Family Therapy Techniques (15 sessions, alternate Thursday Mornings, 30 CEUs)

This in-depth examination of the mechanics of effective family therapy will run 15 sessions. Group size will be small (limited to a maximum of eight participants). The course is intended to intensify participants’ understanding of family treatment and to expand their range of techniques. Each trainee will have the opportunity to explore theory and techniques relevant to his or her clinical work. This course is appropriate for experienced therapists who want to become comfortable working with families as well as those who wish to expand their range of interventions.

Course Content

The course will also include didactic presentations, videotapes, consultation on participants’ cases and role-plays. We will draw from the major schools of family therapy in identifying effective strategies for particular families, exploring the mechanics of engaging families, and inducting families into the change process e.g., using directives. Approaches that emphasize interventions focused in the family session as well as those that emphasize effective homework between sessions will be included. We will consider how the different approaches apply to participants’ current clinical work and can be integrated into their particular clinical styles.

We will offer an integrated model of treatment with interventions seen as addressing the organization of families (structure), interpersonal process, or the families construction of meaning (narrative). We will look at the major theories of family therapy from a contemporary perspective. We will be mindful of the ways that drama can be useful in motivating change, but painful confrontations are rarely necessary. We see the therapist as an expert collaborator, not a trickster. We believe that there are many different and effective ways to approach intervention and we believe that having two presenters who may offer different interventions helps foster a sense that there is no one right way to do things.

The training will focus on a variety of problem areas including symptomatic children and adolescents, couples issues, anxiety, depression, aggressive behavior and substance abuse. Work with families and couples will be stressed but active interventions with individuals will be considered. Problems relating to both short-term and more long-term treatment will to be addressed.

Case Consultation

Ample time will be provided for the examination of problems and issues with participants current cases. We will examine possible solutions to problems with those families as ways in which participants style may be expanded. Participant’s will have the opportunity to bring cases for live sessions. Live presentation is optional and is dependent both on the availability and wishes of the participants.

Topics will include:

· Working with difficult families
· Frequently used strategies
· Specific techniques for particular problems
· Finding and enhancing motivation
· Designing effective homework & getting follow-through
· Integrating various models of treatment


Training Program Schedule

Dates: To be announced

Time: 9:00 a.m. -- 11:00 a.m.

Fee: $750*

Location: Arlington, MA

Enrollment: 8 Maximum

*$50 non-refundable deposit to reserve a spot; $300 due October 11;
balance due January 10.