Apply Now (PDF)
October 2016 – May 2017
“Systems thinking provides no magical answers, but it does provide a different way of conceptualizing human problems. It offers a more realistic evaluation of the difficulty in changing the basic patterns in any human dilemma and it suggests ways to avoid some of the pitfalls of conventional thinking and to institute progress toward long term goals.” — Murray Bowen
Purpose and Description of Program
This monthly Online Introduction to Bowen Theory and Its Applications will begin in October and is organized in monthly learning modules through May. It is designed particularly for people who do not have access to local training and who are motivated to consider Bowen theory as an alternative to conventional approaches to solving problems in families, organizations, or society. It provides a substantial experience in learning and using Bowen theory in one’s own family and field of work. The learning modules will focus on theoretical concepts and the ways they are learned through study of one’s own family and through applications in various fields.
Each month will include:
• monthly two hour faculty presentation with discussion based upon assigned readings and DVD (in online classroom if time zones permit)
• reading assignments from Murray Bowen’s original work
• online access to teaching videos by Dr. Bowen and members of the Bowen Center faculty
• dedicated discussion threads with faculty
• individual monthly coaching/consultation via Skype or Zoom.
The practice aspect of learning is an integral part of training programs that Murray Bowen originally established at the Georgetown University Family Center. Participants will schedule individual monthly sessions via Zoom or Skype with faculty members where they can discuss their own family and the process of working on differentiation of self.
“The concept of differentiation has to do with self and not with others. Differentiation deals with working on one’s own self, with controlling self, with becoming a more responsible person, and permitting others to be themselves.” — Murray Bowen
Differentiation of self is the basis for learning and applying Bowen theory. Steps toward differentiation are described throughout the chapters in Bowen’s collected papers, Family Therapy in Clinical Practice. Everyone learns in his and her own unique way. This Introduction will provide theoretical and experiential groundwork for the changes in a system that occur based on a family member, therapist or consultant who is working on differentiation.
The curriculum for each month and materials will be provided upon registration. Educational resources included in your tuition are online streaming of teaching tapes and faculty lectures associated with the monthly modules. You will be expected to purchase Family Therapy in Clinical Practice by Murray Bowen (available new and used at Amazon.com and Abe Books) and other books by faculty you may want to read.
This course is designed for a combination of independent study and scheduled discussion and consultation. Once applicants have been accepted, Carrie Collier will consult with participants to establish a day and time for the monthly two-hour faculty lecture and discussion adapted to various national and international time-zones if possible. Reading and DVD material are accomplished independently between monthly sessions. Coaching consultation will be scheduled monthly by Skype or Zoom between each participant and his or her faculty consultant. An ongoing discussion thread will include questions and ideas posted by faculty and questions and ideas posted by participants to faculty.
Carrie Collier will direct the Online Introduction and be one of the faculty responsible for teaching, discussion, and consultation. Anne McKnight, Douglas Murphy, and other Bowen Center faculty will teach and consult in this program.
Applications for Fall 2016 will be accepted until September 21, 2016. The application process involves a completed application form (PDF), an application fee of $50, and an interview that will be scheduled after the application form is received.
The Online Introduction is offered for professionals in various fields who do not have prior experience in substantial study of Bowen family systems theory and who do not have access to local training. Admission criteria include a combination of educational background and practice in one’s profession and motivation to learn and apply Bowen theory in one’s family and field of work.
Mail applications to:
Dr. Carrie Collier
The Bowen Center
4400 MacArthur Boulevard NW, Suite 103
Washington, DC 20007
Applications can be faxed to 202-965-1765.
Applications may be emailed to Carrie Collier at .
The tuition for the Introductory Program is $1,500.00.
Please contact Carrie Collier at or 571-264-1668 to discuss your interest and questions.