The main objective of the programme is to provide the fundamentals of good practice as a systemic family therapist. The core learning outcomes associated with this objective are the demonstration of the following:
* The skills, knowledge and competence to practice as a systemic family therapist;
* an ethical positioning that allows them to scrutinise and reflect on their practice;
* A familiarity with theory and research that allows them to review and update their clinical work.
* A reflexivity that allows them to review and manage the place of their own self in their clinical and research practice; and
* An awareness of the importance of the therapeutic relationship in psychotherapy.
Philosophy of the Programme
The Clanwilliam Institute approach to therapeutic practice and training has been constructed from three principal theoretical and philosophical influences – systems theory, social constructionism and professional ethics.
a) The systemic view emphasises the contextual and relational aspects of human experience. It sees the person as embedded in a social and emotional world which s/he is constantly being influenced by and influencing. This approach enables the practitioner to take account of the multi-layered complexity of the many systems within which we live. This focus on context and relationship distinguishes systemic (family) therapy from other forms of psychotherapy. This relational contextual approach emphasises the centrality of the therapeutic relationship.
b) The Clanwilliam approach identifies with a social constructionist perspective which regards all meaning (and thus identity and problem descriptions) as generated in language between people. Thus it is through the medium of language that new meanings and resources may be accessed and new relationship configurations achieved.
c) Within the philosophical positioning of the Clanwilliam Institute professional ethics are an integral part of professional thinking and practice and a part of personal and professional growth The Clanwilliam Institute ethos is grounded in ethical principles drawn from professional codes of practice, a duty of care towards all involved – clients, students, colleagues and the public- and a commitment to the development of non-discriminatory practice and service delivery.
The Clanwilliam approach seeks to hold and work with the continuing tension between these philosophical influences, achieving an appropriate professional stance and maintain an ethical position in particular when dealing with issues of inequality, disadvantage and abuse. This approach emphasises that there are no neutral stances and all participants are challenged to reflect on their biases and cultural conditioning. Therapy and training are viewed as co-operative, explorative, mutually respectful processes.