Why you'll love this course

Suicide can be a dark and difficult topic. But this course tackles the challenges of current suicide research at greater depth than similar courses usually offer. Why is it that even in a good economy, suicide rates are climbing? Why has recent research shown suicide assessment screening instruments to be of little value? And most importantly -- now that we know what we know, what can each of us, individually, do to reduce deaths by suicide?

Course Description

The US suicide rate has increased 30% since 2005. Suicide is now the 10th-leading cause of death in the US. Mental health professionals are frequently called upon to identify those at highest risk and intervene appropriately. New research suggests we could be much better at each of those tasks. 

In this course, we review the current research on suicide prevention, assessment, and intervention. We discuss current screening tools, and examine recent findings that urge against the use of those tools. Participants will come away better prepared to help clients get through their darkest hours safely.

6 hours CE. Video format.

Learning Objectives

By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • Describe three current research findings surrounding suicide

  • Identify at least four risk factors for suicide based on current research

  • Identify at least four preventive factors for suicide based on current research

  • Utilize one or more current assessment tools with clients who may present risk for suicide

  • Develop a safety plan with a client who presents some risk for suicide

Course Outline

  1. Background
  2. Current Research
  3. Prevention Strategies
  4. Assessment Strategies
  5. Intervention Strategies
  6. Tools and Resources


Benjamin Caldwell, PsyD

Benjamin Caldwell, PsyD

Education Director, SimplePractice Learning

Benjamin Caldwell, PsyD is a California Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (#42723). He currently serves as adjunct faculty for California State University Northridge in Los Angeles. He has taught at the graduate level for more than 15 years, primarily in Law and Ethics, and has written and trained extensively on ethical applications in mental health care. In addition to serving a three-year term on the AAMFT Ethics Committee, Dr. Caldwell served as the Chair of the Legislative and Advocacy Committee for AAMFT-California for 10 years. He served as Editor for the Users Guide to the 2015 AAMFT Code of Ethics and is the author of several books, including Saving Psychotherapy and Basics of California Law for LMFTs, LPCCs, and LCSWs.

Basics of California Law is used at graduate programs around California and addresses therapists’ legal responsibilities and clinical options with high-risk clients. Dr. Caldwell authored the entry on “No Harm Contracts” in the Encyclopedia of Family Therapy (spoiler alert: do a Safety Plan instead). Since 2013, Dr. Caldwell has served as a consultant to the Self-Injury Institute in Los Angeles, assisting with research and supervision surrounding risk assessment and intervention, ethical compliance, and evidence-based practice in the family-based treatment of self-injury.

Additional Information

Format & Length:

Video format; Total running time 6 hours, 9 minutes

Topic Area:

Clinical Practice; Research

Instructional Level:


Completion Requirements:

To obtain your CE certificate, you must progress through all course segments, complete a satisfaction survey, and obtain a score of 80% or higher on a course completion quiz.

Who Should Attend:

Counselors, clinical social workers, and marriage and family therapists.

Enrollment Period:

Because of the extended length of this course, your purchase grants access to all course materials for 90 days.

Financial Support Statement:

SimplePractice Learning pays course presenters for their teaching. There is no other financial support for this course.

Conflict of Interest Statement:

There is no potential conflict of interest or outside commercial support for this course.

Refund Policy:

Click here to see our policies on attendance, refunds, grievances, and accessibility, and other frequently asked questions

NAADAC Approval Status:

This course is not part of our continuing education program approved through NAADAC. Click here to view our complete CE approval information, or check out our collection of NAADAC approved courses