Child Life Specialist
Child life specialists are professionals who work closely with children and their families in hospitals and other settings to help them cope with the challenges of hospitalization, illness, and disability. Child life specialists provide children with age-appropriate preparation for medical procedures, pain management and coping strategies through a variety of different activities. Students must complete the application process as the field is highly selective.
Please note: This program DOES NOT lead to teacher licensure. Students interested in pursuing a teaching license should contact the College of Education at 901-678-2728.
Admission to the Program
Once accepted, students must seek academic advising prior to the start of each semester. Advisors will provide guidance in developing a meaningful educational plan that is compatible with the student's abilities, values, interests and career goals. Academic advising is available in-person, by phone and web conference.
Fees and Scholarships
Students are encouraged to visit University and Student Business Services regularly to review fee charts, deadlines and other important details as they are subject to change.
The College of Professional and Liberal Studies offers several scholarships for students meeting the stated requirements. Students may apply for scholarships through Tiger Scholarship Manager.
Students in the Child Life Specialist concentration will select from a set of courses focused on family, childhood and educational contexts. Requirements for this program include general education, a coordinated study, internship/field experience, thematic studies, senior project and general electives. Students should seek guidance from their advisor every semester and follow the assigned degree plan. Please note this degree does not lead to licensure. A minor may be pursued with this degree through the submission of a completed minor application. Approval must be granted from the graduation analyst of the minor they are seeking as well as the College of Professional and Liberal Studies graduation analyst.
Thematic studies focus on significant themes in social, political, and religious history. All College of Professional and Liberal Studies students must complete 6 credit hours of thematic studies courses. These courses are offered on campus and online in many interdisciplinary topics.
All students pursuing the Child Life Specialist concentration will be required to secure an internship as part of their degree requirements. Successful internships provide valuable learning experiences related to coursework and areas of study under the supervision of a faculty member and an employer in the community.
Prior Learning Assessment
Students who wish to accelerate the completion of their degree may be eligible to earn credit through Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) which includes credit earned by CLEP or DSST standardized exams, Experiential Learning Credit, or departmental credit by examination.
File for Graduation
Undergraduate students who are within two semesters of graduation should review the required process to file for graduation. All parts must be completed by the posted deadline.
Students interested in learning more about career options in Child Life Specialist should review information and set an appointment to meet with a Career Specialist in our Career Services Office.