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Course: The Gift of Therapy
by Irvin Yalom, M.D.

CE Credit Hours: 10
Fee: $50

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Our Client's Thoughts About This Course

Yalom seems to 'get it all' regarding interactions with clients, with groups and the ingredients which encourage human growth. Excellent CE! - Carol Jean, Licensed Professional Counselor, North Carolina


Yalom's Open Letter to a New Generation of Therapists

The Gift of Therapy is Irvin Yalom's gift to the future generations of psychotherapists.Yalom's brand of spirituality is found in his wisdom, authenticity, honesty and his existential view of life. The American Psychiatric Association awarded him the 2000 Oscar Pfister prize for important contributions to religion and psychiatry. The book is a repository of wisdom, gleaned from his 35 years of psychiatric practice.

Yalom sees psychotherapy changing radically; prompted by an economically driven healthcare system to provide a 'streamlined psychotherapy, inexpensive, brief, superficial and insubstantial'. In his own words he continues, 'I worry about psychotherapy -- about how it may be deformed by economic pressures and impoverished by radically abbreviated training programs. Nonetheless, I am confident that, in the future, a cohort of therapists coming from a variety of educational disciplines (psychology, counseling, social work, pastoral counseling, clinical philosophy) will continue to pursue rigorous postgraduate training and, even in the crush of HMO reality, will find patients desiring extensive growth and change willing to make an open-ended commitment to therapy. It is for these therapists and those patients that I write the Gift of therapy.'

As a generous older brother, Irvin Yalom gives practical insights into the nuts and bolts of psychotherapy. He shares concepts ranging from the here-and-now to the power of an authentic relationship. The book inspires as much as it equips.

Educational Objectives

Upon completion of this course, the clinician will be able to:

  • Understand and appreciate the concept of the here-and-now
  • Utilize the here-and-now to work through counseling issues
  • Define the three kinds of therapist self-disclosure
  • Understand the healthy context for self-disclosure
  • Determine the best means to provide feedback to clients
  • Identify the four arenas of self awareness defined in the Johari quadrants
  • Know how to be in relationship with clients more authentically
  • Gain greater understanding to help clients express their deeper emotions, fears and anxieties

Syllabus / Course Instructions

  • The Course consists of reading the selected book, successfully completing an online posttest and filling out a course evaluation.
  • The book is not included. It must be purchased separately. We have supplied a link to for your convenience.
  • Purchasing your course will give you access to both a printable copy of the test and an online version. Print the test to use as a companion as you read the book and answer the questions.
  • You cannot exit the online test once you begin, so have your answers available.
Additional Resources On This Site for CE

Additional Resources Not On This Site

  • Love's Executioner, Irvin Yalom, Basic Books, New York, 1989
  • Visit Irvin Yalom's Website

Bio: Irvin Yalom, M.D.

Dr. Irvin D. Yalom earned his Bachelor of Arts from George Washington University, Washington, D.C. He graduated from Boston University School of Medicine and received his Doctor of Medicine in 1956.

He is currently Emeritus Professor of Psychiatry at Stanford University School of Medicine culminating a career of teaching at Stanford, beginning in 1962.

Among many awards and recognitions, he has received the Oscar Pfister Award for contributions to Religion and Psychiatry by the American Psychiatric Association in 2002 and the Commonwealth Club Gold Medal Award for fiction Best Novel of 1992, awarded September, 1993.

He has authored numerous books and articles on various aspects of clinical psychiatry as well as excellent works of 'psycho dramatic fiction'. He is a teacher, writer and psychotherapist.