on unique and specific aspects of serving young children and their families. This in-depth experience will better prepare you for employment in your chosen career path or for continued education in graduate school.

MYAC Group Project Meeting

Why Study Child Development at Meredith?

  • Meredith’s extensive contacts in the Raleigh community allow students to choose from a variety of internship and career options in early education and community-based services.
  • Faculty have a wide range of expertise in a variety of areas including early childhood education, child life and family centered care, early intervention, curriculum and instruction, research, professional writing, and community support.
    • Students may work with faculty members through independent studies or community internships. 
    • Students receive individualized career guidance and on-site supervision by faculty
  • Students are exposed to diverse field experiences in a variety of local programs that support young children and families.
  • Child Development majors have the opportunity to participate in hands-on observation and work at the Ellen Brewer House (EBH), an infant/toddler education program serving children whose ages range from 6 weeks to 2 years.
  • Students earning a degree in child development are eligible to seek North Carolina teacher licensure for birth through kindergarten (B-K) or elementary education (K-6).
  • Student organizations include Meredith Advocates for Young Children (MAYC) and Meredith Alliance for Children in Healthcare Setting (MACHS).
  • Scholarship opportunities for students majoring in child development include the Sue Ballard Scholarship, the Marilyn Stuber Scholarship, the Hull Scholarship, and the Dapore Scholarship.
Ellen Brewer open gate

Ellen Brewer House

The Ellen Brewer House is a five-star, on-campus childcare program serving children whose ages range from 6 weeks to 2 years. It has been cited statewide as an exemplary program and offers child development students the opportunity for hands-on learning. Learn more about the EBH.

Child Development Major

Meredith Advocates for Young Children

Meredith Advocates for Young Children (MAYC) is an organization devoted to helping shape the development of young children. MAYC allows students to become involved in the community and develop a professional network.

Lindsay Parlberg talking with a parent and her child during a well survey.

Meredith Alliance for Children in Healthcare Settings (MACHS)

Meredith Alliance for Children in Healthcare Settings (MACHS) is a multidisciplinary organization devoted to supporting and advocating for the needs of children and families in healthcare settings. MACHS allows students to learn about professions in healthcare, and to participate in community engagement and service projects.
Diana Burrafato working with 3rd grade students.

Careers in Child Development

A childhood development degree prepares students for a wide array of potential careers and graduate study. Potential career options include early education and child care programs, child life, early intervention, government agencies, and other agencies offering children’s programs and community non-profit organizations.

  • Autism and Behavior Support Specialist
  • Birth to Three Quality Enhancement Coach
  • Camp & Youth Development Director
  • Child Life Specialist/Child Life Assistant
  • Cross Categorical Resource Preschool Teacher
  • Early Intervention Service Coordinator
  • Instructional Assistant
  • Master’s degree in child development, human development and family studies, special education, speech and language pathology, occupational therapy, physical therapy, recreational therapy, and child life
  • Parent Educator/Family Support Specialist
  • Parent Engagement Coordinator
  • Preschool Director/Assistant Director
  • Quality Enhancement Coach for child care service initiatives 
  • Teacher in early education programs, non-profit programs, and public school Pre-K and K-6 classrooms

Emily Wilkinson, ’19, has always had a passion for children and individuals with special needs. Her Meredith experience has grown that passion and her own personal experiences have inspired her to become a special education teacher.

The Power of Picture Books

In this episode of The Meredith Minute, Professor of Education Jennifer Olson discusses how picture books are used to convey complex concepts, tackle difficult subjects, or offer role models to readers of all ages.

Child Development News

Two Meredith College faculty members have received a $350,000 multi-year grant from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) to fund research examining the benefit of support systems on maternal mental health. Assistant Professor of Psychology Betty-Shannon Prevatt, Ph.D., and Assistant Professor of Child Development Pamela Norcross, Ph.D., are the co-primary investigators (PIs) on this project.

Assistant Professor in Child Development Pamela Linton Norcross, has had a manuscript accepted for publication in the Journal of Infant Behavior and Development, titled Effects of Maternal Depressive Symptoms on Sensitivity to Infant Distress and Non-Distress: Role of SES and Race.

Equity Statement: All students have the right to an equitable and inclusive learning environment, including fair treatment, acknowledged as individuals, while being encouraged to participate fully in their educational experiences. Thus, the Child Development program will create an environment of respect, tolerance, and understanding of others as unique individuals, through safe spaces within classrooms for discussion, listening, thinking, and learning about these differences. The Child Development program acknowledges that there are many different people, identities, experiences, and perspectives, and as a program, we will address biases and challenge policies and mindset that reinforce dominance or invisibility of others inside and outside of the classroom to help students reach their full potential as students, members of Meredith College community, and society.  

Contact Information

Pamela Norcross
Associate Professor, Human & Environmental Sciences & Child Development Coordinator
216 Martin Hall
(919) 760-2357
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School of Education Health & Human Sciences »
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