Training Opportunities  |  Customized On-site Training

We are pleased to offer a variety of upcoming training events, as well as customized on-site training. All of our training hours can be used towards the International Solution-Focused Practitioner Certificate. We are members of the International Association of Solution-Focused Training Institute.

For registration questions, please contact Anne Miller at or 508-215-5837.


Reaching the Unreachable: Solution-Focused Brief Therapy approaches for youth and families suffering from substance use disorders

Date: 3/25/17 Time: 9-5pm

Framingham State University

The growing number of adolescents and young adults presenting for treatment of addiction poses many challenges. Most adolescents and transitional age youth do not voluntarily seek treatment, and are mandated by their parents, schools, criminal justice systems or child welfare agencies. Engaging youth and families remains challenging despite continuing advances in evidence-based treatment approaches.  Solution-Focused Brief Therapy is now included in Substance Abuse Mental Health Service Administration’s National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices (SAMHSA NREPP). This workshop will provide an overview of the fundamentals of the evidenced-based approach of Solution-Focused Brief Therapy. A special emphasis will be placed on how to use this approach to engage externally motivated youth and their families in substance abuse treatment. Participants will learn how solution building differs from problem solving, learn practical tools to engage clients building on their strengths and resources, and learn how to utilize a system’s perspective to enhance goal negotiation. The workshop is designed so participants will be able to immediately implement the practical skills learned, and will be taught using a combination of didactics, plenty of interactive practice exercises, video examples and case examples.

Early Bird Registration:  $125.00 (must register and pay by 3/3/17)

After 3/3/17 $175.00
FSU Alumni: $100.00
FSU Student: $50.00

Register for Reaching the Unreachable Workshop

Creating Hope and Possibilities: Fundamentals of Solution-Focused Brief Interviewing with Multi-Stressed Youth and Families.

 Date:  Friday 5/12/17 Time: 9-5pm

Framingham State University

This workshop will provide an overview of the fundamentals of the evidenced-based approach of Solution-Focused Brief Therapy. A special emphasis will be placed on how to use this approach to uncover resources and resilience factors in multi-stressed adolescents and their families, including those suffering from substance use disorders. Participants will learn how solution-building differs from problem-solving, learn practical tools to uncover a patient’s strengths and resources, and how to use a system’s perspective to utilize client’s resources, enhance goal negotiation, while increasing their hopes.  The workshop is designed so participants will be able to immediately implement the practical skills learned.

Early Bird Registration:  $125.00 (must register and pay by 4/21/17) Save $50.00

After 4/21/17: $175.00
FSU Alumni: $100.00
FSU Student: $50.00
Register for Creating Hope & Possibilities Workshop 

Solution-Focused Fundamentals and Practice  Online Blended Certificate Course

Date: Spring 2017 January 17 – May 12th, 2017

Framingham State University

This course provides an introduction to foundational knowledge, training and practice in the Solution-Focused approach. The course reviews the evolution of Solution-Focused Brief Therapy, the core therapeutic elements of this approach, current evidence supporting it, and delineates this approach from other therapeutic models. The class is taught in a blended “hybrid” format that includes 3 in-person class days and 14 classes using a web-based program called Blackboard Collaborate. Synchronous online lectures, videos, practice exercises, role-plays, professional diaries, and other learning activities, including selected readings and quizzes, are used. Students who successfully complete the course will be Eligible for Level 1 Solution-Focused Practitioner Certification in Solution-Focused practices. Weekly online activities will include a combination of a virtual lecture, practice exercises, video demonstrations and discussion of the week’s reading. There will be a “Guest Expert” lecture series in which  several guest experts from around the world will talk about applications of solution-focused therapy.  Weekly homework will include a combination of readings, personal and professional practice training activities, and techniques learned in class will be practiced during working hours. All synchronous and face-to-face classes will be recorded for reference if needed

Face to Face meetings: 1/21/17; 2/18/17; 5/6/17 (all from 10-2pm)
Synchronous sessions will be held every Thursday from 7-9pm.

Cost: $1,170
This course received a  Course of Distinction Award in 2016 through the  Massachusetts College Online (MCO) recognizing it as a model for an online and blended learning course in Solution-Focused Fundamentals and Practice.

Register for Certificate Program

Summer Intensive Certificate Program in Solution-Focused Fundamentals and Practice

Date: 7/17/17 – 7/21/17

Place: Framingham State University, Framingham MA

Sponsored by Framingham State University

The Solution-Focused Summer Intensive provides a rigorous 5- day certificate program in Solution-Focused Fundamentals and Practice. Yvonne Dolan and Anne Lutz invite you to visit Framingham State University, just 25 miles from Boston. This intensive will provide the fundamentals of the solution-focused approach, applications of this approach with substance use, trauma, schools, the medical setting, supervision/coaching and research in the field. The workshop will be taught using a combination of didactics, role-plays, ample video examples, exercises and case discussions. There will be plenty of opportunities to network, build relationships and have a forum to exchange and collaborate on ideas.

There will be readings, videos and practice exercises provided outside of the training to fulfill  requirements for certification.

Pricing: $1199.00 for the course

Early Bird Registration is $1099.00 if register prior to 4/1/17

Register for Intensive Certificate Program

Solution Focused Academic Advising:  A Tool to Promote Retention

Date: To be announced

Framingham State University

Academic advising has been identified as a key factor in student retention. Advising is often mandated to obtain permission to register for courses and/or progress through an academic major.  The nature of the advising is multifaceted; advisors often serve as counselors to students who need guidance for majors  and career decision- making and support to facilitate problem solving. The charge to develop rapport and an understanding of the student’s work-life balance in one session (15-20 minutes) can be daunting for both advisor and student. The advising role is especially significant when students face academic failure, inability to progress or a loss of status and identity relative to a major. Given these challenges, a solution-focused approach to advising may be of benefit to the advisor and advisee. The solution-focused approach is a way of having a conversation that emphasizes strengths and what is going well , and provides an opportunity for the advisee and the advisor to visualize a positive outcome.  It is designed to construct a sense of competence and confidence.  This approach may be particularly beneficial with struggling and anxious students given its emphasis on increasing academic self-efficacy and self-regulated learning which can enhance executive functioning and foster grit.

In this workshop, participants will be introduced to the solution-focused approach and how to apply it in academic advising. Participants will be  asked to share their advising dilemmas and role-play using solution-focused tools. Handouts will provide suggested solution-focused approaches salient to advising. The workshop is designed so participants will be able to immediately apply the solution-focused strategies learned.

Please note that if you have any difficulties with registration, contact Anne Miller at or call at 508-215-5837.

Types of Trainings  that have been provided by the Institute

  1. Foundations of Solution-Focused Therapy
  2. Solution-Focused Therapy with Children and Families
  3. Solution-Focused Brief therapy for substance abuse disorders
  4. Reaching the unreachable adolescent: Solution-focused approaches to enhance engagement
  5. Solution-focused therapy for couples
  6. Solution-Focused Supervision
  7. An Introduction to Evidenced-based solution-focused interviewing
  8. Solution focused approaches in the treatment of trauma
  9. Solution Focused Academic Advising
  10. Solution-focused brief therapy in schools – the WOWW approach
  11. Solution-focused brief therapy for mandated/externally motivated clients
  12. Solution-focused conversations in the medical interview: a patient-centered approach
  13. Solution-focused brief therapy in the psychopharmacology visit
  14. Solution-focused therapy in the group setting
  15. Solution-focused consultation
  16. Solution-focused approaches in the classroom
  17. Solution-focused conversations to build and enhance client engagement