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Web Skills for Professionals

One of the objectives for AMHA-USA is to support development of mental health professionals' skills as Internet communicators.  Each professional member of AMHA has personal control over their own professional listing which appears on several interlocking web sites.

Since 1998, AMHA members have studied how the public searches for mental health information on the Internet. The interlocking sites design created for AMHA is, in part, a result of that research. AMHA has a partnership in web presence with a programming and design team that is creating the newest kind of dynamic web page.

The Enhanced Pages and Enhanced Web Sites available to AMHA members represent the leading edge in simplified web presence for people who are not necessarily able web site designers.

Here we offer lessons to guide new and current professional members of AMHA into the construction and use of these dynamic, simple pages.

Getting Started

To change your narrative entries and/or to expand the information about your practice that is available to people searching for therapists on-line complete the following steps:

1. Go to  or to the site for your AMHA Chapter
2. Go to the upper right corner of your computer screen: Member Login
3. Enter your user name and password. this will open a second Member Login and Administration page which begins with the text .. -Welcome Back- read the information on that page as well. 
( If this entry process seem tedious, please be aware there are several layers of protection to keep this site safe from hackers and to protect the security of your information- you have just passed through two of those layers.)
4. You have now come to your personal web site data administration area. You have full control of how your practice is presented on the Internet from this administration area. 

Familiarize Yourself with your web editing pages
Your Name appears at the top of your editing page. 

On the left a column of buttons:
PERSONAL INFORMATION for public search listing this page stores the public information that shapes clients' searches on the -Therapist Locator- menu.

PROFESSIONAL INFORMATION (stores data about your credentials, license, insurance you accept, supervision or peer consultation activity, etc., most of the information entered on this section is not available to the public)






Lesson One


First is your salutation: Ms. Mr. or Dr. or whatever you prefer can be entered there, or, you can leave the space blank.

If you enter a salutation it will appear where your full name appears on the web site.

The next several data windows are self-explanatory, from First Name, through e-mail address.  

 Note that you can let your e-mail address be public, available for prospective referrers potential clients to send you messages, or keep it private, available only for messages from the web site and AMHA administration people. 


You must enter an e-mail address.

Your User Name and Password are linked to it in the web site's data base.

Remember, if you change your e-mail address, change your data page!

Note the scroll down menu of states. If you are licensed in one state, that state should be highlighted (appearing in blue on the list)- if you are licensed and practice in more than one state, hold down the key on your keyboard that allows you to highlight the second or third state/s. 

Then, scroll to the bottom of the data page and click on the -Save Changes- button. (It is important to save changes often when working on your data page.)


If you are a member of an incorporated AMHA chapter, high light and save that affiliation.

Note wheelchair access. Default data entry is -Yes- 
If your office is not wheelchair accessible - please make the change.

Practice Address
The -Location- line of your address can be used in two different ways. 
If you practice as part of a group, or have a practice business name you can enter that on the -Location- line. 

Or, you can use the -Location- line to indicate an area of your community.
The second line of the address is for street and suite numbers.
There are spaces for two practice addresses. 

If you practice in more than two locations, please advise member services:

Your Fee Information can be kept private, or can be public. If you make your fee narrative public, please be sure it is clear and concise.

Please note the information entry for whether or not you have availability for new appointments, and the space narrative to enter your usual office hours.

If you practice in two locations please identify where as well as when you have office hours.

there are a series of data entry windows. 
Enter your discipline,
Then your highest degree

The first scroll down menu refers to populations you serve
the second pull down menu includes terms for problems, theories, types of services, populations, 
the third refers to hospital based services and experience
please use the Control key as indicated, select the terms that apply to your practice from each menu. 

Remember to click the Save Changes button at the bottom of the page often so the electronic gremlins do not eat your data entries.


Lesson Two

The word restrictions listed on the data entry page are guidelines; the Narratives you write can be as long as you like. 

Remember, brief is better.  Your narratives should inform potential clients about who you are and the services you offer.

Please tell us, In "Narrative" form, about your Education / Training /Background 

Write about your professional background and experiences.  Include the types of professional work you have done, the settings and circumstances you have worked in professionally.  Emphasize aspects of your experience relevant to your current clinical practice and to the work you want to attract.

