Behavior Change Specialty Certification Answers Call for Prevention Programming in Communities, Supports Patient Centered Care Model

Posted: Nov 10, 2014 in

ACE Taps World-renowned Pioneers to Help Professionals
Develop Hands-on, Practical Skills in Behavior Change


SAN DIEGO Nov. 3, 2014 – In response to calls from national thought leaders to align healthcare provided inside the doctor’s office with prevention programming in the community, the American Council on Exercise (ACE) has created a new, interactive, all digital learning experience aimed at developing practical skills in behavior change.


The ACE Behavior Change Specialty Certification, anchored in expertise from world-renowned pioneers in positive psychology, emotional intelligence and motivational interviewing, follows calls from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force and the Trust for America’s Health to create a more prevention-focused system of care.


“In order for us to get a handle on costly chronic conditions, we need to evolve our healthcare system from one that is almost solely focused on responding to the already ill to one that also focuses on preventing people from getting sick in the first place,” said ACE President and CEO Scott Goudeseune. “The ACE Behavior Change Specialty Certification can prepare community leaders and a wide array of professionals to serve as an extension of the physician’s office and lead people to lifestyle change in all types of environments—including neighborhoods, workplaces and schools—where risk factors for obesity and its comorbidities are widespread.”


The interactive learning experience incorporated into the ACE Behavior Change Specialty Certification includes insight from such pioneers as William R. Miller, Ph.D., founder of motivational interviewing; B.J. Fogg, Ph.D., founder of the Persuasive Tech Lab at Stanford University and the Tiny Habits program; Dan Goleman, Ph.D., author of The New York Times bestsellers Emotional Intelligence and Focus; and Robert Biswas-Diener, Ph.D., positive psychology expert, author and managing director of Positive Acorn.

“It was important for us to create an educational program that could help nurses, registered dietitians, medical assistants, fitness professionals, health coaches, workplace wellness program managers or other members of the healthcare team better connect with the clients and patients they interact with daily,” Goudeseune said. “Physician extenders can be found in a great number of environments, and it’s essential that those extenders possess the knowledge and skills to help individuals embrace the virtue of modifying their lifestyles.”


The groundbreaking curriculum incorporates time-tested, science-based strategies to develop client-coach relationships and deliver interventions rooted in positive psychology and emotional intelligence. Candidates will also take part in a practical skills experience, during which they’ll receive live feedback from an ACE Master Coach on individual skills.


An ACE Behavior Change Specialty Certification is approved for 25 hours of continuing professional education units (CPEUs) by the Commission on Dietetic Registration. It is provider-approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing, provider #298FBA6, for 25 contact hours. The American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA) has granted the program 25 AAMA continuing education units (CEUs) in the general category. It is also approved for 2.5 ACE continuing education credits (CECs) and 25.0 ACSM CECs.


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About ACE
The nonprofit American Council on Exercise (ACE) educates, certifies, and represents more than 53,000 fitness professionals, health coaches, and other allied health professionals. ACE advocates for a new intersection of fitness and healthcare, bringing the highly qualified professionals that ACE represents into the healthcare continuum so they can contribute to the national solution to physical inactivity and obesity. ACE is the largest certifier in its space; all four of its primary certification programs are accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA), the gold standard in the U.S. for assessing professional competence.  ACE also plays an important public-service role, conducting research and making available science-based information and resources on safe and effective physical activity and sustainable behavior change.

For more information, call (800) 825-3636 or visit AMERICAN COUNCIL ON EXERCISE, ACE and ACE logos are Registered Trademarks of the American Council on Exercise.



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