How Much Does Life Coach Training Cost?

Life Coaching is an exciting and rewarding career path. Although there is no set certification needed for this role, getting the right training is crucial to increasing your bottom line. There are a wide variety of programs that fit almost any budget, but more robust and inclusive programs will cost more, as expected.

There are virtual programs that last only three days up to programs that can take 18 to 24 months to complete. Many are accredited by the International Coaching Federation (ICF), which is an organization that prides itself on its ethics and high standards. Earning a certification from an ICF accredited program can help you stand out from other Life Coaches.

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The Humble Beginnings of Life Coaching

Thomas Leonard was an American financial planner and is said to be responsible for developing Life Coaching as an occupation. He created it in the 1980s because of some additional needs voiced by his clients. They asked for more help organizing their lives, not just their finances. By the 1990s, he created a training program called Coach University/CoachU. He was also a founder of the ICF, which remains the gold standard for training and certification.

Types of Life Coaching Training Programs

Choosing an ICF accredited program or at least ICF approved ensures that the program and school are authorized to issue ICF certifications. The programs offered are created to lead students on the path to Associate Certified Coach (ACC) with Level 1 programs and Professional Certified Coach (PCC) with Level 2 certifications. There are multiple offerings available.

Certified Life Coach Institute offers a certification course that costs $995 for Level 1; an intensive virtual class taught over three days. With this certification, students are ready to begin their work as official Life Coaches. For Level 2 and to gain a Professional Coach Master Class Certificate, the cost is $1295. The class is taught virtually over three days. Level 1 and Level 2 must both be completed before a Life Coach can register with the ICF. Registering for both levels reduces the cost to $1995, saving students nearly $300.

For a more robust program, The Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching (iPEC) offers a mostly self-paced online program that can take 10 to 12 months to complete. Upon completion, three certifications are earned, including their Certified Professional Coach (CPC), as well as two others that are specific to iPEC: Energy Leadership Index Master Practitioner (ELI), is a way to assess clients’ beliefs and fears, and COR.e Dynamics, which focuses on the underlying issues that are holding clients back from reaching their full potential. The full program cost is $11,950.

For those who prefer a university degree, Grand Canyon University offers an online master’s degree in Psychology with an emphasis on Life Coaching. The program is intended for students already possessing a bachelor’s degree in psychology. It includes ten courses adding up to a total of 36 units. The cost of this program is just over $20,000. It is not ICF accredited.

ICF Certification Changes

There will be some changes over 18 months, beginning January 2022, which will affect the way ICF courses are defined. As part of those changes,the ICF will no longer offer an Accredited Coach Training Program (ACTP) or Approved Coach Specific Training Hours (ACSTH) program. Instead, they will be offering Level 1, the path to become an ACC, and Level 2, which is the path to becoming a PCC. Their goal is to streamline the certification process. 

Financial Aid or Scholarship Opportunities

Unfortunately, there are not any financial aid or scholarships available. Some programs offer students multiple payment options. It’s a good idea to read the fine print in these agreements, as some payment plans can cost thousands more than paying for the course all at once.