Suicide Update (2015, 1 hour)

Independent Study Continuing Education Program

This is an online continuing education program based on a video made of a recent workshop held by the Alabama Psychological Association. 

In order to receive credit, register here.


Suicide Update (2015) 

FORMAT: 1 hour lecture


PresenterDale Wisely, Ph.D.  

SUMMARYSuicide prevention is almost always a part of the work of professionals engaged in mental health clinical work. This one-hour video presentation is not intended to serve as training on evaluation and treatment of suicidal patients. It provides an update on suicide rates, including key demographic data, in the last ten years, which reveal significant increases in suicide among middle-aged Americans (and stable rates in the young and the elderly). In addition, presenter Dale Wisely, Ph.D., will provide a basic summary of a interpersonal theory of why people die by suicide, proposed by Thomas Joiner, 

Learning Objectives: At the completion of this activity, participants will

  1. 1.    be able to identify which age groups have and have not seen a significant increase in suicide rates in the last decade.
  2. 2.    be able to identify relative suicide risk among young vs. old, white vs. nonwhite, males vs. females.
  3. 3.    be able to identify leading theories regarding why people die by suicide.
  4. 4.    be able to identify 3 overlapping components that Thomas Joiner believes leads to suicide.

Presenter Bio: Dale Wisely Ph.D. is Director of Student Services and Community Education at Mountain Brook Schools (Alabama) and has been a child and adolescent clinical psychologist for more than 30 years. Dr. Wisely earned his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in clinical psychology from the University of Memphis. He served his clinical internship in psychology at West Virginia University School of Medicine, Department of Behavioral Medicine in Charleston, West Virginia. He also holds a Master's in Theological Studies from Spring Hill College. He was a Visiting Assistant Professor at the University of Alabama and, for 14 years, the senior psychologist at Children's Hospital's Vaughan Clinic. Dr. Wisely has taught and held adjunct faculty appointments at the University of Alabama, the University of Alabama-Birmingham, and Spring Hill College.  He teaches in the area of the intersection of psychology and pastoral work for the Certificate in Spiritual Direction and the graduate program in Theology at Spring Hill College. (Full CV available on request.)

References for this program:

American Association of Suicidology (2015). Fact sheets on suicide.

Joiner, Thomas (2007). Why people die by suicide. Boston: Harvard University Press.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ((2013). Web-based Injury Statistics Query and Reporting System (WISQARS). National Center for Injury Prevention and Control. Available from URL

World Health Organization (2014) Preventing suicide: A global imperative. World Health Organization.

How to Earn CE Credits for this Activity:

1.      Register here. (

2.      Watch the video here.

3.      Complete the online test, and then the evaluation, both available as one online instrument at this link

The Alabama Psychological Association (aPA) is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. aPA maintains responsibility for this program and its content. Each workshop is offered separately. Partial completion will preclude awarding CE credits. 

INTENDED AUDIENCE: This CE activity is intended for psychologists, other mental health professionals, and graduate students in mental health disciplines. 

Cancellations & Refunds: Refund requests must be made in writing within 90 days of completing this activity. No refunds after this date.

Concerns and Complaints: If you have any concerns, complaints, questions, or ideas for improvement, please direct them to either Kelley Durrance at or the CE Chairperson, Dr. Gaye Vance, at

Special Needs aPA is committed to providing access and support to persons with special needs.  For further information, call 334-262-8245.