Animal Assisted Interventions In Counseling (AAI-C)
Certificate In Animal Assisted Interventions In Counseling
The ISU Department of Counseling is pleased to offer a 9-credit Certificate program in Animal Assisted Interventions in Counseling (AAI-C). The courses in this curriculum will be offered in the summer only and are based on the American Counseling Association Competencies for providers of Animal Assisted Therapy in Counseling. Courses are open to currently enrolled ISU counseling masters and doctoral students, ISU counseling alums, practicing professional counselors from any program, and masters and doctoral students currently enrolled in other counseling or related programs outside of ISU. Students from other helping professions are welcome, but should note that the curriculum focuses on the ACA Code of Ethics. The curriculum includes the following 3-credit courses to be taken sequentially:
- COUN 6684: Introduction to Animal Assisted Interventions in Counseling, Idaho State University. Students will understand and demonstrate knowledge of the history, philosophy, and theoretical foundations of Animal Assisted Interventions in Counseling (AAI-C). This course will be offered online.
- COUN 6685: Best Practices in Animal Assisted Therapy in Counseling, Idaho State University. Students will understand and demonstrate knowledge of best practices in Animal Assisted Interventions in Counseling (AAI-C), with particular emphasis on professional ethics, provider competence, and animal advocacy. This course will be offered in an intensive, two-week format and available in person OR via webinar with Zoom teleconference technology.
- COUN 6686: Applied Practice in Animal Assisted Interventions in Counseling, Idaho State University. This experiential skills development course is designed to train students to be knowledgeable and competent to begin applied practice in AAI-C. An integration of essential AAI-C and counseling skills so that student may safely, ethically, and effectively incorporate AAI-C into the counseling process. This course will be offered in an intensive, one-week, in person only format at ISU’s Pocatello campus.
Frequently Asked Questions
When are the course offered?
The courses will be offered only in the summer, exact dates TBD. The first course (Intro to AAI-C) will be offered online only in late May, the second course will be offered in person OR via webinar dates TBD based on student needs and instructor availability. The third and final course will be offered in person only in an intensive one-week workshop format, dates TBD based on student needs and instructor availability. On-campus housing may be arranged for students from outside of Pocatello. You must complete both prerequisite courses to be eligible for the third course.
Can I bring my animal?
The first 2 classes are for human students only. Due to liability considerations, we will only be able to accommodate fully registered therapy animals with appropriate documentation in the Applied Practice class. Participating with your own registered animal in the Applied Practice class is optional, and NOT required.
During the second class (Best Practices in AAI-C), you will learn how to get appropriately registered as a therapy team with your animal. If you are able to get your own animal registered after this class ends and before the third class (Applied Practice in AAI-C) begins, you'll be permitted to do supervised mock counseling sessions with your own animal. That is why we schedule a year in between the second and third class. If you're unable to do this at that time, you will be allowed to practice under live supervision (with me in the room) with a registered volunteer therapy animal-handler team. Then you would hopefully apply this supervised experience towards your future work with a registered animal. Because of liability and safety considerations, the Applied Practice class will only be offered in person in Pocatello, as I cannot effectively maximize safety in human-animal interactions via distance technology.
What will I earn through this class?
After satisfactorily completing all 9 credits, you will have acquired the appropriate knowledge, skills, and attitude to begin the practice of AAT under supervision. Supervision resources and options will be discussed at length in the Best Practices course.
For more information about these courses, please email Dr. Leslie Stewart directly at firstname.lastname@example.org, or find us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/Idaho-State-University-Department-of-Counseling
Information on the current ACA AAT-C Competencies can be found at: https://www.counseling.org/knowledge-center/competencies
If you're not a current student in our program, that’s perfectly OK! We are happy to welcome graduate-level students or graduates in counseling or related fields from other programs. You'll need to enroll in ISU as a non-degree seeking student. To apply go to Graduate School applications.
Several folks have let me know that they found this process to be straightforward and easy. Once you have done this, we can absolutely walk you through the registration process as much as you need. The ISU registrar is a good resource for questions regarding fees; and the ISU scholarship office is a good resource for potential sources of financial support.
Pocatello, ID 83209-8120
921 South 8th Ave., Stop 8120
Pocatello, ID 83209-8120
Mailing and Physical Address:
Meridian Health Science Center
1311 East Central Drive
Meridian, ID 83642
Dr. Judith Crews