Implementing the BSFT® Program : Program Summary

Program Summary

“The BSFT® Program intervention is not about symptom reduction; it’s about restructuring and mobilizing the family. To achieve that, our program engages the agency and the family.” – Joan Muir, Ph.D., Brief Strategic Family Therapy® Institute Executive Director

Brief Strategic Family Therapy® Program Summary

The Brief Strategic Family Therapy® (BSFT®) model is a short-term, structured, problem-focused, and practical approach to the treatment of adolescent conduct problems, associations with antisocial peers, drug use and their accompanying maladaptive family interactions. Brief Strategic Family Therapy® is conducted in 12 to 16 weekly sessions, depending on the severity of the problems. The BSFT® model does not rely on the family’s abilities to come into the session. Rather, the model provides specialized outreach strategies for bringing families into therapy.

The BSFT® model has been developed by a team of researchers led by José Szapocznik, Ph.D. at the Center for Family Studies, University of Miami since 1978. The Center for Family Studies is the nation’s oldest and most prominent center for development and testing of minority family therapy interventions for prevention and treatment of adolescent substance abuse and related behavior problems.

Introductory Workshop in Brief Strategic Family Therapy®

The BSFT® Program introductory workshops are offered to administrative, supervisory staff, case managers, stakeholders and other interested parties whose presence will support the implementation of the model. Because the BSFT® Program requires rehearsal and coaching under the supervision of a BSFT® Model Manager, it is recognized that educational presentations on the BSFT® Program would not be sufficient to ensure effective delivery of the BSFT® Program. To use this research tested model and achieve desired outcomes, training and supervision under the direction of a BSFT® Model Manager is necessary.

Interactive Workshops for Training in the BSFT® Program

  • There are three three-day Interactive Workshops.
  • Each workshop will be conducted at the agency site by a BSFT® Model Manager and consists of interactive lectures, taped demonstrations of family therapy sessions, and clinical case consultations.

Weekly Supervision Sessions

  • Weekly supervision is conducted via video conference and the BSFT® Model Manager will provide feedback to therapists on their digitally recorded family sessions.
  • It is required that family therapy sessions be recorded and downloaded to the BSFT® Model Manager weekly and prior to supervision.

Please contact the Brief Strategic Family Therapy® Institute at 305-243-7585 ( to learn more about supervision to competency, consultations, booster workshops and site licensing.