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Attachment-Based Family Therapy Workshop


Future dates to be announced soon!

ABFT is the only manualized, empirically informed family therapy model specifically designed to target family and individual processes associated with adolescent suicide and depression. ABFT emerges from interpersonal theories that suggest adolescent depression and suicide can be precipitated, exacerbated or buffered against by the quality of interpersonal relationships in families. It is a trust-based, emotion-focused psychotherapy model that aims to repair interpersonal ruptures and rebuild an emotionally protective, secure-based parent-child relationship. 

Treatment is characterized by five treatment tasks:

  • Reframing the therapy to focus on interpersonal development
  • Building alliance with the adolescent
  • Building alliance with the parents
  • Facilitating conversations to resolve attachment ruptures
  • Promoting autonomy and competency in the adolescent.

Attachment-Based Family TherapyOverview of the ABFT Workshop

Drexel's ABFT Training Program runs a series of workshops throughout the year both at Drexel University, nationally and internationally. All workshops run for one to three days.

On Day One we offer a one day overview of the model including theoretical principles and clinical strategies. Faculty review how attachment theory, emotion regulation, and trauma resolution inform the delivery of this experiential treatment approach. We also review the goals and structure of the five treatment tasks that provide a road map for delivering this interpersonally focused psychotherapy effectively and rapidly. Enrollment for Day One is unlimited (as permitted by space) and a student price is offered.

Teaching format on Day One includes lecture and video examples. For those interested in more intensive training, Days Two and Three provide a more in-depth look at the procedures and process involved in facilitating the therapy. The teaching format includes lecture, video tape review, case discussion, and role play. There is limited enrollment for these two days and no student price.

The full three day workshop is the beginning of a two year credentialing program for those interested in ongoing supervision. Commitment to continue is not required for participation.

Target Audience

Psychologists, Social Workers, Couple and Family Therapists, Counselors, Psychotherapists, Psychiatrists and Mental Health Professionals

Program Topics

Introduction, Theory and Overview of ABFT

  • Task 1: Relational Frame
  • Task II: Alliance Building with the Adolescent
  • Task III: Alliance Building with the Parent
  • Task IV: Attachment Task
  • Task V: Autonomy Promoting Task
  • Task I: Relational Frame – Video Review & Discussion
  • Task I: Relational Frame Role Play
  • Task II: Alliance Building with the Adolescent Alone Video Review & Discussion
  • Task III: Alliance Building with the Parent Alone Video Review & Discussion
  • Task III: Alliance Building with the Parent Alone Video & Discussion and role play
  • Task IV: Attachment Task Video Review & Discussion
  • Task IV: Attachment Role Play
  • Task V: Autonomy Promoting Task Video & Discussion


Day One only - $130 (Students and Drexel Faculty - $65)
Days One, Two & Three - $475

Certificate Fees

APA CE - $35 per certificate
LMFT, LCSW, LSW & LPCs - $15 per certificate

Tuition Includes
Day One only:
• Presentation slides and video transcripts
• Coffee and refreshment breaks
• Contact Hour certificate

Days Two & Three:
• Day Two & Three presentation and transcripts
• Overview sheets
• Adherence Measures
• Daily coffee/refreshment breaks and lunch
• Contact Hour certificate

Cancellation and Refund Policy
A $25.00 administration fee will be charged for all refunds. Telephone requests will be honored up to four business days before the start of the course begins and must be confirmed in writing. If cancellation occurs within three business days prior to the course, a refund will not be available.
However, the full amount of tuition may be applied to a future course (Note: certain restrictions apply.)

Allow minimum of six weeks from date of course completion for processing refunds. Please Note: A $50.00 administrative fee will be charged for any returned checks due to insufficient funds.

Travel Info

Philadelphia Workshops:

Directions to Drexel's Center City Hahnemann Campus

Discounted Hotel Rates

Drexel University has discounted rates with hotels in Philadelphia. Please visit the Drexel University Procurement web page.


Guy Diamond Ph.D.

Guy Diamond Ph.D. is Professor Emeritus at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and Associate Professor at Drexel University in the College of Nursing and Health Professions. At Drexel, he is the Director of the Center for Family Intervention Science (CFIS) and the Director of the Ph.D. program in Couple and Family Therapy. CFIS was founded in 1996 and has received funding from NIMH, SAMSHA, CDC, CSAT and several private foundations. CFIS is dedicated to the development; testing and dissemination of Attachment-Based Family Therapy (ABFT) for depressed and suicidal youth. ABFT has been rigorously tested in several clinical trials and process research studies and now enjoys the distinction of being an empirically supported treatment on SAMHSA’s NREPP web site. Dr. Diamond is also the lead developer of the Behavioral Health Screening (BHS) tool, a web based tool for mental health and non mental health settings. The BHS is in primary care, emergency rooms, schools and college health and mental health centers. Dr. Diamond recently became the Director of the Ph.D. program for the Couple and Family Therapy program at Drexel. The new program aims to train the next generation of family intervention scientist who can bring more empirical support to family therapy and help disseminate it into the health care environment.

Suzanne Levy

Dr. Levy is a licensed clinical psychologist and Director of the ABFT Training Program at Drexel University’s College of Nursing and Health Professions. Dr. Levy conducts ABFT training workshops and supervision for therapists nationally and internationally. She also over sees the ABFT treatment in the Drexel Center for Family Intervention Science’s clinical trials. She is a co-author of the forth coming book on ABFT.


To provide an overview of the ABFT model including theoretical principles and clinical strategies.

Overall program objectives:

  • Discuss the theoretical foundation of ABFT
  • Describe the five treatment task structure of the model
  • Describe how to organize therapy around interpersonal growth rather than behavioral management
  • Discuss the importance of each of the five treatment tasks
  • Describe the specific phases within each treatment task
  • Discuss how to apply specific strategies for facilitating the repair of interpersonal ruptures.

Drexel University‘s Couple and Family Therapy Department is a Pre-approved Provider by the Pennsylvania State Board of Social Work, Marriage and Family Therapy and Professional Counselors of Continuing Education Credits. Drexel University Couple and Family Therapy Department maintains responsibility for the program and content.

For LMFT, LCSW, LSW, and LPCs: The workshop qualifies for the following continuing education credits: 7 CEU’s for Day One only and 19 total CEU’s for all three days. A Certificate of Participation will be awarded at the end of the presentation to all who attend and follow protocol for registration and evaluation forms. There is a $15 fee for certificates.

For Psychologists: Drexel University’s College of Medicine, Division of Behavioral Healthcare Education is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for Psychologists and maintains responsibility for the program and its content. This program is being offered for 6.75 credits for Day One and 19 total credits for all three days. For APA CE, $35 per certificate.

Accreditation does not imply that Drexel College of Nursing and Health Professions, or Drexel University College of Medicine, Division of Behavioral Healthcare Education approves or endorses any product included in the educational activity.

Disclosure statement:
All planners and presenters at nursing continuing education activities are required to disclose to the audience any significant financial relationships with the manufacturer(s) of any commercial products, goods or services.  Such disclosures will be made in writing in the course presentation materials.

Commercial support:
No commercial support was received for this program.

No sponsorship was received for this program.

Unrestricted Educational Grant
No unrestricted educational grant was received for this program.

There are currently no Attachment-Based Family Therapy sessions scheduled.