Child Psychiatry Residency Programs

Get information about the field of child psychiatry. Find out about topics commonly taught in training programs as well as he educational and residency requirements to practice in the field. Schools offering Child Psychology degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Is Child Psychiatry?

Child psychiatry, often called child and adolescent psychiatry, focuses on children and teenagers who are experiencing mental illness or other mental issues. As a child psychiatrist, you diagnose and treat emotional, behavioral and developmental disorders through a combination of techniques. Treatments may include psychotherapy, medication, hospitalization and psychoanalysis.

Career Overview Diagnose and treat emotional, behavioral, and developmental disorders of children
Degree Requirements Complete 4-year medical program, pass the U.S. Medical Licensing Exam, complete 3-4 years of general psychiatry residency, enroll in additional 2 year child specific residency
Certification Certification through the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology is optional; specific certification in child psychiatry is also available after completing residency
Program Concepts Geriatric psychiatry, anxiety disorders, child and adolescent psychiatry, neurology, psychotherapy

How Do I Enter the Field?

To become a child psychiatrist, you need to complete a 4-year medical program. During your first two years of study, you take basic science courses, such as anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, pharmacology and pathophysiology. You spend your final two years completing clinical rotations in different medical specialties, such as internal medicine, pediatrics, surgery and psychiatry. After earning your medical degree, you need to pass the United States Medical Licensing Examination to become licensed.

You then need to complete further training to prepare for a specialized career in child psychiatry. After graduating from medical school and earning your license, you'll complete 3-4 years of a general psychiatry residency. Afterwards, you can enroll in a child and adolescent psychiatry residency or fellowship, which typically takes an additional two years. Some residencies combine both general and child psychiatry training into a single 5-year program.

How Do Residencies Work?

Residencies are paid training programs that allow you to concentrate on your chosen specialty; hospitals and universities typically host them. After completing your residency, you can test to earn optional board certification through the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology (ABPN). For highly specialized fields, such as child psychiatry, you need to complete an additional sub-specialty fellowship or residency. ABPN certification in child and adolescent psychiatry is available after you complete sub-specialty training.

What Could I Learn?

General psychiatric residencies are broken into segments. Each segment focuses on a narrow aspect of psychiatry, such as geriatric psychiatry, anxiety disorders, child and adolescent psychiatry, neurology, psychotherapy and mood disorders. Much of your time is spent in clinical rotations treating patients. You may start with few responsibilities and gain more as you delve further into your training. As a resident or fellow, you have opportunities to gain research and teaching experience. In addition to your clinical training, you may attend seminars, participate in journal clubs and attend research conferences.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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  • Capella University

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