Frequently Asked Questions

General Questions

Why were the programs moved to SMRC? 

  • Stanford is a research institution, and as Kate winds down her research career we needed to find a place to continue to support the Self-Management movement.  SMRC provides a good answer.
  • We can continue doing the things we know and love and also give continuity to the programs.
  • Stanford supported and is helped to make this change.


Link to Licensing page

What will happen with existing licenses that were arranged through Stanford? 

  • Stanford has transferred all licenses to SMRC.
  • For currently active licenses, there will be no changes in fees or terms of licenses.
  • SMRC will service these licenses for the term of the license.
  • There is no need to re-issue existing licenses to SMRC.
  • SMRC’s licensing manager is Nieves Michel.  She can assist you with any questions. To reach her, email or 650-242-8040 Ext 406.

Will the cost of licenses change? 

How does my organization get, upgrade, or add a program to a license? 

  • You will be able to complete all of the steps in getting the license, from application, to paying, to signing and transmitting, on this website.
  • To add or upgrade a program to a license, write
  • If you find you have problems or have questions contact or 650-242-8040 Ext 406.  Please, please read the licensing portion of the website before contacting us!

Will licensing annual reports change?

  • No.  Annual reports are still required!
  • Annual reports are submitted on online. We do not accept any other format.

Training and Programs

Link to Training page

Are there changes in training? 

  • We have a new training director, Virginia (Ginger) González. Ginger is not really new, as she worked with us for many many years and has authored most of our Spanish books and workshops. All Master trainings are arranged through SMRC and Ginger.
  • Organizations offering trainings should dispose of any Stanford-branded manuals and get the SMRC manuals.  email
  • For training questions, contact Ginger González, or 650-242-8040 Ext 402.
  • To request manuals, email

Will workshops continue to be updated? 

  • Absolutely! One of the hallmarks of our programs is that we are continually keeping them up to date.
  • We recently updated the HIV program and both the English and Spanish Diabetes programs.
  • We plan to update the CDSMP and Tomando Control de su Salud in 2019.

Will there be new programs? 

  • We recently released Building Better Caregivers, a program for the caregivers of those with cognitive impairment.
  • A workplace version of the CDSMP has also been released recently.
    • The workplace program is two 55-minute sessions a week for six weeks.
    • Any organization offering the CDSMP will be able to offer the workplace (wCDSMP) after Trainers attend an introductory webinar.
    • Because there is very little change in content or process, just timing and organization, there will be no cross-training required, just the webinar.
    • The workplace CDSMP webinar will be required for Master Trainers and T-Trainers only. They will, in turn, train their CDSMP Leaders.

Will Trainer certifications or the requirements for trainer annual reports change?

Will fidelity guidelines change?

  • We have recently made some adjustments to Trainer certification.  Please download the new Certification Guidelines and Fidelity Manual from our Resources section.

Will there be new services? 

  • Yes, we now offer periodic free webinars, such as "Ask Kate" (questions about anything are answered by Kate Lorig).  Previously, we have offered "Ask Kate about Evaluation", "Ask Kate and Virginia How to Work in and With Hard-to-Reach Communities" and "Ask Kate About Self-Management's Role in the Opioid Epidemic".
  • Watch for these informational webinars on our Training calendar. We will also notify you via the Master Trainer and Administrative list serves.

Will the Tool Kit for Active Living mailed program change?

  • No.

Will SMRC translate programs to more languages?

  • Unfortunately, we can only manage English and Spanish. 
  • Any organization that wants to translate any of our materials can get a translation license (free).   This gives you the right to translate.  Once completed, Word files of the trainsaltion must be sent to SMRC so we can share with others.

Will any workshop content or charts change?

  • The cover, title page, and footnotes have been rebranded for SMRC.
  • The closing activity in the fifth session asks people to email SMRC instead of SPERC.  This change is also be on the homework handout.
  • The only chart to change is about internet URLs.  Rather than the Stanford patient Education Research Center’s URL, Stanford University’s main URL is listed.
  • Nutrition or diabetes-specific activities may change with new FDA or ADA guidelines.  Only the pages affected will be changed and made available from
  • The rest of the content will not change at all until we update a program.  We are in the process of updating the CDSMP, which will be released at the same time as the Living a Healthy Life with Chronic Conditions book around the end of 2019 or beginning of 2020.

