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National College Credit Recommendation Service

Board of Regents  |  University of the State of New York

National Family Development Credential Program (FDC) | Evaluated Learning Experience

Empowerment Skills for Family Workers


80 hours of interactive instruction and 10 hours of portfolio advisement, based on the text, Empowerment Skills for Family Workers.

Multiple locations authorized by National FDC.

June 2016 - Present.

Instructional delivery format: 
Traditional classroom model
Online/distance learning
Learner Outcomes: 

Upon successful completion of the course, students will be able to: apply the eleven (11) core principles of family development and explain the seven (7) steps of family development and seven (7) roles of the family development worker while assisting families to restore their sense of hope and ability to care for themselves and their families; practice the necessary skills to help families move from dependence on government programs to a healthy, sustainable relationship with their communities; learn to communicate with skill and heart by using empathy, understanding the importance of non-verbal communication skills and conflict resolution techniques; practice a variety of mindfulness skills and techniques to reduce stress in the workplace; create stress reduction and wellness programs to balance work and family responsibilities; understand cultural competence and barriers to a culturally-competent society; coach families to set and reach their own short- and long-term goals for healthy self-reliance in their communities; develop skills and competencies needed to work effectively with families; learn how to form a partnership with families to help them assess their needs and strengths; advocate for and prepare strength-based assessments; identify specialized services and community resources to support families; define the purpose and prepare for home visits by identifying potential safety issues; assist families by setting and achieving goals through shared power by using family development plans; and identify strengths and supports needed to build a supportive community through collaboration.


This course is taught in-person and/or an online format (with a required workbook - Empowerment Skills for Family Workers) consisting of on-going and cumulative competency-based self- assessments, portfolio (reviewed by a National FDC reviewer), and a final exam. The portfolio contains, for each of ten chapters, responses to at least three “Activities to Extend Your Learning” from the Worker Handbook; plan and carry out at least one skills practice with reflection for each chapter; this is shared with an assigned portfolio advisor and their comments documented in the portfolio. The last section of the portfolio contains three (3) Family Development Plans the worker creates with one family, to demonstrate an ability to work with family member(s) as they choose a goal and begin to take steps toward achieving that goal. Reflections are prepared on the family development plan outcome and an overall course. Students work with a trained portfolio advisor for ten (10) hours throughout the course, who provides guidance to complete required portfolio work.

The course consists of ten (10) chapters: Family Development: A Sustainable Route To Healthy Self- Reliance; Communicating with Skill and Heart; Presence and Mindfulness: Cornerstone of Healthy Relationships; Taking Good Care of Yourself; Our Diverse World; Strength-Based Assessment; Helping Families Set and Reach Their Own Goals; Helping Families Access Specialized Services; Home Visiting; and Collaboration and Community Support. The FDC curriculum offers a wide variety of activities to engage learning: presentation, role-play, paired interaction, small and large group discussions, visualization, personal reflection, self-assessment, case studies, and brainstorming. The purpose of the curriculum activities is to help workers learn and practice skills and competencies of strengths-based family development.

Credit recommendation: 

In the upper division baccalaureate degree category, 9 semester hours in Family Studies, Human Services, Child Family Development, Community Outreach, Social Services, Social Work, Health Services, or related discipline areas (6/21).