Austin Group Psychotherapy Society

Institute - Helping Every Group Client Grow: Working with Common Defense Strategies in Group Therapy (First Year Scholarship)

  • Saturday, June 26, 2021
  • 9:00 AM
  • Sunday, June 27, 2021
  • 12:15 PM
  • Online Event


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Facilitated by Pierre Choucroun, PhD, LPC-S, CGP

Event Description:

The task of the therapy group is to help clients develop new ways of relating with people that meet their emotional needs more directly. This task conflicts with the defense strategies that our clients use to keep themselves from feeling all emotions. Our clients' character traits often aid them in maintaining a defended posture in group. As a therapist, it can be difficult to balance between allowing clients to stay where they are emotionally and using group interventions in an active way. This institute will focus on techniques that group therapists can use to support and intervene with clients’ defenses over the lifespan of a group. Working with these defenses helps clients freely participate in their therapy groups and live in more cooperative ways.

Please Note: This event is specifically for first year AGPS scholarship recipients who have been pre-approved for registration.

About the Presenter:

Pierre Choucroun, PhD, LPC-S, CGP, is a Certified Group Psychotherapist and has been in practice for over fifteen years. He is President-Elect of the Austin Group Psychotherapy Society and an active member of the American Group Psychotherapy Association. Pierre began his career providing individual, family, and group therapy to criminal offenders, bereaved families, and patients facing end-of-life issues. He holds a PhD in Counselor Education and Supervision and has additional specializations in working with patient defenses and high-conflict families. Pierre currently focuses on long-term psychoanalytic work with groups and individuals. He currently leads and co-leads ongoing therapy groups, and one training group, in his private practice.

What Are Group Institutes?

Institutes are a highly experiential form of small group teaching led by experienced instructors. They are intended to develop therapy skills relevant to leading groups. They often offer a chance to explore a particular theme in greater depth or to experience a different theoretical approach. Institutes are primarily designed for mental health professionals who have clinical psychotherapy experience. While institutes are not therapy, they are process-oriented and it is expected that they may stir feelings spanning the whole range of human experience. Members agree to attend the entire group, to participate actively, and to respect the confidentiality of the other members. The secure environment of these small groups allows for rich cognitive and deep emotional learning about group process and oneself, not to mention a chance for personal and professional renewal.


Saturday, 6/26/21

Process 9:00am-10:30am

Break 10:30am-10:45am

Process 10:45am-12:15pm

Lunch 12:15pm- 1:45pm

Process 1:45pm-3:15pm

Break 3:15pm-3:30pm

Process 3:30pm-5:00pm

Sunday, 6/27/21

Process 9:00am-10:30am

Break 10:30am-10:45am

Process 10:45am-12:15pm


The participant will be able to:

1: Define and apply the concepts of defense and resistance.

2: Identify approaches that interrupt treatment destructive behavior and prolong effective treatment.

3: Describe how countertransference feelings are used to intervene with defenses and resistance.

9 CEUs available for social workers, LPCs, LMFTs, and psychologists.

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