About This Training

This collection of 11 courses is designed to be as convenient and flexible as possible for busy professionals. The courses can be accessed in any order. We have placed them in an order that makes sense to us; however, you can choose as many or as few as you would like and complete them in the order you prefer. 

Within each course, you will find a series of topics. Video clips, power point presentations and/or internet links are provided under topics. You are free to take as much time as you need to review these resources. Once you have reviewed and mastered the content of each topic within a course, you will be required to pass a short quiz before proceeding to new topics. You must pass all of the quizzes before you are eligible for verification that you have successfully completed a course.

We suggest you take your time, view content as many times as you like, and access suggested readings and resources when possible. It is not necessary to complete a course in a single sitting. You are free to open and close a course as many times as you like. Some course topics include videos of actors using scripts from real sessions. This provides authenticity while protecting client privacy. 

Each course is structured in a similar manner. Once you get used to the format of any course, it will be familiar to you as you proceed to additional courses. The content, however, is different and the activities may vary from course to course. 

We ask you to have an open attitude as you go through these courses. At times it may seem as if we are reviewing what you already know. However, paying close attention is likely to provide an opportunity to realize subtle differences and important nuances in problem gambling treatment and supervision. Finally, we hope you enjoy this learning format and that these courses support your many contributions to counselors, clients, and agencies.

Please note that the courses are funded by the State of Oregon and Oregon Council on Problem Gambling.

Who Should Attend

ACORN courses are recommended for:

  • mental health counselors (MHC/LPC), marriage and family therapists (MFT/LMFT), art therapists (AT/LAT), social workers (SW/LSW/LCSW), psychologists, and other mental health providers; and

  • problem gambling treatment providers who are new to the field.

Watch Intro Video

Orientation for New Problem Gambling Counselors

courses have been approved for up to 23 continuing education (CE) hours.


Senior Instructor Teresa McDowell

Teresa McDowell, Ed.D., LMFT is a professor emerita at Lewis & Clark, in Portland, Oregon, where she served as Department Chair and co-founded Lewis & Clark’s Problem Gambling Services. Dr. McDowell has served as a licensed marriage and family therapist, family therapy educator, program director, educational administrator, and consultant over the past 40 years. Her work has primarily focused on counselor education and workforce development, organizational consultation, international family therapy, equity-based clinical practice, integrated treatment for problem gambling, and clinical supervision. She currently serves as a social researcher, program evaluator, and consultant with Partners in Social Research and is the senior instructor for the Advanced Career Online Resource Network (ACORN). Dr. McDowell has published over 50 refereed journal articles and book chapters. She has presented her work at numerous conferences across eight countries. She is the author of Applying Critical Social Theory to Family Therapy Practice and first co-author of Socioculturally Attuned Family Therapy: Guidelines for Equity-Based Theory and Practice (1st and 2nd Editions). Her work in problem gambling treatment includes authoring the Working with Families in Problem Gambling Treatment handbook, research on core competencies for problem gambling counselors and prevention specialists, and extensive contributions to the development of Oregon’s problem gambling treatment workforce.

Senior Instructor Rick Berman

Rick Berman, MA, LPC, CADC III, CGAC II specializes in integrated treatment of co-occurring mental health and addictive disorders. He trained and supervised addictions and mental health counselors for more than 20 years. In recent years his work focused more specifically on problem gambling. He has presented at national problem gambling conferences in Canada and the United States. He is the past coordinator of Lewis & Clark’s Problem Gambling Services and instructed Gambling Counselor Pre-Certification Courses for many years.


free of charge, courtesy of Oregon Health Authority, Problem Gambling Services


is committed to excellence.

ACORN has been approved by the International Gambling Counselor Certification Board (IGCCB) and the Mental Health & Addiction Certification Board of Oregon (MHACBO) to provide continuing education courses. Additionally, ACORN has been approved by the National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC) as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 7274. Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified. ACORN is solely responsible for all aspects of the programs.
International Gambling Counselor Certification Board logo
Mental Health and Addiction Certification Board of Oregon logo
National Board for Certified Counselors logo
Oregon Council on Problem Gambling logo
Oregon Health Authority logo