The Institute for Clinical Social Work


Syllabi Archive

CLDL 732: Disorders of Adulthood II

Ph.D. Program - Distance Learning: spring 2012-13


Mike McNulty, PhD


Course Description

This course focuses on the disorders of adulthood related to trauma and attachment difficulties, and the treatment of the disorders. It also focuses on the relationship of these disorders to theories and research in the fields of psychodynamic psychotherapy, neurobiology and emotional regulation. This course builds on the student's previous courses in Disorders of Adulthood II, psychodynamic theory and clinical process and techniques.


Goals

  1. Establish a psychodynamic and neurobiological understanding of the etiology of trauma-related, attachment-based and emotion- dysregulated disorders of adulthood.
  2. Deepen understanding of how these disorders impact transference and countertransference in the clinical work.
  3. Identify treatment techniques associated with specific disorders.
  4. Augment understanding of the dynamic and shifting relationships among theory, research, diagnosis, treatment and the contribution of the historical context.
  5. Increase ability to convey diagnostic understanding and clinical application in both oral and written communication.

Evaluation

Grades will be based 25% on class participation, 25% on class presentation of assigned reading, and 50% on written assignments.

Class participation includes:

  • evidence of reading assigned readings
  • ability to raise questions about the readings and to relate clinical experiences to concepts presented in the readings and class discussions.

Attendance

Class attendance is mandatory and emergency absences should be discussed in advance with instructor.

For students who miss more than one class, the overall grade for the course will be lowered one level.

Students who miss than two classes will automatically fail the course; however, in the case of a personal emergency discussed with instructor and Dean, the student will be asked to withdraw from the course and retake it the following year.


Written Assignments

Each week: write a sentence or two about ten leading comments that attracted your interest and attention in this week's readings. Be prepared to share with class and enter into discussion.

Assignment 1: Discuss one of your cases that involves trauma in the client's background and that poses a practice challenge for you. Give just enough history to help me grasp the dynamics of the case. Offer some initial ideas about transference, countertranference, trauma configurations. Focus discussion on what is happening or not happening in the treatment that leaves you feeling unsettled. If any of the assigned papers have been helpful, discuss what has been helpful.

If you don't have a client who seems appropriate, pick a character in a movie with a trauma/attachment disorder background.( e.g. Good Will Hunting, Ordinary People). Imagine that the main character from the movie comes to you as a patient once he/she reaches adulthood. Write a diagnostic assessment from the perspective of Trauma and trauma theory. Discuss the etiology and course of the illness, connecting theory with clinical understanding. Include issues mentioned above.

This paper is due on (or before, if student prefers) March 5 when the 4th class meets. This paper should be 4-6 pages ( double-spaced) in length and use citations from at least 3 of the assigned readings. Other references can also be used and should be cited.

The paper will be graded on an A-to-F scale. Any student receiving a grade of C or below will have a chance to rewrite it.

Assignment II : Now that you have completed the class, you will be able to take into consideration many of the attachment- based theories and research and incorporate them into your understanding of disorders of adulthood. Pick a public figure, past or present, with a known troubled past and adequate written or film resources to become familiar with this person. Discuss this person in terms of how their past trauma and/or attachment experiences impact their current functioning. discuss why you picked this particular person. If they were to come to you for therapy, how would you diagnose them, what would you focus on in treatment and how would you imagine the treatment would go? What issues would likely arise for you in working with them? Discuss these and how you would deal with them.

(suggestions: Marilyn Monroe, Princess Diana, Frank Lloyd Wright are just a few.)
This paper is due on the last day of class April 16 and should be eight pages or less.

Assignment III: Present one assigned class reading during one class session.


Grading

Your written assignments will be assessed as follows:

An "A" paper should reflect a high degree of understanding and demonstrate creativity and critical thinking. I should be well-organized, clearly written and edited for correct grammar and spelling.
A "B" paper is one that shows a high degree of accuracy in understanding and application of concepts, is well-organized and edited for correct grammar and spelling.
A "C" paper is one that is written with insufficient depth and demonstrates only an adequate understanding of the material. It is also a grade that is given because of poor organization of material, lack of clarity and coherence, or significantly insufficient editing.
An "F" paper is one that reflects major conceptual misunderstandings and demonstrates little effort at organization and writing clarity.

Papers must conform to ICSW Style manual.


Required Texts

  • Ringell, S. & Brandell, J. (2012). Trauma: Contemporary Directions in Theory, Practice and Research. Thousand Oaks, Ca: Sage Publications.
  • Levine, Peter. (1997). Waking the Tiger. Healing Trauma. Berkeley, Ca: North Atlantic Books.
  • Wallin, D. (2007). Attachment in Psychotherapy. New York: Guilford.
  • Wilson, J.; Friedman, M., and Lindy, J. (2001). Treating Psychological Trauma and PTSD. New York: Guilford Press.

Schedule

CLASS 1: Jan.27, 2013.

Overview of trauma and theoretical frameworks.

