Department of childhood education and nursery was established in 1994. Based on a two-year Junior college program in the beginning, the program was expanded into the present four-year program in 1999. The mission of the department is to cultivate educators in early childhood education with specialized knowledge, skills, and qualities. In 2000, Center of Teacher Education at Chia Nan University of Pharmacy and Science was established. Students were encouraged to pursuit excellence in the area of pedagogy and enter kindergarten teacher education programs. Through the teacher education program for the secondary-level school teachers, student could get qualification of a kindergarten teacher in addition to a childcare giver after graduation. In order to response the problems of the low birth rate, the department recruited one class for four-year program each year from 2017. Currently there are approximately 300 students enrolling. In order to recruit more students who are interested in childcare, the department is going to start a two-year program at night school in 2019.
Being highly sensitive to social trends and training students to work professionally, there are 4 cross-disciplinary courses with other departments (i.e., Applied Foreign Languages, Social Work, Applied Life Science and Health, Tourism and Management.) in our university. In order to strengthen the employment expertise of students, the department has conducted training programs of employability including early intervention, afterschool services, and intensive training on Montessori pedagogy by retaining funding from Ministry of Labor (MOL) for the past 8 years. In 2014, the department was accredited by the Ministry of Education as the certified educate giver training facility.
The department keeps developing good connection and collaboration with industries/ Government related to early childhood service, such as establishing Lu-Zhu Center of Resources and Childcare in Kaohsiung, An-Ping Public Child-Care Center in Tainan..., etc. Faculty members can provide support and consultation to these industries; Students can also do social services, volunteers, and internships in these institutions.