Certification Courses

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Trauma Informed Animal/Equine Assisted Self Development & Psychotherapy Certification

12 Months: Five 4-day On-site Modules / One 2 - day Distance Learning Module  / One 3-day Field Observation Module / Mentoring & Supervision - CEU Requirement to Maintain Certification

The professional certification is open to coaches, educators, mental health professionals and other qualified individuals wanting to pursue or enhance a career in animal/equine and inter-species assisted self development and psychotherapy.

All students in this track learn the same information and will have a clear understanding of the ethics and scope of practice parameters that apply to Animal/Equine Assisted Self Development and Animal/Equine Assisted Psychotherapy. This is a comprehensive, multi-disciplined academic on-site and distance learning 12-month mentored program with supervision and continuing education requirements.

Cost of the course: $9,000 USD
$1,000 non-refundable deposit, transferable (for up to 12 months), due upon acceptance into the ROOTS Training Course. Students will be sent a link to pay the deposit upon acceptance.

Limited Scholarships are available - click to request an application.

International Student Rate available - click to inquire for details.

Payment Options

  • 1 payment (5% discount)
  • 2 equal payments 
  • Payment plan is available (3% admin fee)

Distance learning includes reading, mentoring with ROOTS Faculty, presentations, work with equines and other animals, mentored and role playing client sessions. These will be detailed in your syllabus after being accepted in to the program.

Visit the admissions page to learn more about admission requirements and to apply for admission. 

2017-2018 On-site & Field Modules Dates

Onsite Modules Located at One Heart Wild Education Sanctuary, Silverdale, WA

Module 1: September 15-18, 2017 (We are meeting Friday - Monday this module)

Module 2: October 26-29, 2017

Module 3: January 11-14, 2018 **Virtual Module - No Travel**

Ethology Field Observation: March 23-25, 2018, Arizona

Module 4: May 3-6, 2018

Module 5: June 21-24, 2018 

Module 6: August 2-5, 2018


Module 1 - September 20-23

Module 2 - November 8-11

Module 3 - February 7-10

March Field Observation Module 29-31

Module 4, 5 and 6 TBD

MODULE 1 - ROOTS Institute Certification Overview

Trans-species Psychology Theory – Nonhuman Animal Ethics – Collaborative/Mindful Horsemanship Skills – Social Animal Relational Behavior

MODULE 2  - Nature based theory and methods, incorporating mindfulness & expressive arts in Animal Assisted Sessions

FIELD MODULE - Equine Field Observation – Developing Critical Awareness of the Equine Species Through

Understanding Ethology of Free Living Equines

MODULE 3 - Therapeutic Skills – Scope of Practice – Professional Ethics – Industry Research – Animal Assisted Business Plan - Components of a Session

MODULE 4 - The Social Brain – Complex Trauma – Somatic Body-Mind Integration –

Trans-species Psychology – Components of a Session

MODULE 5 - Specific Populations – Neuro-diversity - Assessing & Designing Session Activities – Experiential Animal Assisted Facilitation

MODULE 6 - Children – Teens – Designing Session Activities – Creating & Assessing Treatment Plans – Experiential Facilitation – Final Presentations by Students

"The ROOTS Institute of One Heart Wild Education Sanctuary is one of the most rewarding, rigorous and meaningful learning experiences I have had in my 24 year career as an education professional. The learning format of ROOTS Institute is ideal for me as a working professional. The six-module, 18 month format allows ample opportunity for hands-on learning at a pace that is suitable for adult learners, and it provides time in between modules for reading, reflection, in-depth study of topics, field observations and experiential practice. The instructors are available for support online or by phone as needed during periods of independent study, and they provide exemplary hands-on facilitation and modeling of strategies that we will be using as practitioners. Combining self-study with small group work and outdoor engagement with human and non-human animals will equip us to step into the work of facilitation with clients with confidence, and with a supportive community of co-learners and colleagues."

-Donna Van Renselaar,  M.Ed

ROOTS Institute Class of 2016/2017

Have a question about how you can become a part of the next generation of animal/equine assisted self development and psychotherapy professionals that are dedicated to mutually beneficial experiences within inter-species relational activities? Click here to let us know.

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