About Motivational Interviewing

Over the next few months, the Minnesota Child Welfare Training Academy (MNCWTA) is piloting several cohorts of Motivational Interviewing (MI) training. MI is a practice tool that promotes behavior change through deep listening, reflection, and principles rooted in empathy and supporting self efficacy. As an evidenced-based practice, MI is one of the first approved services in the prevention plan for Minnesota’s Family First Prevention Services Act (FFPSA).

This training is designed for Minnesota county or tribal child welfare workers, child welfare supervisors, and lead workers or designated specialists within agencies. If you are not sure, discuss this opportunity with your supervisor. Refer to the PartnerLink FFPSA webpage for the FAQ and one pager on prevention services for more details.


All pathways must meet the following prerequisite requirement of completing ICWA/MIFPA Training since January 2020.

Approved courses that meet the ICWA/MIFPA prerequisite:

  • TrainLink: CSP111C1A (after January 2020)
  • MNCWTA Training Portal (since November 2021): CWTA X100 (Foundations); CWTA X212 (ICWA/MIFPA Ongoing Worker); or CWTA X216 (ICWA/MIFPA for County Agency Supervisors)

Pathways to Complete Training

A few things to note:

  • If you took ICWA/MIFPA training outside the MNCWTA Training Portal between January 2020 and November 2021 (in TrainLink, for example), please submit a help ticket with proof of training attached and MNCWTA staff will get you registered
    • How to get proof of training: When you go into TrainLink choose "Children's Services" under the Learning Centers and then under "Student Information" you can "View or Print Your Transcript." Please show record of CSP111C1A since 1/23/2020
  • If you completed an ICWA/MIFPA training prior to the change in January 2020, you will need to complete ICWA/MFPA Ongoing Worker Training (CWTA X212) through the MNCWTA Training Portal
  • Supervisors, lead workers, or designated specialists within agencies who are designated to provide supervision to MI trained workers must complete training before workers, at the same time as workers, or within six months of workers starting training.

Fidelity Monitoring

DHS is in the process of contracting with Lyssn, an artificial intelligence (AI) data analysis software tool, for ongoing fidelity monitoring and working to establish a roll out process with agencies as staff become trained. Ongoing fidelity monitoring intends to provide workers and supervisors support as they implement motivational interviewing and is a requirement under the FFPSA prevention services plan.

As part of the requirements for the Family First Prevention Services Act, DHS will reach out to begin the fidelity monitoring process once learners are certified in Motivational Interviewing. Fidelity monitoring can lead to better engagement between workers and families, enable documentation of intervention successes, and provide information for skills development. To learn more, click here.

Title IV-E Prevention Services Funds Claiming

Learners who complete Pathway 1 of MI Training will be ready when claiming begins (late 2024). Additional information specific to claiming and other updates are available on the DHS website