Top 12 Free Online Courses on Child Psychology

Training a child requires high mental strength. However, not many people have this mental strength. Therefore, this article will list and explain the top free online courses on child psychology that will help you build the mental strength required to train a child.

Child psychology or child development deals with the psychological processes of children and the differences between these processes with those of adults. It also explains how children develop from birth to the end of adolescence. You will learn all of these, and more, in the free online courses on child psychology curated here.

It is not always easy parenting a child, but it’s rewarding. From birth to adulthood, children pass through many developmental stages.

In the same vein, genetic, environmental, and cultural factors affect their development. When this happens, it’s usually difficult for the parent to examine and understand what they are going through. Now, this is where the services of a child psychologist are employed to help the parent understand the child’s feeling better.

If you are looking to become a child psychologist later in life, you can “test the waters” with the course free online courses on child psychology curated here then go on to enroll either in a trade school where you can start your journey in psychology or apply for child psychology courses in the UK to earn a reputable degree but it will be expensive.

Note that these free online child psychology courses are not just for parents or for those looking to become child psychologists. It is also for teachers, social workers, and others whose line of profession involves working with children.

Can I Study Child Psychology Online for Free?

Yes. You can get free online courses on child psychology. The online courses are self-paced as they allow you to combine work and family responsibilities with your studies.

Additionally, free online child psychology courses bear the same curriculum and certification as the on-campus program. You will acquire the skills and knowledge required to thrive in the field.

You don’t have to bother searching on the internet for child psychology courses because it has been compiled for you in this article. Keep on reading below to see the courses.

How do I Train to Become a Child Psychologist?

Here are the steps you will take in order to become a certified child psychologist:

1. Complete a related bachelor’s degree program

You will have to complete a bachelor’s degree in General Psychology or Counseling. This will give you the fundamental knowledge to advance in child psychology.

Courses to be offered at the undergraduate that will be relevant for a graduate degree in child psychology include Child Development, General Psychology, Statistics, Behavioral psychology, Research methods, Child and adolescent psychopathology, Theories of personality, Abnormal psychology, Trauma and crisis, Developmental psychology, Social Sciences, Family interventions, and Neuropsychology.

2. Enroll in a graduate degree program

Before you can work as a child psychologist, you must have to acquire a graduate degree in the field. If you wish to practice on your own, you will need to acquire a doctoral degree. Thanks to modern technology, you can acquire an online master’s in psychology from the comfort of your home.

Acquiring a master’s degree can only qualify you to become a mental health counselor, however, you will not have the legal rights to carry out psychological testing. It will take you between two (2) and three (3) years of full-time study to complete the master’s degree program.

To become a full-fledged psychologist, you must acquire a doctoral degree or Psy.D. With this, you will have the legal right to diagnose patients. It will take you between five (5) and seven (7) years to complete the Ph.D. program. You will focus on child development or clinical child psychology.

3. Complete an internship

Upon completion of your graduate degree program, you will undertake an internship program. During the internship program, your work will be under the supervision and guidance of a professional child psychologist.

Meanwhile, the practitioner will have to endorse your work upon completion of the internship. It takes a minimum of one year to complete the internship program.

4. Apply for licensure

Once you complete the internship program, you will take and pass a licensing exam before you will be licensed as a professional clinical psychologist or a professional psychologist.

The exam for Professional Practice of Psychology is administered by the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Board.

5. Acquire board certification

Upon acquiring your license, proceed to a postdoctoral fellowship in a job role that requires child psychology. The postdoctoral fellowship will take you one or two years to complete. It will qualify you to take the board examination of the American Board of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology (ABCCAP).

Before taking the exam, you will have to submit practice samples that the ABPP will examine. If the ABPP approves your application, you will be qualified to take the exam.

Once you pass the exam, the American Board of Professional Psychology (ABPP) will certify you as a board-licensed psychologist.

6. Get a job

Now that you have acquired board certification as a professional child psychologist, you can seek jobs in mental health clinics, hospitals, research centers, legal firms, and schools. You can also start up your own private clinic or consultation service.

free online courses on child psychology

Free Online Courses on Child Psychology

Below are free online courses on child psychology that bear a similar curriculum and certification to the on-campus child psychology program:

  • The Best Start in Life: Early Childhood Development for Sustainable Development
  • Introduction to Child Psychology
  • Handling Children in a Health Care Setting
  • Professional Child Psychology Diploma
  • Protecting Children in Humanitarian Settings
  • Child Protection: Children’s Rights in Theory and Practice
  • Developmental Psychology: A Journey of Growth within Relationships
  • Basics of Safeguarding Children
  • Applied Behavior Analysis
  • Childcare and Young Development
  • Diploma in Childcare
  • Safeguarding Children

1. The Best Start in Life: Early Childhood Development for Sustainable Development

In this course, you will learn about the child’s brain. You will get to know the impact of neurological composition on a child’s development.

The course will also explore ways in which factors like forced migration affect the future of children.

In addition, you will learn how our understanding of early child development has been influenced by neuroscience, sociology, anthropology, and other studies.

This course is designed for advanced undergraduate students and graduates in international development, teaching, nursing and medicine, and other fields that deal with important concepts and practices in early child development.

It is also designed for teachers and health care practitioners who wish to know the biological and societal factors affecting the children they are working with.

