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The Best Executive Function Coaching Certification Programs

Last updated on May 8, 2024

Why is executive function coaching needed more than ever? Daily obligations have increased immensely, and not everyone has the time-management and planning abilities to keep their life organized and stress-free. An executive function coach is there to help both children and adults learn how to be more efficient in today’s complex world full of distractions and conflicting priorities.

If you feel like you’ve found your calling in this field, set your career in motion with the help of the best executive function coaching certification programs. Read on to find out which are our top picks for executive functioning coach training and what you can learn from each one. 

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What Is an Executive Function Coach?

Harvard University refers to executive function as a set of the following skills: 

  • Planning ahead and meeting goals
  • Displaying self-control 
  • Following multiple-step instructions even when interrupted
  • Staying focused despite distractions 

While these skills aren’t innate to everyone, they can be learned—and this is where executive function coaches step into the picture. An executive function coach helps clients become more independent and successful so that they can feel confident in their ability to take on whatever challenges come their way. 

What Does an Executive Function Coach Do? 

An executive function coach teaches kids and adults the necessary self-management skills that will help them deal with daily challenges, be able to successfully juggle multiple obligations, and deal with sabotaging emotions, such as anxiety. EF coaches often work with children and adults who have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), as they have a harder time staying focused on their objectives. 

How sessions generally work is that coaches figure out which executive function skills the client already possesses and which ones need some work. Based on that, they’ll work with the client on all the crucial skills, focusing on the ones that are most important to the client at that moment. The ultimate goal is to help the client learn how to plan their life for maximum efficiency and stay focused. 

How to Become a Certified Executive Functioning Coach

You have the desire, the focused mindset, and the passion for coaching…now how do you become an executive function coach?

Executive functioning coaching certification programs are the shortest route to proficiency in executive function coaching. Not only will you learn about strategies you can apply when working with clients, but you’ll also learn more about coaching and how to establish a coaching business in this niche

In addition to coaching tools and techniques, the qualities that will help you in executive function coaching are:

  • Listening skills
  • Objectivity
  • Communication skills
  • Empathy
  • Organization skills
  • Persistence
  • Patience

Factors to Consider When Choosing an Executive Function Coaching Certification 

How can you navigate your search to find the best executive functioning coach certification program for your coaching goals? In addition to the program’s curriculum and offerings, you should consider how much it costs, how long it lasts, and whether it is accredited. 

Program Cost

When it comes to investing in an executive function coach training program, one of the biggest factors that will affect your choice is the cost. Online courses tend to be more affordable, but you should be certain that you can adapt to a virtual learning environment. Another thing you should be wary of is whether there are any additional costs apart from the tuition fee. 

Course Length

Executive functioning coach training programs come in all shapes and sizes, with some being super intensive and taking less than a few weeks to finish and others lasting up to a year (or even longer). It’s important to think about your goals and what timeline you have in mind for building your coaching business to make a decision that fits your plans.

Accreditation

Accreditation isn’t necessary for you to become a certified executive function coach. But, there are organizations like the International Coach Federation (ICF)—the most recognized accrediting body—that evaluate and approve life coach training companies. Choosing a program accredited by a respected organization can give you greater confidence in the quality of the training and instructors. Plus, having a certificate from an accredited program can help you win over some clients

Best Executive Function Coach Certification Programs

Best Overall: The Executive Function Coaching Academy

If you’d like a comprehensive learning experience and continuous EF training, you can get the most out of your investment with The Executive Function Coaching Academy. You’ll jumpstart your learning with 6 live masterclasses led by master coach Sean McCormick, founder of Executive Function Specialists. Once you’ve completed these introductory lessons, you’ll gain a subscription to the academy, which grants you access to numerous executive coaching courses.

The Executive Function Coaching Academy

Their extensive collection of courses includes:

  • Live Executive Function Coach Certification Program
  • Become an EF Specialist
  • How To Attract Executive Function Coaching Clients
  • How To Build Your Executive Function Coaching Business

The academy aims to set you up with information, strategies, and tools for both effective executive function coaching and building a successful business. 

The subscription brings many benefits, such as self-directed learning material, live coaching twice a month, listing in their directory of executive function coaches, private member community, and pre-made templates and tools that you can instantly apply. 

Full review here.

  • Course Length: 6 weeks
  • Program Cost: $597 for 6 masterclasses + lifetime access to the academy
  • Accreditation: None
  • Mode of Delivery: Online

Beginners Option: Connections in Mind

The executive functioning training certification by Connections in Mind offers a robust curriculum that covers 22 core standards and skills for practicing executive function coaching—which is why it can be an ideal program for beginners. The training is based on the book Coaching Students with Executive Function Deficits by Dr. Peg Dawson and Dr. Richard Guare. The authors of the book have also helped with creating content and accreditation. 

Connections in Mind logo
Connections in Mind – Executive Functioning Training Certification

What you’ll learn through this course are the basics of neuroscience and neuroplasticity, the impact of executive function skills, the connection between emotional processing and executive function skills, the best coaching and motivational interviewing skills, and how to support clients through making changes. They’ll also introduce you to their coaching model, Connections in Mind Connect, Collaborate, and Support.

  • Course Length: 5 weeks
  • Program Cost: £792 – Spring course; £840 – Autumn course
  • Accreditation: None
  • Mode of Delivery: Online

Students with ADHD Option: JST Coaching and Training

Do you want to learn about coaching students with ADHD? JST Coaching & Training has two programs that are designed to prepare coaches for working with learners with ADHD. This is also a training program required by Edge Foundation if you wish to become an Edge coach. 

