How-To

How to Earn a Childbirth Educator Job

Childbirth Educator

Childbirth is the most beautiful experience in the world. And becoming a new mommy, in spite of all the mood swings, pain, irritation, and sleepless nights, is an emotion unexplainable. Imagine helping a couple of experience childbirth most beautifully and positively. Helping couples and families learn the process of birthing and childcare is an exhilarating journey. And that’s what you would do in a childbirth educators’ job.

You don’t have to be a mother or a parent to become a child educator. A man, as well as a woman, has an equal right to become one, provided they have an interest in it.

However, you have to go through childbirth educator training and earn a certification to become a professional.

In this blog, we will discuss everything you need to know about how to become a childbirth educator.

What Does a Childbirth Educator Do

Your profession is going to be a massive part of your life. Therefore, before making a choice, you should always weigh the pros and cons and understand the job description. According to ICEA (International Childbirth Education Association), certified childbirth educators provide professionally sourced information and skills that prepare parents for pregnancy, labor, birth, childcare, and parenthood. A good childbirth educator can have a positive impact on parents’ mental satisfaction and birth outcomes.

Your role and responsibility as a childbirth educator will be huge. This is because you will be in charge of collaborating with other members of the healthcare circle, including physicians, nurses, lactation consultants, midwives, doula, clergies, etc., in sourcing information, care, and support.

ICEA defines the Common Roles and Responsibilities of Childbirth Educator:

You will act as an advocate for couples and families, and help them in growth and development as they transit through pregnancy to parenthood. You will also be an advocate to women in(1) terms of health, individuality, integrity, and autonomy of women.

You will take up the following responsibilities as a childbirth educator:

  • Provide information about psychology, physiology, sociology of pregnancy, childbirth, pre-and postpartum, childcare, and early parenthood.
  • Train women with skills to cope with pregnancy, postpartum, parenthood, and childcare.
  • Help pregnant women connect and network with other healthcare providers
  • Network and collaborate with healthcare providers from the pregnancy circle
  • Help families understand the value of parenthood and the transition
  • Be a spokesperson for maternal-childcare system development, such as safer process, advanced technologies, low-cost care, better access to underprivileged parents, and maternity care in and outside hospitals
  • Travel to different cities to attend and provide training

Additional Information on Childbirth Educators Job

Since a childbirth educator is a certified professional, your first step should be gaining a childbirth educator certification. In most USA states and even across the world, hospitals employ only certified educators.

Many reputed organizations in the country offer certification in childbirth education.

This career can be pursued in several ways – you can find full-time childcare education jobs in nursing homes and hospitals, open your clinic, work as a freelancer from home and help individual parents, and look for contractual employment.

Your salary will depend upon the type of working environment you choose, your experience, and the additional certifications you have. According to salary.com, the average childbirth educator salary in the USA in 2019 is $66,941 per annum.

Steps to Become a Childbirth Educator

You can also pursue complementary careers, such as infant care, lactation consultation, and psychology, to improve your stances of getting a higher salary. Since some employers require the candidates to be licensed or registered nurses, before starting, check with your potential employer-organization and go through their requirements.

Step 1: Choose The Organization You will Be Training For

Here’s a list of certifying organizations providing childbirth education training:

  • ICEA – International Childbirth Education Association
  • International Doula Institute
  • The Bradley Method – The American Academy of Husband-Coached Childbirth (AAHCC)
  • CAPPA (Childbirth and Postpartum Association)

Each certifying educational center has different sets of prerequisites. Select the one that best suits your interest and budget.

You have an alternative option: Go through an informal apprenticeship with a local educator and work independently. This is simple, less costly, and worthy if you spend time with an excellent instructor.

However, certification will help you land better jobs and provide a higher salary.

Organizations, such as ICEA, offers two types of certifications – a traditional pathway and for experienced candidates.

Step 2: Take the Training for Certification

Depending upon the organization you choose, you can take the training online or in-class, while the practice can go up to for one year. You have to pay an upfront training fee, which will cost you between $300 and $1000. The training will cover a vast number of subjects that will enable you to prepare expecting parents mentally and physically for pregnancy, labor, and childcare.

Subjects that you will study during the training include family maternity care, informed decision making and evidence-based analyzing and teaching, teaching skills required, healthy lifestyle, physiology, reproduction, labor process, skills to cope up with pregnancy and labor, gestational transition, birthing, complications, preventions, what to expect, interventions, breastfeeding, newborn care, postpartum care, psychology, and feeding.

You also have to go through at least 3 – 4 practical sessions apart from theoretical studies.

Step 3: Get Your Childbirth Educator Certification

To receive your certification, you must clear the test regulated by the certification organization. Try to associate with an experienced childbirth educator and intern under her/his guidance before you take the examination for clarity and a clear understanding of the subject.

It is generally a closed-book, three-hour-long examination with multiple-choice questions. It is taken under a doctor’s invigilation. You may get one or two years to complete the exam. The passing score for childbirth certification is 70%.

Once you receive the certification, you will gain eligibility for applying for jobs in clinics and hospitals or starting your own childbirth education business. Most certifications are valid for two or three years, and you must apply for recertification from the same organization to continue practicing your profession legally.

If you believe we have missed an essential part in childbirth education, let us know in the comments below so that we can help you with the answers.