When choosing a professional training program in hypnotherapy, it is important to put things in perspective by comparing the educational preparation offered in hypnotherapy to that of other health services.
For example, let us say you wanted to become a medical doctor, and you went to two different medical schools for comparison. The first school reports that its program teaches you everything you need to know and will provide all the credentials necessary to call yourself a real medical doctor in just two weekends.
The second school reports that its preparation for a professional career as medical doctor consists of four years undergraduate study in order to gain a solid foundation in preparation for the rigors of graduate study, then three years of graduate study providing you the diverse and in-depth education that will enable both the public and the Board of Medical Quality Assurance to entrust you with the responsibility to start interacting with real patients under supervision.
In final preparation for your medical career, the school insists that you complete a clinical internship under the direct supervision of licensed professionals who have experience to carefully guide you in obtaining the hands-on clinical experience you need to prepare for the real life responsibilities that you will undoubtedly encounter in your new medical career. Which school would you choose?
Obviously, this comparison seems ridiculous in the context of the medical profession. Yet in the field of hypnotherapy, these are precisely the kinds of education and preparation choices that students face in comparing hypnotherapy schools and course curricula.
How can this be? In the field of medicine, the law is very specific as to the minimum standards necessary for the educational and internship preparation required to become a medical doctor. Hypnotherapy, on the other hand, is what is known as an open profession, meaning that the law does not attempt to regulate or set minimum standards for education, nor is there any state or federal license available.
This means that anyone can legally call themselves a Hypnotherapist without any training or education in the field. This also means that you the reader, if so inclined, could call yourself a Hypnotherapist right now and legally open an office and offer hypnotherapy services to the public.
Because anyone can use the title of Hypnotherapist, there are many schools eager to sell you a piece of paper that says you’re a Hypnotherapist. Usually you are sold a piece of paper after one or two weekends or maybe ten intensive days of study, often in some hotel conference room or the living room of the instructor’s house. This piece of paper, however, has no legal significance. Since the law says you can do hypnotherapy without this piece of paper, having it doesn’t allow you to do anything more with it than you could do without it.
There is certification available but it is not state certification or federal certification since these do not exist in the field of hypnotherapy. The certification that is available is private certification and again has no legal bearing on what you may or may not do. Most certification agencies are actually owned by the individual schools and are only as good as their own requirements for certification.
Some schools invent official sounding names for their privately owned certification agencies such as The United States Board of Hypnotherapy Certification, and tell you that you can become a Board Certified Hypnotherapist. In reality, however, the name is made up and the Board has nothing to do with the federal government, nor is it affiliated with any other government agency. The purpose of inventing these types of names is seemingly to mislead the student to the relative significance (or lack of it) of the piece of paper they are selling.
Equally misleading is the use of the term State Approved. Some schools advertise that you can earn a State Approved Diploma or Degree. Many prospective students then assume it must be good if it’s State Approved.
The fact of the matter is that State Approved means nothing regarding the content, curriculum, or the school’s ability to prepare you to accomplish the vocational goal that it advertises to prepare you for. The law even says that these schools should not use the State’s approval as any reflection on the quality of course content or in any way imply the State’s endorsement of the school.
Accreditation on the other hand is something entirely different. Accreditation comes from the Federal Government’s U.S. Department of Education (DOE). DOE authorizes an Accrediting Agency to review the quality and content of colleges applying for accreditation.
These accrediting agencies send out an Accreditation Team to the school for the review process. This Accreditation Team is composed of leaders from other accredited colleges throughout the United States. The team members then review the school and its educational program to determine if the school is at least equal to the quality of education, business standards, and vocational preparation of all other accredited colleges.
The school first submits a detailed self analysis of its program. After review of this written report, the Accreditation Team makes a visit to the school for first hand evaluation. The team then writes a written report to the school outlining the areas of improvement and growth that they would like to see the school make. This process then repeats itself until the Accreditation Team and the Accreditation Agency are convinced that the school has met the highest standards possible.
The accreditation process generally takes between two to five years to complete, but it doesn’t end there. Every two or three years the Accreditation team revisits, expecting the school to be able to demonstrate continued strength and development of the school’s educational program and services to its students.
HMI is very proud of the fact that it is the first and only college of hypnotherapy to achieve National Accreditation. Accreditation assures the public of HMI’s educational and quality standards. Accreditation also provides qualified applicants access to Federal Financial Aid programs. It is as though the Federal Government says, If you choose a quality college for your preparation for a new career, we will make sure the financing of your tuition will not be a problem.
HMI has earned its accreditation status on the strength of not only its academic training, but also its in-house clinical internship program as well as the clinical facility which provides therapy services to the general public.
It is HMI’s position that a practicing Hypnotherapist has many responsibilities which should not be taken lightly, and that any new career requires thorough and realistic preparation. In light of this, HMI does not offer any weekend, crash, or intensive courses, and would never consider hiring anyone to work in its clinical facility who was trained in that fashion. What HMI does choose to offer is a complete and extensive program that will allow its graduates to provide professional hypnotherapy services.
If you’re looking for the quickest, easiest, or least expensive way to obtain a piece of paper which says you’re a Hypnotherapist, then the HMI program is definitely not for you. However, if you are looking for the absolute best, most competent and thorough instruction that will realistically prepare you to actually begin a new career in an exciting helping profession, then keep reading because there is no finer, or more thorough, clinical hypnotherapy training program than what is presented in the pages which follow.