The course Empowering Students Through Coaching is for those who don’t have any prior experience. This training program will equip you with in-depth content and powerful strategies for working with students from the age of 8 and upwards who are facing the challenges of ADHD. The completion of the course leads to an ICF Associate Certified Coach (ACC) credential. Learn more about credentialing here

JST Coaching and Training logo
JST Coaching & Training – Coaching Neurodiverse Learners

If you already have coaching experience, the better choice would be the Coaching Neurodiverse Learners course. The prerequisites are more than 20 hours of coaching-specific training or enrollment in any of the JST coach training programs. You’ll dive deeper into the field of ADHD coaching by learning about neurodiversity and how it impacts the coaching process, coaching strategies to support neurodiverse learners, and more.

  • Course Length: Up to 6 months 
  • Program Cost: $7,595 – Empowering Students Through Coaching; $2,899 – Coaching Neurodiverse Learners
  • Accreditation: ICF
  • Mode of Delivery: Online

Ready-Made Training Materials Option: Learning Specialist

Learning Specialist’s Developing Executive Functions & Study Strategies: A Comprehensive Approach is a well-structured and very hands-on course that will provide you with done-for-you executive function coaching strategies and tools for working with students. It was designed by Dr. Erica Warren, an executive function coach, educational therapist, and learning specialist. Even though this course isn’t designed specifically for coaches, the content could be integrated into a coaching practice.

Learning Specialist logo
Learning Specialist – Developing Executive Functions & Study Strategies: A Comprehensive Approach

What we like about this program is that it includes material that you can use directly with learners, such as handouts, assessments, videos, and presentations. There’s also an Executive Functioning Activities Library that you can purchase for 50% off once you sign up for the course. In addition, you can pick the brain of Dr. Warren, who offers a free Zoom call once or twice a year.

  • Course Length: Self-paced
  • Program Cost: $299 per year
  • Accreditation: None
  • Mode of Delivery: Online

Professional Development Option: PESI

Here’s another course that doesn’t target only executive function coaches but provides insight into the knowledge and practices that can upgrade your understanding and abilities in this field. 

PESI logo
PESI – Executive Functioning Skills for Children & Adolescents

PESI is a non-profit organization that offers continuing education to a variety of professionals. Their Executive Functioning Skills for Children & Adolescents is an advanced certification course that focuses on improving cognition in students, enhancing learning, and improving self-regulation, sequencing, attention, and memory activities. 

On top of that, you’ll get to experience 50 developmentally progressive cognitive exercises and coaching activities that can upgrade your coaching practice. 

With this course, you can earn up to 12 continuing education (CE) hours. 

Workshop Option: Seth Perler

Seth Perler is one of the pioneers of the executive function coaching industry. He was a struggling student himself before he became one of the most famous executive function, ADHD, and twice-exceptional (2e) coaches worldwide. 

The Executive Function Coach Blueprint is an intensive workshop that demands commitment and passion for executive coaching. It is not designed exclusively for coaches, but it offers a unique approach to executive function coaching. 

Seth Perler cover photo
Seth Perler – Executive Function Coach Blueprint

The teachings are based on Seth Perler’s methods, and the course will cover how to help children struggling with executive functions, and how and why the methods work. As a bonus, Seth will also give you insight into how to build and market your business. 

Since this course is in high demand and the number of applicants is limited, right now there’s only a wait-list option. In the meantime, you can check out the free resources and tools.

  • Course Length: Available upon signing up
  • Program Cost: Available upon signing up
  • Accreditation: None
  • Mode of Delivery: Online

Alternatives (non-niche)

The primary focus of executive function coaching certification programs is the information, methodologies, and tools used in this field. But what about coaching skills? If you wish to boost your confidence as a coach and learn more about starting a business in this industry, you can enroll in a life coaching program.

In this way, you’ll build a strong foundation in life coaching and begin working with clients, to which you can then add executive coaching knowledge and expertise. Our recommendations for life coaching training are Transformation Academy and Coach Training Alliance. These are top-quality and comprehensive programs that also come with an affordable price, so they won’t take a huge chunk out of your coaching budget. With our link to TA courses, you’ll even get a 50% discount. 

Read our TA review and CTA review to learn more about these programs.  

FAQs

  • What is the average executive functioning coach’s salary?

How much you’ll earn depends on your expertise and recognition, but the average annual salary for an executive function coach is $87,631. 

  • ​​Is executive function coaching covered by insurance?

Typically, insurance plans don’t cover this type of coaching.

  • Do you need a certification to be an executive function coach?

Even though a certification isn’t explicitly required, it is a huge selling point and a valuable tool for building and growing an executive function coaching career.

  • How much does an executive function coach certification cost?

The cost of an executive function coach certification program varies from $300 to over $7,000.

  • Does accreditation matter in an executive function coach certification program?

Accreditation isn’t necessary, and whether you’ll choose an accredited program or not depends solely on your wishes and goals. If you need CE hours, you should aim for accredited programs that can provide you with that, but if not, you can also pick one of the reputable non-accredited programs.

  • What is the most recognized coaching certification? 

There are tons of certification programs for coaching, so it can be quite overwhelming to learn about them all. If you want to choose a program with a recognizable name, you should navigate toward programs accredited by recognized institutions like ICF.

Conclusion

Executive function coaching is a fairly new industry with immense need. By becoming an executive function coach, you can make a difference in the lives of children and adults while also creating a balance in your own life and making a good living. We hope that our list of executive function certification programs will give you some guidance and help you become a recognized expert in executive function coaching. 

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