The continuing education events displayed below cover LGBTQ+ issues. Register today to view an upcoming event or earn CE credits by viewing a homestudy course at any time.
According to a 2017 Gallup poll, 4.5% of Americans identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender. LGBTQ+ individuals are three times more likely to have a mental health concern than their heterosexual or cisgender peers. As such, it is not unusual to see LGBTQ+ individuals in therapy. In an APA survey of psychologists, over 90% said they’d served at least one LGBTQ+ person in their career.
However, many mental health professionals lack information about the LGBTQ+ community’s needs.
- Only 51% of psychologists felt confident in their knowledge of sexual orientation, and 13% said they knew little or nothing about the subject.
- Only 19% felt confident working with transgender individuals, and 52% said they had little to no confidence.
This lack of knowledge can have serious consequences for the therapeutic relationship. Even well-meaning professionals can use microaggressions or outdated terms that alienate individuals in therapy. According to the APA, continuing education courses are among the top two most common ways mental health professionals educate themselves about LGBTQ+ populations. By learning about the LGBTQ+ community, you can make your practice a more welcoming place for people in need.
Continuing education units (CEUs) may cover a variety of LGBTQ-related topics. Some may explore person-centered and affirmative therapies. Others may focus on how to avoid microaggressions or treat LGBTQ+ youth. Several states require mental health professionals to take CEUs about cultural competency, which could include sexual orientation and gender identity.
- Hamp, A., Stamm, K., Lin, L., & Christidis, P. (2016). 2015 APA survey of psychology health service providers [PDF]. American Psychological Association Center for Workforce Studies. Retrieved from https://www.apa.org/workforce/publications/15-health-service-providers/report.pdf
- Lesbian/gay/bisexual/transgender communities and mental health. (n.d.). Mental Health America. Retrieved from http://www.mentalhealthamerica.net/lgbt-mental-health#6
- Newport, F. (2018, May 22). In U.S., estimate of LGBT population rises to 4.5%. Gallup. Retrieved from https://news.gallup.com/poll/234863/estimate-lgbt-population-rises.aspx?g_source=link_NEWSV9&g_medium=TOPIC&g_campaign=item_&g_content=In%2520U.S.%2c%2520Estimate%2520of%2520LGBT%2520Population%2520Rises%2520to%25204.5%2525
- State continuing education requirements for psychologists, social work and counselors. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.tzkseminars.com/Custom/TZKSeminars/Pages/State-CE-Requirements.aspx?AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1