The course is created for sustainable development professionals who wish to know the lifecycle of needs and support required to assist children worldwide such as practitioners working for international aid organizations and nonprofits in the areas of poverty, nutrition, and education

Start date: All Year Round

Duration: 8 weeks (2-4 hours per week)

Venue: edX


2. Introduction to Child Psychology

If you have zero knowledge about child psychology and would like to build on that knowledge then it is just reasonable that you start from the basics and that is what this course is here for. The course, Introduction to Child Psychology, is an introductory-level course for those who are just starting out in the field of child psychology or want to have a foundational knowledge of what child psychology is all about.

Start date: All Year Round

Duration: 8 hours

Venue: Open Learn


3. Handling Children in a Health Care Setting

Are you looking to become a pediatric registered nurse? Then you should enroll for this course. Participating in this course will teach you the key concepts of behavior needed to handle a child in a healthcare setting such as a hospital. It will shed more light on how to communicate with a child and the parent as well.

At the end of this course, you will be able to show a high level of confidence in handling the child patient in a health care setting. You will also learn how to sympathize with a child who is going through difficulties and be willing to help the child over such difficulties.

Start date: All Year Round

Duration: 4 weeks (1-2 hours per week)

Venue: National University of Singapore via edX


4. Professional Child Psychology Diploma

This course on child psychology teaches about early child growth, attachments, child abuse, bullying, and separation anxiety. It also explores psychology through the toddler stage, depression, and children’s grief and stress.

After completing the course, you will become a professional child psychologist who will help children fight trauma and emotional stress.

Note: This article has been updated and this course is no longer free but it is offered at a very cheap rate of about $5 or less.

Start date: All Year Round

Duration: 44 minutes

Venue: Udemy


5. Protecting Children in Humanitarian Settings

In this course, you will learn how the social environment of children including family and society impacts children’s difficulties, development, and strength. Students will be implored to think critically about current international child protection practices and offer solutions to strengthen them.

As one of the free online child psychology courses, Protecting Children in Humanitarian Settings is designed for child protection experts working in international humanitarian settings.

After the course, you can be able to think critically about the different strategies for child protection in humanitarian crises and suggest ways to improve it.

Start date: All Year Round

Duration: 12 weeks (3-5 hours per week)

Venue: edX


6. Child Protection: Children’s Rights in Theory and Practice

Children and adolescents are faced with several societal hazards including rape, child labor, child marriage, exploitation, and violence in several countries. However, they need their rights to be enforced so that they can grow to their full potential.

In this course, you will learn about the causes and consequences of failures in child protection. This course will explore international laws, policies, and resources necessary to protect children from harm.

Additionally, the course will give you insights into how to relate legal frameworks and child-rights strategies to the duties of policymakers, lawyers, health workers, educators, law enforcement, and social workers.

After completing this course, you will learn how to apply child protection strategies to your work. The course is provided by Harvard University.

Start date: All Year Round

Duration: 16 weeks (2-6 hours per week)

Venue: edX


7. Developmental Psychology: A Journey of Growth within Relationships

This is one of the best free online courses on child psychology created to teach you how people connect in their relationships during early childhood and the developmental processes involved.

You will also learn how relationships during childhood affect us and our intimate relationships, how we raise children, and how it affects our method of work during adulthood.

The course is designed for the public since most people would want to be parents as they will be involved in parenting and child development.

Start date: All Year Round

Duration: 9 weeks (3-4 hours per week)

Venue: edX


8. Basics of Safeguarding Children

This is a free online course on Alison, an online learning platform, that teaches the importance of safeguarding children, laws against sexual abuse in the UK, and the principles of child protection. You can complete the course in 3-4 hours and earn a certificate when you get an 80% score or higher on the assessment.


9. Applied Behavior Analysis

Do you know anyone with autism? Would you like to know the key treatment for such a disability? Then enroll in this course. Applied Behavior Analysis is considered the Gold standard for treating autistic children and in this free online child psychology course, you will learn the different ABA techniques and the guiding rules for treating children with ASD.


10. Childcare and Young Development

This course is created for those who love to be around children, caring for them and never getting bored of being around them. If you want to pursue a career that involves taking care of kids, then you should enroll in this free online course to test the waters and build your foundational knowledge before diving in. It will help in building your career.


11. Diploma in Childcare

Here is another free online course on child psychology that you can take online to learn and analyze what child development is, gain knowledge on the primary principles of a safe child environment, and how to help protect children from a wide variety of potential dangers. There are many more learning outcomes from the course but these are just a few of what you will learn when you complete it.


12. Safeguarding Children

This course is for those who are responsible for the safety and well-being of children. If your profession lies in teaching, clinical child psychology, or pediatrician then you should enroll in this course and add to your knowledge portfolio on how to care for kids and help keep them safe at all times.



Parents want their children to have a healthy development. However, it is not certain if the child’s behavior is a sign of a normal stage of growth or abnormality. This is where the services of child psychologists are employed to help parents to understand this.

With this understanding, parents can know the best way to connect and interact with their children.

On the other hand, child psychologists figure out abnormalities in children like learning issues, hyperactivity, or anxiety. Child psychologists also help children to diagnose and prevent developmental delays like autism.

The free online courses on child psychology listed in this article will help you to understand child development better.



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