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Last Updated: October 08, 2022

Career Options for Child Development Associate

A child development associate certification is a credential required by professions like teacher assistant, preschool teacher, child care worker, etc. among other child care professions. This certification can easily be taken by those who have the necessary professional working experience in the field and it does not involve additional educational qualifications that one will have to meet. Candidates who wish to take this certification will only have to meet the eligibility criteria and take the CDA examination before they can be qualified.

The first step to becoming a child development associate is to choose one of the four development stages of a child that one would like to work with. The career options in each of these fields will vary and so will the professional experience they will require for the same. In short, one will require work experience based on which their skills and knowledge in the field will be assessed which will further allow them to take the CDA examination and get qualified.

Qualifications Required to be a CDA Official

The qualifications required to be a CDA Official include-

Types of CDA Specializations

Candidates who wish to gain CDA will be able to choose from four specializations. These specializations will be based on the different developmental stages of a child and candidates will be required to gain their education and work experience in the same field to take the specialization. The four specializations offered include-

Places of Work for CDA Officials

CDAs generally work in environments that teach and train children based on the development stage they have opted for. This will include-
  • preschools
  • day cares
  • family environments

    Salary Scope for CDA Official

    The salary scope for a person with a CDA credential is based on the educational qualification they have and the professional experience they have gained in the field. There is a projected growth of 7 to 11% for professions in this field. The wage that one receives will range from $30,000 to $60,000 per year depending on the profession of choice. The average salary that child development associates get is around $34,000 per year.

    Career Options for CDA

    Candidates who have gained their CDA credentials will be able to take up a variety of professions that deal with child care. Most of these professionals are in educational settings and others include the primary looking after of the children. A few of these professions include-
    ProfessionAverage Salary
    Preschool Teacher$32,000 per year
    Teacher Assistant$30,000 per year
    Childcare Worker$25,500 per year
    Kindergarten Teacher$60,500 per year
    Day care Teacher$31,000 per year
    Nanny$40,000 per year
    Child Welfare Social Worker$61,000 per year
    • Preschool Teacher- This involves teaching basic learning skills to children including aspects like numbers, letters, etc. They will also have to provide children with motivation and encouragement for further learning and the cultivation of skills. The job outlook for this profession is around 11% with around 469,500 jobs available.
      Average Salary- $32,000 per year
    • Teacher Assistant-They deal with assisting teachers in providing students with the best of the academic world. This will include grading papers and taking up job roles intended for the teacher when necessary. The job outlook for this profession is around 9% with around 1,306,000 jobs available.
      Average Salary- $30,000 per year
    • Childcare Worker- This profession deals with monitoring and supervising children either in the foster care environment or family environment ensuring that all the needs of the child are being met. The job outlook for this profession is 8% with around 992,000 jobs available.
      Average Salary- $25,500 per year
    • Kindergarten Teacher- This profession involves teaching academic and social skills to children and mainly requires candidates to keep children engaged and motivated in an academic setting. The job outlook for this profession is 7% and around 1,492,000 jobs are available every year for this post.
      Average Salary- $60,500 per year
    • Daycare Teacher- This profession requires candidates to work with toddlers in creating activities they can remain engaged in and also assist them in being involved in the said activities. They will also have to ensure that the toddlers are in a safe environment and will have to interact with other teachers and parents at the same time.
      Average Salary- $31,000 per year
    • Nanny- Nannies are in charge of looking after children within a family setting. Most of them are employed full-time or part-time and they will be in charge of both disciplining the child and providing them with care in every aspect they require for prolonged periods. They will also be in charge of the meal plans and other daily necessities for children.
      Average Salary- $40,000 per year
    • Child Welfare Social Worker- This profession allows candidates to be in charge of protecting children that are vulnerable within a family setting. They will have to assist guardians by connecting them to housing opportunities, child care, and even other child welfare systems. Sometimes, this profession will also involve creating awareness about parenting skills, finding foster homes, and even adoption processes.
      Average Salary- $61,000 per year

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