When seeking to obtain a Child Development Associate (CDA) credential, you must submit a professional resource file containing an autobiography. According to the Vermont Northern Lights Career Development Center, applicants who apply for CDA accreditation must have a background of at least 450 hours of child care experience over the past five years. Thus, you should have plenty of relevant experience to refer to when writing an autobiography for your resource file. Be certain to convey your enthusiasm for working with children.
Observe guidelines. The content of your autobiography should be double-spaced and typed in a standard font, so that it will neatly fit onto a single page. Although a heading is not required, if you choose to include one, it should be centered. Most important, pay heed to the suggested word count for your autobiography, since points will be deducted if it exceeds 300 words.
Consider your intended audience. When you are writing a CDA autobiography, bear in mind that you are not addressing your friends, colleagues or even your instructor if you are enrolled in a CDA preparation course. Rather, your primary audience is members of the Council for Professional Recognition. While the tone of your writing not need be formal to a fault, neither should it be overly informal.
Describe yourself briefly, focusing on positive qualities of your character. Every aspiring educator is a bundle of strengths and weaknesses. Avoid mentioning your weaknesses in your autobiography, since others may perceive you as unqualified if you fail to focus on your strengths. Refer to specific accomplishments that illustrate your strengths, especially if they are related to education.
Explain why you are interested in working with young children. Perhaps you seek to model the caring attitude of an influential mentor. As a teen, you may have worked as a baby sitter of children in your neighborhood. Describe all prior work in the field of education, even work fulfilled as a volunteer if it sheds light on your character.
Define your goals. Write about what you hope to gain personally by securing CDA accreditation, as well as how you hope to use such accreditation to achieve career goals. Most important, share with your evaluators at least one way that you will use the CDA credential to influence the lives of children.