“I believe that the CASE Approach is a remarkable conceptual and clinical contribution to the field of suicidology. It should be routinely taught to any front-line clinician. It has the power to meaningfully save lives.”

David A. Jobes, PhD
Author, Managing Suicidal Risk: A Collaborative Approach, 2nd Ed.
from his Preface to Dr. Shea’s book
The Practical Art of Suicide Assessment

Typical Video Sample: This excerpt from Course #2

"If all mental health providers were trained in the CASE Approach, I believe that thousands of lives would be saved a year. And I’m not exaggerating, I believe this in my very core. A triumph of innovation. A great gift to the field of suicide prevention."

Skip Simpson, JD

Practice Limited to Psychiatric and Psychological Malpractice

The CASE Approach is a flexible, practical, and easily learned interviewing strategy for uncovering suicidal ideation, planning, and intent. It is designed to increase validity, decrease errors of omission, and increase the client’s sense of safety with the interviewer. The interviewing questions used in the CASE Approach - known as validity techniques - are directly pulled from innovations in the field of clinical interviewing. They are flexibly interwoven to match the unique needs of each client as they share their suicidal ideation chronologically over the four time-frames shown. The CASE Approach provides a powerful tool for suicide assessment and prevention that can be easily learned by any clinician from any discipline and with any level of experience from graduate students to wisened clinicians with over 40 years in the field.

“Dr. Shea is an extremely gifted teacher, whose vibrant story-telling skills and compelling videos have led him to garnering some of the highest evaluations in the 30-year history of the Cape Cod Symposium. In short, viewers are in for a rare treat.”

Rob Guerette, MD
Founder and Director of the Cape Cod Symposium

Dr. Shawn Shea

Shawn Christopher Shea, MD is an innovator, author, and speaker in the fields of suicide prevention, clinical interviewing, and creating the therapeutic alliance. He has presented over 850 presentations in the United States and - internationally - from Canada and Europe to Australia and New Zealand.

Dr. Shea has written seven books and numerous articles. His book The Practical Art of Suicide Assessment: A Guide for Mental Health Professionals and Substance Abuse Counselors is viewed as a classic in the field of suicide prevention. His text Psychiatric Interviewing: The Art of Understanding - A Practical Guide for Psychiatrists, Psychologists, Counselors, Social Workers, Nurses, and Other Mental Health Professionals, 3rd Edition was chosen by the British Medical Association as the 2017 Book of the Year in Psychiatry.

Dr. Shea has presented an updated half-day course on the CASE Approach for 21 consecutive years at the Annual Meeting of the American Association of Suicidology representing one of the longest running courses in the history of the organization.

Course Description

Note: Each course may be accessed for 60 Days

"Suicide Prevention through Sound Suicide Assessment"


  • Can the CASE Approach be used in teletherapy?

    Absolutely. It is perfectly designed for teletherapy, meeting a great need in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic. Indeed, it is also very effective for telephone interventions as is often seen with suicide prevention crisis lines.

  • Our organization is implementing a Zero Suicide Approach. Will training in the CASE Approach meet our needs?

    The CASE Approach resonates nicely with the Zero Suicide Initiative as reflected by various trainings on the CASE Approach - provided by Dr. Shea - having been listed on the Zero Suicide’s Care Training Options List for years.

  • Does this course provide CEs or CMEs?

    This course does not provide CEs or CMEs. Students do receive a certificate of completion from TISA indicating a course completion time of 4 hours for the Core-Skills Course or 6 hours for the Advanced Core-Skills Course (Deluxe Package).

  • For what age groups is the CASE Approach designed?

    The CASE Approach is specifically designed for use with adolescents and adults of all ages. It is not designed nor recommended for use with children.

    On the other hand, the validity techniques utilized in the CASE Approach (as are well-described in both courses) are excellent for use with the parents of children to uncover secrets such as child abuse and neglect, problematic alcohol and/or substance use, or other parental behaviors that can damage children or thwart therapy.

  • In what clinical settings is the CASE Approach of use?

    The CASE Approach is used in essentially all clinical settings including community mental health centers, inpatient units, university counseling centers, high schools, private practices, correctional facilities, military bases and VAs, Native American counseling centers, emergency departments, telephone crisis centers, and primary care clinics and general hospitals.

  • Can the CASE Approach be used in differing cultures and populations?

    The CASE Approach has been used across numerous cultures, ethnic groups, races, and sexes including populations - such as the LGBTQI community - that cross all ethnicities and races.

If you are in crisis, you can find help at the
Lifeline Chat Room 988lifeline.org or call or text 988.