Career Description

Child life specialists are trained to provide care to children and adolescents who may be facing issues such as medical procedures or illness. They may work in hospitals, clinics, or doctor’s offices. These professionals are trained to identify children with needs and help address those needs through play or counseling. Child life specialists may also provide support to the families of children who are facing illness or injury and require medical care.

Academic Requirements

Child life specialists will be required to earn a bachelor’s or master’s degree in child life, child and family studies, early childhood education, human development or psychology. Most states will also require you to become certified. In addition to state-level certification, graduates may decide to become a Certified Child Life Specialist by completing a clinical internship and passing a national examination administered by the Child Life Council (

Professional Organizations