Professional Recovery Coach

Addiction is a pervasive problem in society and there are many approaches that have been developed to achieve sobriety and long-term recovery. One of the more successful approaches is the use of Professional Recovery Coaches. Learn the dynamics of a strengths-based system for changing addictive behavior through a process of reconnecting to one's joyful identity and work toward helping others overcome and break the cycle of addiction.

In this course you will learn the effects of addiction on the...

6 Months / 60 Course Hrs
Open Enrollment
Offered in partnership with your preferred school

George Mason University

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Learning method

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Course code: GES178

What you will learn

  • Describe the effects of addiction on the brain's right hemispheric control center, as well as the skills and abilities the brain loses in addiction
  • Explain how the brain shares joy nonverbally, learns the skills of joy and quiet and grows capacity
  • Identify cravings, BEEPS and the process by which the brain is hijacked in addiction
  • Define what Recovery Coaching is and is not according to ethical standards
  • Utilize strengths-based and solution-based questions to move clients from ambivalence to change
  • Identify ways to build trust in the client/coach relationship
  • Understand how a coach's level of empathy can significantly impact client outcomes.
  • Learn to apply Cognitive Behavior Theory and Cognitive Restructuring when disputing faulty thinking.
  • Learn to recognize relapse triggers and co-create relapse prevention plans.
  • Follow ethical standards of conduct and review legally required documentation for providing coaching services

How you will benefit

  • Become confident working with clients who may have addictive or codependent behaviors.
  • Train in Professional Coach Competencies and Best Practices.
  • Use a proven, flexible system designed to help people experience and apply the most useful knowledge and skills in their next steps toward personal transformation.
  • Help people achieve their life's goals and dreams while also thriving in sobriety.
  • Prepare for a career as a Personal Recovery Coach

How the course is taught

  • Self-paced, online course
  • 6 Months to complete
  • Open enrollment, begin anytime
  • 60 course hours
  1. Neuroscience of Joyful Recovery
    1. Introduction to Brain, Addiction, Recovery & Joy
    2. Addiction, The Brain, T-Rex & Recovery
    3. Discovering My Brain's Emotional and Relational Control
    4. Understanding the 4-Level Control Center
    5. How does the Control Center Learn?
    6. Understanding Capacity and Shalom
    7. Relational Circuit Failure, Cravings and BEEPS (Relapse Triggers)
    8. The Story of Low Joy Airlines
    9. Joy Buckets, Recovery Support and Assessments
    10. Quieting My Breath and Body
    11. Learning to Recognize and Describe Appreciation Moments
    12. Monitoring and Restoring Relational Circuits
  2. Professional Recovery Coach Competencies Part 1
    1. Recovery Coaching Overview
    2. Strengths-Based Recovery Coaching
    3. Whole Life Recovery, Five Life Elements and Recovery Capital
    4. What Coaching is and is not, Recovery Coach Traits
    5. Coach Skills and Competencies
    6. Establishing the Coaching Relationship
    7. Recovery Coach Competencies
    8. Motivation to Change
    9. Establishing Trust
    10. Stages of Change, Change Talk & Elicit Change Questions
    11. Motivational Interviewing
    12. Solution focused questions
    13. Development of Motivational Interviewing
    14. Foundational Processes and what matters in M.I.
    15. Quantum Change
    16. Types of Change, values before and after change
    17. How Q.C. and M.I. flow together
  3. Professional Recovery Coach Competencies Part 2
    1. Right Thinking in Recovery
    2. Cognitive Restructuring, Cognitive Distortions, Negative Mindsets
    3. Self-Talk Analysis, consequences and logic
    4. Anger Management: principles, triggers, internal & external obstacles
    5. Boundaries and Relapse
    6. Coaching teens and their families
    7. Enabling, Acceptance and Reclaiming Power
    8. Setting Boundaries
    9. Communication, Fear and Enmeshment
    10. Common Relapse Triggers
    11. Relapse Prevention Plans
    12. Coaching Families and Legal Issues
    13. Transcultural Awareness and Personal Bias
    14. Establishing Cultural Relationships
    15. First Sessions
    16. Orientation and First Session, Defining the Relationship
    17. Questions that Identify Problems and Reveal Answers

Jean LaCour

Jean LaCour, Ph.D., is a Certified Prevention Professional, author, and a trainer with extensive experience in the addiction recovery field. She is the co-founder of the NET Training Institute Center for Addiction and Recovery Education, a 501(c)(3) tax exempt nonprofit corporation offering online training in addiction counseling, peer specialist support, and recovery support services.


Basic computer skills are required.


Hardware Requirements:

  • This course can be taken on either a PC, Chromebook, or Mac.

Software Requirements:

  • PC: Windows 8 or later.
  • Mac: macOS 10.6 or later.
  • Browser: The latest version of Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox are preferred. Microsoft Edge and Safari are also compatible.
  • Adobe Acrobat Reader.
  • Software must be installed and fully operational before the course begins.


  • Email capabilities and access to a personal email account.
  • Hotmail accounts cannot be used with this course.

Instructional Material Requirements:

The instructional materials required for this course are included in enrollment and will be available online.

This course includes content and standards promoted by the International Association of Peer Supporters (INAOPS). It may be accepted by state certification boards that provide credentials for recovery peer specialists or peer supporters. The program was created in partnership with Steve Harrington, founder of the National Association of Peer Supporters (N.A.P.S) organization. This content is the foundation of our current curriculum, which is aligned with and reflects industry best practices and state and national competencies.

Note: Certification for peers is done at the state level, with every state having different requirements for certification of peers. For this reason, we encourage you to contact the appropriate agency within your state that oversees and provides credentials to individuals that want to work as a peer within that state for more certification information.

This course is open enrollment, so you can register and start the course as soon as you are ready. Access to your course can take 24-48 business hours.

This course is self-paced and open enrollment, so you can start when you want and finish at your own pace. When you register, you'll receive six (6) months to complete the course.

The time allotted for course completion has been calculated based on the number of course hours. However, if you are unable to complete the course, contact the student advising team to see what options you may have available to work out a suitable completion date. Please note that an extension fee may be charged.

Our courses are designed to accommodate various learning preferences. Depending on the course structure, you may get different forms of support. Self-paced courses are designed to be user-friendly and independent, minimizing the need for external support. In courses with instructors, our direct platform support feature includes opportunities for questions, discussions, and remediation, with email and phone support available for select courses. Our student advising team is available to guide you on program requirements and administrative requests, but they do not provide assistance with course content. Our goal is to provide you with the necessary support for success, whether it's through self-paced exploration, direct communication, or guidance from our advising team.

Upon successful completion of the course, you will be awarded a Certificate of Completion.

This course will provide you with the skills you need to obtain an entry-level position in most cases. Potential students should always do research on the job market in their area before registering.

This course is non-credit, so it does not qualify for federal aid, FAFSA and Pell Grant. In some states, vocational rehab or workforce development boards will pay for qualified students to take our courses. Additionally, some students may qualify for financial assistance when they enroll, if they meet certain requirements. Financing is available from select schools. Learn more about financial assistance.

If you have questions that are not answered on our website, representatives are available via LIVE chat. You can also call us at 1-877-221-5151 during regular business hours to have your questions promptly answered. If you are visiting us during non-business hours, please send us a question using the "Contact Us" form.

International Association of Professional Recovery Coaches (IAPRC)
The International Association of Professional Recovery Coaches (IAPRC) provides leadership in the field of Professional Recovery Coaching worldwide in order to enhance the quality of life and health for individuals, families and communities.