4 Hours | 4 CEs

This on-demand professional training program on Parenting Capacity in Child Protection Court is presented by Krissie Fernandez Smith, Ph.D., ABPP, in partnership with The American Academy of Forensic Psychology.

Parenting capacity assessments completed in the context of child protection proceedings incorporate risk management techniques that consider the child's best interest. This program reviews relevant case law and helps you incorporate best practice methodology into your evaluation procedures and communication with appropriate court parties. Specifically, it discusses essential elements of a parenting capacity assessment, including parent interviews, child interviews, observations of parent-child interactions, collateral sources, the use of psychological testing, and risk and protective factors for child maltreatment. In addition, these concepts are discussed in light of gender/cultural issues and bias in forensic assessment.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this program you will be able to:

  • Describe case law relevant to parenting capacity assessments in child protection proceedings

  • Describe salient risk and protective factors for child maltreatment

  • Describe important concepts to assess during the evaluation

  • Describe strategies for effectively presenting findings from a parenting capacity assessment

Presented By

Krissie Fernandez Smith, PhD, ABPP

Krissie Fernandez Smith, Ph.D., ABPP has been board certified in forensic psychology since 2017. She received her doctoral degree in clinical psychology with a forensic emphasis from Sam Houston State University in 2007. Following her graduation, she completed various criminal forensic evaluations while employed at the Center for Forensic Psychiatry in Michigan. Since 2010, she has worked at the Cook County Juvenile Court Clinic where she completes court-ordered evaluations for juvenile justice and child protection proceedings. In 2016, she became the Associate Director of the Cook County Juvenile Court Clinic. She is an Assistant Professor in the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and provides training for their Psychiatry and Law fellowship program. She currently serves as a member of the Board of Directors of the American Board of Forensic Psychology and its examination faculty.
  • Intended Audience

    This self-paced program is intended for mental health and other allied professionals.

  • Experience Level

    This self-paced program is appropriate for beginner, intermediate, and advanced level clinicians.

  • CE / CPD Credit

    APA, ASWB, CPA, NBCC Click here for state and other regional board approvals.


  • 1


    • Review Before Proceeding

  • 2


    • Lesson 1 Video

    • Lesson Quiz

  • 3

    Q&A Session 1

    • Lesson 2 Video

  • 4

    Assessment Areas

    • Lesson 3 Video

    • Lesson Quiz

  • 5

    Q&A Session 2

    • Lesson 4 Video

    • Sample Report

  • 6


    • Lesson 5 Video

    • Parenting Capacity Assessment Poster

    • Lesson Quiz

  • 7

    Q&A Session 3

    • Lesson 6 Video

    • References

  • 8


    • Instructions

    • Evaluation

    • Submission Verification

Develop a Specialty Area of Practice

Transforming mental health professionals into experts

  • Expert Instructors

    Professional training developed and delivered by the field's leading experts

  • CE Credit

    Earn CE credit for meaningful professional training that will elevate your practice

  • Convenience & Flexibility

    Learn at your own pace, from wherever you might be!

American Academy of Forensic Psychology

We are proud to partner with the American Academy of Forensic Psychology (AAFP) for this training. AAFP is a non-profit organization of board certified forensic psychologists whose mission is to contribute to the development and maintenance of forensic psychology as a specialized field of study, research and practice. The Academy does this by providing high quality continuing education workshops, providing a forum for the exchange of scientific information among its members, and conferring awards upon outstanding students and practitioners in the field of forensic psychology.

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