Endorsement Requirements and Competencies

Endorsement Designations
There are four designations of Endorsement. They are designed to target different professional areas within the infant-family field. See the Endorsement designations outlined below, and click on each one for a corresponding chart of specific requirements and competencies.

  • Infant Family Associate:  This designation is intended to target individuals working in child-care settings, child care directors, advocates, professionals without an advanced degree working on policy change, case managers, intake specialists, Head Start and Early Head Start*
  • Infant Family Specialist :  This designation is intended for ECI, CPS, therapists, nurses, social workers, and other providers*
  • Infant Mental Health Specialist :  This designation is intended for graduate level mental health providers who provide therapeutic services*
  • Infant Mental Health Mentor:  There are 3 additional designations listed within the Infant Mental Health Mentor designation: Clinical (C), Policy (P), and Research/Faculty (R/F). These designations target professionals with advanced degrees who have experience providing infant mental health reflective supervision and other leadership (C), who are leaders in policy and/or program administration related to the infant-family field (P), or are leaders in university-level teaching and/or published research related to the infant-family field (R/F).*

*Please note that these are only examples of the types of jobs a provider may have at this designation. This is not an exhaustive list. Moreover, the levels are not meant to act as a hierarchy, but rather as categories to organize the wide range of occupations that exist in this field. Providers are encouraged to contact First3Years’ Endorsement coordinator with questions Endorsement@first3yearstx.org

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

Work Experience

CDA or Associate’s degree or 2 years early childhood experience and/or 2 years in the infant, early childhood, and family fieldMinimum 2 years paid, providing services that promote infant mental health for infants, toddlers, and their familiesMinimum 2 years post Master’s, paid, providing infant mental health intervention to infants, toddlers, and their familiesMinimum 3 years post Master’s, paid, as a practice leader in the infant, toddler, and family field in one of the 3 designation areas
Educational Experience
Bachelor’s or Master’s degreeMaster’s or post-graduate degreeMaster’s, post-graduate, doctorate, post-doctorate degreeMaster’s, post-graduate, doctorate, post-doctorate degree
In-Service TrainingMinimum 30 hoursMinimum 30 hoursMinimum 30 hoursMinimum 30 hours

Reflective Supervision

Not requiredMinimum 24 clock hours within a one to two year time period while working with infants, toddlers, and their familiesMinimum 50 clock hours within a one to two year time period while working with infants, toddlers, and their familiesRequired only for Clinical: Minimum 50 clock hours within a one to two year time period while working with infants, toddlers, and their families
Reference Ratings
ThreeThreeThreeThree 

Code of Ethics

SignedSignedSignedSigned

Endorsement Agreement

SignedSignedSignedSigned

Membership in First3Years

YesYesYesYes

Professional Application

Candidate will submit a professional application on EASy (Endorsement Application System) that demonstrates that he/she has met both the requirements and the competencies specified at each level.Candidate will submit a professional application on EASy (Endorsement Application System) that demonstrates that he/she has met both the requirements and the competencies specified at each level.Candidate will submit a professional application on EASy (Endorsement Application System) that demonstrates that he/she has met both the requirements and the competencies specified at each level.Candidate will submit a professional application on EASy (Endorsement Application System) that demonstrates that he/she has met both the requirements and the competencies specified at each level.

Written Exam

NoNoYesYes

Application Fee

$15$15$25$25

Processing Fee

$25$50$200$300