Course Description

Hours: 12

When a client comes in for therapy, they are the symptom bearer for the whole family and thus are bringing attention to a family in crisis. Since what happens to one member of the family happens to everyone in the family, the family systems approach fosters insight into the family group dynamic to promote overall health.

Ecosystemic structural family therapy (ESFT) is an evidence-based, trauma and attachment-focused approach that uses specific tools for family interventions. The tools and techniques used in this modality help illustrate circular patterns and behaviours that negatively impact family dynamics. This workshop will provide participants with an overview of ecosystemic structural family therapy. Specifically, it will focus on demonstrating how to think relationally as a therapist. This means observing, understanding and responding to family interactions within systems (i.e. educational, health care, judicial systems).

Treatment  Philosophy  
ESFT is informed by Salvador Minuchin’s structural family therapy approach, which was enhanced by Dr. Marion Goldberg at the Philadelphia Child Guidance Centre by adding on the ecosystemic focus that implies that each child is treated in the context of their family and their extended relationships within the community they live in with a trauma and attachment based focus.

Theoretical Framework
There are four stages of ESFT:

  1. Constructing a therapeutic system via structural maps and core negative interactional patterns (CNIP).
  2. Demonstrating a meaningful therapeutic focus by genograms, relational timelines and ecomaps.
  3. Creating key transformational interpersonal experiences via reenactments.
  4. Solidifying change and discharge planning.

In this workshop, didactic presentations, video-recorded examples of sessions and case studies will be used to illustrate the learning points.

By the end of this workshop participants will:

  • Understand the basic structure of ecosystemic structural  family therapy including the four stages.
  • Recognize the importance of relational work.
  • Learn the developmental focus of the treatment.
  • Be able to demonstrate a basic understanding of systems theory.


For more information contact the Faculty of Social Work Professional Development office:

Email: fswprofessionaldevelopment@wlu.ca
Phone: 548-889-4967

Cancellations and Transfers
Be sure to carefully review our cancellation and transfer information before registering.

Website: wlu.ca/fswpd

Applies Towards the Following Certificates

Enroll Now - Select a section to enroll in
Section Title
Ecosystemic Structural Family Therapy (ESFT)
Workshop Remote
Th, F
9:00AM to 4:00PM
Apr 18, 2024 to Apr 19, 2024
Schedule and Location
Total Hours
Delivery Options
Workshop Remote  
Course Fee(s)
Registration Fee non-credit $370.00
Potential Discount(s)
Section Notes

Instructors: Patricia Marchand, MSW, RSW and Sarosh Khalid-Khan, MD, DABPN, FRCPC

Location: This workshop is being held remotely through Zoom. 

Website: wlu.ca/fswpd

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