top of page

Preparing for the Mental Health Mentor
Endorsement® Exam 

IECMH professionals pursuing the Mental Health Mentor credential will have their application undergo a formal review by a trained, endorsed Application Reviewer. If the applicant meets all requirements for their category of Endorsement, the Application Reviewer will recommend that the applicant sit for the Mentor exam associated with their category. 

The approval to sit for the exam is valid for up to one year.  

Alliance Exam Package


Exam Package

The Exam Package is available through the Alliance for the Advancement of Mental Health, the international organization that oversees the implementation of the Endorsement for Culturally Sensitive, Relationship-Focused Practice Promoting Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health. This Support Package provides coordination of your entire exam experience by Alliance Staff and includes communication and exam prep resources. The Alliance Exam Coordinator will identify exam reviewers, collect scores and comments from each reviewer, and create the feedback letter to the exam taker. They will also be available to offer QM technology support during your exam window.

Exam Platform 
The Alliance uses a completely virtual online exam proctoring system called Questionmark (QM). This platform allows you to take the exam from your own computer during a preset timeframe you select. Through utilization of this platform, the Alliance will have the ability to gather data for continuous quality improvement of exam content and inform exam decision making. All examinees can be assured they are being tested on the most recent material, thereby ensuring quality assurance.

Registration & Payment ($200)

  • Applicants who are approved to sit for the Mentor Exam will register for the Alliance Exam Support Package and select the timeframe during which you prefer to take your exam the last week of the month between Feb. - Nov. at any time beginning at 7 AM. 

  • Upon registering, the Alliance Exam Coordinator will send a confirmation email with exam information (e.g., QM handout, a recording about navigating QM, and a link to attend office hours to answer questions about the platform). 

  • If an exam receives a 'no-pass' score, the examinee may retake the exam after 12 months have passed. There will be a $200 associated retake fee. If an applicant registers, but does not sit for the exam during the Period of Service, a new $200 per-exam fee will be applied.

Exam scenario:

If you want to sit for the exam the last week in July 2024, your application must be approved by a trained Application Reviewer by  6/1/2024.

Once you register to take the exam, you have flexibility should unforeseen circumstances arise the week you selected. Keep in mind that if you register and pay your registration fee on 6/7/2024, you have until 6/8/2025 to take the exam. If you did not sit for the exam during this 12-month period, you will be charged another $200 to take the exam the following period of service.

Exam Preparation Training (Mentor-Clinical)

Mental Health Mentor-Clinical applicants wishing to receive additional support in preparation for their exam may purchase the Alliance's Exam Preparation Training packet ($250):

Exam Review Timeline

With the purchase of the exam registration the Alliance ensures the applicant's exam is reviewed by a minimum of two trained exam reviewers who will maintain anonymity throughout the review process and provide examinees with meaningful feedback within 10-12 weeks from the date the exam was completed. 


Applicants who wish to request an accommodation for either part of the exam must submit a written request to the Alliance no later than 3 weeks before the examination date.

Part 1:
90-Minute Multiple Choice (60 questions)

Questions relate to direct service, reflective supervision/consultation, policy, and research with a focus on IECMH knowledge specific work with infants, toddlers, young children, and their families.


The Applicant's study of the following topics, learned in a university program, through intensive infant/early childhood mental health in-service trainings or workshops is instrumental in passing this part of the exam.

  • Pregnancy, childbirth, and the newborn period

  • Attachment theory and early relationship development

  • Caregiving practices and behaviors

  • Family, parenting, and childcare issues

  • Infant, toddler, and young child development (e.g., social, emotional, cognitive, language, and physical)

  • Temperament and individual differences in infancy and early childhood

  • Indicators of risk, identified disturbance or disorder, as well as capacity in infancy, early childhood, and early parenthood

  • Infant/early childhood mental health practice

  • Best practice of infant/early childhood mental health assessment, diagnoses, and treatment approaches

  • Cultural humility

  • Familiarity with standardized screening and assessment tools

  • Familiarity with service delivery systems that cater to infants, toddlers, and their families

  • Reflective supervisory practice (Mentor-Clinical)

Part 2:
90-Minute Vignette(s)

Part 2 is intended to measure the Applicant's capacity to apply their knowledge of IECMH principles into practice and demonstrate a reflective, relationship-based approach through written responses to vignettes. 

The vignettes/scenarios are different for exam respondents depending upon their category of Endorsement.


  • Case Studies in Infant Mental Health: Risk, Resiliency & Relationships (2002)

  • Child Development: A Practitioner's Guide (Davies, 2011)

  • Angels in the Nursery: The Intergenerational Transmission of Benevolent Parental Influences

  • Ghosts in the Nursery: A Psychoanalytic Approach to the Problems of Impaired Infant-Mother Relationships.

Clinical Exam



Respond to 2 of 3 vignettes


  • an IECMH specialist/practitioner

  • an IECMH RSC Provider


  • work experiences with infants, toddlers, young children and their families

  • your work from a relationship-based perspective practicing IECMH

  • your experience receiving RSC (group or individual)

  • your experience as an RSC provider who has provided, or is providing, RSC to IECMH practitioners

Policy Exam



Respond to 1 of 2 vignettes


  • leadership experience with the infant/young child-family field

  • your promotion and practice of IECMH


  • Funding

  • Systems development

  • What is required to promote change across systems

Research Faculty Exam



Respond to 1 of 2 vignettes


  • research and teaching experience in the infant/young child-family field

  • your study of pregnancy, infancy, early childhood, early parenthood, attachment security, risk and resiliency in the early years, early assessment and intervention strategies, mental health needs of infants/young children, etc. 


  • your experience with teaching

  • your experience conducting IECMH research

bottom of page