Alliance For The Preventing And Treating Of Nicotine Addiction

Tobacco Treatment Specialist Certification

Listed below are links to websites with information on training and credentialing as a tobacco treatment specialist. Several organizations offer certification and criteria or eligibility vary. Virginia does not provide a state certification in smoking cessation counseling or tobacco dependence treatment. (Website listings are for information only, inclusion does not constitute endorsement.) The Association for the Treatment of Tobacco Use and Dependence (ATTUD) has developed a Tobacco Treatment Specialist "Standards of Practice" document and is actively working on facilitating the development of a national credential.


UMASS Med School provides an online course anyone can take, "Basic Skills for Working with Smokers" ($125 fee, participants receive a certificate of completion) and two levels of certification that require taking the Basic Skills course plus the Tobacco Treatment Specialist (TTS) Core Certification training (a 6-day course held in Worcester, MA, twice a year), passing a written test, and doing/presenting a case study. The two levels are:

1) Entry Level TTS Certification (CTTS)

Requires 240 hours experience for licensed healthcare professionals or 480 hours experience for other healthcare professionals.

2) Master TTS Certification (CTTS-M)

Requires 2,000 hours experience in tobacco treatment.

Details on these credentials can be found at:

Mayo Clinic Nicotine Dependence Center

Mayo Clinic College of Medicine provides a five-day onsite Tobacco Treatment Specialist Certification Training Program. Topics include: neuropharmacology of nicotine, optimization of pharmacologic management, conducting a basic counseling session, motivational interviewing and other counseling approaches, and application of treatment of tobacco dependence to people with co-morbid conditions. The last half-day of the program consists of an exam testing both knowledge and counseling skills. This training program is designed for health care professionals providing tobacco dependence treatment or those with a strong interest in entering the field. Having a bachelor's degree or being within two academic years of completing a bachelor's degree is a prerequisite; certification requires completion of tobacco dependence treatment service hours as part of direct patient/client care (240 hours with graduate degree in health/human services field or 480 hours without):


Arizona's Tobacco Education and Prevention Program (TEPP) provides two tobacco dependence treatment certification training tracks:

Basic Tobacco Intervention Skills

Brief intervention training (onsite in Arizona) with certification available in "Basic Skills" and "Basic Skills Instructor" for several specialties, including generic Basic Skills (CE available), Basic Skills Spanish, Basic Skills Native American, Basic Skills Maternal and Child Health, and Basic Skills Medical and Allied Health Professionals Basic Skills (CE available).

Tobacco Treatment Specialist (TTS)

Intensive intervention training with certification available as a Tobacco Treatment Specialist and/or Tobacco Treatment Specialist Instructor. Certification in one of the Basic Skills is a prerequisite. The first part of the TTS course is conducted online and the second part is a six-hour face-to-face practicum using a small group format. For information, contact the UAZ HealthCare Partnership at (520) 318-7253 (Louise Strayer, ext.162)


The American Lung Association of Maine and the Center for Tobacco Independence developed a Certified Tobacco Treatment Specialist (TTS-C) credential that requires a minimum of a 2-year degree in a health-related field, 240 hours experience in intensive tobacco treatment within the last three years, completion of a 2-day intensive TTS training (provided in Maine by the Partnership for a Tobacco Free Maine), passing the TTS training exam, and submission and presentation of a case study. For information, contact the Center for Tobacco Independence (CTI) at (207) 662-524

New Jersey

The UMDNJ Tobacco Dependence Program provides the training for and the Addiction Providers Certification Board of New Jersey (APCBNJ) provides the credentialing for the Certified Tobacco Treatment Specialist (CTTS) certification. The training is a 5-day, intensive (42-hour) curriculum offered three times per year. Participants must have a Masters or above in the Human Services field with one year of full-time counseling or health care experience, OR, a Bachelors in Human Services with two years of full-time counseling or health care experience, OR a CADC/LCADC/ nursing OR other recognized health related qualification, with four years of full time counseling or health care experience. Details can be found at:

NAADAC (The Association for Addiction Professionals)

NAADAC plans to discontinue offering the Tobacco Addiction Specialist credential as a "free-standing" certification. It will become an "endorsement" instead. This action will take place as a result of the planned merger of national certifications provided by the National Certification Commission (NCC) of NAADAC and the International Certification and Reciprocity Consortium (IC&RC). Information on this consolidation of credentials can be found at either organizations' website.

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