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Animal-Assisted Interventions Certificate

Our next workshop will be held in Knoxville March 11th-13th 2017

Registration information coming soon!  To be the first to know, join our email list

AAI On-line module a is prerequisite for workshop attendance (22 contact hours)

Click here to register for the online module.

You will need to register for a UT College of Social Work Learning Management System account if this is your first time using this system.

Workshop Course Agenda

Man in hospital bedThis workshop aims to prepare social work practitioners for the unique conceptual, clinical and ethical challenges related to animal-assisted interactions (AAI).  The individual, team, organizational, and policy implications of AAIs will be explored in detail, and a focus on implementation complexity will ensure that participants are equipped to create thoughtful, sustainable and ethical practices resulting in measurable outcomes.

This workshop introduces trainees to practical approaches for strengthening planning and delivery strategies for evidence-based treatments incorporating animals.  Current animal-assisted practices are explored through a review of available research evidence, with attention to the requirements of both evidence-based and ethical social work practice.  The logistics critical to methodologically sound program delivery will be explored, focusing on the selection and well-being of the animals employed in these interventions.  Finally, trainees will be instructed in the practice of outcome measurement and evaluation in order to objectively evaluate animal-assisted interactions.

Workshop Learning Objectives

This workshop will prepare practitioners to:

  1. Women holding a rabbitUnderstand the historical, organizational, and cultural factors influencing the development of animal-assisted interventions.
  2. Critically evaluate salient research and best practices in animal-assisted interventions.
  3. Examine ethical practice dilemmas in animal-assisted interventions, and apply models of ethical decision making to real-world practice examples.
  4. Use AAI conceptual frameworks to guide the development of program-specific logic models and outcome measures.
  5. Accurately assess, and develop the processes necessary to manage, the risk of animal-assisted practices.
  6. Critically analyze, monitor, and evaluate animal-assisted interventions and programs.

Workshop Details

  • 16.5 Contact Hours

Workshop Presenters

Maureen MacNamara, PhD, MSW

Maureen MacNamara, PhD, MSWAn expert in the creation and implementation of animal-assisted interventions, Maureen is known for creating the internationally recognized Pet Partners Program.  Maureen also works with regional, national and international institutions in the development and delivery of animal-assisted intervention curricula for human service professionals.

Maureen obtained her PhD at the University of Denver Graduate School of Social Work and is a fellow at the School’s Institute for Human Animal Connections. Her scholarly interests include innovation implementation and diffusion; the critical role of macro-level strategies to the success of evidence-based practice initiatives; the place and consequence of human-animal relationships to community, family, and individual growth and well-being; and the development of evidence-based, functional assessment for animals included in animal-assisted interaction programs.


Jeannine Moga, MA, MSW, LCSW

Jeannine Moga, MA, MSW, LCSWJeannine is a licensed clinical social worker who specializes in human-animal relationships, grief counseling, and animal-assisted therapy. Jeannine formerly served as the founding director of Veterinary Social Services at the University of Minnesota’s Veterinary Medical Center, and she is currently developing the Veterinary Social Work program for North Carolina State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine and Veterinary Health Complex.  She works as a consultant and educator with mental health, veterinary medicine, and animal care professionals across the country.

Jeannine is dually trained in macro- and micro-level practice, with Master’s degrees in both sociology and social work.  Her practice centers on complicated bereavement, family-centered animal behavior medicine, and compassion fatigue prevention.  Her scholarly interests include practice standards for pet loss professionals, the place and consequence of animals in social policy, and the development/evaluation of animal-assisted intervention methodologies.

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