The Yale Child Study Center is a department at Yale University School of Medicine which brings together multiple disciplines to further the understanding of the problems of children and families. Among the many disciplines are child psychiatry, pediatrics, genetics, neurobiology, epidemiology, psychology, nursing, social work, and social policy. The mission of the Yale Child Study Center is to improve the mental health of children and families, advance understanding of their psychological and developmental needs, and treat and prevent childhood mental illness through the integration of research, clinical practice, and professional training. The Yale Child Study Center is unique in its scope of research, clinical services, training programs, policy work, and its local, state, national, and international collaborations. The strengths of the Center are reflected in the breadth and integrative nature of research, clinical services, and training.
The center was started in 1911 as the Yale Clinic of Child Development by Arnold Gesell. Dr. Gesell, who is considered the father of child development in the United States, led the center until 1948. Subsequent directors were: