Ecopsychology

 
Student Jumps Into Water,

The five-course concentration in Ecotherapy integrates perspectives from the following areas as a theoretical underpinning for an approach to practicing counseling within the larger counseling profession:

  • Ecopsychology 
  • Deep ecology 
  • Ecofeminism 
  • Ecology 
  • Nature-based experiential learning 
  • Historical and current perspectives on indigenous people’s world views 
  • Earth-based traditional healing practices 
  • Eastern philosophy 
  • Anthropological study of ritual and rites of passage 
  • Transpersonal psychology 
  • Consciousness theory

The program applies this integration of perspectives in the context of current wilderness therapy and ecotherapy practices. It includes an emphasis on experiential learning, group work, and facilitation of insight as therapeutic techniques, as well as an examination of issues of transfer of learning.

Unlike other ecopsychological educational approaches, this program requires a commitment to application as a portion of practicum and internship, and as evidenced by records of the student’s practice and experiences in the field. Students will be required to document competence in the practice of ecotherapy skills under clinical supervision in a clinical setting as a portion of their training. Because the program is Limited-Residency, accessing opportunities for application of these skills is a significant expectation to be fulfilled by the student.

Emphasis placed on the transpersonal nature of ecotherapy and the significance of attachment theory in explaining pathology in an ecopsychological model.

Students interested in wilderness; adventure venues;  horticultural; broad based animal-assisted or nature- based settings; and counselors aspiring to consult to industry in the area of ecopsychological health and environmental design will find this program worthy.

Courses (15 semester credits) 

  • Foundations of Ecopsychology 
  • History and Principles of Ecopsychology
  • Wilderness as a Healing Environment 
  • Risk Management in Ecotherapy Practice 
  • Standards of Practice and Ethics in Ecotherapy

Students who have already attained a master's degree in a field of mental health practice may apply to join the program and work toward a certificate in Ecopsychology. This requires completion of five 3-credit courses, and successful participation in two optional intensive workshops.

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