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Little Kids, Big Questions
is a series of 12 podcasts that translates the research of early childhood development into parenting practices that mothers, fathers and other caregivers can tailor to the needs of their own child and family. Click here to listen to or download the podcasts. This podcast series is generously funded by MetLife Foundation.

DC:0-3R is Being Revised

With the help of the DC:0-3R Revision Task Force, ZERO TO THREE is once again tackling an update and revision of the DC:0-3R—a 3-year process that began in March 2013. The DC:0-3R Revision Task Force will consider changes to DC:0-3R, making content-related decisions with input from the clinical and research literature, users worldwide, and feedback from recognized experts in particular areas. The revision will capture new findings relevant to diagnosis in young children and will address issues that have remained unresolved since the book was published in 2005. Revision Task Force members are: Charley Zeanah (Chair), Alice Carter, Julie Cohen, Helen Egger, Miri Keren, Mary Margaret Gleason, Alicia Lieberman, Kathleen Mulrooney, and Cindy Oser.

To learn more about the revision and update of DC:0-3R, check out the Zero to Three Journal article “DC:0–3 to DC:0–3R to DC:0–5.” Enter your information below to download the article.

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If you would like more information on the members of the DC:0-3R Revision Task Force, please click here.

To purchase DC:0-3R and related resources, visit the ZERO TO THREE Bookstore

We Want Your Input 

DC:0-3R is designed to guide clinical formulation, enhance professional communication, and provide a basis for research evaluation and continuous improvement. In order to solicit initial input into the revision process, ZERO TO THREE developed and disseminated a DC:0-3R user’s survey in the summer of 2013. The survey was sent out to 20,000 individuals worldwide; there were 890 responses from 6 continents. Respondents reported being experienced in evaluating and treating infants and toddlers —23% had more than 20 years experience and 51% had more than 10 years experience. More than half (56%) of the respondents had used DC:0-3R in the past year, 36% had not used it but would like to in the future, and only 8% were not interested in using it. Respondents provided valuable information about the multiaxial system and suggested changes in specific aspects of DC:0-3R.

The Revision Task Force and ZERO TO THREE invite members of the infant-early childhood mental health community worldwide to provide feedback over the course of the revision process. As revisions in the diagnostic criteria are drafted, they will be posted here for input from the field. With your help, we will be able to make revisions that reflect the knowledge and experience of DC:0-3R users worldwide.

The Release

The Revision Task Force and ZERO TO THREE plan to preview the updated and revised DC:0-3R at the World Association for Infant Mental Health (WAIMH) Congress in June 2016 and to release the new edition in December 2016 at ZERO TO THREE’s National Training Institute.


Originally published in 1994, ZERO TO THREE’s Diagnostic Classification of Mental Health and Developmental Disorders of Infancy and Early Childhood (DC:0-3) was the first developmentally based system for diagnosing mental health and developmental disorders in infants and toddlers. Its diagnostic categories reflected the consensus of a multidisciplinary group of experts in early childhood development and mental health.

The revised DC:0-3 (DC:0-3R) draws on empirical research and clinical practice that have occurred worldwide since 1994. DC:0-3R, published in 2005, extends DC:0-3 by incorporating empirical research and clinical practice. It supports clinicians in diagnosing and treating mental health problems in the earliest years. Specifically, DC:0-3R is designed to help mental health and other professionals:

  • Recognize mental health and developmental challenges in young children,
  • Understand how relationships and environmental factors contribute to mental health and developmental disorders,
  • Use diagnostic criteria effectively for classification and intervention, and
  • Work more effectively with parents and other professionals to develop effective treatment plans.

For more information about the revision, please email us at info@dc03r.org.

Learn More

DC: 0-3 revisions - Explains the need for a revision to DC:0-3

Clinical Formulation In Infancy and Early Childhood - Clinical formulation involves the drawing together of multiple observations and sources of information about the individual within a general diagnostic scheme, so as to guide the clinician about what to do next.

DC:0-3R Forms to Reproduce - Four forms from DC:0-3R

Diagnostic Guidelines - Clinicians may find them helpful when using DC:0-3R to diagnose the mental health and developmental disorders of very young children.

The DC:0-3R Multi-Axial System - DC:0-3R continues the multiaxial classification system that has been so useful in clinical formulation. Use of the multiaxial system for clinical formulation focuses the clinician's attention on the factors that may be contributing to the difficulties of the infant or young child, adaptive strengths, and additional areas of functioning in which intervention may be needed.

The Diagnostic Process - The diagnostic process consists of two aspects: the classification of disorders and the assessment of individuals.

ZERO TO THREE Articles on DC: 0-3R - Zero to Three Journal articles about diagnosing developmental delays and disorders in infants and toddlers.



border=0 Disorders of Behavior and Emotional Regulation in the First Years of Life - Provides a scientifically proven demonstration of how to help families struggling with common and behavioral disorders. More Details

ZERO TO THREE Articles on DC: 0-3R
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