PCFINE Year I Educational Objectives

Key Concepts in Working with Couples

Carolynn Maltas, Ph.D. and Keith Irving, Ph.D.

  • To be able to differentiate between one-person and two-person projective identification in couples
  • To be able to describe two or more psychological purposes of marriage
  • To be able to identify some concepts from family systems models that help in recognizing key dysfunctional patterns and possible choice points for interventions
  • To be able to identify and explain two common differences in the role of couple therapist vs individual therapist in psychoanalytic vs family systems models
  • To be able to describe how intrapsychic elements in the individual partners are transformed into systemic qualities of the couple dyad, using the concept of the "vulnerability cycle."
  • The Formation of the Therapeutic Alliance in Couple Therapy

    Arnie Cohen, Ph.D.

    • To be able to describe the challenges of developing a bilateral alliance in couple therapy
    • To be able to discuss countertransference issues that emerge in creating an alliance in couple therapy
    • To be able to describe effective treatment strategies to maintain a therapeutic alliance in couple therapy
  • Evaluation and Formulation
  • Justin Newmark, Ph.D.

    • To be able to collect data about patients’ psychological histories in order to evaluate the current difficulty and diagnose psychological disorders
    • To be able to identify the key problematic behaviors and symptoms impairing the couple’s functioning
    • To be able to discuss various approaches for working with the couple’s identified problems and making an initial choice of where to intervene

    Therapeutic Action in Couple Therapy

    David Goldfinger, Ph.D.

    • To be able to distinguish between the interpretive and enactive dimensions of therapeutic action
    • To be able to define the experiencing modes of mentalizing versus psychic equivalence
    • To be able to detect the workings of projective identification and role responsiveness in couple dynamics

    Transference and Countertransference in Couple Therapy

    Mark O’Connell, Ph.D.

    • To be able to demonstrate a rudimentary understanding of the historical concept of transference
    • To be able to describe the role of transference and countertransference in couple therapy
    • To be able to demonstrate a working comfort with the similarities and differences of transferences between partners in a couple, and transference between patient and clinician

     

    Couple Development

    Mary Kiely, Ph.D.

    • To be able to describe what couple development means
    • To be able to locate developmental themes in both the couples’ and the individuals’ presenting issues
    • To be able to formulate therapeutic interventions which consider development in both the individuals and the couple

    Behind Closed Doors: Sex in Couple Therapy

    Magdalena Fosse, Psy.D.

    • To be able to understand and describe couples’ distress and disappointment with their sex life and assess the impact it has on couples’ overall functioning
    • To be able to assess partners’ sexual narratives, and based on this understanding to be able to discern the nature of couples’ sexual dysfunction
    • To be able to describe and utilize a couple of models of sexual functioning

     

    Working with Affect

    Jerry Gans, M.D.

    • To be able to discuss the reciprocal relationship between attachment and affect regulation
    • To be able to explain why therapists who utilize the Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy approach do not utilize countertransference
    • To be able to explain why a relationship approach is a two-person psychology
    • To be able to list four ways in which therapist behavior can lead to the mismanagement of affect in couple therapy

    Predictable and Not-So-Predictable Challenges in Working with Couples

    Diane Englund, LICSW

    • To be able to describe common challenges presented in couple therapy
    • To be able to demonstrate effective strategies for managing these challenges
    • To be able to explain how to predict and avoid common errors in doing couple therapy

     

    From the Intrapsychic to the Interpersonal: Defensive Processes in Couples Therapy

    Joe Shay, Ph.D.

    • To be able to describe the manifestations of the defensive projective identification in couples therapy
    • To be able to identify ways to intervene more effectively in the presence of defensive processes
    • To be able to identify common countertransference reactions in the presence of defensive processes

     

    Everything You Always Wanted to Know about Couples Therapy but Were Afraid to Ask

    Joe Shay, Ph.D. and Linda Camlin, Ph.D.

    • To be able to list some of the most common dilemmas faced by couple therapists
    • To be able to describe indications and contraindications for treating couples


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