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Are Anger Management Classes Really Effective?

So, you think you have an anger problem?  It's often hard to determine what exactly is a "problem" which out having a diagnostic category that has been established.  In psychology, all nervous and mental disorders are listed in the DSM-IV-TR which is published by the American Psychological Association.  Unfortunately, anger is not listed as a disorder; however, it is a symptom of many other disorders.  The good news is, problem anger can be treated regardless of whether or not there is a diagnosis for it.

One easy way to find out if your anger is a problem is to have an anger management assessment.  There are various assessments in anger management that can be provided by either a licensed mental health professional and/or a certified anger management professional.  The outcome of the assessment will then show either skill deficiencies or state trait anger outcome depending on the type of assessment used.

The next step is to choose an anger management program.  Here is the real issue.  While most quality anger management programs use empirically validated interventions, most do not have scientific evidence to support their effectiveness.  This is mostly due to the fact that developing studies that can be peer reviewed and scientifically proven take a lot of time, and money, which most private for profit organizations do not have.  Recently the California Evidence-Based Clearinghouse for Child Welfare listed the Century Anger Management model of intervention to it's list of programs.  It is this authors view that programs which utilize the Century Anger Management model of intervention would be a strong choice for those seeking to improve in skills related to anger and stress management.  This model uses two primary evidence based theories in all of it's interventions.  The use of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Behavior Therapy (BT).  There are so many studies available on these two approaches, it would be laborious to try and list them in this entry.

With a solid model of intervention in mind, the next step is to find a provider who can offer these classes.  Anger management is not hard to find.  A simple Google search of the word "anger management" will yield a staggering 18,700,000 results!  So, best to narrow down the search to things like "anger management classes in (your city)".  You will then likely find some local resources that might be a good fit for what you are looking for.  Another resource would be to take the anger management class online from a reputable and trusted provider.  Again, look for a online class that has a proven track record and model of intervention that is well established and recognized.  The advantage to an online course is that you don't have to miss time away from other life obligations and the course can be completed when it is best for you. 

There is simply no reason not to start anger management classes if you feel you need them.  Remember, anger destroys the relationships we love the most.  Don't let it happen to you!

Anger Class Online Releases Summer 2011 Promotion for Online Anger Management Classes

Anger Class Online®, the industry leading provider of online anger management classes has long been known for their high quality programs, excellent customer service, and affordable course. They have recently released a new promotional "offer code" to save prospective customers $20.00 off any class they offer. The summer 2011 offer code is: ACOPR611

Dr. Ari Novick, Ph.D., president of Anger Class Online said, "We are pleased to provide this unique discount opportunity to any of our prospective customers who may want to take an anger management class online". Novick continues, "We know people take our online anger management classes for a variety of reasons, such as for a court order, business, personal growth, or other legal requirements. We wanted to create an opportunity during the summer to get even additional savings on our already affordable and comprehensive programs".

Anger Class Online®, which is owned and operated by AJ Novick Group, Inc., has been providing anger management classes online since 2006. They offer 8, 12, 16, 26, 36, and 52 hour/session courses which can be taken completely online. The courses provide detailed information and instruction on how to better manage and control stress and anger. All courses come with a certificate of completion. This new offer code: ACOPR611 will expire September 1, 2011

Anger Management Classes Online Vs. In Person, the Great Debate

Ah, the debate continues, can anger management be learned online or can it only be learned in a classroom setting?  The U.S. Department of Education recently conducted a study comparing traditional learning with what is now called "E-Learning".  Online or distance learning education is one of the fastest growing trends in the world.   What many used to believe was "distance learning", was video conferencing, educational television, or correspondence courses.

The E-Learning of today is so sophisticated, it's no surprise that research studies are showing that is is simply becoming more effective for learning.  Online learning now uses a combination of technologies that were previously unavailable with older generations of distance learning.  This includes muliti-media, personalized learned response techniques, and easier ability to present materials.

