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Drug & Alcohol Counselor (HF-DA-03)


Course Description

Have you ever thought about a career in addiction counseling? Addiction counseling professionals treat individuals who are in need of substance abuse counseling as well as offer peace of mind to the families of persons who are in need of drug addiction counseling.
Drug and Alcohol Counseling – Level 1 reflects the explosion of information regarding the understanding, identification, and treatment of addictive disorders. It examines the use and abuse of alcohol, tobacco, barbiturates, amphetamines, cocaine, opiates, and hallucinogens, as well as chemicals -- such as aerosols, steroids, and over-the-counter analgesics. Additionally, the course investigates solid strategies for working with clients, the differences between abusers and addicts; drug effects on children, teenagers, and pregnant and nursing women; and children of alcoholics.
After completing this course, you should be able to:
• Define methods for detecting and determining addiction type
• Identify methods for understanding addiction and avoiding triggers
• Define the different treatment approaches
• Identify techniques for overcoming addiction and solving the problems it has caused
• Identify methods for counseling and treatment
Drug and Alcohol Counseling Level 2 is a comprehensive course for people who want to work with the chemically dependent and addicted in a variety of treatment settings. This course shows the student how to use the best evidence-based treatments available, including motivational enhancement, cognitive behavioral therapy, skills training, medication and 12 step facilitation. Guiding the student step-by-step through treatment, this course presents state-of-the-art tools, and forms and tests necessary to deliver outstanding treatment and to meet the highest standards demanded by accrediting bodies.
After completing this course, you should be able to:
• Identify steps for initial assessment and treatment planning
• Comprehend various therapies and treatment groups available to the individual
• Identify the steps involved in the AA 12 step program
• Identify dual diagnoses and family treatment programs
• Define clinical staff and characteristics of a good counselor


Drug and Alcohol Counseling 1 Module 1
Basics of Abuse & Addiction
• About Substance Abuse
• The Cost of Chemical Abuse/Addiction
• Society's Response
• The Continuum of Chemical Use
• Definitions of Terms Used
• The Growth of New "Addictions"
• A Basic Misconception
• Effects & Side Effects of Chemicals
• The Process of Neurotransmission
• An Introduction to Alcohol
• Blood Alcohol Levels
• Medical Complications of Alcohol
• Effects of Alcohol Abuse/Addiction
• Complications of Chronic Alcohol Use
• Alcohol Withdrawal Syndrome
• Barbiturates & Barbiturate-Like Compounds
• Pharmacology of Barbiturates
• Neuroadaptation, Tolerance & Physical Dependence
Drug and Alcohol Counseling 1 Module 2
Commonly Abused Chemicals 1
• Medical Uses of the Benzodiazepines
• Side Effects of the Benzodiazepines
• Long-Term Consequences of Chronic Use
• Central Nervous System Stimulants
• CNS Stimulant Abuse
• Cocaine Abuse & Dependence
• History of Cocaine
• Methods of Cocaine Abuse
• Complications of Cocaine Abuse/Addiction
• Marijuana Abuse & Addiction
• History of Marijuana
• A Medico-Legal Conundrum
• Methods of Marijuana Abuse
• Opioid Use, Abuse & Addiction
• Opiates as Drugs of Abuse
Drug and Alcohol Counseling 1 Module 3
Commonly Abused Chemicals 2
• Abuse of & Addiction to Hallucinogens
• Methods of Hallucinogen Abuse
• The Pharmacology of LSD
• Scope of Phencyclidine Abuse
• Complications of PCP Abuse
• Salvia Divinorum
• Abuse of & Addiction to Inhalants
• Scope of the Problem of Inhalant Abuse
• Anesthetic Misuse
• Problem of Steroid Abuse
• Scope of the Problem of Anabolic Steroids
• Sources & Methods of Steroid Abuse
• Over-the-Counter Analgesics
• OTC Analgesic Overdoses
• Tobacco Products & Nicotine Addiction
• Secondhand Smoke
• Chemicals & the Neonate
• Scope of the Problem for Pregnant Women
Drug and Alcohol Counseling 1 Module 4
The Many Faces of Substance Abuse
• Gender & Addiction
• Differing Effects of Common Drugs on Women
• The Faces of Substance Use Disorder (SUD)
• SUD & the Homeless
• SUD & the Elderly
• SUD & Minorities
• SUD & Children/Adolescents
• Screening & Assessment Tools
• Rehabilitation for Children or Adolescents
• SUD & College Students
• Consequences of SUD in the College Population
• Codependency & Enabling
• Reactions to the Concept of Codependency
• Addiction and the Family
• Scope of the Problem
• Interventions
• Adult Children of Alcoholics (ACOA)
Drug and Alcohol Counseling 1 Module 5
Understanding Substance Abuse Disorders
• The Dual-Diagnosis Client
• Substance Use Disorder & Mental Illness
• A Diagnostic Challenge
• Psychopathology & Drug of Choice
• Treatment Approaches with Dual-Diagnosis
• The Medical Model of SUD
• Applications of the Medical Model of Addictions
• The Psychosocial Models of SUD
• Personality Predisposition Theories
• SUD & Psychological Defenses
• A Disease of the Human Spirit
• The Mind-Body Question
• The Games of Addiction
• Honesty & False Pride
• Assessment of SUD
• The Assessment Format
• Diagnostic Rules
• A Definition of Intervention
• Common Forms of Intervention
Drug and Alcohol Counseling 1 Module 6
The Treatment of Addiction
• Treatment Settings
• Outpatient Treatment
• Residential Treatment Programs
• Aftercare Programs
• The Process of Treatment
• Methods of Treatment
• The Stages of Recovery
• Substance Abuse Rehabilitation
• Pharmacological Interventions
• Pharmacotherapy of SUDs
• Relapse & Other Problems
• Limit Testing by Clients
• Treatment Noncompliance
• Lapse & Relapse
• Cravings & Urges
• Toxicology Tests
• Psycho-Educational Interventions
Drug and Alcohol Counseling 1 Module 7
Other Issues in Chemical Dependence
• Support Groups for Recovery
• History of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA)
• Elements of AA
• AA & Outside Organizations
• The Purpose of AA
• Effectiveness of AA
• Narcotics Anonymous
• Al-Anon & Alateen
• Other Types of Support Groups
• Challenges with 12-Step Programs
• SUD & Infectious Disease
• Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS)
• Pneumonias & Tuberculosis
• Viral Hepatitis
• The Relationship Between Drugs & Crime
• Drug Use & Violence
• Designer Drugs
• The Debate Over Legalization
• The "War" on Drugs