  • Ringell, S. & Brandell, J. (2012). Trauma: Contemporary Directions in Theory, Practice and Research. Thousand Oaks, Ca: Sage Publications. Pp. 1-61.
  • Ringell, S. & Brandell, J. (2012). Trauma: Contemporary Directions in Theory, Practice and Research. pp. 62-76. Thousand Oaks, Ca: Sage Publications.
  • Lindy, J. And Wilson, J. (2001). An Allostatic Approach to the Psychodynamic Understanding of PTSD. In J. Wilson, M. Friedman and J. Lindy , Treating Psychological Trauma and PTSD (pp. 125-138). New York: Guilford Press.
  • Levine, Peter. (1997). Waking the Tiger. Healing Trauma. Berkeley, Ca: North Atlantic Books. Skim the book, with particular focus on Levine's model.

CLASS 2: Feb. 5, 2013

Treatment of Trauma: clinical considerations

  • Rasmussen, B. The Effects of Trauma Treatment on the Therapist. In Ringell, S. & Brandell, J. (2012). Trauma: Contemporary Directions in Theory, Practice and Research.Pp. 223-246. Thousand Oaks, Ca: Sage Publications.
  • Wilson, J. , Friedman, M, and Lindy, J. (2001). Practical Considerations in the Treatment of PTSD: Guidelines for Practitioners in J. Wilson, M. Friedman and J. Lindy , Treating Psychological Trauma and PTSD (pp. 409-431). New York: Guilford Press.
  • Lindy, J and Wilson, J. (2001). Respecting the Trauma Membrane: Above All, Do No Harm. in J. Wilson, M. Friedman and J. Lindy , Treating Psychological Trauma and PTSD (pp. 432-445). New York: Guilford Press.

CLASS 3: Feb. 19, 2013

Trauma and specific populations: Special Considerations

  • Pearlman, L. (2001). Treatment of persons with Complex PTSD and other Trauma-Related Disruptions of the Self. in J. Wilson, M. Friedman and J. Lindy , Treating Psychological Trauma and PTSD (pp. 205-236). New York: Guilford Press.
  • Rubin, S., et. Al. (2012) Military Bereavement and Combat Trauma. In Ringell, S. and Brandell, J. (2012). Trauma: Contemporary Directions in Theory, Practices and Research. Pp. 130-149. Thousand Oaks, Ca: Sage Publications.
  • Lampe, J., Shelby, R.S., Thomas, B. (2012). Traumas of Development in the Gay Male. In Ringell, S. and Brandell, J. (2012). Trauma: Contemporary Directions in Theory, Practices and Research. Pp. 171-190. Thousand Oaks, Ca: Sage Publications.

CLASS 4: March 5, 2013.

Adult Attachment: Introduction and Overview

  • Ringel, S. (2012). Attachment Theory, Infant Research and Neurobiology. in Ringel, S. and Brandell, J. Trauma: Contemporary Directions in Theory, Practices and Research. Pp. 171-190. Thousand Oaks, Ca: Sage Publications.
  • Fonagy, P. (2009). Psychoanalytic theory from the viewpoint of Attachment Theory and Research. In J. Cassidy & P. Shaver (Eds.), Handbook of Attachment Theory: theory, research, and clinical applications (pp. 595-624). New York: Guilford.
  • Sable, P. (2000). Attachment Relationships in Adult Life in Sable, P. Attachment and Adult Psychotherapy. Pp. 29-52. Northvale, New Jersey: Jacob Aronson Inc. T

CLASS 5: Mar. 24, 2013

Adult Attachment: Neurobiology:

  • Wallin, D. (2007). Attachment in Psychotherapy. (ch. 5). New York: Guilford Press. Keep these chapters
  • Ringel, S. (2012). Attachment Theory, Infant Research and Neurobiology. in Ringel, S. and Brandell, J. Trauma: Contemporary Directions in Theory, Practices and Research. Pp. 171-190. Thousand Oaks, Ca: Sage Publications.
  • Coan, J. (2009). Towards a Neuroscience of Attachment. In J. Cassidy & P. Shaver (Eds.), Handbook of Attachment Theory: theory, research, and clinical applications (pp. 249-268). New York: Guilford.

Adult Attachment Issues:

  • Attachment Relationships & Development of the Self
  • Wallin, David (2007). Attachment in Psychotherapy. (Ch. 8, 9). New York: Guilford Press.
  • Sable, P. (2000). Psychopathology of Affectional Bonds in Sable, P. Attachment and Adult Psychotherapy. Pp. 55-90. Northvale, New Jersey: Jacob Aronson Inc.

CLASS 6: April 2, 2012.

Attachment Issues in Adulthood and in Psychotherapy

Emotional Detachment, Conflictual Attachment of Borderline Personality Disorder and Emotionally Abusive Attachments

  • Wallin, David (2007). Attachment in Psychotherapy. (ch. 10). New York: Guilford Press.

CLASS 7: Apr. 16, 2012

Sharpening the Clinical Focus

Experiencing Secure Attachments through Therapy Ethical Considerations: Trauma and Attachment Disorders in Adults

  • Wallin, David (2007). Attachment in Psychotherapy. (Ch. 11, 15). New York: Guilford Press.

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