As an instructor of anger management for many years both live and online, I have witnessed first hand how skills in this area are acquired.  There is no question in my mind that anger management can be learned both in a live or online anger management class setting.  The real issue is who is teaching the class, what is the program used and how is the course being delivered.  Just as all live programs are not the same, neither are the online programs that are available to the public. 

The internet is flooded with new programs all the time, so it is best for the consumer to choose a program from a reputable, well know and respected provider.  The same advice could also be said for those seeking a live program.  Look to take classes from a provider who is licensed or certified to teach anger management.  Find out what curriculum they are using, such as the Century Anger Management program and learn how long they have been offering these classes.

Whether you need to take a an anger management class for a court ordered anger management requirement or simply for personal growth, be open minded to the type of educational instruction you receive.  Both formats have distinct advantages and disadvantages, so it is really a matter of personal preference.

Are Anger Management Classes a Substitute for Marriage Counseling?

Do Relationships Need Anger Management?
As I licensed psychotherapist, I have seen hundreds of couples in my clinical practice.  As an anger management expert, I have seen equally the same number of couples come in for anger management relationship counseling".  While doing therapy with couples does not always uncover issues related to anger, I can say with almost 100% certainty that anger management counseling always covers issues relevant to good communication, listening, empathy, and expectation management.

Why Do Couples Seek Anger Counseling?
While uncovering underlying issues is important in relationship counseling, I tend to see faster results by simply teaching couples effective techniques for improving the quality of their interactions.  Most couples argue because they are experiencing unmet needs.  It could be needs for affection, security, love, respect, appreciation, or something else.  Anger management counseling covers so many skills that couples almost see immediate benefit.  It could be as simple as changing the tone in one's voice, or expressing feelings more clearly.  Sometimes even slight modifications in behavior can have dramatic results.

How Can Couples Best Learn These Anger Management Skills?
Anger techniques can be learned a variety of ways.  While I have always encouraged couples to make the time to come together, it is also possible to gain these same skills individually or through an online program offered by a licensed professional.  Quality online anger management classes are an excellent way to learn effective strategies without having to spend time away from other commitments.  Classes can be taken from work, at the airport, on the road from a smart phone or any computer with Internet access.  Live anger management classes are also an option if coming in together isn't possible.  Isn't your relationship worth getting help for?  Don't wait until it's too late

Anger Management Classes Aren't for Everyone, But Most Benefit

Taking an anger management class isn't right for everyone
There, I said it.  Not everyone is a candidate for anger management.  Yes, the skills taught in these classes would likely help anyone.  Most would agree that learning how to be a better communicator or how to decrease stress would be helpful.  And yes, most good anger management programs will teach skills in empathy and improving judgment and impulse control.  Still, some might not be a match for such classes.  You might be thinking, who couldn't benefit from learning how to do all these things much better?

Motivation is the Key to Change
Quite frankly, if one isn't motivated to change, it really doesn't matter how great the class is or what is taught in the program.  On a recent phone call earlier today, I was asked by a man how quickly he could finish his class so he could "get on with his life" and not have to worry about this S#$t.  He went on to say "I don't really want to learn anything because I'm not an angry person". My response was, "anger management isn't [email protected], and speediness isn't the cure".  Anger management is set of skills, actually a series of skills that must first be understood, then practiced.  If one's motivation to change is low, taking a class fast or slow won't make a difference.  The participant still wont change.  The motivation to succeed at anything is usually the first predictor of potential success.  So before you sign up, ask yourself, "Am I really motivated to change".

Anger Management Classes Come in all Shapes and Sizes
These days, anger management can be learned in a variety of settings.  For some, taking  group anger management classes is most effective while for others being seen one on one seems to have the most benefit.  Anger Management Classes online is another great option.  These programs do not require the need to drive, and are incredibly convenient and typically cost less than a traditional program.  Regardless of the format, anger courses can be a great match for those that really want to make serious changes to how they think and behave towards others when they do get upset.  Perhaps give it a try and see how you do.  You might be surprised.