Drug and Alcohol Counseling 2 Module 1
Counseling: The Initial Hours
• How to Greet Patients
• How to Handle Family Members
• Beginning the Therapeutic Alliance
• The Initial Assessment
• The Intoxicated Patient
• How Patients React in Detoxification
• The Biopsychosocial Interview
• Diagnosis and Disposition
• The Treatment Plan
• How to Build a Treatment Plan
• The Problem List
• Goals and Objectives
• Treatment Plan Review
• How to Write Progress Notes
Drug and Alcohol Counseling 2 Module 2
Counseling and Treatment
• Individual Treatment Process
• The Therapeutic Alliance
• Transference and Countertransference
• Behavior Therapy
• Cognitive Therapy
• Interpersonal Therapy
• How Patients Use Feelings Inappropriately
• How Patients Learn Relationship Skills
• Benefits of Group Therapy
• Preparation for the Group
• The Honesty Group
• The Euphoric Recall Group
• The Reading Group
• The Relapse Prevention Group
• The Spirituality Group
• The Childhood Group
• The Men’s Group / Women’s Group
• The Community Group
• The Personal Inventory Group
• Creating and Using Contracts
Drug and Alcohol Counseling 2 Module 3
The AA 12 Step
• Step One: Powerless and Unmanageable
• Step Two: Belief in a Higher Power
• Step Three: Turn it Over to God
• Step Four: Fearless Moral Inventory
• Step Five: Sharing the Moral Inventory
• Educational Lectures Series
• Lecture Series: The Disease
• Lecture Series: Defense Mechanisms
• Lecture Series: The Great Lie & the Truth
• Lecture Series: Normal Development
• Lecture Series: Physical Addiction and Recovery
• Lecture Series: Alcoholics Anonymous
• Lecture Series: Understanding Feelings
Drug and Alcohol Counseling 2 Module 4
Dual Diagnosis and Family Therapy
• Psychiatric / Psychological Assessment
• Depressed Patient
• Angry Patient
• Homicidal Patient
• Personality Disorders
• Antisocial Personality
• Borderline Patient
• Narcissistic Patient
• Anxious Patient
• Psychotic Patient
• Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome
• Patient with Low Intellectual Functioning
• The Elderly Patient
• Early childhood Trauma
• Pathological Gambler
• Adolescent Treatment
• The Family Program
• How to Treat Family Members
Drug and Alcohol Counseling 2 Module 5
The Clinical Staff and Being a Good Counselor
• The Physician
• Psychologist & Psychiatrist
• Nursing Staff
• Clinical Director and Supervisor
• Chemical Dependency Counselor
• The Rehabilitation Technician
• Activities Coordinator
• Team Building
• Staff-Patient Problems
• Discharge Summary and Aftercare
• Outpatient Discharge Criteria
• Understanding the Drugs
• Being a Good Counselor
• Characteristics of a Good Counselor
• Code of Ethics


12 months




There are no specific prerequisites for this program. Students will need access to both a computer and the internet. Students should have basic keyboarding and computer skills, and be comfortable navigating the internet.

The intended audience for this program is individuals that are seeking to enhance their skills or find employment as a Drug and Alcohol Counselor.


Upon successful completion of our Drug and Alcohol Counseling Level 1 and Level 2 courses, students may be prepared, in part, to sit for licensing and credentialing exams. Each state has its own regulations.




This class supported by an Educational Mentor. Our educational mentors have worked or are working in the subject they mentor. Educational Mentors reviews student work, student progress, and interacts with students as needed. They respond to any questions or concerns you might have, as well as encouraging and motivating you to succeed.


Internet Access
• Broadband or high-speed internet access is required. Broadband includes DSL, cable, and wireless connections.
• Dial-Up internet connections will result in a diminished online experience. Moodle pages may load slowly and viewing large audio and video files may not be possible.

• Windows hardware configurations and processors are acceptable
• Mac computers MUST have Microsoft Window Operating Systems over Bootcamp (Bootcamp is a free download from Apple's website)
• 1 GB RAM minimum recommended
• Operating Systems
-Windows XP, Vista or 7 and Mac OS X 10 or higher with Windows
• Web Browsers
-Google Chrome is highly recommended
-Internet Explorer is not recommended as it may not display certain menus and links
• Cookies MUST be enabled
• Pop-ups MUST be allowed (Pop-up Blocker disabled)
• Kindle Reader App
• Adobe PDF Reader
• Media Plug-ins (These may be required depending on your course media.)
• Adobe Flash Player
• Adobe Acrobat Reader, Apple Quicktime, Windows Media Player, &/or Real Player
• PowerPoint Viewer

The following textbooks will be provided to each student upon registration:

• Concepts of Chemical Dependency by Harold E. Doweiko
• Chemical Dependency Counseling: A Practical Guide by Robert R. Perkinson

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