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ADLER TRAUMA PSYCHOTHERAPY CERTIFICATE COURSES

NT-513 Safe and Effective Use of Self 

The therapist’s degree of self-awareness, self-regulation and self-development has a major impact on therapeutic outcome. To enhance these abilities, students must examine their beliefs, behaviours, and blind spots. This four-day course is divided into four topics: responding to clients’ sexual concerns; balancing your needs and your clients’ needs; the wounded helper; and identifying and escaping therapy traps.

AT-681 Introduction to Trauma Psychotherapy

Introduces the theory and practice of treating traumatized clients. Topics include: what is trauma?; the individual response to trauma; the psycho-biology of fear; how trauma affects memory and cognition; understanding problematic behaviours (addictions, eating disorders, self- harm) as coping strategies; dissociation, re-enactment and somatization; the evolution of trauma therapy; diagnostic confusions; assessing the trauma client; treatment goals; and healing in the metaphoric domain.

IP-524 The Social Dimension of Therapy

In every nation, the rate of mental illness rises in direct proportion to the level of income inequality. Yet psychotherapy rarely considers the impact of social context on mental health. The result is attribution error: the clients’ behaviours are viewed as poor choices or character defects rather than as reasonable responses to unreasonable social conditions. In order to facilitate the therapist-client alliance, therapists must understand, and be able to explain to their clients, the impact of social conditions on mental health. Topics include: the social determinants of health; why most clients are women; how oppressive conditions generate intra-personal and interpersonal conflict; and responding to internalized oppression. Grades are based on a 20-minute presentation on the second day of class. Each student will briefly identify the group they have chosen; identify what experiences common to this group might affect mental health; and demonstrate how a therapist might discuss this information with a client from this group.

AT-682 Inter-Generational Trauma
Prerequisite: PTH690-ATP101 

Each generation teaches the next. Along with knowledge, skills, and culture, we also transmit the impact of traumatic experience. This course introduces students to: the biological, familial and social transmission of trauma; the multi-dimensional impact of trauma in the formative years; how unresolved trauma can lead to intimate partner conflict; parenting deficiencies and child protests; and why treating caregivers can be the most effective way to treat traumatized children.

AT-683 Introduction to Working with Couples
Prerequisite: PTH690-ATP101 

Most clients present as a single unit yet have a significant other with whom they are emotionally engaged. Treating one-half of a couple system can result in destructive triangulation and mistakenly reinforce the symptom-bearer as the sole problem. Working with couples is more challenging and offers more therapeutic benefits. This course introduces basic theory and practice for working with couples affected by trauma. Topics include: an historical overview of couple therapy; recent contributions from neuroscience; the traumatized and traumatizing couple; safety versus intimacy; how internal conflict becomes inter-personal conflict; how past trauma disrupts attachment; the disruptive impact of “thirds” (venting, addictions, infidelities, children); creating safety; repairing ruptures; addressing sexual discontent; and treating traumatized individuals within the couple system.

AT-684 Building Skills in Couple Therapy
Prerequisite: PSY690-ATP301 

Therapy with distressed or traumatized couples is a minefield, as clients press the therapist to take sides, attempt to embroil the therapist in their dramas, and defeat the therapist’s efforts to provide solutions. In this experiential class, students will observe and participate in fictional role-play scenarios of challenging couple-therapist interactions. Students will acquire basic therapeutic tools for successfully managing the more difficult couple challenges.

NT-651, 652, and 653 Practicum*
(Supervision by qualified trauma psychotherapist) 

IP-660 Practicum Seminar 

*Note: Students who meet other competency criteria but lack the 450 total hours of direct client contact and 100 hours of clinical supervision required for registration as a Registered Psychotherapist may elect to apply for “Qualifying” status while they complete their client contact and/or supervision hours. Consult the College of Registered Psychotherapists website www.collegeofpsychotherapy.on.ca for details.

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