Educators and child care providers can have access to a free online resource for professional training through Best Care Connected and Guiding Children Successfully, according to a news release from the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture.

The Cooperative Extension Service, in partnership with the Division of Child Care and Early Childhood Education, offers 43 hours of online professional development training for educators or caregivers of young children – all of it research-based.

“The areas of emphasis include child development, health, nutrition, and resource management,” said Rachel Chaney, extension program associate for the U of A System Division of Agriculture. “All training opportunities are offered free of charge and are verified training through the Professional Development Registry and support the Better Beginnings quality rating system.”

Best Care Connected provides five hours of online verified training annually. Current courses are available until Sept. 15. New courses will be available in October. Details:

Guiding Children Successfully is a self-guided training program offering up to 38 hours verified training online and in paper form. Participants are able to take these hours every four years. New courses were added in January. Details:

The online course format includes interactive elements and audio recording. To access these online courses, go to the website. After logging in, click on the course category titled “Child Care Courses-PDR Eligible” to access the Best Care Connected and Guiding Children Successfully courses.

“Don’t miss out on all the free training opportunities and resources available to child care professionals in Arkansas!” Chaney said.

For details on all of their training opportunities, visit

“The Cooperative Extension Service is the source for early childhood professional development opportunities. We encourage others interested in learning more about how to care for young children to visit your local county Cooperative Extension Service office,” according to the news release.

The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture offers all its Extension and Research programs to all eligible persons without discrimination.