In this article, I answer the question “What is the main difference between SUSS and JCU’s Early Childhood Education degree besides the duration.
The question was asked on my TikTok but I thought it’d be useful to answer it off the platform as well.
I think the first thing we need to talk about is the entry requirement. The most glaring difference would be that you’ll need to be currently employed as a L2 ECDA registered teacher on a full-time basis to meet the admission criteria for the Bachelor of Early Childhood Education with Minor at the Singapore University of Social Sciences if you’re looking to enroll as a part-time student. This requirement doesn’t apply for full-time students though.
On the other hand, you can enroll into James Cook University’s Bachelor of Education (Early Childhood Education) after completing an IB diploma, GCE A levels, a polytechnic diploma or any equivalent qualification. No work experience necessary regardless of whether you’re enrolling as a full-time or part-time student.
The second difference is the accreditation.
In Singapore, the Early Childhood Development Agency states on their website that they do not accredit or recognize any bachelor or masters degrees in early childhood education. So no accreditation for the SUSS degree.
But, the JCU degree is recognized by accredited through the Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL) in association with the Queensland College of Teachers (QCT) and also nationally accredited through the Australian Children’s Education & Care Quality Authority (ACECQA).
But of course, all that doesn’t really matter if you don’t plan on heading to Australia to work.
Building on that point, JCU’s early childhood degree naturally has a syllabus that would meet the needs of Australia. So you’ll find subjects such as Indigenous Futures and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Education which you may find totally irrelevant to you if you have no plans of heading to Australia for employment.
I’m not too sure about the SUSS programme, but being a Singaporean university that requires prospective part-time students to be a L2 ECDA registered teacher I’m going to assume that they’ll take reference from the Nurturing Early Learners framework by MOE. If I got it wrong here, I’m sure there’ll be someone on the internet who’ll be happy to correct me.
The fourth difference I’d like to highlight is the exposure. The professional experience component at JCU will try to expose students to various schools of thought within the sector. Students can expect to be placed in schools adopting the international baccalaureate, montessori or the reggio emilia systems.
While at SUSS, they offer experiential learning trips to learn about the educational context in places like Japan, Shenzhen and Taiwan to name a few.
If I missed out anything or got anything mixed up, I’m sure there’ll be someone on the internet who’ll be happy to correct me in the comments section.