Academic Catalog

Social Work and Infant Mental Health (M.S.W. or Ph.D. Dual-Title)

Students in the master’s or Ph.D. program in Social Work can apply to earn a Dual-Title Degree in Social Work and Infant Mental Health (IMH). This dual-title degree is designed to prepare Social Workers to support early social and emotional development especially in contexts of risk such as poverty and violence exposure that place young children at risk for relationship disruptions and developmental concerns, and in families where parents or children suffer from developmental disabilities, physical health or mental health concerns. The dual-title program offers many advantages to students whose goal is to work with very young children and their families. Students who earn an IMH dual-title degree have a solid understanding of both research and clinical work with infants and families, are prepared to work in multi-disciplinary teams and to implement evidence-based treatments. MSW Dual Title Students also receive clinical supervision from program faculty during the IMH clinical seminar that is offered in the Fall and Winter terms.  As a result of their training and supervision, IMH dual-title students are well-positioned to be competitive in the job market.

Admission Requirements

Applicants must meet the admissions standards of the Graduate School and the School of Social Work. Interested students can submit an online application located on the program website. Current students can discuss their interest in the dual-title option with their faculty advisor prior to spring semester of their core year.

Social Work and Infant Mental Health (M.S.W. Dual-Title) 

M.S.W. students whose concentrations are ICP-L and IP can earn a Dual-Title Degree in Social Work and Infant Mental Health. All students are required to complete the following IMH coursework in addition to the M.S.W. 

Required for both ICP-L and IP students:
Psychology of Infant Behavior and Development
Infant Mental Health: Theory to Practice across Early Childhood Settings
Infant/Family Mental Health Assessment
Infant Mental Health Practice
ICP-L students must select the following course:
Advanced Policy Analysis in Child and Family Wellbeing
Assignments should focus on policies related to pregnancy, infants and toddlers, or parenting young children.
IP students must select the following courses:
Infant Mental Health Seminar I
Infant Mental Health Seminar II

All students must complete and earn a ‘B’ or above in IMH-DT courses.  Some of the IMH-DT courses can count toward the MSW degree. ICP-L and IP Advanced Standing students take three credits above what is required for the MSW and IP CORE students take six credits beyond what is required for the MSW .

Master’s students must also complete an IMH-related field placement in their second year. Advanced standing students must focus their year of fieldwork on an IMH-related placement.

Social Work and Infant Mental Health (Ph.D. Dual-Title)

The dual-title degree requires coursework additional to the conventional social work doctoral program: twelve credits that focus on the social emotional capacities of young children birth to five years and in the primary relationships that support these capacities. Nine of these twelve credits can count toward the student's cognate. IMH expertise thereby gained should be reflected in a substantive research paper and a dissertation that addresses IMH issues and concepts. Students' studies and scholarly productions will be mentored by Social Work faculty members as well as IMH faculty members from other University schools and colleges.

Doctoral students are required to take the following courses:

SW 7025Infant Mental Health: Theory to Practice across Early Childhood Settings2
PSY 7425Psychology of Infant Behavior and Development3
SW 7880Infant/Family Mental Health Assessment2
SW 8880Infant Mental Health Practice3
Select at least 2 credits of an elective course from the list below:2
DSM in Clinical Social Work Practice
Interpersonal Practice in Substance Use
Directed Study: Doctoral (must be related to IMH)
Research Practicum (must be IMH research)
Infant Mental Health Seminar I
and Infant Mental Health Seminar II (4 credits total)
Total Credits12
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