week students in Bill Borden's Psychodynamic Theory and Practice
I course submit a single-paragraph response to the readings, relating
key points to their current field experiences or raising specific
questions or concerns. "Writing about something helps us
integrate it into our experience," says the senior lecturer
in the School of Social Service Administration. "To register
these ideas takes a long time. It's important to settle in and
spend some time with these thinkers."
The primary "thinker" on Borden's syllabus is Stephen
Mitchell, author of Relational Concepts in Psychoanalysis
(Harvard, 1988). The text explores the client-therapist relationship
as a mutual and collaborative endeavor. Says Borden, "We'll
learn to think about the clinician as a participant-observer.
We'll think about relating to clients as others do. We'll consider
the concept of internal supervision, and we'll work to monitor
the interactive process and use it as a means to evaluate our
progress. We'll read ourselves in light of the situation-when
we're considering things we might say, we'll be imaginative and
empathic. We'll put ourselves in the patient's place."
"work" in social work
During the last four weeks of the quarter, students will learn
to apply psychodynamic concepts in a social-work setting-where
the Freudian id is easily forgotten when clients are only seen
once or twice or when budgets or managed-care limit therapeutic
contact. Using Patrick Casement's Learning from the Patient
(Guilford, 1991), students will construct a working plan that
takes them from assessment to formulating goals and establishing
a safe and therapeutic "holding environment" to creating
an interactive and "relational" experience and finally
to determining how to terminate the therapy.-S.A.S.