Date of Conferral

2015

Degree

Ph.D.

School

Psychology

Advisor

Peggy Gallaher

Abstract

This study was conducted to comparatively examine child specific expulsion rates and parent satisfaction of children who received early childhood mental health consultation (ECMHC) services delivered in 2 states for the 2012 program year: Maryland (unlicensed) and Delaware (licensed) . This current study examined secondary data to determine whether unlicensed (Maryland) ECMHC professionals are equally or more effective than licensed (Delaware) ECMHC professionals. Of the total number of child specific consultations or cases referred for services in Maryland (unlicensed), N = 370, n = 266 children avoided expulsion and were able to remain at their childcare placements while n = 17 children were expulsed. Of the total number of child specific consultations or cases referred for services in Delaware (licensed), N = 135, n = 119 children were able to remain in their childcare placements while n = 3 children were expulsed. The results of this study revealed that there is no statistically significant difference in expulsion rates between Unlicensed (Maryland) professionals and Licensed (Delaware) professionals. Results suggest that licensure status of ECMHC professionals has no affect on expulsion rate outcomes and should receive further examination. Additionally, results could support policy changes that could lead to a national credentialing process that would address the current gap in ECMHC services due to the shortage of qualified ECMHC professionals. This study was unable to determine the outcome of parent satisfaction due to missing data. Future direction should include replication using a mixed longitudinal study.