These programs are designed for those counselors who are or plan to be working with problem gamblers and their families in a variety of clinical settings. We welcome participants from the criminal justice field, the employee assistance field, the faith and pastoral care traditions, educators, the gaming industry, the recovering community and others to our programs. Though the information is designed for counselors to incorporate into their clinical practice we hope all of our participants, no matter who they may be, will learn about the effects of problem gambling on the individual, family and community and use the information to help those who fall into their own professional scope of practice. Completion of 30 hours of gambling-specific training education may allow participants to become eligible as a referral source for the Wisconsin Council on Problem Gambling’s 1-800-GAMBLE-5 Helpline.

Following completion of the Phase 1 & Phase 2 thirty-hour training and education program, counselors will be ready to assess, screen and evaluate for gambling problems among their caseloads and among those who present for care. They will be ready to intervene in a crisis, assist in preparation of restitution plans, refer clients for appropriate levels of care and begin the treatment planning process, etc. Following completion of the 60 hour training and education program, counselors will be prepared to work with family and significant others, special populations, present salient patient education topics to clients and families, prepare court reports, assist with complete asset protection plans and use an array of clinical strategies focusing on impulse control and self-regulation interventions in the treatment of gambling problems, etc.

The training for clinical professionals is a total of 60 hours of gambling specific training and education sessions. Participants who successfully complete the entire sixty hours are then encouraged to begin the National Certification process.

Certification Hours

Continuing Education Units for 15 hours each phase has been applied for with the following: Association for Addiction Professionals (NAADAC), Employee  Assistance Certification Commission (EACC), International Gambling Counselor Certification Board (IGCCB), Wisconsin Association for Marriage and Family  Therapy (WAMFT) and the National Association of Social Workers (NASW).


Phase 1*

  • History and prevalence of gambling and problem gambling
  • Types of gamblers
  • Definitions of gambling
  • Screening and assessment
  • Co-morbid and co-occurring disorders
  • Family counseling
  • Group and individual counseling strategies and treatment approaches to problem gambling

*Phase 1 is a prerequisite for Phase 2.

Phase 2*

  • Self-help programs and natural recovery
  • Motivational enhancement and the use of harm reduction
  • Financial issues and asset protection plans
  • Neurotransmitters and communication in the brain
  • Psychopharmacology: Research, cautions, and treatment
  • Gambling and legal issues
  • Workplace warning signs
  • Mind, Body, and Spirit: Practical advances in gambling treatment

*Must provide proof of Phase 1 completion.

Phase 3*

  • Multicultural issues and problem gambling (Hispanics, African Americans, and Asians)
  • Women and problem gambling
  • Special Populations: Adolescents
  • Special Populations: Older Adults
  • Special Populations: Women

*Must provide proof of Phase 1 and Phase 2 completion.

Phase 4*

  • Problem gambling and relapse
  • Ethical
  • Professional code
  • National certification and standards/National Certification Exam

*Must provide proof of Phase 1-3 completion.

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