College of Education and Human Development

Family Social Science

Ambiguous loss certificate

Expand your expertise for working with Ambiguous Loss

The University of Minnesota’s Department of Family Social Science is offering an online noncredit certificate program led by Pauline Boss, PhD, professor emeritus and the groundbreaking therapist revered as a pioneer in the interdisciplinary study of ambiguous loss. For over thirty years, her work has focused on connecting family science and sociology with family therapy and psychology.

Professionals from a variety of disciplines will find this course valuable, including family therapists, social workers, educators, nurses, psychologists, school and guidance counselors, grief counselors, international humanitarian workers, clergy and pastoral counselors, military support personnel, and health care professionals.

Learn more about ambiguous loss.

Online noncredit certificate program

Human relationships are often traumatized by ambiguous loss, however this unique kind of loss is just beginning to be discussed in professional texts and training courses.

Understanding the difference between ambiguous loss and other kinds of loss will help you serve students, clients, and patients more effectively.

You will learn:

  • How to recognize ambiguous loss
  • How it differs from other losses
  • Guidelines for therapy, education, and family/community interventions
  • View the modules outline [PDF]

You will earn a professional development Certificate of Completion and 15 CEUs from the University of Minnesota.

Having taken the course on AL, I have a greater depth of knowledge and understanding of this concept…. In the future, I hope to conduct research on parent’s grief experiences applying an AL framework in my dissertation as well as to continue to educate others about this valuable framework.
~ Ambiguous loss certificate student
Having a better understanding of Ambiguous Loss has helped me work more efficiently with clients in my clinical practice. This has allowed me to connect with them, and their ambiguous loss in a new way giving words and understanding to their circumstances. After explaining ambiguous loss to a client they stated, ‘That's exactly what it is. That makes so much sense.’
~ Ambiguous loss certificate student
I am grateful that I took the Ambiguous Loss Training this summer. The information I learned in this training is highly connected to my research… I believe that I will encounter a lot of cases with ambiguous loss in ERs and psychiatry department and this training will help me to better conceptualize cases and support clients.
~ Ambiguous loss certificate student

Learn on your schedule

  • Course content is asynchronous - learners move at their own pace through course content - whenever it is convenient to them.
  • Once the training has been completed, participants will have unlimited access to the training videos, resources and materials for easy review.

Certificate of completion

  • Although the course is a noncredit course offered by the University of Minnesota, a Certificate of Completion with 15 CEUs (based on 1:1 contact hours) is available to those completing the training.
  • It is participant’s responsibility to apply for training hours earned with their individual licensing governance boards.

Pricing and registration

  • Complete certificate program (five learning modules): $500
  • Complete the first online training module: $100
  • Register for modules two – five: $400

Support teaching and scholarship

Support research, teaching and scholarship into Ambiguous Loss with a gift to the Family Social Science Ambiguous Loss Visiting Scholar fund. Your gift ensures this important work continues.