Lactation Program Review: Certified Lactation Educator (CLE) Training through CAPPA


Lactation Program Review: 

Certified Lactation Educator (CLE) Training Program

through  CAPPA Academy

 Reviewer: Christy Jo Hendricks, IBCLC

        January 20, 2015

How long did it take you to complete the program? 3 months

What year did you complete the program? 2012

Certification or Certificate Offered – Certified Lactation Educator (CLE)

Scope of practice for a Certified Lactation Educator (CLE)

Delivery of Program – In-person 20 hour Lactation Educator Training over a period of 3 days + certification requirements via CAPPA Academy (now completely online).

CAPPA’s current Lactation Educator Training locations, times and dates

Books & Materials Required – The initial three-day training provided a manual and handouts that corresponded with the PowerPoint. After taking the 20 Hour Course, individuals who certify are required to read the manual (provided) and four additional books from this list and one of the following texts in its latest edition: Hale and Hartmann’s Textbook of Human Lactation OR Jan Riordan’s Breastfeeding and Human Lactation (preferred textbook).

Cost of Program (Including books, materials, application fees, etc.) – $400 (early bird) + $55 CAPPA Membership + $35 Hug Your Baby +$175 CAPPA Academy = $665 + cost of 5 additional books.

If you don’t want to be certified and just want to take CAPPA’s 20 hour Lactation Educator Training, then you just pay the cost of the 3 day workshop (usually around $400) and all other materials are provided for free.

# of L-CERPs, Nursing Contact Hours, CEUs, CPEs, etc. offered – 21.5 L-CERPs (guaranteed through 2015).

Do this program’s hours meet partial or full requirements for the IBCLC exam’s lactation specific training requirement?

Yes, partial (21.25 hours).

If yes, how many hours of lactation specific training are counted for the IBCLC exam?

It counts for 21.25 hours towards the 90 hour IBCLC exam lactation education requirement.

Name of trainer(s): Laurel Wilson

What did you like about the program?

  • I was impressed that so much was covered. There were sections on anatomy, physiology, latch, education, curriculum development, business marketing and networking opportunities.
  • I was happy to see the program stressing evidence-based information and autonomy of clients.
  • I also appreciated the organization of the program and the accessibility of the instructor following the course.
  • I was able to learn so much in three days and then follow through to certification with a mentor.

What did you dislike about the program?

At the time I took the course, the certification after the training was completed in paper form and mailed in. Since my certification, they have transitioned to an on-line program, which I think is much better. They now have traditional, distance and accelerated options for those wishing to certify. I appreciate CAPPA staying contemporary in education.

How rigorous/time consuming did you find the program?

Since I was already an IBCLC, I was able to take the accelerated course. I had read the required books and regularly attended coalitions meetings and read research, so, for me, it was not difficult. It fit into my regular schedule. I think the reading assignments and research reviews are probably the most time consuming.

Would you recommend this program to others?

Absolutely! It is a perfect entry level course for those who want to enter the lactation field and it also helps those in the perinatal field to earn a certification for a relatively small investment. It is a recognized certification that can help propel a profession and build breastfeeding education confidence. So many families have questions regarding breastfeeding and I believe every doula, WIC Peer and RN benefits from a course like the CLE training.

Knowing what you know now, would you take this program again? Yes.

Do you feel the course and/or certification helped you obtain your goals?

Yes. I get referrals from the organization and have used the education-specific training to add to my services. Students who I have trained have been hired at WIC clinics, hospitals, Baby Friendly practices and started private practices.

Additional Comments?

  • I appreciate how quickly this organization answered my questions.
  • I value how committed they are to research and education; thus, offering a free annual conference with free CEUs to all members (with membership only $55), it is very affordable to earn the CERPs needed.
  • I also appreciate the faculty’s willingness to travel to locations so students can take a local training. It has been a wonderful experience.
  • I associated so much with the “Love Wins” philosophy of the organization, I applied to be faculty. I have since learned what is expected of faculty.
  • As a mentor, I am required to serve the students, stay up-to-date on research, promote building bridges with all perinatal professionals and network to improve support for breastfeeding families.

Does your program/credential require you to recertify? If so, how long does the credential last and what is required to recertify? Yes, my CLE credential is good for 3 years. I need 15 CERPs to recertify – all of which can be earned at the annual conference, which is FREE to all CAPPA members. You can read more on CAPPA’s recertification process here.

Would you like to write a review of a Lactation Training Program that you’ve taken? If so, don’t be shy! You can access the review form directly from Galactablog. Or directly online via Google Forms here.

**Disclaimer – The views and opinions expressed in this review are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Galactablog. It’s also important to note that these views are not the only source of information about this particular lactation training program. See here for more program details on CAPPA, along with comparison of similar Lactation Training Programs. If you’re interested in Lactation Training Programs that offer a clinical practice component, see here.


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