About this course

International Training School for Infancy and Early Years (ITSIEY) is being responsive to the Covid-19 crisis. From July 2020 all ITSIEY training will be taking place online and will continue to be delivered by experts in infant mental health. Rich teaching content, as always, will be enhanced by group discussions with the tutor, small breakout groups for participants and video presentation.

This module introduces students to the field of perinatal, infant and early years’ mental health. It draws on neurobiology and developmental research, attachment, systems, psychodynamic theory and clinical work, to give students a cutting edge knowledge-base about early development of the infant and young child. Normative development and disturbance in the development of the baby/young child are addressed from conception to age 5 taking into account the family, cultural and legislative contexts in which the child is raised. There is a focus on areas of development, including the brain, that are affected by trauma and disruptions in attachment relationships. 


The module has been created to provide a developmental journey for students that models that of the transition to parenthood. The module builds on students’ knowledge and skills from conception through pregnancy, birth and the early years – considering the key issues in the parent-infant relationship up until the child is 5 years old.

The module will also consider practitioners’ roles in working with the parent fetus/infant/toddler relationship, within different contexts and cultures, and the use of observation skills and reflective practice to underpin evidence based practice.



Seminar 1: An introduction to perinatal and infant mental health

Seminar 2: Pregnancy and preparing for the transition to parenthood

Seminar 3: Birth and meeting the baby

Seminar 4: The interface of adult and child mental health and an introduction to attachment

Seminar 5: The neurobiology of parent-infant relationships in the early years

Seminar 6: Parent-infant observation: the theory and technique of direct observation and its relation to evidence-based practice

Seminar 7: Parent-infant interactions in the postnatal period: the inner and outer worlds of early infancy

Seminar 8: Parent-child interactions in the early years: the inner and outer worlds in toddlers

Who is this training suitable for

ITSIEY is suitable for professionals working in the field of infant and perinatal mental health e.g. nurses, therapists, psychologists, family therapist, health visitors, social workers and psychiatrists. If you have any specific questions about the suitability of the module for your practice, please email

System requirements for online training

The online platform Zoom will be used to deliver this training live. Prior to booking on, please ensure you meet the system requirements so you're able to join this training. 


About International Training School for Infancy and Early Years (ITSIEY)

ITSIEY is the winner of 2017 Maternal Mental Health Alliance Emma Cadywould Award for Perinatal Mental Health Education and Training, see our news story here. 

Delivered by a unique collaboration of internationally acclaimed Centres of Excellence (Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families, the Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust and Yale University Child Study Centre), the International Training School for Infancy and Early Years (ITSIEY) provides mental health professionals with expert-agreed standards of knowledge and skills to work confidently with infants (0-3) and their families. This exclusive training encompasses a range of theories “seamlessly interwoven into a shared conceptual framework” (student). The ecological model that is at the heart of its vision and curriculum uses most up to date knowledge of advances in neuroscience combined with strong clinical and research experience relevant to collaborative work with families. ITSIEY builds a forum for international cross pollination of knowledge, skills and research in the field of infancy and early years mental health for practitioners.

Currently ITSIEY offers the following modules:

We have compiled an essential reading list for this training. This will be made available for you on-line three weeks before the training. The essential reading list has been carefully chosen to support the learning objective of the course so we would strongly encourage you to read this as thoroughly as possible before the training begins.


Special offer

A 5% discount is available for students who book on more than one ITSIEY module at the same time. Please contact to claim this offer.

To hear about any new dates scheduled for this training, please subscribe to our mailing list


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