1. Introduction & Overview of Alcohol and Other Drugs (45 hrs): This course will examine the history of alcohol and other mood altering drugs in the United States. Course content includes cultural and lifestyle issues in alcohol and drug abuse, human behavior (personality, development, emotions, motivation and denial process), family dynamics (codependency, family roles, and family treatment), treatment and recovery approaches, and program and educational planning in treatment.

Course Content

  • Cultural/Lifestyle Consideration; norms and differences; issues specific to special populations (e.g., ethnic minorities, women, youth, elderly, homosexuality, physically disabled or impaired); the nature and extend of alcoholism/drug dependency problems among target populations.
  • Human Behavior: theories of personality and human development; emotional states (e.g., dependency, resentment, guild); theories of human needs and motivation; denial process.
  • Family Dynamics: Recognition of family roles, modalities of treatment; communication issues; role play.
  • Treatment and Recovery Approaches: Treatment and recovery modalities; (e.g., psychiatric, psychosocial, clinical; Alcoholics Anonymous (and other support groups); Aversion Therapy; medical modalities; behavioral modification, social models, drinking driver programs. (etc.)
  • Program Planning and Client Education: Goals and objectives; program policies and procedures; program strengths and limitations, service delivery planning, client education, lectures.

2. Physiology and Pharmacology of Alcohol and Other Drugs (45 hrs): This course will examine the effects of alcohol and other psychoactive drugs on the body and behavior. It includes drug related issues such as dependence, tolerance, withdrawals and synergistic effects. It further explores the disease model, neurobiology related to addition, the AMA definition and Jellinek’s work.

Course Content

  • Examination of the effects of alcohol and similar legal psychoactive drugs to the body and behavior; damage to the body and behaviors; damage to the brain, liver and other organs.
  • Tolerance, cross tolerance, and synergistic effects.
  • Physiological differences between males and females.
  • Disease model including signs and symptoms, research, neurobiological, AMA definition, Jellinek’s work.
  • Communicable diseases including tuberculosis, HIV and Hepatitis etc.

3. Law and Ethics (45 hrs): This course will explore legal and ethical issues such as patient rights, code of conduct, professional liabilities, assessment, screening, intervention, referral and crisis counseling. It also includes government regulations and employment problems related to alcohol and drug abuse.

Course Content

  • Community prevention and education: the concepts of prevention, community education and outreach; education and prevention models; effectiveness of prevention strategies and training methods; adult education techniques.
  • Outreach: Businesses and clubs that can be used as identification and referral sources.
  • Assessing needs for training and technical assistance.
  • Screening techniques: communication theories and techniques; interviewing techniques; considerations is assessing, client needs, resources, strengths and limitations. Identification of appropriateness and eligibility.
  • Intervention and referral: emphasis on the chronic disease model and recovery process. Continuum of care issues, including employee assistance programs; information and referral; detoxification; various treatment modalities etc.
  • Crisis Counseling Techniques and theories: The signs and symptoms of potential suicide, aggression and other self-destructive behaviors.

4. Case Management (45 hrs): This course will explore case management issues related to drug and alcohol counselors. General topics include but are not limited to intake, assessment, orientation, treatment planning recovery, relapse prevention, reports and record keeping, consultation and referral.

Course Content

  • Initial intake and case management: administrative requirements for admission, interpersonal dynamic and potential influence of client behaviors; signs and symptoms of physical disabilities, assessment of potential violence, self-harm, activities that bring agencies, resources of people together within a planned framework of action toward the achievement of established goals; including alcohol/drug history, vocational, cultural, educational background, lifestyle, living situation, medical, strengths and weaknesses for the development of a treatment plan.
  • Orientation: General nature and goals of the program; rules governing conduct, infractions that can lead to disciplinary action or discharge, hours of services, costs, clients rights. etc.
  • Treatment/Recovery Planning: the components of a treatment plan; problem solving models and processes; theories and behavioral components of change; techniques used in behavioral contracts; the stages of recovery; identification of problems, ranking problems, realistic and unrealistic treatment goals at various stages of recovery; the value of participant concurrence or expresses disagreement in the process; how to organize client information for presentation to other professionals, case presentation procedures.
  • Reports and Record keeping: Charting the results of the assessments; treatment plans; writing reports, progress notes, discharge summaries, and other client related data. (Practical application is required.)
  • Aftercare and follow up: the role of aftercare in the treatment process; the role and importance of client follow up; relapse dynamics; self-help groups and/or support groups. (AA, NA etc.)
  • Consultation and Referral: Alternative resources available to provide treatment and supportive services; roles and functions of individuals in resources agencies and their position in the decision making process; advocacy techniques; assessing the need for consultation and referral; identifying counselor limits and scope of practice.

5. Individual, Family, and Group Counseling (45 hrs): This course will explore different theoretical perspective on individual, group, and family counseling in the drug and alcohol treatment setting. It also offers practical application of the different modalities in role play setting. Studies include the different counseling models and knowledge of application of these models for treating alcohol and drug addictions.

Course Content

  • Counseling is a relationship in which the counselor helps the client mobilizes resources to resolve his/her problems and/or to modify attitudes and values.
  • Exploration of a problems, its ramification and examination of attitudes and feeling; consideration of alternative solutions; decision making; therapeutic approaches, (e.g., Reality Therapy, RET; Brief Therapy; Motivational interviewing; etc.)
  • Provisions of services to special populations, co-occurring disorders, people with disabilities, cultural differences, criminal justice etc.
  • Family Counseling: (All family counseling must be relative to substance abuse issues.) Theories of family codependency; techniques for motivation family involvement in the treatment process; techniques of multi-family group counseling; working with family therapists, selecting therapists for family work; counselor identification of limitations relating to family issues.
  • Group Counseling: Purpose and function of different types of counseling groups; models of group; group techniques; stages of group; group intervention, group patterns; therapeutic factors in groups; expression, commitment, process groups, didactic training; role of the counselor; group orientation.
  • This course must include practical applications in role play settings.

6. Professional and Personal Growth (45 hrs): This course will explore issues related to professional and personal growth of addiction counselors. Topics include counselor burnout, strengths, limitations, certification requirements, consultation and professional development and application of the ethics code to professional situations.

Course Content

  • Counselor burnout; signs and symptoms; early warning signs; unique needs of the recovering counselor; prevention techniques.
  • Personal and Professional Growth: recognizing personal strengths, limitations and knowledge to promote professional growth; importance of stress management; relaxation techniques; leisure skills, exercise; proper nutritional; time management etc.
  • The recovering counselor: “two hats” and the limitations and liability. (Include ethical situations.)
  • Professional Growth: Ethics and professional conduct/standards; consultations, counselor support and performance; the skills of a successful helper; ongoing education and training; translation of the code of ethics into professional behavior.
  • Certification requirements: Outline and review of the California Certification Board of Alcohol/Drug Counselors (CCAPP Credentialing) career path. Review the State of California Counselor Regulations and code of conduct. Professional contacts and organizations.

7. Supervised Practicum (45 hrs): This course includes supervision by a qualified instructor and includes direct supervision. The instructor must also be available for consultation while student is completing field work requirements. Completion of 255 externship hours (12 core functions) is also required to complete this course.

8. Supervised Field Work Practicum or Externship (255 hrs): A minimum requirement of 255 hours of practical experiences performed at an agency approved by the aforementioned instructor. The student must complete all of the 12 Core functions at internship site. Each core function requires a minimum of 21 hours practicum. The application of knowledge and skills in a practice setting is essential to professional counseling. The field work is the means by which students learn to apply and integrate acquired knowledge and values; and to refine skills that are taught in the classroom.