Doulaing the DoulaBirth Doula Training and Certification

In Person Workshop

Have you already registered for the in person workshop?

Welcome! Your workshop starts now!


During the preparation phase of the workshop, you’ll complete your book reading, read about certification and ethics, watch some videos, fill out the pretest, and hopefully take the Childbirth for Professionals class.  If you have time, here are projects you can do now or later to begin your doula practice.

Your space is confirmed when the registration form and payment have been received. You will be emailed a confirmation letter with details about the training. If you do not hear from me within a few days, please contact me again.

Preparation Tasks

1. Make sure you reply to the email to let me know you received it. It’s the only way I know we’ve connected!  (15 seconds)

2. Choose two books to read. Always get the most recent edition you can find, in our field that’s important. For a pregnancy book suggestion, we like The Simple Guide To Having A Baby (authors differ) or The Mother of All Pregnancy Books by Ann Douglas.  The book you choose needs to include the information you need to answer the pretest (see #4).  (3-4 hours)

For your labor support book, you have three choices:  We like The Nurturing Touch At Birth: A Labor Support Handbook by Paulina Perez.  You could also read The Birth Partner: A Complete Guide to Childbirth for Dads, Doulas, and other Labor Companions by Penny Simkin or The Birth Partner’s Quick Reference Guide and Planner: Essential Labor and Childbirth Information for Partners and Helpers by Penny Simkin and Katie Rohs.  We also recommend but don’t require The Mocha Manual to a Fabulous Pregnancy by Kimberly Seals-Allers.  (2 – 4 hours)

3. Review the list of “things you are expected to know before attending”.  Optional if taking Childbirth for Professionals course. (10 minutes)

4. Please download, read and fill out the DTD pretest from this webpage and send it to me two weeks before your workshop begins. The pretest is a preparation exercise that narrows down for you what I expect you to know and the issues I want to hear your perspective about. It enables me to get to know you better and for you to feel more confident about your background knowledge. Don’t lose sleep over it – a completed test that arrives a week later is much better than a rushed one received on time! You can send me a Google Drive link, a pdf, a Word document, or fill it out longhand and mail it in an envelope with a stamp. I can’t print a jpg or png file (photos) or a pdf converted from a jpeg. (2 hours)

5. Read the Doulaing The Doula Standards of Practice Birth Doula Standards of Practice and Code of Ethics, skim our certification options, and details about our mentored small group certification process.  (15-20 minutes)

6. Pay any remaining tuition.  Thank you!  (5 minutes)

7. As part of our commitment to cultural competency to our doulas, we ask workshop participants to spend time focusing on these issues before class. An important topic in perinatal care today is the issue of racial disparities in birth outcomes and racism in health care. There are some key historical events that affect how patients experience their perinatal care.  We recommend viewing these three videos: “How The US Health Care System Is Still Haunted By Slavery” (9 mins) and “The Culture War Between Physicians and Midwives” (6 mins), and “Midwives Address Health Disparities” (10 mins). These videos may be triggering for people of color whose lives are affected by these issues. Please use self care strategies if you choose to watch – breathing, grounding, ‘pleasure’ triggers close by (pets, blankets, a pretty view, etc). (25 minutes)

We also recommend reading the O magazine article, Getting Sick While Black. This link opens to a scanned pdf of the print article, suitable for a computer or tablet.  (12-15 minutes)

If you have more time, we also recommend the documentary “the AMERICAN dream”, featuring midwife Jennie Joseph, CPM, LM, a very important person in the modern midwifery movement. “The women tell their own stories: they know what is wrong, they share their hopes, they share their fears, and they share about their American dream, related to maternal health in the US.” (45 minutes)

These other preparation tasks are optional and depend on your goals:

8. For people wanting to begin a doula business: You may be interested in completing the Doulaing The Doula Marketing Exercise. People who complete all six steps of the exercise may participate in a Mastermind on the last day of the course, getting input from other people about their initial business plan. Here are the first four questions on the exercise, which you can complete before the training. You’ll receive the rest of the exercise in your training manual. You’ll also want to set aside a half hour to complete the last two steps on your own before the morning of our last day.

9. If you are eager to get started, there are several tasks you can do before attending your training. You’ll want to have them accomplished before you start attending births. They are listed here: “Seem Like A Long Wait?”

10. You may be interested in reading some posts on my Blog, Doulaing The Doula.

Our Absence Policy: If you miss a required portion of the training, you can make up that one or two hour session by attending that session during another online or in person training. Alternately, you can arrange for an individual learning session with the training assistant for your class to cover the material; there may be an additional fee for your training assistant’s time. You will not receive a completion certificate until all required sessions have been attended.

I look forward to seeing you at the workshop!



Amy managed to work in the social and political context of doula work while still keeping it heart centered. I learned so many concrete skills to use in other aspects of my life. This training was so much more than I expected it to be.