In the first of its kind, HumRRO is conducting a job analysis of psychedelic‐assisted therapy practitioners for the newly formed Board of Psychedelic Medicine and Therapies (BPMT). The work will provide the foundation for a new credentialing program for the multi‐disciplinary certification of providers who are qualified to treat mental disorders using established psychedelic medicine and therapy practices.

In partnership with BPMT, HumRRO is helping to define the relevant job roles, enhance public confidence, augment professional credibility, and establish clear ethical guidelines for the profession.

“HumRRO has been responsive, reliable, and helpful in our work together to professionalize the emerging paradigm of psychedelic medicine,” said Scott Shannon, M.D., CEO of BPMT. “Their team has guided us through this complexity in a thoughtful manner.”

Psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy is a critical contributor to quality of life for many suffering from clinical or other disorders and is increasingly viewed as an effective strategy for combatting the mental health crisis plaguing the United States. As legal restrictions concerning the use of psychedelics for therapy evolve and the practice continues to receive legitimate medical and scientific recognition, there is an increased need to establish professional standards to ensure the safe and effective practice of this form of therapy.

“HumRRO has worked with dozens of credentialing organizations to build certifications from the ground up and to continuously update and enhance their programs, incorporating both scientific and practical advancements,” said Maura Burke, Ph.D., HumRRO’s project director. “This particular effort will likely be subject to a high level of scrutiny, so it is critical to have a rigorous and well-designed approach to building the professional credential.”

To ensure high rigor, HumRRO is conducting the following tasks:

  • Job Analysis and Exam Content Outline. Defining the standards and core knowledge necessary for psychedelic-assisted therapy practitioners to practice safely and effectively. Mapping these knowledge domains will provide the foundation for developing a certification program that ensures only qualified candidates become certified. Beyond that, establishing a certification will ensure both the public and patients of their safety under the practice of a Board-certified practitioner.
    • Background Research and Practitioner Interviews. Using a Strategic Job Analysis (SJA) approach, HumRRO will use the information gathered during the background research phase to develop a draft list of tasks performed by psychedelic medical professionals as well as a list of the knowledge required to perform these tasks safely and effectively. Interviews with esteemed practitioners will ensure the tasks and knowledge statements are representative of the nature of work conducted by psychedelic therapy professionals.
    • Conduct Subject Matter Expert Workshops. HumRRO will conduct workshops with SMEs to review the draft task and knowledge lists. During the workshop sessions, SMEs will revise, add, and drop statements as needed to finalize the lists for administration in the job analysis survey. Throughout the workshop, facilitators will encourage discussion around both current practice and how SMEs anticipate the job evolving in the future.
    • Field an Online Job Analysis Survey. Once the task and knowledge lists are finalized, HumRRO will survey approximately 10,000 practitioners to identify the importance of various work activities and knowledge domains. The analysis will generate descriptive statistics which will inform blueprint specifications based on the obtained ratings.
    • Finalize and Report Blueprint. HumRRO will create a draft exam blueprint based on the survey results which will later be reviewed by a small group of SMEs. Following the blueprint review workshop, HumRRO will document the methodology used to conduct the SJA and the results of the job analysis survey, along with a rationale for the blueprint content weighting decisions in a job analysis report.

In the next phase of the project, HumRRO will collaborate with BPMT to develop an exam, including item writing, item review, form development, and statistical analysis, that is designed to meet the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA) Standards for the Accreditation of Certification Programs.

Expected to launch in 2023, the Board‐Certified Psychedelic Practitioner (BCPP) certification program will recognize licensed healthcare providers who are qualified to treat mental disorders using established psychedelic medicines and therapy practices. The BCPP designation confirms that certified practitioners meet the requirements for certification through initial assessment and periodic recertification.

Maura Burke, Senior Scientist

For more information, contact:

Maura Burke, Ph.D.

Senior Scientist