Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health

Coordinator: Dr. Gerard Costa
Office: Center for Autism & Early Childhood Mental Health, 14 Normal Avenue
Email: costag@mail.montclair.edu
Phone: 973-655-6685

The Graduate Certificate in Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health (ICMH) offers professionals the opportunity to examine the optimal physical, social, emotional, and cognitive development of the infant and young child within the context of the family. The program is designed for professionals in the field of psychology, counseling, social work, education, pediatrics, nursing, home visitation, and other allied health fields.

The program allows professionals from a wide range of disciplines to learn about infancy and early childhood studies, assessment and intervention strategies, and service delivery systems for infants, children, and families. 

The program is particularly relevant to those who work in early intervention and preschool disabled programs, Early Head Start, Head Start, infant and early childhood centers, neonatal and pediatric units, child protective services, judicial programs, adolescent parenting programs, foster parenting, and parent education programs. For licensed mental health providers, it would allow them to expand their treatment, training and consultation business by seeing and treating infants/young children and parents/caregivers, but it would also expand their availability as consultants and trainers to EI/infant and early childhood programs, and likely as court experts.

Courses are offered during the evenings and summers to meet the needs of working students, and individuals may complete the certificate program in just one year.

For more information, please send an email to caecmh@montclair.edu.

The curriculum encourages students to apply their learning in working relationships and roles with children and families within the scope of their specific professional title, licensure, credential and/or practice. The goals of the program include:

  • Explain the science of infancy and early childhood development
  • Investigate discipline-relevant assessment and intervention strategies
  • Understand and apply to their work  the critical importance of integrating mental health principles, relationship-based strategies and reflective practices into service delivery systems with infants, children and families
  • Apply the skills required to influence policies that impact the mental health of children
  • Apply knowledge from the neurosciences and research about the core role that emotions and socio-emotional development play in brain development and the capacities for self-regulation, social relationships, intellectual development, language and shared human development
  • Apply the  skills required to become change agents to influence policies that impact the mental health of children and families
  • Apply concepts and interventions from the certificate program in use within the scope of their professional licensure and practice.

Admission Information:

Applicants must submit an application online through The Graduate School. Other materials required include the application fee, essay and transcripts.

clinical certifications in the Center for Autism & Early Childhood Mental Health  

Center for Autism & Early Childhood Mental Health Brochure
The Center for Autism and Early Childhood Mental Health (CAECMH) serves as a center for professional development, education, clinical services and research around the issues of autism, infant and childhood development, and early childhood mental health.

View Program Brochure - Center for Autism and Early Childhood Mental Health - Consultation

Course Requirements:

Required Courses
Name Hours
ICMH 501 Historical and Theoretical Perspectives in Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health 3
ICMH 502 Wonder, Hypotheses, and Meaning in Assessment and Research in Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health 3
ICMH 603 Special Topics in Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health 3
ICMH 604 Practicum: Implications and Applications in Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health 3
FCST 542 Dynamics of Family Interaction 3