The Equine Psychotherapy Institute

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Equine Assisted Learning (EAL) Foundation Training


What is Equine Assisted Learning?

EAL is a unique approach to experiential learning, where clients are offered safe experiences with horses for the purpose of learning social-emotional skills, personal development, and professional development skills (e.g. leadership and team building). EAL is a fast-growing modality across Australia and the globe. National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) clients benefit greatly from EAL services as do children, adolescents and adults.

Equine Assisted Psychotherapy - The Equine Psychotherapy Institute
animal assisted therapy dog

Who is this training for?

  •  If you love horses and helping people, then becoming an EAL practitioner might be the next step in expanding your career horizons.
  • This course is suitable for teachers, coaches, integration aides, disability support workers, horse riding coaches, and anyone with a love of horses and people.
  • As an EAL practitioner, you would provide opportunities for clients to develop their skills in a safe and engaging, natural environment. This a fulfilling and fast-growing approach to learning and personal or professional development.
  • If you ARE a registered mental health professional, you may be suited to our Equine Assisted Psychotherapy program.
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How is the training delivered?

Once a year, we also offer our In Person Immersion training over 3 consecutive weeks in Mount Prospect, VIC! This suits international students and national students who need to fly in, train, and fly home. This includes training from Monday to Friday each week, for three consecutive weeks, with weekends off in between for integration and processing. This also suits some students who learn best in this immersion-style format.
We also deliver our Training online. Again, this suits our international and national students who are unable to travel and have to fit training around work, family and life commitments.

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What are the Learning Objectives?

  •  To understand the theory and practice of the EPI Model EAL and Aware Therapy™.
  • To understand and apply experiential and creative principles and practices.
    To understand ethical issues and professional standards in delivering social-emotional learning 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 equine experiences to offer clients based on appropriate assessment, with professionalism and sensitivity.
  • To understand and be guided by self-awareness and ‘self as practitioner’, understanding the impact of practitioner core themes or personal styles on clients and the change process.
  • To understand horse psychology, herd behaviour and appreciate the subjective and 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 Horse-person-ship.
  • To understand and practice EPI 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!
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What can you expect from the training journey?

  • Experiential
    It is an experiential and process-oriented training.
  • Professional and Ethical
    Students develop professional practice and ethical boundaries to conduct safe, appropriate equine assisted practice.
  • Personal
    Personal work is an integral part of the Foundation Training.
  • Theoretical
    Theoretically grounded.
  • Practice-based
    Practitioner and practice oriented.
  • Research focused
    We encourage research and evaluation of programs.
  • Horses as Teachers
    Including the horses as co-facilitators, assistants, teachers and supports for client change.
  • 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 client change.
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What happens in EAL sessions

What are the 2024 Completion Requirements?

  • Attend all 15 Days of Foundation Training (see Online Foundation Training for Online requirements)
  • Complete at least 5 EAP/ EAL Clinical/Practice Sessions and keep case notes
  • Complete 6 Phone / Online Education Support and Supervision Sessions with EPI Supervisor
  • Completion of Self-Paced Virtual Equine Studies course (included in course fees)
  • Includes Required Reading and active participation during training

All must be completed within 12 months of the commencement of training.

    What is the Investment?

    2025 Foundation Training Investment: $6,600 plus GST ($7,260 inc GST)

    Payable as 3 x installments of $2,200 plus GST

    Price includes 120 hours of trainer led training and 6 Education Support and Supervision Sessions

    Virtual Equine Studies Program to be completed within 12 months (included as part of your course fees)

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    What support will you get?

    After completion of training students/practitioners will:

    • Join EPI Online Network Group
    • Join EPI Closed Facebook Group
    • Access EPI Supervision
    • Access EPI Model Psychotherapy (as needed)
    • Access ongoing Professional Development opportunities – Advanced / Specialist Training, Conferences, Assisting in training etc.
    • Have lifetime access to the EPI Community of Practitioners

    Why Train with Us?

    We are uniquely placed given our training is pitched at the standard you would expect from a post graduate training. The standard of training is high, aimed at a post degree level or equivalent.

    We are celebrating our 10th year of training in EAP! We are an established training organisation and have been successfully training hundreds of practitioners since 2011.

    We have a unique approach to EAP. Our EPI Model is a psychotherapy model, that is fundamentally founded on ethical practice with both clients and horses. Our faculty is highly qualified and experienced in EAL and EAP, and live and breathe this work.

    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, development and healing, where the horses are honoured as teacher, assistant 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.

    As a graduate of our training, you can choose to join our EPI community of practitioners and get access to ongoing support, supervision and advanced, high quality specialist psychotherapy training.