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Oklahoma State University

Infant Mental Health Graduate Certificate

This graduate certificate program is offered online.


The HDFS graduate certificate in Infant Mental Health integrates research, theory and practical application of Infant Mental Health principles. Infant Mental Health is defined as “the developing capacity from birth to three to experience, regulate and express emotions; to form close relationships; and to explore the environment and learn — all in the context of family, community and cultural expectations for young children.” Coursework addresses these concepts from a developmental and attachment-based perspective and emphasizes reflective practice.

Graduates of the HDFS graduate certificate in Infant Mental Health:

  • Provide leadership in the field of Infant Mental Health
  • Gain competence in areas needed for Infant Mental Health Endorsement
  • Work in a variety of fields with infants and families including clinicians, early childhood teachers, healthcare professionals, and administrators.

The infant mental health certificate is beneficial to anyone working with young children and families. 

Gainful Employment

For employment disclosures related to the OSU Infant Mental Health graduate certificate program, click here.

View the Flyer -- Infant Mental Health Graduate Certifcate

Certificate Requirements

15 semester hours


  • HDFS 5233: Infant Mental Health
  • HDFS 5243: Infant and Early Childhood Development and Attachment
  • HDFS 5193: Reflective Practice
  • HDFS 5343: Developmental Assessment and Interventions
  • HDFS 5513: Issues in Family Science

Course Descriptions

HDFS 5233: Infant Mental Health
Foundations of infant mental health theory, research, and practice. Includes the familial context of children’s early development and the importance of infant-caregiver relationships, early intervention, assessment, and reflective practice. Emphasis is placed on the application of infant mental health principles across settings and disciplines focused on early childhood and families.

HDFS 5243: Infant and Early Childhood Development and Attachment
Survey of research and theory pertaining to infant and early childhood development and attachment. Content includes cognition and learning, social and emotional development, and assessment. An emphasis is placed on attachment and implications for practitioners working with young children and families.

HDFS 5193: Reflective Practice
An exploration of the principles and methods of reflective practice. Reflective journaling and group interactive dialogue based on the application of theoretical models. Supervised field experiences in community settings.

HDFS 5343: Developmental Assessment and Interventions
Applications of qualitative and quantitative approaches to observation and developmental assessment and intervention strategies for students preparing to become specialists or practitioners working with children and families, including early childhood educators, child and parenting practitioners, and human service practitioners.

HDFS 5513: Issues in Family Science
Current and classic literature in family studies. Consideration of philosophical bases and current research issues relevant to the family as a field of study.

Curious about Tuition and Fees?

Nonresident students who have been admitted to an approved online graduate certificate are eligible for the Graduate Nonresident Online Program Tuition Rate. In addition, because these students are not campus residents and not using the universities physical facilities, they receive a reduction in university mandatory fees. For more information please refer to the Graduate Nonresident Online Program Tuition Rate.

Documents to Submit for Your Application

All application materials are submitted online to the OSU Graduate College.  Applicants should submit the following items as part of their application materials:

  • Official online OSU Graduate College Application (and application processing fee)
  • Transcripts with bachelor’s degree conferred or pending*
  • Resume/Curriculum Vitae
  • Statement of professional goals
  • A writing sample
  • Names and email addresses for three references. References will receive an email requesting completion of an online recommendation form.
  • All international applicants must also submit scores from the TOEFL** exam or the IELTS (academic stream) exam; the exam must have been taken within the last two years.

*A minimum GPA of 3.0 is preferred for prospective graduate certificate students.

**A minimum TOEFL score of 79 is required for admission.

Application Deadlines

  • Rolling

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More Information

For questions regarding admission to the Human Development and Family Science graduate certificate program in Infant Mental Health please contact:  

Dr. Amy Payton