Steps to IMH Endorsement®
- Getting Started. Please visit wiaimh.org for information regarding IMH Endorsement. Review the flowchart Which Endorsement Specialty is Right for Me?, along with the Competency Guidelines and requirements for the specialty you are considering. It is strongly recommended that you complete the Self-Assessment Form to help determine what additional specialized training might be necessary to meet the competencies and earn IMH Endorsement (IMH-E®).
- Become a WI-AIMH Member. Membership to an IMH association is required for Endorsement. You will be asked to provide your IMH Association membership number upon registration. It is recommended that you secure membership before registering. Go to http://wiaimh.org/get-involved/membership/ to become a member of WI-AIMH. WI-AIMH offers individual and group membership.
- Complete Endorsement Registration. Go to http://easy.mi-aimh.org/wi-aimh to register. Click on Register under New Applicant. Please have information about your educational background, work experience, and reflective supervision (including total number of hours received) available when you register. Complete the registration and pay the registration fee. Upon completion of registration, the Endorsement Specialist and/or Endorsement Coordinator will contact each applicant to answer any questions, provide guidance and ensure that the applicant is pursuing the Endorsement specialty that best matches their work and other experiences.
- Note: We strongly recommend that you use a personal email address as many employer email servers reject the messages that are sent to you by the EASy system.
- Logging on to EASy. After completing registration, a staff member of WI-AIMH will contact you to review your preliminary information, answer any questions and provide guidance for next steps. Your application is accepted after it has been determined that you are applying at the appropriate type of endorsement. Once your application has been accepted you will receive an email from EASy (Endorsement Application System) with a username and password. Please note that it may take 1 week for your application to be accepted. After logging into EASy go to Edit Profile to change your password and to set email notifications such as when references are completed, transcripts uploaded, etc. You can log back on to your application through EASy to complete your application anywhere you have a computer with an internet connection.
- Note: Please make sure you are using the most current version of your internet browser. The EASy system is best suited for Google Chrome, Firefox and Internet Explorer.
- Help with the Application. If you would like assistance with completing your application, WI-AIMH will assign you an endorsement advisor. An advisor can provide feedback and support to help ensure everything is complete before submitting the application. Your EASy application is equipped with a messaging system that allows you to ask questions to your advisor along the way. If you need more information or assistance, please do not hesitate to contact Director of Integrated Programming, Carrie Finkbiner, at email@example.com.
- Complete the Application. Complete each tab of the EASy application. Tabs include: work, education, transcripts, specialized in-service training, references, and reflective supervision. Carefully read the instructions at the top of each tab. Please use descriptive language and enough detail to capture your experiences, strengths, growth and development as a professional engaged in relationship-based work with infants, young children and their parents. The descriptions should go beyond what is typically provided in a resume.
- Prepare and submit your application through EASy. Please make sure to save often. The EASy system times out after 20 minutes. Some find it helpful to prepare responses on a Word document, then copy and paste text into the EASy application.
- Order your transcripts right away. They can be sent directly to WI-AIMH. Once your transcripts are received and uploaded your status is changed from “accepted” to “in progress.”
- We also recommend identifying and contacting your reference ratings right away. This way, you can continue to work on your application as you wait for reference ratings to be completed. Note that reference ratings are active for one year. After 12 months, if the application is not submitted, new reference ratings need to be completed.
- WI-AIMH will be supporting you throughout the process by sending reminders and comments through EASy. WI-AIMH, or your assigned advisor, will help you to double check that everything is thoroughly completed before you submit your application.
- When you submit your completed application you will be routed to the payment page to pay the application processing fee. There are 4 opportunities to submit a completed application; they are on the 15th of March, June, September and December.
- Completing the endorsement application is self-paced. Some applicants are able to complete quickly (4 weeks) others take longer. The average time is about 6 months from beginning to submittal.
- Application Review. After the submittal deadline, all submitted (and complete) applications undergo the review process. Your completed application will be assigned two independent reviewers for review of your application. Reviewers are volunteers who have earned IMH-Endorsement® and have participated in the required training. The review process takes approximately 8 weeks.
Infant Family Associate or Infant Family Specialist
- Endorsement Decision. If you have applied for Infant Family Associate or Specialist, a decision will be made as whether to your application meets criteria for Endorsement. Your application will be either Endorsed or Deferred. You will be notified of the decision via email.
- Endorsed Application Feedback. Feedback regarding your application will be mailed to you along with the Endorsement Certificate. You will also be provided with a survey link to provide feedback about your experience with endorsement and the EASy system. Participation in the survey is voluntary.
- Follow up for Deferred Applicants. Next steps for applicants who are Deferred will vary by applicant depending on the criteria that has not been met. If your application is Deferred, the Endorsement Specialist will work closely with you to develop a plan to address the criteria that was not met.
Infant Mental Health Specialist or Infant Mental Health Mentor
- Application Decision. If you have applied for Infant Mental Health Specialist or Mentor, a decision will be made as a result of the two-person, independent review process as to whether your application is Approved (for taking the exam) or Deferred. You will be notified of the review outcome via email.
- Follow-up for Deferred Applicants. Next steps for applicants who are Deferred will vary by applicant depending on the criteria that has not been met. If your application is Deferred, the Endorsement Specialist will work closely with you to develop a plan to address the criteria that was not met.
- Exam Preparation. If your application is approved you will be notified via email. WI-AIMH will provide you with information regarding the exam including suggested study materials.
- There are several opportunities to sit for the Endorsement exam throughout the year. Please see the Endorsement Timelines and Submittal Dates on the WI-AIMH web page for exam dates.
- Taking the Exam. The exam takes place in Madison, WI and is scheduled over a 4-hour time block. The exam includes a multiple choice section and an essay section in which the candidate has a chance to demonstrate knowledge, skills and experience in response to vignettes.
- Exam Review. Your exam is then reviewed by two independent exam reviewers. Please note that complete confidentiality is kept during the process and the exam reviewers are “blind” to the candidate’s name. This process takes approximately 5 weeks.
- Endorsement Decision. Passing the exam earns Endorsement, not passing the exam results in Deferred to retake the exam. Candidates will be notified of the exam outcome by e-mail.
- Portfolio & Exam Feedback. If approved for Endorsement, feedback regarding your application and your responses to the exam vignettes will be mailed to you along with the Endorsement Certificate.
- Follow-up for Applicants Deferred to Retake the Exam. Applicants who did not receive passing scores will have to retake the exam. It is required that at least 1 year pass before applicants can retake the exam to help them prepare. Applicants only have to retake the section(s) of the exam that they did not pass.
Annual Endorsement Renewal
Starting at the end of CY 2018, endorsed professionals will be required to submit Endorsement renewal. WI-AIMH will support endorsed professionals in completing and submitting maintenance requirements. It is recommended that endorsed professionals maintain their IMH competencies by participating in training and other professional development opportunities pertaining to the promotion of social-emotional development and/or the practice of infant mental health. Maintenance includes:
- annual renewal of WI-AIMH (or another infant mental health association) membership;
- at least 15 clock hours per year of relationship-based education and training, pertaining to the promotion of social-emotional development and/or the practice of infant mental health;
- a minimum of 12 clock hours per year of reflective supervision for Infant Family Specialists, Infant Mental Health Specialists and Infant Mental Health Clinical Mentors.