Child Development Center


A world of wonder, exploration and learning awaits at the on-campus Child Development Center. 

working away at the child development center

When a group of parents spoke up about the need for child care while attending classes about 30 years ago, the University of Northern Iowa Child Development Center (CDC) emerged. Since then, the CDC has held true to its mission by offering a safe and nurturing environment to support learning for children of faculty, staff and students of the University.

We can serve 60 children with a full-day program and accept children ages six weeks to five years old. 

Maria Ackerson,, serves as the director of the CDC. 

Accredited, quality care and instruction

The CDC is NAEYC (National Association for the Education of Young Children) accredited and has a QRS 5-star rating (the highest quality rating score possible). We seek to continue to better ourselves and our program and strive to offer future educators and professionals at UNI a wonderful, hands-on experience here at the CDC.

Early childhood education at CDC

Explore. Educate. Discover. 

The CDC is an essential piece of the UNI College of Education, so we recognize the importance of providing a developmentally appropriate, child-directed learning environment in which children can construct their own knowledge. This type of learning happens through teacher-guided activities, hands-on experimentation and exploration to promote social, emotional, physical, and cognitive development. 

Child Development Center
Volunteer, Observe, Participate.

Get Involved

Here at the CDC, we love to welcome new visitors, observers and participants. If you would like to join us, please contact Maria Ackerson, the center director, and she will guide you on next steps.

Nielsen Fieldhouse
Nielsen Fieldhouse

A Home with Character 

For 20 years, the Nielsen Fieldhouse has served as the child-friendly home for the UNI Child Development Center. With five age-appropriate classrooms, an adjacent gym, fenced outdoor playground and recently renovated office space, this historic structure provides a welcoming environment for infants to five-year-olds. 

To locate us on the map, click the link below and select "Child Development Center" from the drop-down menu.

‌Campus Map