Yes, there is a difference. An Associates degree in Early Childhood Development (CDA), has several hours of training in 8 different areas; as with the Early Childhood Specialist you have training ,(lots of it), in one specific area.
With a CDA these are the areas of training and their hours:
Plannning a safe, healthy,learning enviorment 12 hrs. Managing a program operation 18 hrs.
Physical and intellectual development 21 hrs. Commitment to Professionalism 15 hrs.
Positive social and emotional development 12 hrs. Observing and recording childrens
Establishing relationships with families 12 hrs. behavior 12 hrs.
Principles of child development and learning 18 hrs.
120 hrs. of CDA training program developed for caregivers 3/25/2010 to 8/12/2010 (Camp Fire USA)
Child Development Associate (CDA) CDA Credential by the Council for Professional Recognition (Preschool Endorsement) Deborah C. Jordan (Deputy Director) and J.Cucy, Jr. (President/CEO) January 01, 2011