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July/August 2017Vol. 18, No. 5Training for Adoption Competency

The Training for Adoption Competency (TAC) curriculum was designed exclusively for mental health professionals by the Center for Adoption Support and Education in collaboration with a national advisory board consisting of adoption experts. TAC was created to train mental health professionals to help alleviate some of the challenges of adoption, such as children's intellectual and social functioning, children's ability to form attachments to their adoptive families, previously experienced early abuse and neglect, and prior foster care placements.

TAC has an in-depth clinical focus and is designed to build and strengthen clinical skills. The TAC training is based on competency, manualized to make it easy to replicate, and rigorously evaluated through pilot testing and replication evaluation. The two components of TAC are the TAC curriculum, which is a 12-module, 72-hour in-home and classroom-based training program, and the TAC case consultation component, which consists of six case consultation sessions over the course of six months to support the transition from learning to practice.

The following are examples of the learning objectives of the TAC training:

  • Learning the theoretical framework and therapeutic approach of adoption-competent mental health practice
  • Developing clinical skills in working with adopted children and youth and adoptive families regarding issues of loss, grief, separation, identity formation, and attachment
  • Understanding the issues that impact identity formation for adopted children and youth
  • Identifying evidence-based and evidence-informed practices and interventions with adopted children and their families

Students who complete the training can receive either an Advanced Clinical TAC Certificate if they successfully completed the classroom training and the case consultation component or a Basic TAC Certificate if they only completed the classroom training.

To learn more about TAC or to register for training, visit