Chatham University

Low-Residency Graduate Certificate in Infant Mental Health

Promote wellbeing

Infant Mental Health (IMH) addresses the social and emotional well-being of very young children and their caregivers by building and strengthening secure, nurturing relationships. Chatham University was the first institution in the state of Pennsylvania to create academic programs that recognize and respond to this need.

The IMH certificate may be completed for-credit or non-credit. If a student wishes to specialize in IMH but does not need to earn graduate course credit, he or she may choose to pursue the IMH certificate on a non-credit basis. The non-credit IMH certificate is available at a reduced cost. Note: A course taken for non-credit cannot be applied toward a graduate degree.

All students (non-credit and for-credit) are required to attend one IMH weekend event in Pittsburgh (or elsewhere in PA) as planned each year at their own expense. For students who are not able to meet travel demands to attend such events, alternative activities may be arranged.

Our low-residency Graduate Certificate in Infant Mental Health consists of:

  1. A set of six core courses, all offered online:
    • Essentials of Infant Mental Health
    • Infant Development
    • Family Interactions
    • Infant Assessment
    • Practices and Principles of Infant Mental Health
    • Infant Attachment – a Dual Relationship

  2. One IMH Weekend Event each semester, where we engage in live and in-person training with infant mental health experts from across the country, either at Chatham University and/or the location of the annual Pennsylvania Infant Mental Health Conference.

Our program graduates work with infants and caregivers in a wide variety of settings, including hospitals, clinics, social services, and non-profit services. Learn more.

In addition to our low-residency Graduate Certificate in Infant Mental Health, we also offer a Master of Science in Infant Mental Health and a Master of Science in Infant Mental Health Counseling.

Why Infant Mental Health?

Infants are not small adults. Expertise in facilitating care for them is increasingly important–and increasingly relevant–as our understanding of infant neuroscience advances. Few therapeutic interventions offer the opportunity to make such a long-lasting impact on the lives of others. This expertise–gained from a solid grounding in theory and significant supervised field experience–is well-recognized.

IMH practitioners must be aware of and attuned to the details that can provide game-changing insight into a relationship between a child and a caretaker. They must also be familiar with the challenges that may arise or be present at the outset. And to be optimally effective, they must be aware of their relationship to their own practice.