Training & Courses

Training Programmes

Couple Counselling – the Family Systems Approach

The Bowen theory stipulates that effective relationships involve developing a solid sense of self, getting the focus off of our partner and onto myself, and managing the emotional intensity between us. Instead of seeing marital problems as stemming from individual psychopathology, and therapy as helping the partners to satisfy each other’s needs, Bowen theory provides a systemic framework to understanding marital problems, and to manage the clinical relationships with the couple and their family systems.

Course Objectives

This course aims to facilitate the application of the Bowen Family Systems theory to working with couples.

The teaching will be based on the book: Richardson, R. (2010). Couples in Conflict – A family Systems Approach to Marriage Counseling. Minneapolis: Fortress Press.


Course Content

1.  What is a good marriage?!

     Marriage and the family emotional system.

2.  A new way of caring - The counselling relationship in Bowen theory

3.  Assessment of the couple functioning - Defining the emotional process in the marriage,

     how anxiety and stress influence the emotional process in the marriage and the interlocking triangles.

4.  Goals for the counselling proces

5.  Addressing the triangles in couple counselling

6.  Defining a self in the marriage and the extended family

7.  The counselling process


Course Details
Course Code:

CC 04/17

Date & Time: 

June. 6, 13, 27 & July 4, 11, 18, 2017(Tues) 6:45 pm- 9:45 pm


$3,500 (COF: $3,400)


Mrs. Peggy Chan    B.Soc.Sc., M.Ed., R.S.W.

Peggy Chan is presently Director of Programme, ISS Family Institute, International Social Service Hong Kong Branch. She also teaches at a local university counseling programme. She has over 20 years of experience in counseling individuals and families, conducting clinical supervision, and training professionals. She has attended five years of the Postgraduate Program on Bowen Family Systems Theory and Its Applications at the Bowen Center for the Study of the Family in Washington, DC, U.S.A. Prior to that, she had also attended the 2-year training program on Family Systems Therapy at Pacific Coast Family Therapy Association in Vancouver, Canada. She has devoted herself to understanding the Bowen theory and applying it to her clinical work and daily life since the early 1990s.

She has rich experience of counselling a wide variety of clients and problems, both in Hong Kong and in Vancouver. Her areas of specialization include marital and women‘s issues, sexual issues, loss and grief, parent-child relationship difficulties, and cultural adaptation.



You may download the application form as below, or proceed for online enrollment. 

Click here for application form in word format
Click here for application form in PDF format