Annual Reports

Link to Annual Reports page

Will the requirements for licensee and trainer annual reports change?

  • No.

Are organizational annual reports required?

  • Yes.  Organizations are required to submit a report on the anniversary date of their existing license.
  • You will be reminded by email when it is time to submit an annual report.

Are Trainer annual reports required?

  • Yes
  • Trainer annual reports are by calendar year (for example, January 1 2018 to December 31 2018).  Trainers are required to submit an annual report in January for the previous calendar year. 
  • All annual reports are submitted online.  We will not accept anything else.
  • You will be notified on the list serve when your annual report is due with details on how to complete the report. 

Do I have to submit an annual report if we did not offer workshops during that year?

  • Yes.  Our system will see any trainer or licensed organization who has not submitted an annual report as “inactive” or “lapsed”.
  • We need the report even if it shows “0” in most of the fields.
  • We have thousands of trainers and licensed organizations.  We need all reports in order to keep track of how the program is being used.
  • All reports must be submitted online.  No other formats will be accepted.

I was trained as a Master Trainer late last year and haven’t done a workshop yet.  Do I still have to submit a trainer’s annual report?

  • Yes.  Our system will automatically label any trainer who has not submitted an annual report as “inactive”. 
  • You must submit the report yourself and not allow your program coordinator (or anyone else) to do it for you.
  • Trainers who have been trained after the time parameters of the annual report (such as 2019) are not required to submit a report until the following year.

SMRC Structure

What is SMRC’s relationship with Stanford?

  • We are completely separate from Stanford.

What is the organizational structure of SMRC?

  • SMRC is a partnership.  Scientific Director is Kate Lorig, Training Director is Virginia (Ginger) González, CEO is Diana Laurent.

Is SMRC non-profit or for-profit?

  • SMRC is a Limited Liability Company (LLC) and for-profit.
  • After consulting with attorneys and accountants and many discussions among the partners, it was clear that even though we would have preferred to organize as a not-for-profit company, we could not protect the programs if we did. 
  • It is vitally important that we, as the developers of the programs, keep control on how the programs are used and updated.

Are you still conducting research?

  • All of our Stanford research projects are complete.
  • With Kate Lorig winding down her research career, we do not plan to apply for any research grants.
  • We are available as consultants for other organizations’ grants. Contact Kate Lorig at

Where is your new office located?

  • Our office is virtual only.  Our mailing address is actually our accountant's office!
  • We are registered in the city of Palo Alto, CA.
  • Our staff members all live in different cities and in three states!  
  • This has made it possible for us to hire the best people for the job.
  • We meet regularly by videoconference, and the partners meet in person regularly.

Online Programs

What is happening with the online programs?  

  • Canary Health will continue to be the sole source for these programs in the United States.

How will the SMRC and Canary work together? 

  • Right now Canary can only handle big contracts. This means that many community groups that would like to offer online workshops to only a few people cannot do so.
  • In the near future, SMRC will be working with Canary to offer smaller contracts for those organizations wishing to offer an online choice of workshops.

Program Promotion

Can we still refer to the workshops as “Stanford” programs?

  • No. Stanford requires that the Stanford name and logo NOT be used for any reason.

What words can we use to describe the workshops?

  • The only words you can use when describing the programs are “an evidence-based self-management program originally developed at Stanford University”, or "an SMRC evidence-based program orginally developed at Stanford University."
  • Certificates of completion for workshops and Leader trainings should use the above language, as well. 

Can we use the SMRC logo and Steps to Healthier Living trademark?


What can we do to help? 

  • Let us know what we are doing right, and most importantly, what is going wrong and how we might do things better. We have always depended on you to keep us honest and to help us provide the very best service. This will not change.
  • And…if you can think of other services that you would like the SMRC to offer, please tell us! We may not be able to do it, but maybe we can. Our self-management community has always given us good ideas and feedback, and we value it highly.  Do it quickly, though!  We are in the process of rebuilding our website.

How can we contact SMRC?