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Tobacco Treatment Specialist Certification (CTTS) Training

A Continuing Education, Certification Workshop for Tobacco Treatment Specialists
Approved for 33.5 CE hours by the University of Mississippi Medical Center Department of Continuing Education for AMA Category I, Mississippi Dental (national ADA approved), Pharmacy (national), Mississippi Nursing Foundation, and General CEUs; approved for Social Work credit through NASW Mississippi Chapter.

Next Workshop:

October 3-7, 2016: Flowood, Mississippi

  • Airport destination: Jackson Medgar Wiley Evers International Airport (JAN)
  • Workshop hours: 8:00 am-5:00 pm Monday-Thursday; 8:00 am-1:00 pm Friday
  • Dress: Business casual
  • Training Site: Hilton Garden Inn Flowood, 118 Laurel Park Cove, Flowood MS 39232
  • Contact: (601) 487-0800, indicate ACT Center room block
  • Conference Room Rate: $119/night if booked by 9/16/2016, then $129/night
  • Website / Online booking: [TBA]
  • You will receive an email confirmation once your application is complete
  • View the DRAFT agenda
  • Note that hour-for-hour CE is provided for attendance

Please contact Nancy Alford (nalford@umc.edu or 601.815.1180) if you require further help or additional options.

Locations of Selected Previous CTTS Trainings

  • New York Presbyterian Hospital
  • Cardiovascular Associates of the SouthEast
  • Cleveland Clinic
  • Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals
  • MD Anderson Cancer Institute
  • North Dakota State University
  • Ochsners Medical Center
  • Ohio State University
  • Oregon Research Institute
  • University of Alabama at Birmingham
  • University of Arkansas for the Medical Sciences
  • University of Massachusetts Medical School
  • University of Mississippi Medical Center
  • West Virginia University


This program prepares professionals with appropriate educational and experiential backgrounds to deliver a high-intensity, evidence-based, cognitive-behavioral treatment for nicotine dependence.

The ACT Center has trained Tobacco Treatment Specialists (TTS) since 1999, both in Mississippi and locations nationally. This program represents an expansion of the approach developed and employed to train clinical psychology residents at the University of Mississippi and Veterans Affairs Medical Centers Psychology Residency Consortium during 1985-2000 (under Dr. Payne's direction).

Program faculty have extensive experience in the direct provision of clinical services for nicotine dependence, program management, and TTS training. In addition, ACT Center faculty and colleagues are actively involved in research focused on understanding and managing nicotine dependence, including clinical assessment, behavioral interventions, treatment adherence, pharmacotherapy, dissemination of treatment, and the genetics of nicotine dependence (please see our recent publications).

Program Description

Certified Tobacco Treatment Specialist Workshop (5-Day): Emphasizes the acquisition of fundamental knowledge and skills relevant to understanding the addictive nature of tobacco use, its impact on health and other factors, and key clinical activities for assessing and treating the nicotine dependent individual. A unique aspect of this program is that clinical skills are taught within the context of mastering the ACT Center Tobacco Treatment protocol. This manualized, evidence-based approach is the product of many years of testing and experience, and represents an effective balance of state-of-the-art clinical procedures.

Interactive presentations and extensive use of hands-on exercises are interwoven throughout the workshop experience to facilitate the attainment of training goals. All the necessary resources are provided, including the detailed Therapist Treatment Guide, the complementary Client Workbook, and supplemental clinical forms. Finally, common administrative and treatment program evaluation issues are reviewed, to prepare attendees for managing a clinical service.

Both the workshop curriculum and treatment program are routinely updated, incorporating the latest advances emerging in the published scientific literature.

This program was designed to provide the necessary content and experiences for enrollees to achieve the Competency Standards for TTSs, as set forth by the Association for the Treatment of Tobacco Use and Dependence (ATTUD). This program is fully accredited by the ATTUD / Council on Tobacco Treatment Training Program (CTTTP) as a CTTS Training Program.

Continuing Education. This program is nationally approved for 33.0 CE hours: AMA Category I, Mississippi Nurses Foundation (includes American Nurses Credentialing Center Commission [ANCCC]), Mississippi Pharmacy Association, American Dental Association, Mississippi chapter of the National Association of Social Workers, National Board Certified Counselors (NBCC) and General CEUs. Attendance at the entire workshop is required for initial certification. Applications can receive hour-for-hour CE credit when attending less than the entire workshop.

