Categories of Endorsement and Requirements

NYS-AIMH will endorse professionals from many disciplines at the following four categories:

  • Infant Family Associate
  • Infant Family Specialist
  • Infant Mental Health Specialist
  • Infant Mental Health Mentor

Please note: These categories are not hierarchical. They each recognize skills and knowledge, training and position responsibilities that conform with best practice standards. Each category is designed to capture a different perspective in this multidisciplinary field who work with very young children and their families.

 Categories Education Training Experience Reflective Practice
Infant Family Associate

(IFA)

CDA, or Associate’s degree in a related area or 2 years of infant/childhood paid work experience (including college, AA and CDA work) 30+ hours of defined training or portfolio CDA, or Associate’s degree in a related area or 2 years of infant/childhood paid work experience (including college, AA and CDA work)  
Infant Family Specialist

(IFS)

Bachelors or Masters degree in defined fields, 30+ hours of training 30+ hours of defined training 2 years post-BA paid IMH work 24+ hours over 1-2 years of reflective practice
Infant Mental Health Specialist

(IMHS)

Masters or Doctorate in defined fields (some possible credit for intensive in-service training) 30+ hours of defined training 2 years post-grad paid IMH direct services to infants/caregivers OR one year supervised graduate internship 50 hours over 1-2 years of reflective practice
Infant Mental Health Mentor Clinical

(IMHM-C)

Masters or Doctorate in defined fields (some possible credit for intensive in-service training) 30+ hours of defined training Level III + 3 years post-grad providing IMH reflective practice supervision/consultation and defined leadership activities 50 hours over 1-2 years of reflective practice
Infant Mental Health  Mentor Policy

(IMHM-P)

3 years of post-grad experience in Policy/Administration related to IMH field and defined leadership activities OPTIONAL: 50 hours over 1-2 years
Infant Mental Health  Mentor  Research/Faculty

(IMHM-R/F)

3 years of post-grad experience as a leader in university-teaching and/or published research and other defined leadership activities OPTIONAL: 50 hours over 1-2 years