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Child Life Practicum

Program Information

The focus of the Child Life Practicum program is to provide students the opportunity to shadow child life specialists in their daily work, apply child development and family theories to clinical practice, and implement therapeutic activities with patients and families. The Child Life Practicum consists of 150 hours over the period of 11 weeks, and includes rotations in 2 separate units. We are dedicated to providing students with high quality education, training, and experiences that are necessary to be ready for a Child Life Internship. Consequently, our program is competitive and requires us to carefully consider the education and experience of candidates. Submission of an application does not guarantee placement at The Children’s Hospital of San Antonio as our program receives many applications for a limited number of spots. We strongly recommend candidates apply to practicums with a variety of organizations.

Once accepted into the program, students must provide verification of one TB test, COVID-19 vaccine, MMR vaccinations (measles, mumps, and rubella) and a current flu shot before the practicum begins.

Download the Application here. Questions concerning the application process and practicum experience can be emailed to CHOFSA.ChildLife.Students@christushealth.org

Requirements to Apply

  1. Applicants must have achieved at least a college-level junior status or higher.
  2. Must have a 3.0 grade point average in the applicant’s declared major.
  3. Applicants must have completed at least three of the required college-level courses for ACLP eligibility prior to the start of practicum.  These courses include a course in play, a course in child development, and a course taught by a Certified Child Life Specialist.
  4. Applicants must have at least 50 hours of work or volunteer experience with either a child life department or with children with special needs. These hours must be fully documented in your application, along with completing the ACLP verification of related experience hours form here.
  5. Experience with well children must be fully documented in your application, along with completing the ACLP verification of related experience hours form here.
  6. Two references are required. At least one reference must be from someone who has directly observed your work with children. No more than 2 references will be accepted.
    1. Reference forms can be submitted with your application (signed and sealed) or emailed directly from your reference to CHOFSA.ChildLife.Students@christushealth.org

You can download the reference form here

For your application to be considered, the application must be post-marked or emailed with the application in PDF form (references included) according to the following deadlines:

Fall Session

Application Deadline: March 29
Initial Offer Date: Third Tuesday of May
Initial Acceptance Date: Third Wednesday of May

Spring Session

Application Deadline: September 19th;
Initial Offer Date: Fourth Tuesday of October
Initial Acceptance Date: Fourth Wednesday of October

Summer Session

Application Deadline: January 19th
Initial Offer Date: Fourth Tuesday of February
Initial Acceptance Date: Fourth Wednesday of February

*We are fortunate enough to offer our student programming each semester. We provide the most current offerings shown on this website, should statuses change the website will be updated to reflect those changes.

Application Review and Interview Information

Once all applications are received, the student programming team will meet to review applications using a scoring matrix in each step of the application and interview process. We will then:

  1. Identify our initial candidate pool from the applications and conduct a brief phone interview.
  2. Extend offers and conduct final interview using the Multiple Mini Interview format (MMI format).
    1. Specific details regarding the MMI format will be communicated to to candidates via email prior to the final interview.
  3. Interviews are typically held one to two weeks prior to the initial offer date.
    1. Interview dates will be pre-selected each semester and communicated to the candidates
    2. At this time, due to COVID-19, we are facilitating all interviews virtually.

Application Checklist

*Please note that incomplete applications will not be considered.

Completed Application

  • Download the reference form here.
  • Download the verification of hours form here
  • Resume
  • Proof of 50 hours or more of volunteer experience with either a child life department or with children with special needs.
  • Proof and documentation of volunteer or work experience with well children
  • Two signed and sealed reference forms
  • Unofficial college transcripts with a minimum of 3.0 GPA

Applicants may submit by one of three routes:

Email: CHOFSA.ChildLife.Students@christushealth.org
Mail: Child Life Practicum Coordinator
c/o Child Life Department The Children's Hospital of San Antonio
333 N. Santa Rosa Street
San Antonio, Texas 78207-3108
Fax: 210-704-2454