Certificate in Somatic Psychotherapy
Specialized training and continuing education program for experienced practitioners offering 30 CEs (CEUs)
The demand is soaring for practitioners qualified in somatic therapeutic approaches that acknowledge the powerful body-mind connection for effective healing. In just three weekend residencies, earn 30 CEs (CEUs) and enhance your therapeutic skill set with Antioch University’s Somatic Psychotherapy Certification. AUSB offers a rare opportunity for experienced practitioners to integrate this leading-edge knowledge into your current practice, learning from renowned somatic experts.
This certificate is offered by AU Santa Barbara.
Why Somatic Therapy?
Somatic psychotherapy is a therapeutic approach embracing the interconnection between the body, emotions, cognition, and sense of self. It is applied in the treatment of psychological and physical responses to trauma and post-traumatic stress disorders, as well as in responding to a vast range of life issues including depression, anxiety, and attachment disorders. Somatic approaches draw from scientific evidence that feeling, sensation, expression, movement, and emotions are embodied through the course of development, in patterns impacting how we function including how we relate to ourselves and others. Through exploration of what is embodied, including body sensation, posture, and expression, somatic psychotherapists help clients explore and shift patterns to alleviate symptoms of trauma and stress to enhance well-being.
The Certificate in Somatic Psychotherapy includes four intensive courses offered in three monthly weekend residencies, offering a total of 30 CEs (CEUs). In between the three residency sessions, students will participate in a virtual community of somatic practitioners with opportunity to dialogue, consult with and receive feedback from peers and faculty. Students can complete the online component flexibly within their own schedules.
The three monthly residencies will meet Fridays 5 – 9 pm and Saturdays 9am – 4pm, totaling 10 hours per residency weekend.
Spring 2019 Certificate Residency Dates
- Friday March 15: 5pm – 9pm
- Saturday March 16: 9am – 3pm
- Friday April 12: 5pm – 9pm
- Saturday April 13: 9am – 4pm
- Friday May 3: 5pm – 9pm
- Saturday May 4: 9am – 5pm
Attend all three (3) residency weekends as an active participant, and participate in the between-residency online interactions as per course expectations.
- Movement, Mindfulness & the Expressive Arts – This experiential course is grounded in somatic therapies’ principles and practices, and will provide the student experience in integrating these practices with verbal psychotherapy. This course will draw from the field of dance/movement therapy, from mindfulness practices, and from the work of both Peter Levine and Pat Ogden. Elements of the expressive arts, with attention to present moment and body-centered experience, will be included in the course. Distinctions will be made between the expressive arts therapies and the clinician’s ability to utilize the arts as a tool in the course of therapy, without formal training in art, dance/movement, or music. This course will be experiential and will focus on practical application, as the student learns to improvise integrating somatic tools in the here-and now context of therapy. The course builds upon and expands the student’s previous clinical training, and the theoretical information offered in additional somatic courses.
- Somatic Approaches to Trauma & PTSD – This course will address recent advances in understanding the effects of trauma on the brain, mind, and body in general and with regard to specific forms of complex trauma and PTSD. Building upon traditional psychotherapeutic techniques and principles, students will learn approaches viewing the body as central in the therapeutic field of awareness, including observational skills, theories, and interventions not usually practiced in psychodynamic psychotherapy. Students will develop a solid theoretical understanding as well as practical application of treatment modalities and methods with special populations including; children, adolescents, veterans and other adult survivors of various forms of abuse and trauma. Students will learn basic theory, skills and practice of Sensorimotor Psychotherapy (developed by Pat Ogden) for the treatment of trauma. Theoretical principles and treatment approaches from both the mental health and body psychotherapy traditions are integrated in this approach. Major current theorists and practitioners in the field will be studied in depth: (Pat Ogden, Stephen Porges, Bessel van der Kolk and Peter Levine). Certified trainers in Sensorimotor Psychotherapy may be guest lecturers for this course.
