Course Description

Motivated clients succeed best in treatment, but what can Medication Assisted Treatment Specialists do to improve motivation? Until recently, motivation was viewed as a static trait or disposition that a client either did or did not have. Furthermore, motivation was often viewed as the client's responsibility, not the clinician's. However, new research suggests clinicians can successfully nudge clients along a continuum of willingness to change. There are a variety of proven techniques and gentle tactics that you, the clinician in a treatment facility, can use to raise the topic with people not thinking of change, to create client doubt about the commonly held belief that substance abuse is “harmless” and to lead to client conviction that substance-abuse is having, or will in the future have, significant negative results. This course reviews the proven strategies for helping those in the precontemplation stage build their readiness to change. (SAMHSA, TIP 35, 2019).


Course Modality: This is an independent home-study course. Students will take the course according to their own timeline. 

Course Completion: To receive the course certificate, each student is required to agree to Student Learning Contract, read all text-based materials, view any media posted, complete and pass course examination, and complete and submit course evaluation. 

Senior Instructor

Diane Sherman, PhD

Dr. Diane Sherman, Ph.D., a substance abuse profession since 1975, beginning her career while serving in the U.S. Army for in the capacity of Behavioral Science Specialist.  She holds the national advanced credential of Master Addiction Counselor, Certified Clinical Supervisor, Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor-II, and E-Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor. Diane earned her Doctorate in Industrial / Organizational Psychology from Capella University in 2007. Since 2008 she has taught and supervised students who are in pursuit of the certified addiction counselor credential. She is a national, regional and state presenter offering topics relevant to addiction professional, clinical, and ethical practices and clinical supervision. In 2015 was honored to receive the Georgia School of Addiction Studies, Bruce Hoopes Pioneer Award in Addiction Treatment, a personally meaningful award, for excellence in the addiction profession.

Course curriculum

  • 1

    Chapter 1. Introduction

  • 2

    Watch this Instruction Video for Completing your Assignments

    • Instructional Video for Completing Assignments

    • MAT and Stages of Changes. Assignment 1: Precontemplation

    • MAT and Stages of Change. Assignment 2: Contemplation .

    • MAT and Stages of Change. Assignment 3: Preparation.

    • MAT and Stages of Change. Assignment 4: Relapse.

  • 3

    Chapter 2. MAT and Stages of Change

    • MAT and Stages of Change. Presentation

    • Stages of Change handout

    • Building Discrepancy handout

  • 4

    Chapter 3. Additional Resource Materials

    • Stage of Change Matching Guide

    • SAMHSA Recovery

    • Quick Guide for Clinicians. Enhancing Motivation for Change.

  • 5

    Chapter 4. Course Completion

    • Stages of Change. Post-Test.

    • Course Review

    • Course Evaluation

Reviews