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Developing Skills for Demonstrating Empathy

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CE Credits: 1.5 Credits
Length: 1.5 Hours
Level: Introductory
CE Eligibility: APA, ASWB ACE, ANCC, NAADAC, CPA
Training Style: Video
Category: GIFR Membership Exclusive
Intended Audience: Mental Health, Correctional, and Legal Professionals

Training Description
Professionals working with people who have abused are typically empathic people. However, having clients feel heard, understood, and respected can be a challenge. This interactive 1.5-hour workshop explores specific steps in improving empathic responding at the front lines of treatment and supervision. It takes place in a warm and friendly environment where no one is expected to have the right answers; it’s better if you don’t! Research has found that clinicians often believe themselves to be more effective with their clients than they actually are. In one 1997 study, Tony Beech and Claire Fordham found that therapists working with clients who had sexually abused believed themselves to be more empathic and better leaders than their clients believed them to be. Meanwhile, professionals around the world strive to be empathic, but don’t necessarily leave their clients feeling heard, understood, and respected. This interactive workshop explores specific skills for formulating an understanding of a client’s experience, expressing it, gathering feedback on that understanding, and then refining that understanding. It reviews key skills such as summarizing statements, seeking elaboration, reflective listening, and “going upstream” – forming hypotheses about a client’s experience from often minimal information. The format blends didactic introduction of ideas with skills rehearsal in a warm, friend, supportive, and directive environment.
Trainer Biography
Mr. David Prescott is the Clinical Services Development Director for the Becket Family of Services. He is the National Adolescent Perpetration Network (NAPN) Chairman and 2018 recipient of NAPN’s C. Henry Kempe Lifetime Achievement award. He is a past president of the Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers (ATSA) and 2014 recipient of that organization’s Distinguished Contribution award. Mr. Prescott has authored and edited 20 book projects and lectures around the world.
Learning Objectives
Participants will be able to…
  • Describe “going upstream” while considering the seemingly unmotivated client and formulating responses.
  • Identify 4 ways to formulate reflective statements.
  • Discuss the difference between expressing empathy and being empathic.

1 Sponsorship: The Global Institute of Forensic Research, Inc is approved by the American Psychological Association, National Board of Certified Counselors, National Association of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselors, and Canadian Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education trainings. The American Nurses Credentialing Center accepts Continuing Education Credit sponsored by the American Psychological Association. The Global Institute of Forensic Research, Inc (provider #1371) is also approved as a provider for social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) www.aswb.org, through the Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. ACE provider approval period: 6/8/2022-6/8/2025. Social workers should contact their regulatory board to determine course approval. The Global Institute of Forensic Research, Inc maintains responsibility for this program and its contents.
2 Refund/Cancellation Policy: If you wish to request a refund on account of technical difficulties, please contact [email protected].
3 Commercial Supports: The Global Institute of Forensic Research, Inc reports no conflicts of interest in the development and sponsorship of this training. The Global Institute of Forensic Research, Inc receives no commercial support for its Continuing Education programs or from its presenters.

Note 1: The CPA's approval of an individual, group, or organization as a CE Sponsor or Provider is restricted to the activities described in the approved application or annual report form. The CPA's approval does not extend to any other CE activity the Sponsor or Provider might offer. In granting its approval, the CPA assumes no legal or financial obligations to Sponsors, Providers, or to those individuals who might participate in a Sponsor or Provider's CE activities or programs. Further, responsibility for the content, provision, and delivery of any CE activity approved by the CPA remains that of the CE Sponsor or Provider. The CPA disclaims all legal liability associated with the content, provision, and delivery of the approved CE activity.