- Introduction to Theories & Techniques of Somatic Psychotherapy – Students will critically examine seminal historical theories of the body and mind interconnection in psychotherapy with reference to current theoretical models and techniques including, interpersonal and affective neurobiology with a focus on attachment, affect regulation and dysregulation, stress, PTSD and trauma as they relate to clinical work. Theories covered, will include psychodynamic, attachment, affect regulation and interpersonal neurobiology. Techniques will include Somatic Experiencing, Hakomi, Sensorimotor Psychotherapy, Expressive Arts (movement, music, theatre, visual arts, and poetry), Mindfulness, Yoga, and Psych-K. The course will provide a basis for an interdisciplinary, holistic perspective that will inform the development of treatment planning skills and therapeutic orientation with individuals, groups, children, and adolescents.
- Practicum: Somatic Consultation – This practicum course focuses upon group and dyadic work with specific current cases through presentations, discussions and explorations relating to the application of the theories and techniques learned in the program. Key aspects of somatic psychotherapy are integrated in consideration of assessment, treatment plans, differential diagnosis, course of treatment, choice of modalities, working with multiple diagnoses, cultural sensitivity, transference and countertransference, clinical intuition and the art of psychotherapy based on science and technique. Legal, ethical and professional issues will be covered including most current statutes, regulations, and ethical standards relating to psychotherapy and somatic treatment modalities and techniques. Ethical decision-making regarding issues surrounding touch and physical contact, informed consent, clinical judgment, transference/countertransference, boundary issues, differential diagnosis, and treatment planning will be addressed.
AUSB’s Somatic Psychotherapy programs are taught by faculty who are well-respected experts in the field of somatic therapy and other holistic therapeutic approaches. Students will learn from active professionals who are thought leaders, teachers, and practitioners with decades of experience. Some of the expert faculty who have taught in our Somatic Psychotherapy program include:
- Shira Musicant, LMFT – Musicant has been practicing as a somatic therapist for more than 30 years. In addition to training in dance/movement therapy (BC-DMT) and somatic experiencing (SEP), she has studied Hakomi with Dr. Ron Kurtz and is a Level II practitioner of sensorimotor psychotherapy. Her approach as a therapist is informed by more than 35 years of studying and teaching authentic movement and process-oriented EMDR.
- Victoria Stevens, PhD – Dr. Stevens is a licensed clinical psychologist, psychoanalyst, researcher, and educator, with specialized certifications in hypnosis and the treatment of victims and perpetrators of violent crimes. She studied interpersonal affective neurobiology with Allan Schore for more than a decade and is a founding faculty member of the California Institute of the Arts Teaching Artist Training Program.
- Angela DeVita, PhD – Dr. DeVita is a licensed MFT, coach, and consultant who specializes in helping her clients with relationship issues. She is a registered art therapist, Neuro-Emotional Technique practitioner, and depth psychotherapist. Her research interests include somatic psychology, trans-generational transmssion, and the arts and mental health.
- Melissa Cordero, PsyD – Dr. Cordero is a Spanish-speaking bilingual and bicultural certified yoga teacher and licensed psychologist. She received her doctoral degree in clinical psychology from Pepperdine University and completed her postdoctoral fellowship at Harbor UCLA, specializing in trauma and working with youth engaging in non-suicidal self-injury.
Existing Master’s degree in psychology or related field, or advanced training in movement arts, or relevant experience.
- Brief essay: In less than one (1) double-spaced page, please respond to the question:
How would you envision this training might impact your life (e.g. career, practice, awareness, personal growth, relationships) and what challenges might you encounter?
If you have questions about the application for admission or the requirements, please contact Admissions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Antioch alumni and faculty: $1,339
Current post-MA students: $1,236
30 CEs (CEUs)
Tuition does not include travel or accommodation expenses for out-of-town students.
Federal financial aid is not available for this program.
Deadline to Apply
Applications are being accepted. Please complete the form at the top of the page for more details and application information.
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