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1. Attend the Basic Externship.

Four-Day Externships in Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy are held in our region and in other centers throughout the USA. Most are taught by Dr. Sue Johnson and the ICEEFT certified trainers.

The Externship is the first level of training for learning EFT and for becoming a Certified EFT Therapist. The course teaches mental health professionals the basic clinical skills necessary to become competent as an EFT couples therapist. It includes readings, lecturers, discussions, videotape examples, and experiential skills practice. Two live couples sessions are scheduled for each Externship so participants have the opportunity to see the work in real time. 

2. Attend a Four-Weekend Core Skills Series

EFT Core Skills training sessions are facilitated by Certified EFT Trainers. Core Skills consists of small groups (6-10 people) learning the skills essential to the practice of EFT. The training takes place over four weekends, 12 hours each weekend. Participants must have completed an EFT Externship and be willing to present their own work through audio/videotape presentation.  

3. Get clinicial supervision of videotaped couples sessions. 

Individual and group supervision in EFT/EFFT is offered by Certified EFT Supervisors and approved supervisor candidates. Aminimum of 8 individual supervision hours are required to apply towards certification. Group supervision can also be accessed through teleconference, Advanced Externship, or Core Skills training. The key principles of EFT clinical supervision are:

  • A positive working alliance between the supervisor and supervisee is fostered — safety enhances learning.
  • Modeling is available: the supervisor actively demonstrates EFT interventions (e.g., demonstrates attachment language and non-verbal behaviors of EFT).
  • Observation of therapy sessions occurs or transcripts are examined. Role plays with feedback give opportunity for rehearsal.
  • Feedback to supervisee is clear, focused, supportive, and congruent with supervisee's stage of learning.
  • Specific elements are pointed out for the supervisee to improve or work on.
  • Written theory and techniques of the EFT model are referred to and taught in relation to practice (e.g., steps, stages, interventions, experiential and non-pathologizing approach).

These principles were formulated with the help of Lisa Palmer-Olsen and the work of Eugene Mead.

Group Supervision of EFT

Many clinicians find presenting in a group format adds to their training experience, and your hours can also take the place of Core Skills if you choose to go that route.  

4. Submit your application package for certification

The International Centre for Excellence in Emotionally Focused Therapy (ICEEFT) certifies EFT therapists, EFT supervisors and EFT trainers. A certified EFT therapist is one whose expertise in this model of therapy is recognized by ICEEFT. The primary goals of certification are to promote excellence in the practice of EFT and EFFT and to ensure maintenance of these standards in both supervision and training of this approach. 

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775 East Blithedale Ave. #625

Mill Valley, CA 94941


In association with the International Centre for Excellence in Emotionally Focused Therapy

NCCEFT is a professional association of therapists practicing Emotionally Focused Therapy in Northern California. Serving communities of the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond, including San Francisco, Oakland, Berkeley, Fremont, San Jose, Sacramento, Santa Rosa, Stockton, Modesto, Fresno, and beyond; we have members throughout California and throughout the United States.
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