The Clinical Conferences are designed to assist professional people in the pursuit of clinical excellence. Using presentations, videotaped interviews with family members, and ample discussion time, the conferences illustrate the interplay of theory and technique for a variety of human issues. The goals of each conference are to illustrate the application of Bowen theory in practice and to enhance people’s understanding of differentiation of self.
Format of the Day
Each month, a different faculty member is responsible for the program and selects a topic of his or her own professional interest. The format of the day includes a lecture on a particular theme followed by videotaped clinical sessions that illustrate the topic. After each presentation there is ample time for discussion and participation by the registrants. The format with its changing topics provides an opportunity to hear different perspectives on Bowen theory applied to a broad range of clinical problems.
Schedule for the Day*
All times below are in Eastern Time
9:30 – 10:30
10:30 – 11:00
11:00 – 11:15
11:15 – 12:15
12:15 – 12:45
12:45 – 2:00
2:00 – 3:00
3:00 – 3:30
* Please note that the schedule may change at the speaker’s discretion.
The Clinical Conferences will be held online until further notice.
The Conference Series began in January 1967 as a monthly videotaped interview project with families seen by Murray Bowen at the Medical College of Virginia. He pioneered the use of videotape in family therapy and saw its potential for teaching and enhancing the therapeutic process. In 1978 the project moved to Washington under the auspices of the Georgetown University Family Center. Gradually, responsibility for the conference was transferred to the faculty of the Family Center. The long, continuous history and the unusual format of videotaping families who are invited to the clinical day make this conference unique in the world of family theory and family psychotherapy.
Who Will Benefit
The Clinical Conference is designed for mental health professionals and other professionals with postgraduate training. This includes but is not limited to: psychiatrists, social workers, nurses, psychologists, counselors, clergy, and other mental health clinicians. Graduate students are especially welcome.
Upcoming Dates for Academic Year 2020-2021
The Clinical Conferences will be held online until further notice.
November 2, 2020 (Monday)
Daniel V. Papero, PhD, MSSW
Between a Rock and a Hard Place: Families Under Pressure
Family systems periodically face challenges and stresses linked to the generational cycle itself. One of the most frequently described challenges is that of managing the care of an older family member. The pressures linked to these situations intensifies the pull on family members towards togetherness while also triggering the pull to be free of the tension and constraints of the family dilemma. How families handle the emotional reactiveness and interpersonal tensions among family members influences the competency of caregiving and the overall well-being of family members.
December 4, 2020
Victoria Harrison, MA, LMFT
Can’t Live Without It: Anxiety and Adaptation
Bowen theory defines anxiety as “emotional reactiveness to real or imagined threats”. These reactions are fundamental to adaptation and also play a part in symptom development. This theoretical perspective differs from the framework popularized in DSM diagnostics and other therapy. The conference will include a presentation of examples of anxiety as a resource for adaptation in nature and in the family. Two clinical interviews with families who have had babies during the COVID-19 pandemic will feature their observations about anxious reactions and managing anxiety through working on differentiation of self.
January 22, 2021
Barbara Laymon, PhD, MPH
The Systems Model for Family Assessment in Clinical Practice
In a clinical setting, some clients seem to get interested in systems thinking, while others find it inapplicable to their lives. How does a person become interested in a family systems view? When does the perspective become its own motivation for understanding more? What facilitates the capacity to explore multigenerational processes? During the conference day, I will explore these questions and more, using Papero’s (2018) Systems Model for Family Assessment as a guide.
April 1, 2021 (Thursday)
Carrie E. Collier, PhD, LPC, CRC
Relationships from Long Ago are Present in Our Modern Families: Are We Really So Modern After All?
What does Bowen family systems theory offer the modern family? The family vitality is motivated by emotions and fear about survival or challenges in relationships. A lot has changed since Bowen observed families at NIMH but the four adaptive mechanisms are still alive in the family emotional system. The family make-up might look like a modern family, but is it really all that different? How does one see the emotional patterns in the family and how useful is it to see this process in self and in others?
May 14, 2021
Kenton T. Derstine, MDiv, DMin
Exploring Automatic Patterns: From the Family to the Workplace
This conference will explore the idea that the effort for differentiation of self in one’s own family contributes to enhanced functioning in one’s work. Increasing one’s awareness of emotional and relationship patterns across one’s previous generations informs the effort to become a more connected and a more defined self in one’s family. This process can produce shifts in one’s functioning in family, a family’s functioning, as well as enhanced leadership effectiveness. Recordings of two clinical interviews will be shown to illustrate the interplay between the effort for differentiation of self in one’s family and in the workplace.
June 11, 2021
Randy T. Frost, MDiv
The Integration of Bowen Theory and Family Psychotherapy
This day will focus on the integration of theory and therapy by explicitly linking theoretical concepts of Bowen theory with the conduct of family psychotherapy. Two clinical families will be presented as examples of the way in which theory and therapy ideally proceed in tandem. Portions of a clinical interview with each family will be shown.
|$390.00 for the Year (save 32%)||N/A||N/A|
|Individual Conferences: $95.00||Individual Conference: $75.00||Individual Conference: $25.00|
|CEU/CE Fee: $15 per meeting||CEU/CE Fee: $15 per meeting||CEU/CE Fee: $15 per meeting|
Continuing Education Credits
The Georgetown Family Center is approved as a(n):
- Independent provider of continuing education credit by the Maryland State Board of Social Work Examiners and the District of Columbia Board of Social Work.
Georgetown Family Center/Bowen Center for the Study of the Family has been approved by NBCC as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 6225. Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified. Georgetown Family Center/Bowen Center for the Study of the Family is solely responsible for all aspects of the programs.
Each conference day provides a maximum of 5 hours of Category I continuing education credit for social workers and for counselors.
If you plan to participate in the CEU/CE process, it is necessary to:
- Pay the CEU/CE fee of $15 per conference
- Sign CEU/CE registration form each day of conference
- Prepare to stay for the entire conference
- Submit a completed evaluation at day’s end
Return policy: With advance notice, it is possible to apply payment to a subsequent conference in the same academic year.
- Demonstrate an understanding of the core concepts in Bowen theory.
- Demonstrate a knowledge of the application of the concepts in clinical practice.
- Demonstrate an understanding of Bowen family systems theory and the individually oriented theories used in clinical practice.
- Demonstrate a knowledge of the similarities and differences in the application of conventional theories and Bowen theory in clinical practice.
- Demonstrate the use of strategies employed in Bowen theory.
- Demonstrate the capacity to maintain a family focus in all phases of the treatment process.
- Demonstrate an understanding of the importance of one’s own self-awareness in being an effective therapist.
- Demonstrate an understanding of the role of the coach/therapist in the clinical process.
- Demonstrate the ability to address a wide range of social, emotional and physical problems when using Bowen theory.
- Demonstrate the capacity to intervene appropriately enable the clients to address their issues and concerns.
- Demonstrate the ability to employ Bowen theory in all phases of the treatment process including assessment, diagnosis and treatment.
- Demonstrate a solid grounding in the values and theory required for competency in clinical practice.
Georgetown Family Center, Inc.
ACEP No. 6225