Motivational Interviewing: Using Compassionate Conversation to Move Clients Toward Health and Change



This seminar is offered over the course of four days.
One must attend all sessions to earn CEs.

VIRTUAL SEMINAR | March 2, 9, 16 and 23, 2021
All sessions are offered 1 – 4:15 p.m. ET
Instructor: Sara Schieffelin, LICSW
CEs: 12 CEs available for social workers and psychologists for a $10 fee.  

Motivational Interviewing (MI) is an evidenced-based practice that came out of the addictions field and is applicable to a wide range of presenting problems. It is currently used in the health care, mental health and substance abuse/recovery fields and is gaining increasing recognition for its efficacy, broad application and humanistic approach. 

During Motivational Interviewing conversations, the practitioner engages the client in a guided dialogue meant to uncover and heighten ambivalence around a target behavior or issue, aid the client in resolving their ambivalence and ultimately identify a change plan that supports the client’s self-definition of health. MI employs a core set of skills, used within an overarching framework or "spirit," which includes respect, promotion of autonomy and personal choice, collaboration, acceptance, compassion/empathy and evocation. 

This highly interactive and participatory seminar will offer the basics of Motivational Interviewing, with emphasis on exploring and understanding the spirit of MI and learning and practicing the core skills through “real” plays, demonstrations, exercises and case examples. Participants new to MI will leave with effective tools, and those already familiar will increase their confidence and repertoire.

Target Audience: 

Social workers and other social service providers

Course Delivery Method, Format and Instructor Interaction:

Synchronous, interactive virtual seminar with discussion and Q/A ​

System Requirements:

Attendees will need access to a computer with working camera and microphone. All courses are offered using Zoom conferencing software and login information is sent shortly after registration. 

Registration Fees and Deadlines:

Early registration by January 15, 2021: $260
Regular registration by March 1, 2021: $285

CEs: 12 CEs for social workers and psychologists are available for $10 fee 

Learning Objectives:

  1. Define the theoretical framework of Motivational Interviewing.
  2. Identify approaches to improve empathy skills.
  3. Demonstrate the core skills of Motivational Interviewing
  4. State methods to identify and prompt client/patient change talk. 
  5. Describe how to respond effectively to resistance.
  6. Demonstrate the structure of a Motivational Interviewing conversation and how to move a client from sustain talk toward change talk using the core skills of MI.

Day 1:

  • 1 - 2:35 p.m. ET Spirit of MI - Partnership, acceptance, compassion, evocation
  • 2:35 - 2:45 p.m. ET Break 
  • 2:45 - 4:15 p.m. ET Process of MI - Engaging, focusing, evoking, planning
Day 2:
  • 1 - 2:35 p.m. ET Active listening
  • 2:35 - 2:45 p.m. ET Break 
  • 2:45 - 4:15 p.m. ET MI skills - Open-ended questions, affirmation, reflections, summaries

Day 3:

  • 1 - 2:35 p.m. ET Change talk
  • 2:35 - 2:45 p.m. ET Break 
  • 2:45 - 4:15 p.m. ET Resisting the righting reflex
Day 4:
  • 1 - 2:35 p.m. ET Digging deep
  • 2:35 - 2:45 p.m. ET Break 
  • 2:45 - 4:15 p.m. ET Bringing it all together​

About the Instructor:

Sara Schieffelin, LICSW, a 2008 Smith College School for Social Work alumna, has worked with children, adolescents, families and adults in Massachusetts, Colorado and Thailand. She has worked in community mental health and school settings, and currently has a private practice and does consulting work. Schieffelin is a member of the international organization Motivational Interviewing Network of Trainers (MINT) and has been teaching MI since 2013. She lives with her husband and son in Florence, Massachusetts. 

Completion Requirements for Virtual Seminars

Virtual Seminars (referred to as live interactive webinars by ASWB) are live, synchronous, online courses held in Zoom meetings. To receive a CE certificate, you must attend the entirety of the virtual seminar. Partial credit will not be awarded to those who attend only a portion of the virtual seminar. For virtual seminars, participant attendance is tracked through Zoom, students are engaged throughout the online class utilizing their camera and/or microphone and participants must complete an evaluation. A link to the online evaluation will be emailed to participants within 24 hours of the conclusion of the course. It is attendee’s responsibility to contact their state licensing board/certification boards to determine eligibility to meet continuing education requirements.

How Will a CE Certificate Be Awarded?

Upon completing the evaluation for the virtual seminar, participants will be emailed their online certificate​ within 30 days of seminar completion​. ​Participants should save and/or print ​the certificate upon receipt for ​their records. Receiving the CE certificate is contingent on attendance and completion of the evaluation.

Continuing Education Credits and Accreditation

Social Work CE Credit: The Smith College School for Social Work provider, #1755, is approved to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Organizations, not individual courses, are approved as ACE providers. State and provincial regulatory boards have the final authority to determine whether an individual course may be accepted for continuing education credit. The Smith College School for Social Work maintains responsibility for this course. ACE provider approval period: 11/19/2020-11/19-2021. Social workers completing this course receive 12 continuing education credits. 

The Smith College School for Social Work is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education and is therefore authorized to provide CEs as a postsecondary institution accredited by CSWE in many states. Courses offered through the School's Program of Professional Education are awarded continuing education credits in accordance with Continuing Education Regulation 258, CMR, 31.00 in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Smith College School for Social Work, Office of Professional Education SW OPE is recognized by the New York State Education Department's State Board for Social Work as an approved provider of continuing education for licensed social workers #0169. If outside these states, please contact your licensing board for accreditation information regarding your state. Association of Social Work Boards database of social work licensure requirements.

Psychology CE Credit: Co-sponsored training events for psychology CE credit with Smith College School for Social Work. Amego Prepare​ is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Amego Prepare maintains responsibility for this program and its content.

Further information on policies and CE accreditation can be found here.

Mary Curtin | Manager of Professional Education

Lilly Hall, 23 West Street, Northampton MA 01062 | 413.585.7970