CDA: The Best First Step

Whether you are looking to earn your CDA or need to renew, we are here to help you every step of the way!

What is the CDA?
The Child Development Associate (CDA) Credential is the most widely recognized credential in early childhood education and is the best first step on the path of career advancement. The distinctive CDA credential is the only nationally recognized, portable, competency-based credential of its kind in the United States.

Why should I earn a CDA?
Child Development Associates are individuals who have successfully completed the CDA Assessment and have been awarded a CDA credential by the Council for Professional Recognition.

CDA recipients are able to better meet the specific needs of children and work with parents and other adults to nurture children’s physical, social, emotional and intellectual growth in a child development framework.

What is the 4C CDA Preparation Program?
This program is designed to support students throughout every step towards earning a CDA. Download our brochure to learn more. There are many advantages to participating in the 4C program, including:

  • convenient class times and locations in Northern Kentucky, the Miami Valley and Southwest Ohio
  • skilled instructors with years of experience in early childhood education
  • assistance with documentation requirements and preparing for the CDA Exam and Verification Visit
  • opportunities to learn within a community of other early childhood education professionals
  • scholarship availability

Are there scholarships available for the CDA Preparation Program?
Yes! Scholarships are available in each region. Attend a CDA orientation to learn more about how much each scholarship is worth, and how to apply.

What should I do when it is time to renew my CDA?
CDA credentials need to be renewed every three years. To renew, you will need to complete 45 clock hours (4.5 CEU's) of traning in advanced early childhood development and complete your CDA Renewal Packet. 4C will guide you step-by-step through the entire CDA renewal process. Visit the CDA Renewal page for more information.

Ready to Learn More?
Come to a CDA Orientation!

To participate in the next 4C CDA class, you will need to attend the mandatory orientation session. During the orientation you will be given valuable information regarding the process of obtaining your CDA, scholarship opportunities, the fee structure and answers to any other questions you may have.

For dates and more information:
Miami Valley
Southwest Ohio
Northern Kentucky

Contact our CDA specialists


Miami Valley
Linda Lockhart
1000 N. Keowee St.
Dayton, OH 45404

Northern Kentucky
Andrea Heil
525 W. Fifth Street, Suite 215
Covington, KY 41011

Southwest Ohio
Karen Bundy
2100 Sherman Ave., #300
Cincinnati, OH 45212

4C CDA Services

Candidates not enrolled in the 4C CDA Preparation Program may hire 4C staff to assist with the following:

  • training hours review and plan for training
  • a Pre-Verification Visit observation
  • assistance and review of Professional Portfolio

Renewal Services

4C staff can assist those renewing CDA credentials by providing the following:

  • training hours review and plan for training
  • observation and letter of recommendation

Professional Development Options

Visit to find a complete listing of early childhood workshops and classes. This online catalog offers options to search by date, topic, location, age group/category and instructor.