Psychodynamic Systems

Social Work

In order to take this course, please register or log in.
Instructor: Abstract:

Edward R. Shapiro, MD, Senior Consultant, Erikson Institute for Education and ResearchThis three-lecture course is an introduction to psychodynamic systems theory. The first lecture focuses on basic principles, beginning with the recognition that the individual is an open system linked to others through the communication of affects, both consciously and unconsciously. With a review of projective identification, we move from the study of the dynamics of the individual to the couple, the family, the group and the organization. I will offer an outline of an interpretive stance and the potential development of an organizational culture that can provide increased access to understanding and using organizational irrationality. The lecture ends with an example of psychodynamic systems thinking about an organization, focusing on psychoanalytic institutes.

In lectures two and three, we explore the family as an organization, using excerpts from family and individual treatment to deepen the understanding of organizational task, regression, shared unconscious assumptions, the co-creation of irrational roles, and the use of interpretation. We conclude with excerpts that illustrate the family’s recovery from shared irrationality and the re-establishment of competent organizational functioning.

Format: Videocast or Audio Podcast

Target Practice Level: Intermediate level course

How it Works:

  1. Users must register and provide credential information in order to gain access to course material. 
  2. In order to receive credit, users must watch/listen to the course, take and pass a post-course quiz and complete a course evaluation. 
  3. Certificates are available for download and printing upon completion of the course evaluation. Users will have ongoing access to certificates via their individual online transcript. 

Social Workers participating in this course will receive 1.0 continuing education clock hours.

Austen Riggs Center, provider #1344, is approved as a provider for social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) www.aswb.org, through the Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program.  Austen Riggs Center maintains responsibility for the program.  ASWB Approval Period: 2/2/2017-2/2/2020.  Social workers should contact their regulatory board to determine course approval for continuing education credits.

As of July 2015, ACE is accepted in 50 jurisdictions. This does not include the states of New York, New Jersey, and Maine. For a listing of the approved jurisdictions visit https://www.aswb.org/ace/ace-jurisdiction-map/.

The Austen Riggs Center follows all state and federal laws and regulations, including the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA).  In accordance with the ADA, the Austen Riggs Center is committed to accessibility. If you need accommodations for your online course, please contact info@austenriggs.net.

Learning Objectives

Participants will be able to identify the underlying interpersonal dynamics and unconscious mechanisms that contribute to family and organizational irrationality.
Participants will be able to describe an approach to interpreting collective irrationality that clarifies its link to the task of an organization.
Participants will be able to explain the difference between rational and irrational roles and the processes that lead to organizational regression.

System Requirements

The Austen Riggs Center Continuing Medical Education and Online Courses system is offered to users who are able to access these courses with systems and devices meeting the following requirements:

  • Internet Explorer 11 or 10
  • Latest Versions of Safari, Firefox, and Chrome
  • Apple iPhone and iPad devices running iOS 7 or iOS 8
  • Android 4.4.x-capable devices
  • No pop-up blockers or browser extensions that interfere with multimedia rendering of content installed or enabled.