Equine Assisted Learning (EAL) Training & Certification


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Our Institute is an IAHAIO Accredited Training Organisation



Who are Equine Assisted Learning (EAL) Practitioners?

Our Certified EAL Practitioners are teachers, disability support workers, youth workers, horse riding instructors, coaches, organisational consultants, and, people interested in helping people learn new skills, with the horses as engaging partners in the process.

EAL practitioners have also successfully completed over 120 hours training, supervision and assessment in EAL , and now offer it as specialist modality to support social-emotional learning, personal development and professional development such as leadership and team effectiveness skills.

EAL is not therapy. EAL is an innovative form of experiential learning – where clients develop new insight and learn new skills via relational experiences with horses.


Equine-Assisted Learning (EAL) Foundation Training Program (120 hours)

What is included in the EAL program?

3 Foundation Training Intensives – each Foundation Intensive is of 5 Days in duration (15 Days – 120 hours)

  • Intensive 1 – Awareness, Mindfulness and How to Practice with Clients and Horses.
    Growth through awareness with horses.
  • Intensive 2 – Relationship, Contact, Relational Practice and How to Practice with Clients and Horses.
    Relationship and growth through contact with horses.
  • Intensive 3 – Experiments, Creative Processes with Clients and Horses and Business Planning.
    Growth through safe and creative relational experiences with horses. Business sense in EAL.

Students receive a Training Manual.

Light Vegetarian Lunch is provided in each Foundation Training Intensive.

You will learn:

  • Overview of the Equine Psychotherapy Institute (EPI) Model.
  • How to work holistically, with body, feelings, relationship, behaviour.
  • The ‘how’ and ‘what’ in EAL processes – the EAL facilitation process.
  • I-Thou Horsemanship, horse psychology and herd behaviour, horses in EAL processes.
  • An Introduction to diverse applications with individuals, couples, families, groups, children, corporate work (in advanced specialisations), working with people with disabilities.
  • EPI Model Theory of Change – including how people grow and change and how change happens in equine-based processes.
  • Professional Ethics and Horse Welfare in EPI Model Equine-Assisted Learning Practice.

Training Learning Objectives:

  • To understand the theory and practice of the EPI Model.
  • To understand and apply experiential and creative principles and practices.
  • To understand ethical issues and professional standards of social-emotional learning practices and personal development practices.
  • To understand and apply safety practices with horses and clients.
  • To develop here and now assessment, process and closure skills.
  • To create appropriate and graded experiments to offer clients based on assessment, client presentation and feedback with professionalism and sensitivity.
  • To understand and be guided by self-awareness and ‘self as practitioner’, understanding the impact of practitioner core themes, patterns and counter transference issues.
  • To understand horse psychology, herd behaviour and appreciate the relational dynamics that horses bring to the process.
  • To understand the relationship between practitioners and their horses and the impact on safety and efficacy of the work for clients, horses and practitioners.
  • To understand and practice I – Thou Horsemanship.
  • To understand and practice Horse Wisdom Psycho-education ™ programs
  • To design and implement a range of equine assisted learning sessions and programs
  • To develop a commitment to continuing personal and professional development.
  • To begin EAL practice with support and supervision!


Intensive 1 – 5 Days Training $1500 plus gst
Intensive 2 – 5 Days Training $1500 plus gst
Intensive 3 – 5 Day Training $1500 plus gst

Optional Pre-payment for Foundation Training (Intensive 1,2,3 inclusive) – $4200 plus gst (SAVING OF $300)
Supervision Sessions (online/phone) – 4 Sessions – $120 per sessions (to be invoiced and paid at time of each session)– Total $480 includes GST

Certification with the Institute requires:

  • Attend all three Training Intensives
  • Complete 5 x Phone Supervision Sessions ($120 plust gst per Supervision – must be completed within 12 month period)
  • Attend 2 Day Horse Essentials Clinic OR Apply for RPL and Submission of 1 x Horsemanship Video (recorded footage of basic horsemanship skills)
  • Satisfactory completion of open book Exam (must be completed within 3 months of onset of training)
  • Signed/compliance with Institute Code of Ethics.

