The Ethics of Touch in Psychotherapy:
Rethinking the Prohibition on Touch in Psychotherapy
6 CE Credits - Online Course - $60.00
Co-developed by Nola Nordmarken, MFT and Ofer Zur, Ph.D.
Course fulfills the California and other states' ethics and law requirements.
Course may qualify for insurance discount. Check with your insurer.
CE Credits for Psychologists,
LMFTs, LPCCs, LEPs & LCSWs (BBS) Social
Counselors (NBCC, NAADAC, CALPCC), Nurses (BRN) & More
This course is also offered as part of two Certificate Programs:
Somatics & Touch 22 CE Credits
Advanced Ethics 71 CE Credits
For an advanced course on Touch In Therapy II, click here.
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GENERAL COURSE DESCRIPTION
This course reviews the importance of touch for human development and healing practices, describes the application of touch in psychotherapy as adjunct to verbal psychotherapy. It looks critically at the prohibition of touch in therapy and examines its historical, professional and cultural roots. Sexualizing most forms of touch combined with psychoanalytic and risk management guidelines are reviewed, as they present the main obstacles for the clinically appropriate use of touch in therapy. Issues of power, gender, history of abuse, dx and context are also discussed. Finally, detailed clinical and ethical guidelines for the appropriate use of touch in therapy are provided and description of ethical decision-making and a summary of California law in regard to touch in therapy are also presented. (Intermediate level).
This course will teach psychotherapists to
- Review the importance of touch for human development and healing practices.
- Outline the objections for using touch in psychotherapy.
- Discuss the relationships between sexual and non-sexual forms of touch in therapy.
- Review professional organizations' codes of ethics on touch.
- Discuss concerns with touch as it relates to gender, dx, culture, power, patient history and context.
- Review and update California laws and regulations which are relevant to touch in psychotherapy.
- Review the risk management concerns with touch in psychotherapy.
- Utilize ethical decision-making regarding touch in psychotherapy.
- Discuss ethical and clinical guidelines for touch in psychotherapy.
- The importance of touch
- Research on infant massage
- Touch culture and bonding
- Touch, ethnicity, region, class and sexual identity
- Type of touch in psychotherapy
- The prohibition of touch in psychotherapy
- Beyond verbal communication
- Touch in context
- Patients' perceptions of touch
- Touch and the therapeutic alliance
- Surveys on touch in therapy
- Clinical orientation on touch in therapy
- Definitions of sexual and non-sexual touch in therapy
- Body-Centered Therapies
- Touch with special populations
- Medical and psychological effects of massage
- Psychoanalytic prohibition of touch
- On power and touch in therapy
- Risk management prohibition of touch
- The slippery slope argument around touch
- Ethics codes regarding touch in therapy
- Ethical decision-making regarding touch in psychotherapy
- California law and touch in psychotherapy
- Guidelines for the ethical use of touch
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