Post-Master's Certificate

The Post-Master’s Certificate in Addictions is intended for mental health practitioners who would like to develop knowledge and expertise in the area of substance abuse, addictions and addictive behaviors. You will explore the dynamics of substance abuse and dependence including drugs, alcohol, and marijuana, with an emphasis on assessment and treatment planning. You will also examine research related to addictions and compulsive behaviors, as well as co-occurring disorders.

Basis of Admission

A completed master's level or higher degree from an accredited institution or university.

6 Courses (18 Credit hours) must be completed from the coursework outlined within the corresponding Post-Master's Certificate.

Prerequisite: A Master's degree in any field from an accredited institution will satisfy admission requirements.

Requirement: At the end of each Post-Master's Certificate (except where noted), students will complete a final written research project, demonstrating the ability to conduct an investigation on a workplace problem, identify an area for intervention, critique, justify, and recommend a plan of preventative action.

Course Length

All courses are 12 weeks in length. 

Time to Completion

Northcentral University allows 2 years to complete all Post-Master's Certificates.

Specialization Courses - 18 credit hours

Course Code


Course Description


Clinical Survey of Substance Abuse and Dependence

Focus on the dynamics of substance abuse and dependence including drugs, alcohol, and marijuana. The impact of substance abuse and dependence on individuals, families, and society is studied. The physiological and psychological processes of dependence will be explored.


Addiction and Compulsive Behaviors

This doctoral-level course is designed as a comprehensive overview of research in addictions and compulsive behaviors. Both the ingestive addictions (i.e. chemicals, food) and the process addictions (i.e. gambling, sex) will be explored through a thorough integration of the DSM IV Substance Related Disorders, other Axis I clinical syndromes and the Axis II Personality Disorders.


Co-Occurring Disorders

This doctoral-level course is designed as a comprehensive overview of co-occurring disorders (sometimes termed dual diagnosis) in current research and in the DSM-IV Mental Disorders and Substance Related Disorders. Primary and secondary differential analysis, assessment, intervention and treatment will be addressed. Legal, ethical and cultural considerations are an integrative component.


Family Systems Approaches to Addiction

This course provides an overview of family systems approaches to addiction. Course material addresses addiction with respect to etiology, intervention, assessment, diagnosis, and treatment from a family systems perspective. In addition, the course explores how multicultural systemic issues influence family systems approaches to dealing with addictions.


Addiction Assessment and Treatment Planning

This course provides an overview of addiction assessment and treatment planning. Course materials address addiction assessment testing, biopsychosocial interviewing, DSM-IV diagnosis, and treatment planning based upon the ASAM Patient Placement Criteria.


Group Therapy

The course examines the key concepts of group process and the application of these concepts in a variety of groups from formation of a group through termination of a group, as well as the ethical and professional aspects of group leadership and participation.

At Northcentral University, we pride ourselves in being completely transparent when it comes to tuition and fees. If a cost is not included in our Cost Per Course Tuition Rate, we let you know up front. Currently, the only additional cost above your program rate* is books. Learn more about NCU School of Psychology's post-master's certificate costs below:

  • Per credit cost: $930
  • Per 3 credit course cost: $2,790
  • Program cost: $16,740
  • Average Book cost per course: $110
  • Application Fee: $0
  • Technology Fee: $0
  • Registration Fee: $0

Click here to learn more about payment and financing options.

*Program rates are subject to change and generally increase at the start of each calendar year.

Total program costs reflected are calculated based on standard degree program credits exclusive of the program’s potential evaluation track. The actual cost of a program is determined based upon the program and track the student enters, transfer credits if any, and other unique student factors. For more information: please contact Admissions or refer to the catalog.

If there’s one thing we’ve learned about our students, it’s that they are motivated and ambitious—but they are also busy! At Northcentral University, we’ve designed our education experience to work with you, not against you, so you can achieve your academic goals without sacrificing the quality, flexibility and support you need to be successful.

To learn more, request information or call 1-866-776-0331 to speak with an enrollment advisor today. We offer new courses every Monday of the year so you can get started when it’s best for you.