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SA 600


Enhancing Motivation for Change in Substance Abuse Treatment


This course provides a comprehensive overview of studies, research, and dynamics related to Substance Abuse Counseling and Motivation. Students study many facets of Substance Abuse Counseling, as well as major theories, process models, cultural issues, and other related content regarding motivation. Specifically this course reviewed enhancing motivation for change in substance abuse treatment.  Progression in the course follows motivating the client to succeed in treatment. This course provides for scientific inquiry into substance abuse counseling and motivational techniques and theories. Key chapters focus on the theory Motivational Interviewing (MI), the use of MI and Interventions, the 5 stages of MI change, and several tests and measures for screening and Assessment are appendixed.  Upon successful completion of this course, students earn 25 hours of continuing education contact hours toward Fellowship status recertification. Course Code: SA 600. Course Cost: $125.00

Instructor/Course Author:  John Pitselos, Ph.D., CAP, CMHP

BOARD APPROVALS: AIHCP is an approved provider of continuing education by the Florida Board of Nursing and the District of Columbia Board of Nursing. CE Provider # 50-11975. Access information

The American Institute of Health Care Professionals (The Provider) is approved by the California Board of Registered Nurses, Provider number # CEP 15595 for X Contact Hours.

Course Refund & AIHCP Policies: access here

Instructor/Course Author:  


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AIHCP BLOG: Please visit our interactive web blog. Here you will find frequently added information on our programs, articles and news by practice speciality, and much more. Register and become a part of our professional health care community.  

TIME FRAME: You are allotted two years from the date of enrollment, to complete all of the courses in the Substance Abuse Practitioner program. There are no set time-frames, other than the two year allotted time. If you do not complete the courses within the two-year time-frame, you will be removed from the course and an "incomplete" will be recorded for you in our records. Also, if you would like to complete the courses after this two-year expiration time, you would need to register and pay the course tuition fee again.

TEXTBOOK: Both the electronic and print copy are free.

MOTIVATIONAL ENHANSEMENT – Motivational techniques for Substance Abuse treatment.
Enhancing Motivation for Change in Substance Abuse Treatment. Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) Series, No. 35. HHS Publication No. (SMA) 13-4212. Rockville, MD: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 1999 (Electronic Access and Printed Copies

  • This publication may be ordered from or downloaded from SAMHSA’s Publications Ordering Web page at http://store.samhsa.gov. Or, please call SAMHSA at 1-877-SAMHSA-7 (1-877-726-4727) (English and Español). )

GRADING: You must achieve a passing score of at least 70% to complete this course and receive the 40 hours of awarded continuing education credit. There are no letter grades assigned. You will receive notice of your total % score. Those who score below the minimum of 70% will be contacted by the American Academy of Grief Counseling and options for completing additional course work to achieve a passing score, will be presented.

EXAMINATION ACCESS: there is link to take you right to the online examination program where you can print out your examination and work with it. All examinations are formatted as "open book" tests. When you are ready, you can access the exam program at any time and click in your responses to the questions. Full information is provided in the online classrooms.

STUDENT RESOURCE CENTER: there is a link for access to a web page "Student Resource Center." The Resource Center provides for easy access to all of our policies/procedures and additional information regarding applying for certification. We also have many links to many outside reference sites, such as online libraries that you may freely access.

there is a link in the classroom where you may access the course evaluation. All students completing a course, must, without exception, complete the course evaluation.

FACULTY ACCESS INFORMATION: you will have access to your instructor's online resume/biography, as well as your instructor's specific contact information.

some of our faculty have prepared additional "readings" and /or brief lecture notes to enhance your experience. All of these are available in the online classrooms.

Our site also provides specialty practice blogs, an online health care directory where members may voluntarily post information about themselves, and a health care articles blog.

COURSE OBJECTIVES: Upon completion of this course, you will be able to:

  • Use new skills to motivate clients:
    • Effective Motivational Interventions in Substance Abuse Treatment.
    • Motivational Intervention and Stages of Change
  • Understand 5 Principals of Motivational Interventional Interviewing
  • Update current skills and refresh previous learning.
  • Gain a wider perspective of current focus on motivations. Self-Efficacy, Readiness, Decisional Balancing
  • Understand theories behind applications.
  • Understand the roll of motivation in Substance Abuse and Substance Abuse Treatment.
  • Apply theories to current work: a Transtheoretical Model of Stages of Change
  • Identify and use Stages of Change: Pre-contemplation, Contemplation, Preparation, Getting Started, Action and Maintenance in Substance Abuse Treatment.
  • Have access to some tests and measures. 


A brief abstract of content: A Transtheoretical Model of change is reviewed. It focuses on Motivation, Motivational Interviewing and Tailoring Motivational Interviewing to the Stages of Change (Pre-contemplation, Contemplation, Preparation, Getting Started, Action and Maintenance) Measuring, monitoring and enhancing a client motivation is discussed. Direct focus on motivation in any type of treatment modality is suggested.

Best wishes with your cAREER in Substance Abuse Counseling!
John Pitselos, Ph.D. 

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