The Delaware Institute for Excellence in Early Childhood (DIEEC) is located within UD’s College of Education and Human Development and the Department of Human Development and Family Sciences.

Our goal is to improve the quality of early care and education experiences for young children and their families, with an emphasis on high-risk children. We accomplish this through the design, development, and testing of model programs and practices in areas such as professional development, technical assistance, and early intervention benefiting the early learning community.

Parents, practitioners and service advocates are invited to learn more about our programs:

  • DIEEC Professional Development is committed to supporting the healthy growth and development of Delaware’s children by providing resources and information for those who care for, who care about, and who teach our children and support their families.
  • Delaware Stars for Early Success has developed a Quality Rating and Improvement System to assess, improve and communicate the level of quality in early care centers and education settings. Participating programs receive training and resources designed to increase access to high quality care for Delaware’s children, especially those from low-income families.
  • New Directions Early Head Start provides pregnant women, infants, toddlers and their families with quality care and family services that support families in providing the best for themselves and their very young children, in order to promote children’s success and families’ self-sufficiency, through community collaboration and partnerships.

Students looking to participate in research projects through DIEEC should contact Dr. Hustedt at