5-Day Workshop Topics and Activities

  • Workshop Overview, Training Philosophy, Societal Context
  • Tobacco's Toll: Health, Economic, and Other Impacts
  • The Biopsychosocial Model
  • Nicotine Dependence
  • Environmental Tobacco Smoke
  • Comprehensive Assessment of the Tobacco User
  • The First Contact
  • The Intake Evaluation and the Treatment Plan
  • PHS (2008) Guideline Overview
  • Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy
  • Group Therapy Techniques and Strategies
  • Pharmacotherapy
  • Improving Motivation
  • Maintaining Abstinence
  • Delivering Treatment Sessions 1-6: Modeling and Practice
  • Delivering Follow-up Sessions: Modeling and Practice
  • System and Administrative Considerations
  • Treatment Program Evaluation

Eligibility for the 5-Day CTTS Workshop

Education Requirements (must meet one)

  • A master's or doctorate degree (completed, or in-process) in a profession in which counseling skills are emphasized, including but not limited to psychology, psychiatry, social work, counseling, or psychiatric nursing, with at least 1 year of experience (degree program-based practica / internship / residency / fellowship experiences are acceptable)
  • Attainment of a BA or BS degree in an area as above, with at least 2 years of counseling-related experience (counseling experience must be post-degree)
  • Formal degree in any healthcare profession in which patient contact of a counseling nature is emphasized, such as medicine, dentistry, respiratory therapy, nursing, or pharmacy, plus at least 2 years of counseling-related experience (counseling experience must be post-degree)

Additional Requirements

  • 2 letters of recommendation from supervisors / colleagues
  • Credentials documenting education background, as stated above (photocopy acceptable)
  • Tobacco-free for at least 6 months, with a signed commitment to remain so and agreement to stop delivering treatment if using tobacco

You may be contacted if further information is required. If you meet minimum enrollment criteria, you will be provided with location, travel, hotel, and other necessary information.

Registration Fee

Registration Type Full Conference Half-Day Rate
hour-for-hour CE credit;
please refer to agenda
General, Non-Mississippi Resident $750 $85
General, Mississippi Resident $650 $75
Student, Non-Mississippi Resident* $650 $75
Student, Mississippi Resident* $500 $60

Cancellation with full refund is permitted if formally requested via email at least 2 weeks prior to program start.

The fee includes:

  • Continental breakfast (with hotel registration), lunch and refreshments
  • Workshop manual containing all slides, forms, exercises
  • Certificate of completion
  • Clinical Reference Guide
  • Therapist Manual, Participant Manual, clinical forms
  • CTTS examination access for 1 year (3 attempts)

Optional Fees:

1. Continuing Education Credit

Approximately 33 hours of CE credit is available for the following professions: Physicians (AMA Category I), Dental (ADA CERP), Nursing (Mississippi Nursing Foundation / ANCC), Pharmacy (ACPE), OT/PT/RT (Continuing Health Professional Education Credit [CHPE]), and National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC).

Cost is $45; hour-for-hour credit is available for those who attend a portion of the workshop.

Social Work credit (Mississippi Chapter of NASW) is available at no cost.

TTS credit for Certified TTS renewal is automatic

2. Treatment Starter 5-Pak

Discounted cost for materials sufficient to treat 5 patients: $80

Other Training Locations

Training events may be conducted at sites outside Jackson upon request. With an adequate number of participants, considerable cost savings may be realized. Contact Dr. Thomas Payne if you wish to discuss this option.


To apply for the upcoming ACT Center Mississippi training and to PAY BY CREDIT CARD:
Click here

To apply for the upcoming ACT Center Mississippi training and to PAY BY CHECK OR OTHER OPTIONS:
Click here

For more information, please contact Nancy Alford at 601.815.1180 or nalford@umc.edu.

TTS Certification and Renewal

Formal certification is not yet required at the national level; however currently available institutional options provide an interim solution for recognizing the expertise of those providing services. Interest in national certification is growing, and ACT Center faculty and colleagues have worked closely with the Association for the Treatment of Tobacco Use and Dependence (ATTUD) to facilitate these efforts.

An award of TTS Certification through the University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC) currently is considered valid for 2 years. Requirements include:

  • Verification of all eligibility criteria
  • Completion of the ACT Center TTS Workshop
  • Passing the CTTS examination with a score of at least 70%
  • Providing documentation of at least 250 hours of evidence-based treatment experience within the 3 years preceding the examination and / or 1 year following workshop attendance.
  • These hours must be based on clinical activity, such as (a) direct patient contact (treatment, assessment, discussions about clinical issues, program description, etc.), (b) consultation or discussions with health professionals about a specific patient (identified or anonymous), (c) specific case presentations, (d) case note documentation, and (e) case supervision, whether provided or received. You cannot count general presentations or discussions that are not about specific cases, for example, "How to use the nicotine patch."

Applicants are eligible to take the CTTS examination upon completion of the training program. To be granted certification status, the examination must be passed within 1 year post-workshop completion, and may be taken up to 3 times. If not successful by the third effort, the workshop (5-Day or 2-Day within 2 years of original 5-Day program completion, or new 5-Day if longer than 2 years) must be repeated before attempting the examination again.

Certification must be renewed every 2 years. Renewal is contingent upon submitting documentation of the following for the period since certification / renewal: (a) 150 hours of tobacco treatment activity, and (b) 14 CE credits from accredited CE providers, 7 of which must be relevant to tobacco in some way (e.g., health issues, prevalence, etc,), and at least 7 of which must be directly related to tobacco dependence treatment. A $50 processing fee will be assessed.

To take the TTS Certification Examination:
Download the TTS Certification Examination Application Form

To renew your TTS Certification:
Click here

Notice: The content and associated costs of the programs described above are subject to change.

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