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Health Forum Online    The Psychologist's Source for C.E. Credits Online

Expressive Writing to Promote Resilience to Stressful and Traumatic Life Events

by Rebecca Ferrer, PhD 3 CE Credits

Expressive writing is a cost-effective, efficient and simple clinical tool that has been used extensively as either a stand-alone intervention or means of augmenting existing therapies to facilitate coping with acute or chronic stressors. Moreover, the benefits of expressive writing therapy extend beyond the psychological domain to include desired physiological outcomes (e.g., reduced blood pressure). This online CE course is designed to introduce mental health professionals to expressive writing therapy and inform them about its implementation and evidence-based clinical applications. Specifically, the course will present a theoretical foundation for expressive writing, as well as outline its potential clinical applications. A detailed description of expressive writing therapy protocols, as well as recommendations for implementing expressive writing interventions in a clinical therapy context, are provided. Finally, clinical considerations associated with expressive writing therapy are presented, including contraindications.


Continuing education for this online course is offered through the following approvals:


  • HealthForum is approved by the American Psychological Association (APA) to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. HealthForum maintains responsibility for this program and its content.
  • HealthForum (ACE Provider #1156) is approved as a provider for social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) www.aswb.org, through the Approved Continuing Education (ACE) Program. HealthForum maintains responsibility for the program. ASWB Approval Period: (6/20/2017 to 6/20/2020). Social workers should contact their regulatory board to determine course approval for continuing education credits. Social workers participating in this course will receive 3 Clinical continuing education clock hours.
  • HealthForum has been approved by NBCC as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 6216.  Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified. HealthForum is solely responsible for all aspects of the programs.


Course Sections/Outline:

  • Brief Introduction and Relevance
  • Expressive Writing Therapy: The Basic Underlying Mechanisms
  • Therapeutic Uses and Benefits of Expressive Writing Therapy
  • Published Guidelines and Recommendations for Practitioners
  • Facilitating Expressive Writing in the Clinical Setting
  • Clinical Considerations and Limitations

Learning Objectives:

After completing this course, health professionals will be able to:
  • Discuss the foundational theory of expressive writing therapy, the Anagogic to Digital Model, as well as 3 underlying mechanisms of its utility.
  • Recognize the scope and evidence-based potential of expressive writing interventions including at least 12 traumatic situations, stressful events and/or clinical conditions for which expressive writing therapy may be most beneficial.
  • Utilize therapeutic guidelines to design and implement the 3 essential components of an expressive writing intervention in clinical practice.