Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Degree Name

MA in Child Development

First Advisor

Barbara Schecter

Second Advisor

Jan Drucker


Early childhood trauma has been shown to have a significant impact on children’s development, including their long-term physical and mental health. Recent research has shown these experiences to be widespread, affecting significant numbers of people across all populations. The effects of trauma lead many families to seek mental health services for their children’s emotional and behavioral symptoms, in the hope of promoting their children’s recovery and resilience. However, Spanish-speaking or bilingual families often face additional obstacles to obtaining mental health treatment due to language needs. Emerging research has also begun to examine the impact of bilingualism on the therapeutic alliance and services. Additionally, due to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, many mental health services rapidly shifted to virtual services, also known as telemental health services, which have unique advantages and disadvantages for providing services to young children and families. This thesis will address the process of working via telemental health with bilingual families during the COVID-19 pandemic. It will also include two case studies from a children’s mental health clinic that illustrate these concepts and their intersections.