A few colleges offer doula certificate training programs, and students wishing to begin the practice may also find 2-day workshops, which provide the necessary education and knowledge to assist a mother with delivery, infant support and postpartum expectations. These programs may include practical experience in a volunteer capacity at an affiliated hospital or clinic.
Programs for Doulas
There are only a handful of accredited programs that offer training to become a doula. Below is a list of schools with certificate programs:
|College/Universities||Location||Institution Type||Degrees Offered||Cost (2019-2020)*|
|Bastyr University||Kenmore, Washington||4-year, private not-for-profit||Certificate||$689|
|Birthingway College of Midwifery||Portland, Oregon||4-year, primarily associate's, private not-for-profit||Certificate||$525 (program fee)|
|Birthwise Midwifery School||Bridgton, Maine||2-year, Private for-profit||Certificate||$450|
School Selection Criteria
Students looking for doula training may consider the following:
- Look for programs offering professional certification that has been accredited by the Childbirth and Postpartum Professional Association (CAPPA) or Doulas of North America (DONA).
- Students who wish to broaden their knowledge and obtain multiple credentials may benefit from enrolling in a college that offers doula, nutrition and counseling training within a larger midwifery program.
- Credit obtained in a doula certificate program may transfer for those wishing to continue in a medical- or health-related degree program.
Certificates for Birth or Labor Doulas
Workshop and training opportunities for birth and labor doulas focus on preparation for childbirth. Students learn the physical and emotional support strategies often necessary during the birthing process. Birth doulas can be responsible for relaying information to the expectant mother, as well as ensuring that the birthing experience is as pleasant as possible.
Certificates for Postpartum Doulas
Assistance with breastfeeding, general housework, mood disorder management and infant care are typically the expected responsibilities of the postpartum doula. Training programs for postpartum doulas concentrate on subjects like childbirth process, hormonal levels, and breastfeeding.
There are only a select number of accredited programs that offer professional certification in becoming a doula. These short programs consist of classes and may require hands-on training.