FAQs & CERTIFICATIONS in the Equine Assisted Field

~ What CERTIFICATIONS are available in the equine assisted field~?

The primary requirement for any therapist seeking to do equine assisted/facilitated psychotherapy is a license designated by each state’s licensure requirements for mental health professionals. The standards for both NARHA/EFMHA and EAGALA require that a licensed mental health professional provide the psychotherapeutic services in Equine Assisted Psychotherapy [EAP] or Equine Facilitated Psychotherapy [EFP].


EAGALA requires a team comprised of a licensed mental health provider and a horse specialist. _____________________________________________________

EFMHA standards require written evidence of legal credentialing of the mental health provider who maintains professional liability insurance and is a NARHA certified instructor or assisted by a NARHA certified instructor when conducting EFP sessions. All NARHA/EFMHA standards may be viewed online by their members only. Within this organization certification is provided for NARHA certified instructors at different levels. EFMHA provides Equine Specialist training.

The Certification Board for Equine Interaction Professionals [CBEIP] is a not-for-profit, tax exempt organization, started by professionals in the field who feel a credential for equine facilitated professionals is needed to identify the body of knowledge and those who practice in the field. http://www.equinefacilitatedprofessional.org/ OR http://www.cbeip.org/ is a test of information, not a facilitators training.

Ann Alden, EFMHA President 2007, explains the national credentialing rationale here.

This organization is comprised primarily of EFMHA related members and based on EFMHA standards. EAGALA Board Chairman, Don Zimmerman, withdrew from the CBEIP board as explained in an August 1, 2007, message on the former MSN Eagala listserv HERE . Greg Kersten, EAGALA founder, and owner of the OK Corral Series declined the invitation to join this organization, and his letter to them explaining why can be obtained HERE.

CBEIP held its first certification test in December 2007.

EAGALA has responded HERE .

EGEA has responded HERE.

Dr. Beverley Kane, M.D., comments on the certification HERE.


Greg Kersten’s OK Corral Series offers his certification and CEU’s http://www.okcorralseries.com/CEUs.html


Innovative Horizons has a certification program for Equine Assisted
Professional Development for the Corporate & Business Training field.

You don’t ‘find’ yourself….what are you, under a tree?  You create yourself.” Victoria Principle

~ What are EAGALA and EFMHA~?

EAGALA is the Equine Facilitated Growth and Learning Association. www.eagala.org

EFMHA is the Equine Facilitated Mental Health Association, www.narha.org/SecEFMHA/WhatIsEFMHA.asp an affiliate of NARHA, the North American Riding for the Handicapped Association. www.narha.org

~ How are EFMHA and EAGALA different~?

Comparing EFMHA and EAGALA is to some extent comparing apples and oranges in that EAGALA proposes and promotes a very specific model of psychotherapy while EFMHA provides general ethical and practice guidelines without reference to theoretical orientation or model of practice,” writes Paul T. Haefner, Ph.D, Licensed Clinical Psychologist at www.ridingfar.com, on the EFMHA Listserv.

EAGALA Standards here.

EFMHA Standards are available to members only in their standards manual.

~ What do EFP and EAP mean~?

See the NARHA Glossary of Terms for writers.

EFP = Equine Facilitated Psychotherapy. This term is used by EFMHA.

EAP = Equine Assisted Psychotherapy. This term is used by EAGALA.

These terms are also used:

EAL = equine assisted learning

EAPD = equine assisted personal development

EEE = equine experiential education

EEL = equine experiential learning

EFHD = equine facilitated human development

EFL = equine facilitated learning

EGE = equine guided education

EIL = equine interactive learning

EAA = equine assisted activities

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