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Courses & Programs


Courses & Programs


The Psychology of Serious Illness

A Community-Based Palliative Care Training Program for Michiganders


Do you know an adult who struggles to manage the pain and stress of a serious health problem? Would you like to learn more about how you can help them find a good quality of life?

The Psychology of Serious Illness: A Community-Based Palliative Care Training Program
is a 5-month, virtual course for Michigan health care professionals and community leaders, such as clergy, educators, and public health workers. Participants will develop an awareness of common challenges faced by individuals with serious illnesses, their families and their care teams. These concerns range from pain and fatigue to anxiety and uncertainty about medical decision making. Participants will develop knowledge needed to identify and respond to these challenges as they occur in their practices and communities across Michigan. This program is supported by a grant from the Michigan Health Endowment Fund and aims to develop a statewide network of community champions in palliative care.

Preliminary Course Syllabus
May 18 - September 28, 2022
Interactive Webinars:
Case-Based Discussions:
Office Hours:
Select Wednesdays at 12 pm - 1 pm ET
Select Wednesdays at 12 pm - 1 pm ET
Weekly, TBD
15 credits


Webinar recordings and speakers' slides will be available.
Register Now - Spaces are Limited.
Health Care Professionals and Rates:
Physicians Free
Advanced Practice Providers Free
Nurses Free
Psychologists Free
Social Workers Free
Chaplains and Clergy Free
EMT/Paramedics Free
Community Members Free
Curriculum Focus:
  • Increase awareness of the needs of patients with serious illnesses
  • Improve communication with patients and families
  • Support well-being and overall quality of life of adults in your community
Learning takes place through:
  • 10 Webinars
  • 5 Case-based discussions with instructors and peers
  • Weekly office hours with the course director
  • Webinar recordings and speakers’ slides available on the Canvas learning management course site
  • Discussion board for peer-to-peer learning and networking on the Canvas learning management course site

For more information, please contact the Course Director
James Gerhart, PhD, Assistant Professor of Psychology, Central Michigan University

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