Parent-Child Interaction Therapy for Selective Mutism (PCIT-SM) Training for Professionals

Next trainings will be May 18-19, 2023 9am-5:30pm (SOLD OUT AS OF 1-5-23) and October 26-27, 2023 9am-5:30pm. This is a fully remote training. Please click on link at bottom of this page to register or to get more information.

Typical PCIT-SM coaching session with a family in the office setting. The therapist is talking to the parent via a wireless earpiece, while viewing the parent-child interaction unobtrusively through the one-way mirror.

Internet PCIT – the parent is being coached remotely by the therapist through standard wireless or wired headphones.

Typical case consultation group helping therapists work towards certification remotely.

Typical Training Schedule for Didactic & Role Play

Thursdays, 10am-2pm Eastern Time
Fridays,  10am-2pm Eastern Time

Training Schedule for Ongoing Case Consultation Video Calls

The 12 monthly follow-up case consultation video calls leading to certification will be mid-week, mid-late mornings Eastern time. The didactic training and the follow-up consultation calls are limited to 6 persons maximum.

Parent-Child Interaction Therapy for Selective Mutism (PCIT-SM) is a research-tested behavioral therapy that improves verbal and non-verbal participation and reduces parental over-accommodation. Research in randomized trial shows that the outcomes are impressive and the gains persist and generalize to real world settings  Dr. Kurtz is the developer of the PCIT-SM protocol and is certified by PCIT International as a PCIT Global Trainer. He provides training virtually, and both at the NYC flagship offices of Kurtz Psychology Consulting PC as well as onsite at agencies to suit their scheduling needs. Training is remote with 16 hours of live, participatory synchronous learning, accompanied by some asynchronous learning, and includes the required monthly case consultation calls to help with your implementation with fidelity and to earn PCIT-SM certification.

The treatment has many interesting and unique characteristics including the fact that the parent and child are coached live – in real time – to shape new interaction patterns.  The motto of Kurtz Psychology Consulting PC is changing interactions one at a time  and no treatment captures this process better than PCIT and PCIT-SM. In the office, we use a one-way mirror to coach parents with a wireless earpiece – sometimes called a “bug-in-the-ear.” (The one-way mirror is preferred but not required in all PCIT settings.) On the internet, we help families with live coaching via their own tablets, laptops, or phones.

Training: Two days of didactics followed by one-year of ongoing case consultation to achieve proficiency and then be eligible for certification as a PCIT-SM Therapist. Training cohorts are limited to six individuals for a more personal and intensive experience.

Training towards certification involves completing the initial didactic course as well as case consultation for one year, during which time therapists treat at least two cases to graduation. Payment plans are available to spread out the cost of the training. There is an additional fee of $35 per person for those seeking CEs for through APA or PCIT International. Case review is accomplished most easily by our review of sessions either live or recorded by you and uploaded to our HIPAA-compliant secure cloud website.  There are many options for infrastructure and we will work with you to optimize your setup. You are essentially creating a portfolio of your work doing PCIT-SM.

Case Consultation Calls:  The 12 consultation calls for the May 2023 cohort will be 10:00am the 1st Wednesday of each month from 6/7/23 to 5/1/24. The 12 consultation calls for the October 2023 cohort will be 10:00am the 4th Wednesday of each month from 11/22/23 to 10/23/24. The calls are a minimum of 60 minutes each, but we block 90 minutes from 10:00-11:30am Eastern as case flow may require.

Grandparenting for prior training: For those who trained with Dr. Kurtz or one of the other Certified Trainers, you are welcome to consult with that trainer to determine if your prior training may qualify you to be grandparented as a certified PCIT-SM Therapist. Individual situations vary and alternatives to demonstrate competence and fidelity might be arranged.

Instructors: The primary course instructor is Steven Kurtz, PhD, ABPP.  His co-trainers have included psychologist Dr. Andrea Brandon, SLP Sabine Laerum, and SW Meredith Polsky.

Intended Audience Participants: This course is intended for therapists and allied health professionals licensed for independent practice, or accruing hours towards licensure in some cases. If you are not already certified in the traditional PCIT protocol for disruptive behavior by PCIT International, you will also need to complete the free 10-hrs online course from the UC Davis website and send us the PDF of your completion certificate any time before our course begins. You don’t need to complete this short course before registering.

Instructional Levels: Intermediate and Advanced.

PCIT International, Inc. is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. PCIT International, Inc. maintains responsibility for this program and its content. Approval will be sought for 16 Continuing Education credits (CEs) for psychologists for this training.  The CE certificate will be awarded to all participants who complete the didactic training and have paid for the CE certificate. CE certificates will be emailed within 30 days of the training session. Partial credit can not be offered per APA. There is no commercial support for this CE program. If you’re in need of any additional special assistance or accommodations including those required for a disability, please contact

If you have any additional questions, please contact Steven Kurtz, PhD at or Refunds in full, minus a $100 administrative fee, are available until two months prior to the start of the event. Please make checks payable to Kurtz Psychology Consulting PC and mail to SM Training c/o Kurtz Psychology Consulting PC, 57 W 57 St #1007, NYC, NY 10019-2802. Payments can also be made by Zelle, ACH, or wire transfer.

Learning objectives for the Didactic and Role Play training. Upon completion of the didactic and role play parts of the training, i.e., the 16-hours, participants should be able to:

  • State the theoretical foundations of PCIT-SM
  • State the key components of the PCIT-SM model including those for each phase of treatment (Client intake and assessment, Child Directed Interaction (CDI), and Verbal Directed Interaction (VDI).
  • State the procedures for key PCIT-SM assessment tools:
    • Selective Mutism Questionnaire (SMQ), Frankfurt Scale for SM (FSSM)
    • SM Parent-Child Interaction Coding System (SMICS)
    • Leading an SM-BOT Observation session
  • Demonstrate proficiency in role plays of:
    • CDI skills
    • VDI skills

Additional objectives for those pursuing PCIT-SM certification, after the didactic and role play portions:

  • Demonstrate clinical proficiency in conducting patient assessments with 90% fidelity
  • Demonstrate clinical proficiency in conducting the CDI and VDI teaching sessions with 90% fidelity
  • Demonstrate clinical proficiency in conducting fade-in sessions with peers and teachers with 90% fidelity
  • Deliver treatment sessions with high fidelity while also attending to the therapeutic relationship and family engagement
  • Deliver treatment both via telehealth and in-person
  • Graduate two cases to clinically significant improvement. Please see PDF below for more details on all the training milestones.

Instructor biographies: Click here for instructor biographies and CVs.

Disclosures: There are no commercial supports for this training that could be construed as a conflict of interest.

Training location: online

Parent-Child Interaction Therapy for Selective Mutism (PCIT-SM) Training for Professionals | Kurtz Psychology