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Spiritually Integrated Psychotherapy (SIP) Program

Program Overview

The ACPE Spiritually Integrated Psychotherapy (SIP) Training Program is a multi-disciplinary, inter-spiritual, multi-racial community of persons gathered for education, connection, and formation in the work of spiritually integrated psychotherapy. It serves licensed and pre-licensed mental health professionals (i.e., counselors, social workers, marriage and family therapists, pastoral counselors, psychologists, psychiatrists, addiction specialists, and more), as well as graduate students in any of those disciplines, who seek to explore the ways spirituality, religion, and the search for meaning influence their own lives and the lives of their clients.

 The Program includes:

  • A 30-hour continuing education curriculum, offered by SIP Trainers in the communities where they live and work
  • A post-curriculum certification process (20 hours of consultation with a local SIP Trainer and a Peer Review)
  • SIP Communities of Practice where connection, learning, and professional formation can continue beyond the certification process
  • A Train the Trainer program to develop and support SIP Trainers

The SIP Program recognizes that high-quality therapists become high-quality therapists over time, in formative relationships with colleagues and mentors. In addition to teaching theory and skills foundational to spiritually integrated psychotherapy, the SIP Program emphasizes personal integration, development of professional identity, and growth in a distinctive way of being. 

Four persons sit in a line looking at the camera with their thumbs up

 ACPE’s SIP Program is an alignment with ACPE’s core values:

  • Diversity and Inclusion
  • Integrity
  • Curiosity
  • Process
  • Service

 ACPE is a Department of Education recognized organization that provides

  • CPE programs for spiritual care professionals of any faith and in any setting
  • Education, professional formation, and an organizational home for spiritually integrated psychotherapists and pastoral counselors.

 

Curriculum

The word psychotherapy means “care of the soul” (from the Greek psyche + therapeia). While the history of psychotherapy includes theorists and practitioners with a bias against spirituality and religion, there have always been those who found effective ways to include spiritual wisdom in psychotherapeutic work. In recent years, there has been an outpouring of research and instruction in spiritually integrated psychotherapy, and empirical evidence demonstrating the therapeutic efficacy of attending to clients’ spiritual beliefs and practices.

The ACPE SIP Curriculum draws upon diverse spiritual traditions and psychological research to provide practical, usable resources to help therapists integrate spirituality into their work. It teaches therapists how to elicit and make therapeutic use of their clients’ spiritual perspectives and how to make ethically appropriate use of their own spiritual perspectives.

The program consists of 10, 3-hour courses, offered for continuing education credit. These are: 

A table with 10 Courses are described by course title and contact hours are assigned for each course

 The courses draw upon multiple modes of teaching and learning, including:

  • interactive seminars;
  • role plays;
  • small group work; and
  • case consultation.

Many of the 10 courses can be taught independently for continuing education credit. However, the curriculum is most effective when taught in its entirety in a sequential manner. 

Learning Objectives

At the conclusion of course 1, participants will be able to:

  1. Understand the benefits of integrating spirituality and religion in psychotherapy when done well.
  2. Define a holistic understanding of humans: bio-psycho-social-spiritual.
  3. Recognize different models for integrating spirituality and religion in psychotherapy.
  4. Summarize the ethical principles that guide how therapists integrate spirituality and religion in therapy.
  5. Comprehend how therapists can ethically draw upon their own spirituality as a resource.

At the conclusion of course 2, participants will be able to:

  1. Approach spiritual conversations in therapy in a collaborative rather than directive manner.
  2. Understand the difference between explicit and implicit spiritual language.
  3. Recognize and respond to spiritual openings that clients offer.
  4. Initiate spiritual conversations.

At the conclusion of course 3, participants will be able to:

  1. Identify clients’ spiritual and religious resources.
  2. Identify clients’ spiritual struggles.
  3. Assess whether clients’ spirituality is helping or hurting.
  4. Recognize “heart of the matter” spiritual issues affecting client’s well-being.5.Determine whether spirituality will be an explicit part of the therapy process.

At the conclusion of course 4, participants will be able to:

  1. Conduct spiritual assessment.
  2. Help clients deepen existing spiritual resources. 
  3. Help clients reconnect with forgotten spiritual resources.
  4. Help clients develop new spiritual resources.

At the conclusion of course 5, participants will be able to:

  1. Understand the Spiritual Interventions in Four Dimensions rubric.
  2. Identify explicit spiritual practices that can be integrated into psychotherapy.
  3. Identify implicit spiritual practices that can be integrated into psychotherapy.
  4. Incorporate spiritual interventions in therapeutic practice with beginning competence.
At the conclusion of course 6, participants will be able to:
  1. Identify elements of harmful spirituality or religion.
  2. Discuss how spirituality and religion become harmful.
  3. Discuss strategies for countering the impact of harmful spirituality or religion.
  4. Apply strategies for countering the impact of harmful spirituality or religion to a clinical example.

At the conclusion of course 7, participants will be able to:

  1. Recognize and describe spiritual struggles.
  2. Identify spiritual struggles commonly encountered in psychotherapy.
  3. Identify therapeutic strategies for addressing spiritual struggles in ethical and effective ways.
  4. Apply therapeutic strategies for addressing spiritual struggles to a clinical example.

At the conclusion of course 8, participants will be able to:

  1. Recognize the connection between their spirituality and therapeutic presence.
  2. Identify ways their spiritual beliefs impact how they understand clients, the therapeutic relationship, and therapeutic process.
  3. Investigate areas of spiritual countertransference that may influence therapeutic process.
  4. Identify personal examples of spiritual countertransference. 

At the conclusion of course 9 and 10, participants will be able to:

  1. Construct a Spiritually Integrated Case Conceptualization to present to and discuss with peers.
  2. Integrate spirituality into clinical assessment and treatment planning.
  3. Recognize the “heart of the matter” spiritual issues implicit in clinical symptoms and client personality styles.
  4. Name strategies to distinguish between spiritual issues and mental health issues.

Registration Process

In order to register, please review the upcoming trainings and reach out to the SIP trainer associated with the training dates that work for you. The upcoming trainings list will provide you the names and qualifications of each trainer.

In your registration you will provide your legal name, email, phone number, preferred address and optional demographic information.

 

ACPE: The Standard for Spiritual Care and Education is an NBCC Approved Continuing Education Provider™, ACEP No. 7004.  ACPE is solely responsible for sponsored programs, including the awarding of NBCC credit. To facilitate the provision of continuing education credit when appropriate, the Psychotherapy Commission established the following Continuing Education Policy.