Infant, Child and Adolescent Mental Health
This specialisation is designed for graduates in nursing, medicine, occupational therapy, psychology, or social work who are currently employed in infant, child and adolescent mental health services or aim to be.
Infant, Child and Adolescent Mental Health difficulties vary depending on the age and developmental stage of the child or adolescent. Therefore their healthcare needs are different.
A sound understanding of developmental differences and knowledge of what is normal and abnormal are key to practicing in the area. The specialisation focuses on this as well as the assessment of psychopathology and impairment.
Formulation skills, the key principles of management of child and adolescent mental health disorder in general, and more specific therapy skills in key areas are also covered in the courses. This is essential training for clinicians working in ICAMHS or youth addiction services.
Infant, Child and Adolescent Mental Health can also be studied in the disciplines of Counselling and Social Work. Dealing with the emotional needs of children is very different from adults. With the introduction of social media and the rise in cyberbullying, along with the increasing incidence of suicide and self-harm, there is growing awareness around the mental health of our children and youth. If you are wanting a career where you can make a difference by focusing on the mental health of children, then this specialisation is ideal for you.
Where can Infant, Child and Adolescent Mental Health take you?
The certificate course is recognised as providing an important foundation for clinical work in child and adolescent mental health. Over the years it has become well-known and highly regarded in the sector.
Certificate courses can be credited towards a Postgraduate Diploma and then towards a Master of Health Sciences or other degrees, depending on your background.
It’s important to note that the certificate programme does not by itself equip trainees to work clinically with children. A basic clinical training is also required.
You can take courses as part of undergraduate and postgraduate study to become a registered social worker, as well as postgraduate study to become a registered counsellor. The courses are also valuable for current social services practitioners.