School Licensure Requirements and Practitioner Certification
The practice of hypnotherapy is not regulated at the federal level. This means educational institutions and professional certifying boards set their own standards for minimum academic requirements, scope of practice, code of ethics, postgraduate studies and continuing education.
In the 1950’s the common standard 100 hours or less of training.
In the 1980’s the common standard was set at 200 hours.
In the 2000’s the common standard rose to 300 hours.
In 2010 higher standards were established by the International Board of Hypnotherapy (IBH), which required a minimum of 400 hours of training before certification as a medical support clinical hypnotherapist.
There are many different certifying organizations and levels of certification with varying titles. Usually, fewer training hours (approximately 100) earns the professional title of “Hypnotist.” With more training hours (200), the title of “Hypnotherapist” is awarded. The title of “Clinical Hypnotherapist” is awarded at 300 training hours, and “Medical Support Clinical Hypnotherapist” is awarded after 400 training hours by the International Board of Hypnotherapy.
Hypnotherapy education is classified under the category of human services by the United States Department of Education. Therefore, it is our position, as it is many others’ in the educational system, that brief and superficial training (less than 200 hours) or online video correspondence courses in general, are inappropriate for initial or foundational training for professional practice.
Hypnotherapy training facilities must be licensed by a State Higher Education Department. The facility should be State licensed as a private post-secondary educational institution approved to provide career training in hypnotherapy.
Hypnotherapy Academy of America is one of the oldest State licensed Hypnotherapy Training Institutions in the United States. So far, people from 35 countries and all 50 states have studied with us. Since 1988 we have maintained our licensure and status as a private post-secondary institution.
The American Council of Hypnotist Examiners, and the International Board of Hypnotherapy have established the highest requirements for certification in the field. Other certifying organizations do not require licensure by a State Department of Higher Education, allow brief and superficial training (less than 200 hours), and allow for online video correspondence courses.
The International Board of Hypnotherapy was established to facilitate hypnotherapists’ access to quality post-graduation support, mentoring and bi-monthly continuing education. It was founded by Robert Sapien, MD, and Tim and Angela Simmerman Sierra. The IBH requires its members to have 400 hours of hypnotherapy education from a school licensed by its state department of higher education and whose curriculum complies with the United State Department of Education requirements for hypnotherapy training programs. IBH requires that members successfully complete both written and practical skills examinations with a score of 80% or better, and provide an actual clinical case history for peer review. Also, because clinical hypnotherapists are classified as members of the humans services field, proof of identity is required.
Hypnotherapy Academy Directors, Tim and Angela Simmerman Sierra’s leadership in increasing requirements for certification as a clinical hypnotherapist, has earned the respect of many, including serious medical researchers. The Hypnotherapy Academy of America has the unique distinction of providing the National Institutes of Health with hypnotherapy protocols for use in their scientific research of mind-body medicine.
The Hypnotherapy Academy of America moved from Santa Fe to Albuquerque, New Mexico in 2013.