Please enter a brief narrative about Professional Interests / Specialties / Groups or other projects

Write about your practice and clinical focus. Remember you are writing to future clients, not to colleagues.  

TIP: To help narrate your professional interests you could write brief outline descriptions of your last 5 to 8 most-enjoyed clients/clinical cases -- the issues, concerns, the process of the work, its direction and outcome.  Leave those descriptions for a day or so and then re-read them.  As you read what you have written, remember what you love to do and are good at.  Then write about your practice and clinical focus, the "I like to work with..." part of your narrative.

Hospital and/or Teaching Affiliations: (if applicable): List, including information you want to highlight about your hospital or teaching work.

Professional Affiliations / Activities:  List the organizations to which you belong, professional certifications, Diplomate status etc.

Double check your spelling.  You are creating the gud first impreshun of ur praktiz! 


Lesson Three

Improving your chances of being found on the Internet.

Your practice listing is a mini-website and you can put on links or get others to link to it.

To start Click on:  EXPAND MY WEB PAGE 

About meta-tags.  These are the search terms that search engines use to find destinations on the internet.    If you would like to expand your meta-tag list for your professional page, here is how to do it: 

On the EXPAND MY WEB PAGE admin page, put your cursor on Content Outline, near the top. Pull down the short menu and click on "Page Extras."  You get a page with a lot of lines and terms in bubbles. 

Your name is your title, which is what appears at the top of your personal page.  You can change or add to anything on this page, but you MUST "save" when you change EACH LINE.  

These lines are separate; you cannot change the whole page at once.  A bit tedious going back and forth to the Outline Page, but you are talking to a very complicate data base engine here. 

The "Search Terms" line contains your personal meta-tags.  You can add anything that applies to you, or that you think potential clients might use.  The terms are in no particular order, so you can start anywhere.   Add variations of those terms that occur to you.  Add anything that someone might use to describe your work or your therapy approach.  Just use commas between terms.  Another good place to find useful terms is to go to the website's "Therapist Locator" (on the left on the Home page, and on most pages).  Click, and when you get to the search page, click on key terms.  The list is comprehensive, to put it mildly. Don't forget to save your line

When you finish adding Search Terms think of a good, comprehensive description of your practice, including your name, and type it in as the "Description," the next item under Search Terms.  Again, save the line

For your professional advertising, you can buy a personal domain name (about $30 for 2 years), and have AMHA point that domain name at your web page ($60).  OR, You can link your AMHA page to a separate personal web page.

Lesson Four

Adding External Links to take your page-viewing audience where you would like them to go:

To start Click on:  EXPAND MY WEB PAGE 

On the left of the page, below the Content outline pulldown, are the numbers of the items which appear on or link to your page.

Then, below, an un-used number, with a blank space and further to the right a pull-down menu which has “contact info” at the top.

Steps to create an External Link:

  1. Decide where on the internet you want to direct your viewer. Perhaps a personal web page or an article you value?  Get the “URL” (web address) of that exact page.
  2. Choose “External Link” on the pull-down menu. This will create an external link item on your page.
  3. Open the new item by clicking on the “magnifying glass” icon; an administration panel for your new external link will open.
  4. Put the full URL for the page you want the viewer to find in the top space on that panel.
  5. Put the text you want the viewer to see on your page in the space by ”Text for Link:”
  6. The next sections are “Alignment, Size and Type” … you have choices about how the link text will appear on your page. If you are not savvy about what you want, make no changes.
  7. The Redirect Automatically choice should not be changed … if you do, your page will disappear … this choice is only used on AMHA web sites, not web pages.
  8. Next, you can put a description of the link, which will appear when the viewer “hovers” on the link.
  9. Or, alternately you can put a paragraph above, or below your new External link which explains why you want your viewer to click on it. (See Lessons Five and Six).
  10. You can choose the date you want your External Link to become visible, and the date you want it to turn off.
  11. Finally, turn your External Link to “on” (Even if you don’t want it to begin to display until a later date) and SAVE CHANGES.


Lesson 5

Creating Paragraphs

Lesson 6

Changing the order of Items on your page