Eligibility Requirements Effective January 1, 2019

To establish eligibility for the Child Life Professional Certification Exam, applicants must successfully complete and document each of the following requirements.  All applicants must complete an Eligibility Assessment.  Individuals who established eligibility prior to January 1, 2019, must re-establish eligibility under the current requirements including the completion of a new Eligibility Assessment.

Bachelor's Degree Requirements 

Applicants must have successfully completed a bachelor’s degree (in any field of study) on or before the registration deadline for the exam for which they are applying. 


Graduation from an ACLP-endorsed child life academic program or 10 college courses in the following content areas:

  • Child Life Course Taught by a CCLS
  • Two (2) Child Development Courses (birth - 18 years old)
  • Family Systems Course
  • Play Course
  • Loss/Bereavement or Death/Dying Course
  • Research Course
  • Three Additional Courses in Related Content Areas

Please note: 

  • Details about each of the above courses can be found here.
  • if you are entering pre-approved courses, you must still follow the steps below for your eligibility assessment.
  • Applicants who are attending or have graduated from endorsed academic programs should contact the ACLP office to begin their eligibility assessment at certification@childlife.org.
  • Each course may satisfy only one of the requirements; none can be applied to meet two or more of these required courses.For example, a child life course that addresses play may not be used to fulfill both the child life course and the play course requirements. It may be used to meet the child life course OR the play course requirement, but not both.

600-Hour Child Life Clinical Internship

Applicants must complete a minimum of 600 hours of a child life clinical internship under the direct supervision of a Certified Child Life Specialist.

Supervisor Qualifications

To be eligible to supervise internship hours, a CCLS must:

  1. Maintain professional child life certification throughout the supervisory period
  2. Have a minimum of 4,000 hours of paid child life clinical experience prior to the start of the supervisory period
  3. Take responsibility for the educational development and guidance of the candidate in the clinical setting

Verifying the Internship

Clinical experience is documented by an online verification process or via a Clinical Experience Verification Form, signed by the CCLS internship supervisor.

Please note:  ACLP members can search for an Internship/Clinical Program in the Internship Directory.

Please refer to the Candidate Manual and the CLCC Policy on Establishing Eligibility for other important details about the requirements.