Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Education




Early Childhood Education

Capstone Instructor

Kelly Sadlovsky

Second Reader

Elisabeth Amirahmadi


barriers, challenges, developmentally appropriate practice (DAP), implementation, early childhood


Early childhood educators are faced with making many impactful decisions daily. The implementation of developmentally appropriate practices (DAP) in the learning environment is one of these many decisions. Developmentally appropriate practice in the early childhood learning setting refers to the framework that helps teachers to provide an environment, activities, and materials which intentionally meet children’s current level of development. While many early childhood educators believe in the concept of DAP, barriers are often encountered which prevent the implementation of DAP in the learning environment. In order to provide children with a DAP learning environment, teachers must first recognize and understand that these barriers exist. The focus of this paper was to investigate research to find what types of barriers to the implementation of DAP exist in early childhood environments both in the United States and in other countries. Studies showed that the three most common barriers to the implementation of DAP in the early childhood learning environment to be personal and environmental constraints and teacher training (Heisner & Lederberg, 2011; Sahin-Sak, Tantekin-Erden, & Pollard-Durodola, 2018).