Motivational Interviewing



Motivational Interviewing (MI) is an evidenced-based practice in the treatment of individuals with behavioral health issues. MI works across a range of racially and culturally diverse populations, and behaviors including problematic substance use, health-promotion, medical adherence, and mental health issues. MI is a collaborative, person-centered counseling method for addressing the common problem of ambivalence about change. The method supports change in a manner congruent with the person's own values and concerns and is thus an effective practice for minority populations and communities. The primary goals of this training, coaching, and feedback opportunity are: 

  • Understand what MI is and practice using it as an engagement strategy in your work as a NNED member working with diverse ethnic populations. 
  • Work together with presenter and other participants to practice applying MI in your work empowering others to reach their goals. 
  • Receive feedback and coaching on 3 submitted recordings of conversations about change. Actual clinical work will only be used if participant has met the necessary requirements to receive approval from their organization and the trainer.


Organizations may propose a team of minimum 3 and maximum 5 clinicians in behavioral health from the organization. At least one member must be the primary contact/supervisor who:

  • has the support of the organizational leadership to implement MI,
  • is committed to attaining and maintaining their own proficiency in MI, and
  • is able to support the implementation of MI in the organization.


  • Participants will gain an understanding of the definition of Motivational Interviewing and important foundational concepts.
  • Participants will learn about the core skills used in Motivational Interviewing and practice using them.
  • Participants will understand the importance of change talk in supporting someone in making a change and practice identifying change talk when they hear it. 
  • Participants will practice strategies for eliciting change talk.

Questions to consider before applying for Motivational Interviewing

Motivational Interviewing is, briefly, a collaborative conversation to strengthen a person’s own motivation for and commitment to change.  To determine whether there is a potential role for MI in your organization, consider the following questions (yes or no):

  • Are there (or should there be) conversations about change happening?
  • Will the outcomes for the people you serve be influenced by the extent to which they make changes in their lives or behavior?
  • Is supporting people to make such changes a part of your service (or should it be)?
  • Are people you serve often reluctant or ambivalent about making changes?
  • Are utilization, adherence, engagement, and retention in your services significant concerns?
  • Do staff struggle with or complain about people who are “unmotivated,” “resistant,” or “difficult”?

If you answered yes to any of the questions above, there may be a potential role for MI in your organization.  

Criteria for selection of participants

Successful applicants will:

  • Commit to submitting and receiving feedback on 3 20-minute digital recordings (pre-training, post training, and 2-4 months post training) of conversations with a colleague, friend or family member about a real change they are thinking about making or wanting to make. If you wish to submit real work samples you will have to obtain clearance from your organization and the trainer.
  • Demonstrate commitment and readiness to use MI to further the interests and well-being of the people you serve; 
  • Commit to submitting pre-training outcome data and post-proficiency outcome data (i.e., when staff skill in applying MI to their work has reached proficiency). 
  • Commit to supporting an atmosphere of safety and respect to support your learning and the learning of the other participants.
  • Commit the time and resources necessary to support developing and maintaining proficiency in MI skills and institutionalizing it into your organization (e.g., policies and procedures, allocation of financial resources, staff beliefs and behaviors).


Jennifer Frey, PhD
Licensed Psychologist,
Motivational Interviewing Consultant


Pre-work and Post-training webinar dates

Pre-work webinar: Thursday, April 18, 2013 1:00 pm – 2:30 pm ET

Post-training webinars:

  • Tuesday, May 28, 2013 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm ET
  • Tuesday, June 25, 2013 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm ET
  • Tuesday, July 30, 2013 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm ET
  • Tuesday, August 27, 2013 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm ET

Apply now!

Applications to this track are closed. Current participants:


For more information visit the Motivational Interviewing website.

Read more about NNEDLearn.