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This 5 hour course on Digital and Social Media Ethics is a videotaped presentation from March, 2013 at the Sacramento Valley Psychological Association.

This is the entire course for those who want to learn more but are not seeking continuing education units. If you are seeking CE’s please look at the 5 CE version.

This is an introductory course for psychotherapists of any discipline (psychologists, social workers, marriage and family therapists, licensed professional counselors, etc.).

After completing this program, you will be able to:

  1. Describe social media and list several popular social media sites and services.
  2. Distinguish between your personal and professional activities on the Internet.
  3. Describe the latest research findings on clients and clinicians’ searching for one another’s information on the web.
  4. Identify the ethical challenges that may arise from engaging in activities on the Internet.
  5. Review different approaches and strategies towards social networking and managing your online presence.
  6. Construct a Social Media Policy for your office to address potential boundary issues with clients.


The program is broken into four video segments which you can watch at your own pace. The concepts covered include:

  • Part 1: Introduction: Understanding having a social media presence

Google Exercise, Our Web Visibility, and setting up Google Alerts
Removing/correcting information
Public Records

  • Part 2: Introduction to Social Networking

What is it? Why do psychotherapists use it?
Research on psychotherapists seeking client information online
Research on clients seeking psychotherapist information online
Brief intro to: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Foursquare and Places (LBS), and G+
Blogging, Personal Ads, Cloud Storage, Email, Videochat
Tips and Hacks for protecting your privacy on these sites
Personal vs. Professional Online Presence

  • Part 4: Focusing on Digital Ethics

General Principles of APA Ethics Code
Informed Consent
Confidentiality & Privacy
Multiple Relationships
Seeking Consultation
Soliciting Testimonials
Clinical and Ethical Vignettes
Tips for Dealing with Online Reviews
Discussion on Googling Clients

  • Part 5: Creating a Social Media Policy Exercise

Please start and stop the video for each section of this exercise and take 10-15 to draft a policy statement that describes your approach to these various potential digital interactions with psychotherapy clients.

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About the Instructor:

Keely Kolmes, Psy.D. is a licensed psychologist in private practice in San Francisco. She has offered over 60 Continuing Education courses on digital and social media ethics, internationally, since 2010. Dr. Kolmes currently serves on the Ethics Committee of the California Psychological Association. She is a member of the 2014 class of the APA Leadership Institute of Women Psychologists, has been elected Member at Large of APA Division 42 for 2015 – 2017, and is representing CPA as an APA Council Rep beginning in 2015. Currently she is co-authoring the 5th revision of Ed Zuckerman’s The Paper Office helping update it for the digital age.

Dr. Kolmes writes, does research, and provides consultation and training on clinical and ethical issues related to social networking and technology. Her Private Practice Social Media Policy has been internationally taught and adapted across health disciplines.  She has published a New York Times Op-Ed on the challenge of consumer reviews of mental health services and developed Getting Better, a product to help clinicians track treatment outcomes and address client satisfaction on the Internet. She has been quoted in The Washington Post, Forbes, WIRED, BBC News, and HuffPostLive.

Conflict of Interest Statement:
There is no known commercial support for this CE program or instructor.

Cost & Refund/Cancellation Policy:

This course is currently offered $39.

Since this is an online product and you gain immediate access to the product, there are no refunds and all sales are final.

If you purchased this item by mistake, please contact me immediately to discuss a refund.

Note that CE version is available at a higher price for those seeking CE’s.