Stress Management Education

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Certificate Director: Eric K. Willmarth, Ph.D.

This Certificate program is designed to prepare individuals to become consultants, coaches, or instructors in the field of Stress Management and allows each student to “custom design” his or her own course of study by combining core required courses with selections from among a host of elective offerings.

The Certificate is available to students in any Saybrook degree program as well as to non-matriculated students.

Although “stress management” is a term that permeates our culture, stress continues to be a primary factor in the degrading of both physical and psychological health worldwide. Participants in this Certificate program will use a uniquely humanistic approach to explore the physical, psychological, cultural, and spiritual impact of stress management by studying approaches as diverse as biofeedback and hypnosis, music and art, dance, prayer, diet, and nutrition. The objective of the Certificate is not only to learn about the many stress management options but to learn to teach these skills to others. Students will develop a portfolio of tools for this worthwhile mission.

The Certificate in Stress Management Education consists of two core 3-credit courses: CSIH 3210: Stress Management Education and CSIH 3215: Essential Consulting Skills. This is followed by two Elective Courses from the following list:
• CSIH 4030: Psychophysiology for Health
• CSIH 4045: The Buddhist Path of Healing
• CSIH 4050: Health Psychology
• CSIH 4101: Basic Hypnosis
• CSIH 4105: Essentials of Biofeedback
• CSIH 4110: Coaching for Health and Wellness
• CSIH 4115: Imagery for Health
• CSIH 5656: Music, Health, and Healing (Project X Course)
• TSC 4020: Relationships in Health and Healing Practice
• TSC 7115: Refugee Trauma and Resiliency
• CS 4520: Art and Healing

The Certificate concludes with CSIH 8151: Practicum in Professional Practice (3 credits) and with CSIH 8950: Certificate Integrative Seminar (1 credit).

The practicum experience (CSIH 8151) will be individually designed by the student in consultation with the program faculty. Ideally, the student will design and implement a stress management consultation in a medical, educational, corporate, community, or other system setting. This will involving selecting a consultation site, designing a stress management presentation or series of stress management classes, providing this to the identified “client” group, and then writing up a summary of the practicum experience.

Integrative Paper, Poster, or Project
This capstone paper or project (CSIH 8950) is designed to allow reflection, assessment of progress, integration of experience and academic learning, and a summary skills and applications developed throughout the courses and practicum included in the Certificate in Stress Management Education. This may take the form of a paper, a poster, or a project developed in consultation with program faculty.

Learning Objectives
After completing this Certificate program, the student will be able to:
• Identify multiple modalities for stress management intervention
• Develop a portfolio of tools for stress management education
• Discuss the cultural impact of stress and stress management
• Use mind, body and spirit concepts in designing individual stress management plans
• Articulate stress management concepts at a level consistent with the target population
• Implement both group and individual approaches to teaching stress management skills
• Demonstrate specific skill sets related to the treatment of stress-related disorders
• Demonstrate the ability to design and implement a program for stress management consultation.

Learning/Teaching Approach
Each of the courses involved with the Certificate in Stress Management Education will be offered in a cohort-style online class providing weekly readings and discussion. Each class will also include one or more video conferences with the instructor and individual consultations as needed to assure clarity of expectations and a positive learning experience. In addition to the reading, students will be required to post to the course shells on a weekly basis and to share their questions and insights with other cohort members. Some of the courses included as options for this Certificate also include on-site instruction at the spring and/or fall Residential Conferences. Students are encouraged to discuss their proposed course selections with the Certificate Director prior to RC attendance.