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PCIT Room Set-Up

It is imperative to have an appropriate PCIT room set-up to implement PCIT in your clinic. The basic set-up for PCIT rooms will include a one-way mirror, side-by-side rooms (therapy room, observation room, and barrier room), an adult-sized table with two chairs to accommodate a caregiver and child, an adult-sized sturdy time-out chair, and at least three choices of CDI-appropriate toys. Average-sized treatment rooms are preferred rather than larger conference rooms. A sound system (microphone and amplifier) is necessary to hear the interaction between caregiver and child while you stand on the other side of the one-way mirror in the observation room, and a "hearing helper" system will be necessary for speaking to the caregiver through a microphone and headset device. A timer is important when coding the caregiver's skill level each week. Videotaping sessions also allows for session review by consultant or supervisor, your review of caregiver skill level, and as a reference as the sessions progress. A barrier room (or "time-out" room) is preferred but not required. A barrier room is ideally approximately 4X6 feet or so - no smaller than 4X4 and no larger than a small office - and it must have adequate light and ventilation. When designing a barrier room, consider having a "dutch door" cut off approximately 5 feet high and/or a safety glass window into the time-out room to permit visual contact.



Below you will find a preliminary list of necessary equipment and toys appropriate for PCIT.  This is not a comprehensive list and the links provided are for your convenience, not mandatory.

Quality Time
Therapy Room Example

Therapy Room

  • The therapy room should be bare of extra furniture, hanging pictures, extra toys, etc.

  • There should be an adult sized table and three chairs (one will be the time-out chair)

Observation Room Example

Observation Room

  • One-way mirror between observation and therapy room (costs vary); glass should be shatter resistant

    • ​You may investigate the use of video baby monitors or more sophisticated video equipment to take the place of the observation window if a one-way mirror is not feasible. 

Barrier Room Example

Barrier Room or "Swoop & Go" Room

  • This can be a separately constructed room, or a spare, bare treatment room in close proximity to the therapy room.  The room should ideally be 4X6 but no smaller than 4X4. Additionally, there must be adequate lighting and a "dutch door" should be considered.  If a barrier room is not feasible, you may use the "swoop & go" technique in which the treatment room becomes the barrier room.


Sound System: Microphone & Amplifier

  • The goal is to be able to have sound from the observation room to the therapy room. All agencies are different and there are a wide variety of options. However, it is important for each agency to ensure the equipment and room set-up is in compliance with HIPAA, agency, local, state, and federal standards.

    • Some agencies drop microphones through the ceiling on the play room which allows for sound to travel to the amplifier in the observation room.

    • Other agencies are able to run audio and video through the play and the observation room into a single recording using computer software.

    • Some agencies have used baby monitors, but the sound quality can be an issue if it’s hard to understand what the parent and child are saying due to static or distortion


Hearing Helper

  • You will need some type of two-way listening device so caregivers can hear you from the observation room.  

    • Here is a model that our agency has had success using.  

    • You may also consider using walkie-talkies, Bluetooth receivers and cell phones, etc. to cut down on cost.


Video Recorder

  • There may be instances when you will need the ability to video record sessions (i.e., for training purposes) and will need some kind of recording device that you can set up in the observation room, either on a table or tripod, to pick up the audio from the therapy room and your voice. 



  • You will need some type of timer for coding. 

Painting Class

Have additional room or equipment questions?

Contact us

OUHSC Child Study Center

1100 NE 13TH ST 

OKC, OK 73117

Tel: 405-271-5700 x 45173


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