Competence framework for
Child & Adolescent Mental Health Services


Welcome to the competence framework for child and adolescent mental health services.

On this site you will have open access to the framework, as well as background documents that explain how to use the framework (there are two versions; one for clinicians/ commissioners and one for service users).

It is important to read the background documentation, as this will help you to implement the framework to best effect.



Version for Clinicians and Commissioners

Version for young people and
parents/ carers

Map of Competences

Competence Lists

A brief description of the competences framework for CAMHS

The framework describes the various activities which need to be brought together in order to carry out clinical work in the context of CAMHS work. It is not intended to prescribe what a clinician should do; it makes suggestions about best practice in the light of our current knowledge of the effectiveness of approaches and interventions.

The framework locates competences across six “domains”, each of which represents a broad area of practice. This helps users to see how the various activities associated with work in this area fit together.

Background documents to the framework

There are two background documents:


Navigating the framework – the map of competences

As described fully in the background documents, the map shows the six domains of competence, and the activities associated with each domain.

Downloading the competence descriptions

The map functions as an overview - it is not the full list of competences. We have tried to make downloading the lists of competences as easy as possible, and you have two main options:

1) From the map itself: placing the cursor over any of the boxes in the map links you to the competences. To see the competences associated with a specific activity, click on the relevant box

2) The first three domains of the framework represent the competences expected of all caseholding CAHMS clinicians. On this basis we have provided ‘one click’ access to the complete set of competences within each domain:

Complete list of Core competences for work with children/young people

Complete list of Generic Therapeutic competences

Complete list of Assessment and formulation

Part A - Assessment and formulation

Part B - Specialist Mental Health Assessments


We welcome any feedback on the framework (including feedback on the functionality of the website itself) – contact us to email feedback