HSP Certification Program

Highly Sensitive Person (HSP)
Certification / CEC Program


This program is approved for 10 continuing education credits by the CCPA and the HCA (Health Coach Alliance). It is also accredited by the AADP.

In the late 1990’s the Sensory Processing Sensitivity (SPS) trait (also known as Highly Sensitive Person or HSP) was identified by Dr. Elaine Aron and colleagues. Affecting 15-20% of the population, this trait has a strong influence on the ability to interact and thrive in the everyday world as common stimuli from the environment produce uncommon reactivity in the nervous system of HSPs, resulting in biological and psychological challenges. Many clients are being treated for depression and anxiety without acknowledgement or treatment of their underlying SPS/HSP trait.  This is crucial to their overall psychological health and recovery.

Over the last two decades, with more research and exploration of the trait being conducted, we are now able to put forth tools and methods to help professionals provide appropriate treatment for their HSP clients.

Why become HSP certified?

  • Highly Sensitive People account for 15-20% of the population
  • 30-50% of therapy clients are HSPs struggling with depression, anxiety and other mental challenges
  • Identifying as an HSP relieves many psychosomatic issues
  • The methods & support for HSPs are different and far more effective than what is appropriate for other clients
  • The more HSP certified professionals there are, the more awareness will be brought to this unique trait and subsequently, improved/effective care will be more readily available


At the end of this course, the participant will…

  • Understand how to assess the sensitivity trait in their clients
  • Identify common mistaken conditions and characteristics
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the neurological process of sensory processing sensitivity
  • Identify HSP’s common mental challenges and therapeutic needs
  • Implement multiple appropriate therapy methods
  • Possess tools that stimulate positive change in the client’s wellbeing


The 8 session course covers the following material:

  • Overview of the Sensory Processing Sensitivity trait
  • The Neurological Process & Physiological Challenges of HSPs
  • The Psychology of HSPs
  • The Social-Emotional Challenges of HSPs
  • HSP Self-Care
  • In-Session Practices & Traditional Therapy Methods
  • Alternative Therapy Methods
  • Program Review


Course Features

Continuing Education

Approved for 10 continuing education credits with the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association (CCPA) and the Health Coach Alliance (CAIN/HCA)


An accredited certification course by the American Association of Drugless Practitioners

Total Hours

10 hours of course videos and 10 hours of supplemental material


Available in online video streaming format with audio and video narration

Supplemental Material

Supplemental videos and reading provided for each session

Completion Time

Take up to 4 months at your own pace

Learning Tools

Engaging and interactive assessment tools and course quizzes

Access to Course

Course material available for up to 1 year from time of enrollment


Email support available throughout course completion

Suggested Qualifications for the HSP Certification Program

  • A licensed social worker, therapist, counselor, or psychologist or
  • Certified Health Coach, nurse, child or elderly care worker
  • An ability to commit approximately 20 hours over a 4-month period

*This course, while presented in English, is appropriate for international bi-lingual participants.

Upon completion of the course, you’ll receive:

  • A digital certificate accredited by the AADP, CCPA, CAIN/CHA (hardcopy also available)
  • seal from the Nickerson Institute confirming course completion (can be displayed on your website/marketing material)
  • A counselors guide (100+ page digital format) for teen HSPs
  • A digital copy of  a “Discovering the Power of Sensitivity: A Guidebook for Parents and Activity Book for Children”
  • A  personalized listing in two online directories for HSP certified professionals
  • A guide offering tips for how to market yourself as an HSP trained professional on your website and social media (includes content for your website)
  • Access to periodic online support meetings providing continued knowledge, guidance and community with other HSP certified professionals



$398 (plus taxes where applicable)


Refunds are allowed 30 days from purchase provided the course has not been started.


Instructor Information

The principle instructor of this course is Dr. Wendy Nickerson, founder of the Nickerson Institute for Integrative Health Training, Licensed Clinical Psychologist in Canada  and the United States, university instructor to graduate students in Counselling Education and Behavioral Health Sciences, and author of “Wild Women Never Get The Blues”.  You can read Dr. Nickerson’s full bio on this page.

The supporting instructor is Jeannette Folan, integrative health coach, author, educator and advocate for Highly Sensitive people. Jeannette has presented workshops across North America to mental health professionals and the mainstream population. She can often be heard as a guest presenter on online summits and podcasts.  To learn more about her, visit her website.

The guest presenters in the HSP program include:

Carla Sodi, MEd is a health coach and author specializing in highly sensitive people with autoimmune issues.

Suzanne Velasquez-Sheehy, Ed.D. is a former teacher/principal, author and energy psychology specialist who shares the benefits of EFT/tapping .

Yvonne Czarniak is an author, tai chi instructor, and advanced eden energy medicine practitioner who shares specific practices for highly sensitive clients.

Dr. Michael R. Smith is an intuitive HSP/empath, coach, mentor and author who shares his vast knowledge and experience on the benefits of spiritual support for sensitive clients.



  • "Very useful and a lot of great and informative references! A great value!"

    Raffaello Saracini | MND Coaching | www.mndcoaching.com
  • "I knew quite a bit about HSPs, but I still found this course very interesting and learned a lot.  I highly recommend the course to other mental health professionals."

    Lian Kirksæther | Certified Coach & NLP Master Therapist | www.liank.no
  • "The course shows in-depth knowledge about how to relate to HSPs and how to help them in therapy."

    Susana Gonzalez