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Birth Doula - Certification Requirements

Many new Birth Doulas are concerned about what they need to do before they can become certified. No need to worry with Childbirth International - the process is simple and straightforward. There are no workshops to attend, and you do not need to obtain evaluations from doctors or other caregivers.

Start straight away!

With Childbirth International you can get started right away and complete your training with complete flexibility and convenience. You DO NOT have to attend a workshop. There is no additional charge for certification and no requirement for membership or recertification. Certification as a Childbirth International Birth Doula is for life! Once you have successfully completed all the requirements you will be eligible to apply for certification as a Birth Doula with Childbirth International.


Read your student materials

You will receive a comprehensive set of study guides which build up to form an impressive reference library that you can refer to again and again. Each study guide contains a variety of reading material, learning activities and exercises which you complete in your own time. The course is made up of three modules - Communication Skills, Physiology in Birth, and Birth Doula Skills. As each module is completed you simply submit an on-line evaluation form.  

Support two women through labor

To gain experience and put some of your new found knowledge into practice, you will support two women through labor. After the birth, you will write to your trainer and tell her what you learned at the birth. It might be the value of some of the skills you used, the experience of working with the family and caregivers, or simply describing the heady euphoria of being at a birth! You do not need to provide an evaluation from the doctor, midwife or nurses caring for the mother. You can use the birth as part of your certification requirements even if the mother has a cesarean or births so quickly that you do not make it to her birth. These two births can take place any time after you begin your training.


Read three books

To broaden your knowledge and become exposed to different viewpoints, you will read three books that are relevant to doula work. You can choose any three books you like from the extensive reading list. Take a look at the reading list here.


Complete a childbirth survey

To help you understand the options available for parents in your area, you will complete a short survey on the childbirth classes available in your community. This helps you to determine not only the services available, but also to see any future opportunities for yourself as you build your Birth Doula business.


Complete two assignments

During the course of your training you will complete the assignments at your own pace. The first, a communication assignment, is a written account of one of your own births, or an event in your life that was significant to you if you have never had a baby. This assignment is reviewed and graded by your trainer. A pass grade is necessary to be eligible for certification.

The second assignment is an open book test of multiple choice questions on different aspects of pregnancy, labor, birth and the early postpartum period. You can use any reference materials, including your student manuals, to research and find the answers to the quiz. A pass grade must be accomplished for each test to be eligible for certification.

"My trainers support and feedback were excellent and I really respect her comments. It immediately felt like I was handed over to someone who cared about me as a student, and I could ask her anything and get well thought out answers. Just having someone who responds quickly to emails and queries makes you more at ease in studying and knowing that if you have a problem you can just ask.

I loved the student forum - it was great to get input from doulas from all over the world, some in training like myself, some from personal experience and some experienced in the field for decades." - Alexandra, Thailand

Requirements for certification

Read the manuals provided and submit a short on-line evaluation for each of the modules

Support two women during labor

Complete a brief survey on childbirth class options locally

Read 3 books from the reading list

Complete and pass two assignments on communication and physiology

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