Practising License Program: Special Needs Community Practitioner (BLENDED)

This program aims to qualify any candidate who has passed all the program’s requirements of International Association of Counselors & Therapists (IACT) and be admitted as a licensed & practising special needs community practitioner. Special Needs Community Practitioner’s (SNCP) is a specialty program that covers special needs community services (SNCS) based on a participatory community-based transdisciplinary treatment. It involves intervention, rehabilitation & management that deals with acute & chronic cases related to intellectual-developmental disabilities within a residential home context. As children with disabilities grow up and enter into adulthood, most of them are more likely than not unable to lead an independent life. As a result, many would end up staying 24/7 in a community home. This is where the SNCPs come into play. In the SNCS approach, 3 key aspects of SNCP’s professional work are: (1) nursing care for people with disabilities living and working in a therapeutic community; (2) application of the principles of universal design in therapeutic community living & working; & (3) assessment, evaluation & profiling of people with disabilities to get them ready for living and working in a community home. 

IACT is a prestigious professional body based in the USA that admit any member who have fulfilled the rigorous requirements of the practising license programs to obtain practising membership as a counselor or a therapist. The membership with IACT is a mark of high standard and excellence. Practising members are not only knowledgeable and bound by high ethical standards, but are also highly respected as well. They are eligible to work in many countries such as North American, Asian and European countries etc. 

The three tiers of IACT’s practising license are Credentialed, Registered and Board Certified. A Board-Certified member holds the highest status of the membership of IACT. Each tier of the practising license comprises 5 modules and takes a year to complete.  All tiers of the practising license programs must be completed in sequence.

As a requirement of IACT, all coursework, assignments and essays of a candidate must be supervised and verified by an approved instructor of IACT. All works of the candidate are required to be submitted by the instructor to the IACT’s Assessment Board based in the USA for final assessment. 

Merlion Academy is authorised to supervise and verify candidates’ work seeking to gain admission as an IACT member. Student member will also be supported by the Singapore and Malaysia IACT-chapters.

The 5 modules at the credentialed (therapist) tier are:

  • Module 1: Community Care Services for People with Special Needs
  • Module 2: Lifespan Human Development (Late Adolescence to Late Adulthood)
  • Module 3: Disabilities & Disorders in Adulthood
  • Module 4: Functionality, Disability & Health
  • Module 5: Treatment Planning in Community Care Service (with Case Studies)

Module exemptions will be granted based on individual’s merits and to the graduate of relevant diploma accredited by International Association of Therapists.


1. Assessment is based on essays and case studies.
2. Guided learning hours to fulfil: 30 hours per module (150 hours in total).
3. Non-guided learning hours (reading time and journal papers writing for publishing): 30 hours per module (150 hours in total).

Entry Requirements:


21 years and above

Minimum qualification

Minimum a bachelor’s degree in
i. special education, education, psychoeducational therapy, speech & language therapy, occupational therapy, counseling or psychology; or
ii. any discipline with postgraduate diploma in teaching, education, educational therapy, psychology etc.

English requirement

1.  Pearson Test of English (PTE) 53; or
2.  IELTS 6.0 (reading and writing must be at 6.0); or
3.  A pass in English Language paper at GCE Ordinary Level
4.  TOEFL 65 
5.  Equivalent (such as Pearson Versant English Test). 

Course Fees:

(Non-refundable one-time application fee of SGD 95.00 is payable upon application)

Program fee

SGD 1,500.00 per module

Marking fee

SGD 50.00 per module

Payment mode

Stripe / Credit card / Alipay

Refund Terms

90% – more than 28 days before course commencement

50% – less than 28 days before course commencement

10% – less than 3 days before course commencement

  0% – more than 3 days after the course commencement