The Training journey is:

  • Experiential – It is an experiential and process-oriented training.
  • Professional – Students develop professional practice and ethical boundaries to conduct safe, appropriate equine assisted learning
  • Personal – Personal work is an integral part of the Foundation Training.
  • Theoretical – Theoretically grounded.
  • Practice-based – Practitioner and practice oriented.
  • Research focused – we have developed an EPI Evaluation and Research tool for certified practitioners to use.
  • Horses as Teachers – Integrating the horses as co-facilitators, assistants, teachers and supports for building true awareness and contact.
  • Relational – the model is Relational and grounded in relationship-based learning.
  • Experimental – Includes Liberty, Ground-based and Mounted experiences with horses for the purpose of supporting awareness, growth and healing.

Post Training Support

After completion of training students/practitioners will:

  • Join relevant EPI Network Groups.
  • Have eligibility to EPI Closed Facebook Group.
  • Access EPI Supervision.
  • Access EPI Model Psychotherapy as needed for ongoing support and professional development.
  • Access ongoing Professional Development opportunities – Advanced Training, Conferences etc.
  • Access to EPI Model Evaluation tool and research your program support.
  • Have lifetime access to the EPI Community of Practitioners.

To Apply for our Life Changing EAL Training Program NOW:

  • Check the ‘Learning Training Dates Calendar Page‘ to confirm you can attend all 3 Intensives in the EAL Training Froundation Program.
  • Email equinepsychotherapyinstitute@gmail.com to request an Application Form. Complete and email back. Preference will be given to those applicants intending to complete all 3 intensives in EAL Foundation Training.
  • Once your place has been confirmed you will receive a Welcome Letter. This will give you information to support you in arranging accommodation, transport, required reading and other information to support preparation and planning for your successful training experience.
  • Begin your training journey and know that you are 1 step closer to beginning your dream career as an Equine-Assisted Learner and you will be supported for the life of your training and practice.

Time and Venue for Training

*9.00am – 5.00pm daily

*Victorian training – The Equine Psychotherapy Institute
459 Telegraph Rd, Mt Prospect. Victoria.
*NSW, QLD and WA Training venues are provided upon receipt of Applications in Welcome Letter.


Deposit / Fee Payment and Conditions

Once the Application is received and confirmed you will be required to pay non-refundable $200 deposit, which will be deducted from the total training fees.
For example – $200 will be deducted from the $1,500 training fee for Intensive 1 and the remaining $1,300 will be required 4 weeks prior to day 1 of training.

If opting for Foundation Program pre-payment, $200 deposit will be paid for 15-Day Foundation Program and $4000 will be due 4 weeks prior to commencing Intensive 1.

Full Payment is required 4 weeks/1 month prior to training, unless negotiated otherwise. Training fees are non-refundable; however, students who have made payment and cannot attend the training dates as initially contracted will be offered a place in future Training Programs/Dates (available within a 12-month period only, across different states).

In the case of an emergency, accident or illness, students are encouraged to contact the Institute directly to arrange reimbursement, total of 80% fees will be reimbursed. Please read the Refund Policy in Application Form carefully before consenting and signing.


Introducing our Senior Trainers

Meg Kirby, Author, Creator and Founder of EPI Model, Mental Health Social Worker, Gestalt Therapist/Psychotherapist, I-Thou horsewoman.

Noel Haarburger, Psychologist, Psychotherapist, Gestalt Therapy Trainer, and Trauma Specialist and Assistant with
Somatic Experiencing Australia.

Meg and Noel are experienced trainers, psychotherapists, group facilitators, consultants and registered mental health professionals whom live and learn with a herd of 12 horses as part of their extended family.

Please view interstate EPI Trainers in NSW, QLD and WA on this website!

Further enquiries or questions are very welcome. Please contact the Equine Psychotherapy Institute on:

Mobile – 0437 882 600
Email – admin@equinepsychotherapy.net.au

This training program is designed to support you as a practitioner to be personally and professionally competent in working with horses and humans for the purpose of human growth and development, where the horses are honoured as teacher and co-facilitator. We will support and challenge you to grow and feel ‘held’ as you grow into grounded and authentic practitioners. Our Program sets a high standard for students, practitioners and the wider international community.