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Infant Mental Health Competency Guidelines

To best serve infants, young children, and families, we must support all professionals who work with them to incorporate core principles of social and emotional health and well-being into their practice.

To address this need, the Rhode Island Association for Infant Mental Health (RIAIMH) promotes a nationally established set of Competency Guidelines and Endorsement for Culturally Sensitive, Relationship-Focused Practice Promoting Infant Mental Health® (IECMH-Endorsement®) for the diverse array of RI providers in the infant and family workforces.

Competency Guidelines document is being revised to reflect the four categories (FA, FS, MHS, MHM) and the new ad-on Endorsed Reflective Supervisor (ERS).

Building a competent workforce

The Competency Guidelines and Addendum to the Guidelines, continues to identify knowledge, skills, and reflective practice approaches that support the development of competency in infant and early childhood mental health across disciplines and in multiple service settings. Competency Guidelines information is being revised and moving to the EASy website. Please stay tuned for more information.

Together with RIAIMH’s IECMH-Endorsement® process, the Competency Guidelines can help fuel high-quality, systematic workforce development opportunities across Rhode Island’s early childhood system and lead to a more engaged, competent, and committed infant/early childhood-family workforce. 

The IECMH-Endorsement® Journey

The Competency Guidelines form the basis for IECMH-Endorsement® through RIAIMH. In order to become Infant or Early Childhood Mental Health Endorsed®, applicants must demonstrate that they have achieved competence in specific areas of expertise through education, work, specialized training, and reflective supervision experiences. Some categories do not require an education degree or reflective supervision.
See here for list of categories and requirements.

Get started

Review the Competency Guidelines sections of your category. The Competencies Guideline Booklet is in process to include information regarding category Family Reflective Supervisor. While the revision is still in production, please see descriptions for Family Reflective Supervisor category on the following pages: Family Specialist section (pg. 23-31), Mentor Leadership section (pg. 51), Mentor Reflection section (pg. 53)

Please note: The materials supporting RI-IMH-Endorsement® Competency Guidelines® are copyrighted by the Michigan Association for Infant Mental Health (MI-AIMH). RIAIMH is able to make these materials available to our membership and collaborators through a licensing agreement with the MI-AIMH.

The materials supporting the [AIMH] Competency Guidelines are copyrighted by the Michigan Association for Infant Mental Health (MI-AIMH). The [AIMH] can make these materials available to our membership and collaborators through a licensing agreement with the MI-AIMH.

Copyright law does allow individuals to print out or make ONE copy of copyrighted material for personal, non-commercial purposes only. None of the copyrighted Endorsement documents included here may be reproduced, displayed, distributed or otherwise used in any format, including electronically, without the express written consent of MI-AIMH. Legal action will be taken against those who violate the copyright.

Competency Domains and Knowledge and Skill Areas of Expertise

The Competencies are organized into the following general domains of expertise. Click on each domain to bring you to additional information. This information is based on the Infant Family Associate category. If you wish to read more or about a different category, please see full document.

Some IECMH-Endorsement categories have additional IMH-Competency Domains and Areas of expertise, see full document for category requirements. For instance, Family Reflective Supervisor and Mental Health Mentor each include a Leadership Domain.


RIAIMH is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.

RIAIMH is a founding member of the Alliance for the Advancement of Infant Mental Health.

RIAIMH is an affiliate of the World Association for Infant Mental Health.

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